Narrow, Winding Roads in Maui

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by Byron on Dec 22, 2006 at 9:44 AM

narrow, winding

While this “mountain in the middle of an ocean” is as car culture as it gets, after pedaling a few minutes from our resort, we found ourselves climbing, descending, and cornering the narrow, winding roads of Maui.

Last year when were in Kihei, rode Haleakala, the winery, and along the beaches. This year in the Lahaina, Napili area, we rode what I called the “road of the Gods” and the locals call the Jim Stuart Memorial (pdf).

Over 3k feet of climbing in 60 miles and featuring Mr Steepy the ride exhilarates, breaks your legs, and finishes with a 30 mph tailwind-tempo ride back into town.

Along the way and after recovering from Mr. Steepy’s 20 percent grade, we stopped for banana bread at Kahakalua and that fueled us back to the resort.

banana bread

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Ktrak: Non-Dopey Snow Bike?

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by Jason Swihart on Dec 21, 2006 at 6:12 PM

Hang around either the ski or the bicycle industries, and eventually you’ll encounter some form of snowbike–a misbegotten contraption that neither skis nors bikes, looks dopey, and strands its rider at the bottom of the hill.

ktrak.jpgEnter Ktrak: a snow bike that looks like fun and uses the rider’s “legs” to drive a track and thereby create locomotion. The question are: can it go uphill and can it handle deep powder?

Cross-posted to Snow Hugger

Via Engadget

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Stocking Stuffers

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by andrew_f_martin on Dec 19, 2006 at 4:49 PM

I’m practical. I know my wife and family wouldn’t dare buy me more than a $20 cycling item. They know that no matter who they ask, it’ll probably end up being the wrong size/fit/style/color. That said there’s always room for stocking stuffers so here’s a list of the last minute little things I (and I assume most cyclists) can’t get enough of:

  1. Glove Liners - I’m not sure of the physics, but glove liners keep my hands feeling dryer in my wet gloves. I also tend to loose these a lot, thus the need for many.

  2. Smartwool Socks - I’m sure other brands are just as good, but I love my Smartwools. They are perfect for combating wet feet and they can pinch-hit as work socks if I forget.

  3. Red Blinkies - I always loose/break these things. I strap them to all of my bags and like to keep extras on hand when I run out of battery.

  4. Chamois Creme - I’m partial to Greyhound Juice, but there are plenty of players out there. It’s a consumable and I prefer to have a stash in my closet, my garage, my gym locker, and in my messenger bag.

  5. Cycling DVD’s - When I need to, I ride the trainer, and the only thing better than watching “Lost” on the trainer, is a bike movie. 90 minutes never went by so quick.

  6. Base Layers - Now that I’ve gotten used to these, I use one for every ride. The more base layers, the less often I need to do laundry.

  7. Knogs - Like rear blinkies, these are great to have on hand in case I get caught out a little later than planned.

  8. Casual Wear - who doesn’t need a cool heather-green T-Shirt?

I’d love to hear other ideas, mostly so I can try out more stuff!

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Detour

4

by andrew_f_martin on Dec 19, 2006 at 10:39 AM

Commuter (Photo Courtesy of Trevor)

With all the wind damage, riding on the trail required skills most of us aren’t used to employing on the way into the office this week. This morning debris was finally cleared and the parade of commuters is back to “normal”.

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LEDs

4

by andrew_f_martin on Dec 16, 2006 at 11:50 AM

How did I ever find my way home before this little guy? I’ve always relied on inexpensive LED lights to navigate the dark trail - mostly because I was too cheap and thought my eyes were plenty good. There are a number of comparable lights out there these days. $200 buys a lot of lumens these days compared to the halogen options of just a couple years back.

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You know what’s the best?

2

by andrew_f_martin on Dec 15, 2006 at 4:08 PM

Riding to work on a day like today. Seattle had a huge storm last night. Today’s drive into Seattle took forever because the bridge was closed. As I made my way into work I could gauge my progress in the bike lane against cars struggling to make it through unlit traffic lights. I’m pretty sure I made it to the office 20 minutes faster than had I driven. That’s the best.

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Disc Brakes no longer just for the Mud

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by andrew_f_martin on Dec 14, 2006 at 11:46 AM

I’ve got a good collection of bikes, but in the Pacific Northwest, the bike that gets the most action is my rain bike. It’s my commuter most days, and after years of replacing brake pads monthly for only marginal stopping power - I have found the light: Disc Brakes on a road bike. Fender routing is simple with plenty of tire clearance. Stopping power is never in question in even the heaviest downpours. I’m sure many commuters who ride in more of an upright “mountain” position have been riding discs for years, but I’m happy to have finally made the jump. There a couple major brands out there with offerings (Kona Sutra, Redline Disc-R, Trek Portland), as well as some smaller frame builders who have put together some nice custom setups (Marcroft Cycles, Clemente Cycles). If Santa’s bringing a new bike this year - maybe remember to share the love with the rain bike?

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USA Today Features Outdoor Gifts

2

by Byron on Dec 12, 2006 at 4:17 AM

A gift guide in USA Today features cycling gear, clothes, food, and says, “Bike makers have been busy coming up with some dandy models for 2007 that feature the creative use of carbon fiber technology. The bottom line is a bike that’s stiff enough to win a sprint to the next stop sign while also being comfortably compliant. In English, that means fast and comfy.” And perfect for the bike hugger!

Continuing with the focus on sports, USA Today’s gift blog links to “tricked out” bathing suits for triathletes.

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