Type 2 Diabetic. Bike tour guide. #NextBurgh Flâneur.   Coffeeneur.    Errandoneur
A bike / map geek with a gadget obsession and a high-viz fetish. by Vannevar Bush       about       /       murals       /       Pgh-DC bike maps new

Monday, February 13, 2012

Monday Mileage

02/13/12 #238 28m 2h28m 34F

I was experiencing a bit of cabin fever because it's been about six days since my last ride (although there's no complaining about this year's winter) and I was eager to get a ride in today, because the next few days are not promising. Today was cold and dry.

I drove to the Bastille trailhead and got my togs on. In deference to the low temperature I wore my mid-weight wool sweater, my Wombat gloves, and I put chemical toe warmers inside my booties. Inevitably, I lifted my bike off the rack and found a flat front tire. Argghhhh.

I couldn't find a leak anywhere, and it seemed like the valve core itself was loose so I tightened it and hoped for the best. Generally you don't use pliers to fix tires. It did seem to fix the problem, although I was not sanguine at starting a ride in 34F with a questionable wheel.

I rode around the Casino and the stadia, and encountered a trail closure at the baseball stadium - fortunately, the Friends of the Riverfront had advertised the closure (concrete work, Feb 6 to April 1) on their Facebook page so it was no surprise.

Continued along River Street to the 31st Street Bridge, then got back on the trail. It looked as if somebody had used the volunteer's shovels to clear the snow from the new concrete piers, very nice job. Went into Millvale looking for the mural, "A Walk Through Millvale" (2003) by Sandy Kessler Kaminsky, located at 112 Lincoln Ave Millvale, PA 15209.

It's a great mural. I can identify Marc Chatellier's Bakery, Mr. Small's Funhouse and Recording Studio, the Lincoln Ave. Pamela's, the 40th Street Bridge, and possibly St. Nicholas' Church.

Crossed the (actual) 40th Street Bridge, and rode west on Butler Street. At 3711 Butler Street, the location of Elisco Advertising's Creative Cafe (fresh ideas served daily!), I saw this mural which I believe is in the parking lot for an adjacent hair salon:

No information available on the work's title or artist.

Joined the Strip Trail at the Cork Factory, there was more snow on this than I expected, and rode around to the Point. Used Boulevard of the Allies to Grant Street, and the Jail Trail to the Hot Metal Bridge.

It appeared that on both ends of the Hot Metal Bridge, volunteers had used the shovels provided to clear a path through the snow, many thanks! I took the Baldwin Trail south to Keystone Metals, entertained hopeful thoughts about the Sandcastle Solution, and then reversed and rode north through South Side Works.

Quite a few runners out, not too many bicyclists. I did see one bicyclist, opposite direction in an orange jacket, who gave an excellent demonstration of the effectiveness of a good front blinky - it caught my eye much earlier than he would have otherwise.

Dropped my chain climbing around the curve to the Ft. Pitt Bridge, this is happening more and more, the Long Haul Trucker is due for a drivetrain overhaul in the near future.

Took the Ft. Duquesne Bridge and the Casino Trail back to the Bastille, saw a few more bicyclists out. It was a pleasure to get off the bike at 5:40 pm and still be in daylight.

This was a great ride that I really needed. The toe warmers were extremely effective, I wasn't cold at all on this ride.

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