D.C. Commute Scenes: Capital Bikeshare and True Love

The throngs of tourists combined with the rising temps make mornings the best time to ride in the city these days.

This morning Felkerino and I were en route to coffee and passed by the Lincoln Memorial. It always surprises me how serene the Lincoln is in the early-ish morning. It’s a much different place than the populated tourist spot it becomes in the afternoon.

As we rode, we saw a few tourists and this lovely site. Continue reading “D.C. Commute Scenes: Capital Bikeshare and True Love”

1992 Bridgestone MB-4: Free bike = FIGHT!

Recently, I sent a bike of mine off to the hospital to be parted out. Last week after our morning ride to coffee, we ran into  saw a coffee buddy of ours who said he had an old mountain bike that he wanted to give away. Specifically, he wanted to give it to us because he said “You guys will know what to do with it.”

Who, us? How did he know? And how did he know that we had just freed up some space in the dining room bike shop so we could accomodate one more steed? Continue reading “1992 Bridgestone MB-4: Free bike = FIGHT!”

Memorial Day

Remembering. Continue reading “Memorial Day”

Bikes to Like: Russ’s Rivendell Custom

Russ and the Rivendell on the Korea Southern Beauty 600K (c) RUSTYCOOL7

Felkerino and I used to see Russ quite regularly on D.C. Randonneurs brevets. Russ is great riding company. He loves wool, flat pedals, steel bikes, and being outdoors. Also, he always seems totally relaxed when he’s on the bike.

Unfortunately, we don’t see Russ on D.C. Randonneurs rides anymore because he is now stationed in Korea. However, we keep virtual tabs on Russ and his bike via flickr. He’s still riding brevets, only now he does them with the Korea Randonneurs.

(Lothar Hennighausen, a D.C. Randonneur who travels frequently to Korea, started the Korea Randonneurs, and they now offer a full Super Randonneur series. Is that cool or what?)

When we first met Russ, he was riding a Surly Long Haul Trucker in Olive Green, and one day he turned up riding a knock-your-socks-off gorgeous Rivendell custom. There was a lot of ooohing and ahhhing that day. Read more about the bike and check out the pictures. I dare you not to oooh and awww.

Panda Shot on the Rivendell (c) RUSTYCOOL7

1. What kind of bike do you have?

I have a 2000 Rivendell custom that I acquired on eBay in 2007. It was custom built for a gentleman in Alaska who, unfortunately, died of a heart attack in 2007. His entire stable of bikes was auctioned by a professional seller. The bike came to me nicely equipped and as far as I could tell was seldom if ever ridden. The seller even included the original correspondence with Grant Peterson on the details of the build. So it is custom, but not to me.

Continue reading “Bikes to Like: Russ’s Rivendell Custom”

D.C. Randonneurs – Frederick, Maryland 400K Brevet

What is 252 miles, starts at 4 a.m., and has many hills and valleys? It’s the D.C. Randonneurs 400K brevet. Ha ha ha!!

I may be laughing now, but I certainly was not on Saturday morning when my alarm went off at 2:45 a.m. I never imagined that my idea of fun would require this kind of early riding rising. I propped my eyelids open with toothpicks, felt heartened by the comfortable morning (or evening?) temperatures and forecast, ate a banana, and hoped for the best.

I tend to ride myself awake on these rides, and Saturday was no different. The sun came up, and by 8 a.m. I was happy to be on the bike. For a blow-by-blow of the route’s twists and turns, see the D.C. Randonneurs website. For an impressionist view of our ride, read on! Continue reading “D.C. Randonneurs – Frederick, Maryland 400K Brevet”

Bike to Work Day, aka Friday

Today was Bike to Work day! Of course you all knew that.

In a fit of irony, Felkerino and I rode away from work  and headed to the Rosslyn stop to join the Bike to Work festivities. I have found Rosslyn to be a fun stop and not quite as crowded as the Freedom Plaza location. Continue reading “Bike to Work Day, aka Friday”

Bikes to Like: Ritchie’s 1979 Austro-Daimler Vent Noir II

This year I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and riding with Ritchie, a D.C. Randonneur. The first time I saw Ritchie, I had to rub my eyes and take a second look to make sure he was real. He looked liked he might have stepped out of a time machine and somehow ended up on our ride. I later learned that he had not emerged from a time machine; he just embraces vintage treasure. Ritchie’s Austro-Daimler is one of those treasures, and I asked him to tell me more about it. 

The Austro-Daimler with Fenders (c) Pants Pants

1. What kind of bike do you have?

I have a 1979 Austro-Daimler Vent Noir II. That’s well-aged and lovingly lugged Reynolds 531 steel, baby!
Continue reading “Bikes to Like: Ritchie’s 1979 Austro-Daimler Vent Noir II”

Requisite D.C. Bicycle Glamour Shots: Big Wheel Bikes Mural

Washington, D.C., is a lovely city for bicycle glamour shots. While what might come to mind most readily are pictures of bikes and monuments, that is not entirely true.

One of the spots where I’ve always wanted to take a glamour shot is by the bike mural at Big Wheel Bikes in Georgetown. This eye-catching sight is tucked into an alley just off of  33rd and M Street. Continue reading “Requisite D.C. Bicycle Glamour Shots: Big Wheel Bikes Mural”

Commute Scenes: Tourist Photos Edition

I’m crushing the Capitol

In case you haven’t noticed or don’t live in the area, it’s PRIME TIME for tourists.

I love watching tourists. It’s also a requirement if you are a pedestrian or cyclist, because you never know what a tourist is going to do. One minute they are walking on the right side of the mall path, and the next blink of an eye they could be standing right in front of you. It can be quite disconcerting.

That said, tourists do some pretty fun things, one of them being the poses they do around the monuments. I get a kick out of riding around the National Mall and seeing people set up their photos. Continue reading “Commute Scenes: Tourist Photos Edition”

Bikes to Like: Ron and Barb’s Burley Paso Doble Tandem

I remember the first time I rode with Barb and Ron. I spied the Berthoud bag adorning on their steel Burley, their matching Swobo jerseys, and thought to myself, “These are some stylin’ randonneurs. I must find out who they are.” And so I did. Ron and Barb are great randoneuring buddies with wicked senses of humor and one awesome  tandem. Don’t believe me? Read on, my friends!
Barb and Ron
1. What kind of bike do you have?

We have a 2006 Burley Paso Doble tandem. Continue reading “Bikes to Like: Ron and Barb’s Burley Paso Doble Tandem”

D.C. Randonneurs: Frederick, Maryland 300K

Saturday was a beautiful day to be a randonneur, and today I am still riding the post-brevet high of this ride. The D.C. Randonneurs 300K out of Frederick, Maryland, is one of my favorite rides for a few reasons: Continue reading “D.C. Randonneurs: Frederick, Maryland 300K”

Bikes to Like: Bill B.’s Trek Madone SSLx

That’s right, people. It’s a double feature of Bikes to Like this week on Chasing Mailboxes. Today, I highlight Bill B.’s Trek Madone. Bill, the excellent RBA for the D.C. Randonneurs and our head photographer, has completed many MANY brevets on his Trek Madone.

I was curious how he managed to make a randonneuring bike out of what I would consider a more “racy” bicycle. Read on and find out how he did it!

Bill’s Trek Madone on a Fall Ride

1. What kind of bike do you have?

It started life as a 2003 Trek 5200 with the Project One “Andromeda” paint job. But after the bottom bracket shell came loose from the carbon frame in 2007, Trek replaced the frame with a 2006 Madone SSLx.

Continue reading “Bikes to Like: Bill B.’s Trek Madone SSLx”

Bikes to Like: Rick B.’s Merlin Extralight

There are some people I know from being on the bike and nowhere else. Rick B. is one of those people. We’ve never seen each other in our “real lives,” only our cycling lives. 

I’ve come to know Rick from my morning commute, where our routes occasionially cross paths. Rick and Felkerino know each other through weekend rides with the C&C Climbing FactoryRick may be speedy (I think he’s not carrying enough stuff on his commute!), but he always takes time to say hi and chat with Felkerino and me. 

Rick commutes on a lovely Merlin and, since I wanted to find out more about it, I asked him if he’d be part of Bikes to Like. Rick said yes, and below is the story of his bicycle. 

Rick B. on the incognito Merlin

1. What kind of bike do you have?

Merlin Extralight, in stealth mode as almost all the decals (and currently even the headbadge) are removed, 59 cm, Campy components.
Continue reading “Bikes to Like: Rick B.’s Merlin Extralight”