Saturday, October 22, 2016

2016 SMR 36

Man, did the flat ride last Saturday and didn't make it to the health club this week, and it was harder than usual climbing The Mountain today.  Beautiful weather though, started out a little cool and then got a little warm.

Exciting - this car passed JB and me just before Livermore Overlook.  His engine was making a funny noise and then we smelled something burning and we figured he didn't know how to drive...

...but as it turns out HIS CAR WAS ON FIRE!

Lucky he had the Overlook to pull over at so he didn't start a vegetation fire.  I called the ranger phone and got a voice mail, so I called 911 and got transferred to the fire department.  But then the rangers showed up with a fire extinguisher and cancelled the fire truck.

Hey, a hang-glider... no, it has an engine... some kind of ultralight.

I'm not sure what they're doing with the Summit bathrooms, but there's a couple porta-potties here now.

We stopped to talk to car fire guy on the way down, turns out he's a friendly guy who just had some bad luck... surprisingly in a good mood about the whole thing, waiting for the tow truck.

 Tarantula Tally:  one crawler near Moss Landing.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

2016 Foxy's with Vladimir

My 16-year old neighbor Vladimir decided to do another organized ride with me, and together we selected Foxy's.

We dodged a bullet because there was a big storm this weekend and it turned out the ride time was about the only time it wasn't raining.  So it was a little cool and a little windy but thoroughly enjoyable.

I also enjoy passing along cycling knowledge to the younger generation, so the night before we went over all the preparations and what to expect and what to bring, and did some bike maintenance.

Vladimir paid attention to my safety instructions, and ride courtesy suggestions, and even a few more advanced cycling tips.

We got behind a couple of hipsters on fixies and he may have put out a little too much effort keeping up with them, but I explained the rule about not passing unless you're sure you can stay in front, and after a while we let them go.

Toward the end of the ride it got quite a bit windier and Vladimir started to suffer... just enough that I was sure he would remember the ride as an endurance event that he succeeded in, and it wasn't easy... that's kind of the point, right?

Foxy's was the ride when two years ago I broke my ribs in a crash.  We didn't ride by that spot on the 50km route, but I did walk past the place in the lunch room where I sat with a bag of ice on my chest; still at that point unaware of how badly I was hurt.  There was no sentimental moment associated with it.

Ride photos by Captivating Sports Photos.  This is a really nice perq that the Davis Bike Club offers - I guess they pay to have all the photos be available for free, rather than the usual model of having "proof" photos on-line with watermark/proof/branding that an individual can buy a nice electronic or physical copy of.

Back home and it started to rain - like I said, the timing was fortuitous.

Obligatory event video:

2016 Foxy's With Vladimir from Diablo Scott on Vimeo.

Saturday, October 08, 2016

2016 SMR 35

Kind of quiet this morning, not too many riders.  The sun was in our eyes for way too much of the ride though... just that time of year.

Wildlife Encounter:  whole pack of deer on the approach.

Did you know there's a fictional murder mystery book that takes place on Mount Diablo?

Amazon Link

Other than the location, it doesn't look like my kind of novel though.

Product Review:  Serfas FP200 Floor Pump

My Joe Blow gave up the ghost this week - time for a new one.  Big Dave recommended the Serfas and said it's the one they use in the shop... that's good enough for me.

I really liked the head on my Joe Blow - one side for presta, one side for Schraeder - simple.

Here's the culprit... failed check valve.  When this little doohickey goes fubar, your whole pump is snafu.

I saved the head and the hose ... I seem like the kind of guy who does that.

OK, now for the new pump.

Stable foot, gauge up high for visibility, smart hose attachments.

Lifetime warranty excludes "normal wear and tear"... that's kind of bogus.

This head is different from the Joe Blow - a single port somehow knows if you're putting in a presta or Schraeder; that was my biggest concern but it works fine.

Comes with a little pack with a ball inflator and a nozzle thing for rafts or something.

Look at that - fits just fine.

The pump has a real positive stroke too - you just know all the air is going to the right place and every pump counts.

The Serfas FP200 gets a rare 10 out of 10 on the Diablo Scott floor pump rating system. I honestly can't think of anything they could do to make it better.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

2016 SMR 34

Cold this morning, almost needed tights... not quite.

There was an event going on but the Junction was mile 80 so we didn't see many of them when we were there:

Best of the Bay Double Century

Road Closed?  That doesn't apply to me.

Best of the Bay Profile

 This guy complimented me on my classic bike... auto blog.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

2016 Diablo Challenge Volunteer

This is the 8th time in 10 years I've volunteered for this event.
Check out these blog post links:

  1. 2007
  2. 2008
  3. 2009
  4. 2010
  5. 2013
  6. 2014
  7. 2015
  8. 2016

Things went pretty smoothly except they moved registration to the parking lot instead of the start line, so people were showing up late to the Athenian School area.  Also since the forecast was for warm weather, fewer riders opted to have warm clothes when they got to the top, so there weren't nearly as many backpacks as usual.  That meant there was kind of a last-minute rush to get things in my truck, but there weren't all that many things to load anyway.

The other change was at the Lower Lot there were chairs and event-type bike parking so the organization at the top was superb... much nicer than people just laying their bikes everywhere like in previous years.

Blog Reader Rick pulled off a PB of 55m04s... which is about my time to The Junction yesterday... of course The Challenge goes up The Easy Side.

Click below for fast motion finish line action!

Where is everybody?

Bay Area Cycling Legend Chuck Tyler - voice of the Start Line

I forget this guy's name
CHARLEY - Thanks Christine!
 but he's a manufacturer's rep
for several bicycle companies and has some great stories.

John Slawta of Landshark fame, and Jenny Slawta of female 
Diablo Challenge Champion fame.
They come every year with their two young sons 

who are both incredible riders too.

Diablo Daughter enjoys the vegan fig bar of volunteerism.

Uber legend Bob Roll acting like a normal guy.

Bobke tells some stories on stage.

Blah blah safety... OK go.

Your humble blogger and his fan kit.