2016 Seattle To Portland Ride Report

While I’ve talked a lot about the Seattle to Portland (STP) ride in the past, I unfortunately wasn’t able to make it this year. Luckily David Bussey did – and completed it in one day. David is a long time friend of JustAnotherCyclist.com, and was also one of the core members of the VeloReviews online cycling community. I’m excited that David agreed to share his experiences from the 2016 STP.

STP where virtual meets reality

By David Bussey

The decision

I ride with a group of guys with an interactive online cycling “game” called Zwift, where you ride your bike in the game, and as you pedal faster thru ant+ speed or power meter and cadence your in game rider rides faster.  This game launched beta in late 2014, I got an invite approval in April 2015, still early in the process. This group of riders races together, does 62 mile weekly endurance rides, and we use an audio app that lets us in essence have “race radio”.  We have gotten to know each other but not IRL (in real life).  Well, late in 2015 we began talking about getting this group to meet up for a ride, maybe STP [Seattle to Portland]. Some had done it in prior years some (myself) had not. We decided to give it a go, and to do the 205 mile ride in one day. What? Keep reading →

Far End Gear XDU stereo earbud

Far End Gear XDU stereo earbud
Far End Gear XDU stereo earbud

I avoided riding with headphones for a long time. I simply wasn’t that comfortable with my ears covered – especially in busy San Francisco traffic. I had experimented a couple of times with riding with one earbud in. But this invariably lead to me either hearing only half of the music, or switching back and forth between stereo and mono settings on my iPhone. Neither of these options were particularly appealing.

However, after a little shopping on Amazon I came across the Far End Gear XDU stereo earbud. It plays both the left and right stereo channels it a single earbud.

Keep reading →

Salsa Vaya Claris Adventure Touring Bike

2017 Salsa Vaya Claris with Tubus Cosmo rear rack and Ortlieb Backpacker plus
2017 Salsa Vaya Claris with Tubus Cosmo rear rack and Ortlieb Backpacker plus

The 2017 Salsa Vaya has some updates over previous model years, and one of those is the introduction of a Claris 8 speed build. The bike is being sold as a “road adventure and light touring bike.” I started looking to build up my own touring bike out or Eloise – my vintage Motobecane. As the price point for the SRAM build I was looking at crossed $1000 I started to recall my long unfulfilled desire to own a Surly Long Haul Trucker. That lead me to my favorite local independent bike shop Huckleberry Bicycles. The staff there, continuing their long run of really good service and sound advise, turned me on to the Salsa Vaya.

Keep reading →

Coros LINX Smart Cycling Helmet safely delivers audio

Coros LINX smart cycling helmetRedmond, WA company Coros Wearables is launching a new helmet that comes with more than the usual bells and whistles. The product, launched on KickStarter, has been dubbed the Coros LINX Smart Cycling Helmet. In a nutshell, it is a bunch of useful technology stuck into a bicycle helmet. If you are going to wear a helmet, you might as well use one that comes with a smartphone app.

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A picture guide to bikes for car owners

If you’ve been living in a car-centric world like most of the US, this picture guide to bikes for car owners can help you understand the different styles. Bikes are just as varied – and maybe more so – than cars. That can make selecting a bike a bit confusing, especially for first time buyers. Most of us have ridden a bike as a kid, but if there has been a gap of a decade or more since you have thrown your leg over a bike, then you are probably in the “first time buyer” camp. When you are a kid you probably just begged your parents for whatever the other kids had. As an adult your decision making process is probably a bit different.

Or maybe not…

At any rate it can be helpful to think of the different bikes in a context of something you already know – different cars. So, here’s your picture guide for bikes. A side-by-side cheat sheet.

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San Francisco candidates spar over bike licensing

Bicycle LicensingFive days ago I ran across an article in the San Francisco examiner titled “Time to mandate bicycle licenses.” I did my obligatory eye-roll and read the article. It was the same arguments we hear over and over again:

  • Don’t get mad at me, I’m a cyclist myself
  • Cyclists need to be held accountable
  • Cyclists need to be treated the same as (those poor) motorists

Funny the article was titled “Time to mandate bicycle licenses.” As if the idea hadn’t ever been suggested before, but now is different. Now is the time.

Yesterday, the plot thickened…

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Brooks England launching two new bicycle helmets

Island Bicycle Helmet by Brooks England
Island Bicycle Helmet by Brooks England

Brooks England has added two new helmets to their iconic line of saddles, bags and clothing. These are currently being release in pre-order on their website, and are expected to ship by spring of 2017.

Both helmets will be released in two sizes, M (53-58cm) and L (59-62cm).

The ISLAND, our first Commuter Helmet, and the HARRIER, our first Road Helmet, are currently in development. Soon they will be in pre-production, the full commercial release being planned for Spring 2017


Keep reading →

Adult Bicycle Helmet Laws In the US

Bicycle HelmetAdult bicycle helmet laws draw no end of passion on both sides. We don’t call them the “bicycle helmet wars” for nothing. But until recently I was under the mistaken belief that there were few – if any – jurisdictions in the United States that actually had laws regarding adult usage of bicycle helmets. This belief was shattered on a recent trip to Washington state where, coincidentally, two totally different people completely unconnected made comments about King County Washington having a helmet requirement for adults.

Me being Mr. Skeptical of course went to the one and only authority as soon as I got home – Google. I was admittedly surprised. Keep reading →

“The Program” – a movie review

The Program - a movie about the career of Lance ArmstrongI just finished watching “The Program” – a dramatized version of the events of Lance Armstrong. The movie itself credits its inspiration to David Walsh and his book “Seven Deadly Sins.” Somehow I had been aware of this movie and had (incorrectly) assumed that it was another in the line of documentary works that come out since the Oprah Winfrey interview with Lance Armstrong. After watching, however, I realized this was a bit different.

This movie was a dramatization in that there were actors playing all the roles. The astute cycling fans will recognize the moments of actual footage scattered throughout the production. But there is no denying that Lance Armstrong, Frankie and Betsy Andreu, Johan Bruyneel and other key figures were played by actors. That sets it apart from the majority of the films published since Lance Armstrong’s admissions. Keep reading →

The feel good story that keeps getting better

13467596_573088359537395_671161118_oNot too long ago I I related to you the ‘Feel good story of the day‘ that I’d stumbled upon on Facebook. It is an epic tale that should have been titled Michael and the well ridden bicycle. Our intrepid hero Michael had run into a lovely lady and her bike in need or repair. Well, there is now a second part of that’s story. That’s right – Michael actually connected with the bike’s owner and lived up to his word. Keep reading →