Type 2 Diabetic. Cyclist Flâneur.   Coffeeneur.    Errandoneur
A bike / map geek with a gadget obsession and a high-viz fetish.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

6.29.2016 4m
6.30.2016 18m
June eom: 314 ytd: 1095
Riding along Baum Blvd, saw this billboard put up by the American Orthodpedic Association. I like the Orthopods, and I like a public message that reminds me that cyclists are fragile.

What I don't like about the sign is the negative opening.
It flows like: We all know that some cyclists break rules
BUT REALLY you should remember they're fragile.

What kind of opener is that? Here's some parallel examples.
  • Not all women are sober and modest. BUT Fund Planned Parenthood
  • Not all black people aspire to "white success". BUT Restore the Voting Rights Act
  • Some children really misbehave. BUT store your guns securely, and where kids can't find them
I really prefer the sign carried this message: Great day for riding. Got to see Jon, JP, YC, and SB. Heard this later in the day on NPR. Excellent listening:

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Bane, Shrub, Tunnels & Ice Cream

June 7 22miles
June 8 24 miles
June 9 45 miles
June12 9 miles
June 14 18miles
June 15 12 miles
June 18 26m
June20 23m
June22 15m
June 25 19m
June mtd: 292 ytd: 1073

In case you've missed it, I have an ongoing internal question about the difference and similarities between homeless people and camping cyclists, and our social response to each.

This is a new campsite along the SouthSide Trail (notably not the GAP) - It's a marvel. Carpet, planters, hummingbird feeder.

The explicit, "out" campsites along the trail have recently been augmented by this, at Hot Metal Street and the GAP trail:

It's right across the street from a rather upper-end hotel, I imagine they'd prefer it not be there.

Tuesday June 7th I rode with a couple from California from the Waterfront out
to Boston PA (using the McKeesport Loop detour).

Wednesday 6/08 I putzed around town and ran some errands, which included picking up the second print run of my Pittsburgh to DC bike trail map. Took a picture of my newest water bottle with the Water Cube on Penn at 8th: free cold seltzer!

June 9th I met an outgoing tour group at their Penn Ave hotel. We rode under the Convention Center, along the Allegheny to Point State Park. Then I rode with them out along the GAP, using the McKeesport Loop detour because the Durabond Bypass was being paved. Very nice people. One of the folks, Gordon, was a frame-builder.

June 12, Golden Triangle Bikes had a GAP Trail Day event. I put up my tent & hammock to demonstrate camping gear, and loaded up a rental LHT to show how the bike looks with panniers etc.

As summertime warms up, the overhead misting station at Golden Triangle Bikes is getting more appreciation:

I had a chance to participate in a Brews & Bikes Tour, featuring beer from Mt. Lebanon's Hitchhiker Brewing. This was a sampling of their Bane of Existence on the Hot Metal Bridge:

We also rode around to the North Side, and in the archway of the former Manchester Bridge we had a beer sampling with Mr Rogers. There was audio of his TV show playing, I don't remember that from previous visits.

June 20, Golden Triangle Bikes hosted a bike tour of Pittsburgh for a Mt. Lebanon Vacation Bible School group of about 45 youngsters.

The trail always presents new things. Here we encountered a few ballerinas on the Hot Metal Bridge. The scrounge campsite is about 100 feet south of this location:

Rode with my wife Karen to Caffe d'Amore (Butler and 54th) to experience their Shrub Sampler. Shrub is a vinegar-based fruit drink (which by itself was once known as drinking vinegar) mixed with club soda. It was a refreshing, novel taste and I'm glad I got to try it.

June 25 we met Denny and Doreen, Rusty and Donna, and Kevin, Mari, & Mindy in Breezewood for a ride on the Abandoned Turnpike Trail. This was a great ride. We pre-positioned a van at the eastern end of the publicly accessible trail. Our ride started at the western end, in Breezewood on Route 30.

It is "darker than the inside of a cow" in the longer of the two tunnels. A great place to evaluate your lighting kit.

When we reached the eastern end, we rode north on Pump Station Road (428), then north on North Hess Road (4007), and then turned right (east) onto Mountain House Road (4006) which takes one directly into the employee parking lot Sideling Hill Turnpike Plaza (where they have ice cream). We really enjoyed the ice cream and it was very cool to bike into a turnpike rest stop.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Sacramento on the Mon

6.4.2016 30m
June mtd: 40 ytd: 819
Met a couple of Californians at the Waterfront and escorted them out to Boston PA. Riding through the-town-formerly-known-as-McKeesport, I was surprised to see that the municipal building -slash- police headquarters looked like this:

Probably there's a movie going to film there. This got me wondering about the origin of the name, Sacramento, and the machine suggests:
The city was named after the Sacramento River, which forms its western border. The river was named by Spanish cavalry officer Gabriel Moraga for the Santísimo Sacramento (Blessed Sacrament), referring to the Catholic Eucharist.

The web advertised a trail closure at the Durabond Bypass for repaving, so we took the McKeesport Loop detour. It had been a year since I'd taken the Loop. Although it often has glass on it, there wasn't any and the alt-transition went well.

Sitting at the Boston Trailhead, I saw riders coming and going on the normal route. A Trail Monitor who came by explained that the contractors didn't show up, so they left the route open.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016


40m May eom: 239
June mtd: 10 ytd: 789
Saturday 5/28 I got off to a late start. Made camp in Dravo Campground. Saw this most excellent Dutch bike and a hammock set up on the lower level:

Late at night I saw a message, Sarah and Noah and JohnA and JonP were inbound. Very excellent. They arrived late in the dark, and I was impressed at their makeshift MidRats of cheese & bacon on hot dog rolls.

Noah, who is a photographer, took this most excellent photo.

In the morning, I was treated to a Master's Seminar on camp coffee procedures. All the coffee was wonderful, and I was stunned by this Ortlieb drip-coffee thingy:

Monday I hoped to enjoy the Buena Vista pool, but it was not to be; they open next week. Read a book, caught some rays, took a nap, rode some bike. Nice day.

Tuesday evening there was a quarrel in the campsite between two 20-something kids that would be called Crusties in the SouthSide, and an older man who regularly sleeps at Dravo. My quiet inner voice told me I should pack up and get out of there, but I didn't and I should have. In the morning, one or the other had stolen my camp stove and my solar-shower rig. Learned a lesson.

Rode into Pittsburgh. Ran errands on the bike which is really a great way to get around town.

Thursday I dropped off a new document for the next revision of the Pittsburgh to DC Trail Guide I've been working on with Golden Triangle Bike. Had an email from PaulH, with a picture of him picking up the map - very exciting.