Monthly Archives: December 2017

Cold\Bike Pumps

Back in the day I used to post here everyday. Not so much anymore but I could. I’ve kinda decided in the past to keep this more of a personal blog. Try not to let any store advertising in. That can ruin things here. I could probably go on forever about stuff I use. I go thru a lot of stuff. I like to try everything. Its a perk of the trade I guess. And Im always curious about new products. I like riding different bikes. Like riding a BMC Roadmachine last summer or the Borealis fatbike this winter. I just like checking things out.

As far as writing everyday it seems I have the time now. Especially now with the temps below zero every nite. Not much riding going on. And its going to stay that way for another week. Store is slow as no one wants to go out in that temp. It doesn’t bother me so much. Im walking on the beach in shorts. I do wear a heavier jacket during these time tho.

I had a ride planned this morn. Was looking like 5 degrees at ride time and I was just happy it was above zero. I had planned to ride with a buddy and was half dressed when he called to say he was under the weather. I had no problem undressing. We will try it again tomorrow although it looks like it will be the the neg tomorrow morn at ride time. Whatever.

So how about a product evaluation today. Let’s talk tire pumps. I’ve had a million of them. Im kinda a bike pump snob. They need to work well. And with the invention of fat bikes I needed another. One that could read single digits. So now I need two pumps. The fat bike pump gauge goes up to 15psi. Then I need a MTB pump that can do 30 to 50psi, then a pump for the road bike over 100psi.

Out with the old.

So I had to carry these two around. Fatbike pump on left, everything else on right.

Sure, I could have just used the normal pump and use a pressure gauge and thats what most do. But I do like the fact the fat pump has more volume. Save a lot of time when your setting pressure out the back of your car in 5 degree weather. And the gauge is super accurate down to a pound. But still, I hated carrying two pumps around.

Enter Pro’s new digital pump. One pump to rule them all. Digital gauge. Super accurate and it has good volume too. One pump for road bike, cross bike, MTB, plus bike and fat bike. There are a lot of nice digital pumps coming out. This Pro and Lezyne are two good ones. Now the same pump can pump up your fat bike to 4 pounds and your road bike to 120psi. These things are expensive. Both mentioned pumps are around $120. Careful, there are cheaper ones available. Im sure they all work nice but the better pumps just last much longer and make sure they are rebuildable. And as I find out lately it works just fine in the sub zero temps.

So here’s the bike pump Im using today and I really like it. It’s in my car 24\7.

Thus endeth the product evaluation for today.

Tomorrow its Friday and I hope to get in a small ride in the morning. We have a dusting of snow on the way. Less than a inch so that might just make the local woods a bit whiter again. Still not enough snow to groom any ski trails and thats a bummer heading into January. I always have big expectations heading into December and Im always disappointed. I look at my ski’s in the store and wonder why I even bother sometimes.

Saturdays group ride is in jeopardy as it looks to be about 2 degrees. Not a lot of people will attend that one. Some of that ride is on the road.

As we head into another Holiday weekend I have another 2 days off. Temp steady in the single digits for highs for the next week. This most likely will be my last post till next Tuesday so have a good Holiday weekend. Get outside. Don’t forget to layer up!


Christmas 2017

Im not real big on Christmas. I mean I dont hate it but I just dont get in the spirit as soon as others. But I eventually do. This year it was Saturday around 3pm. Another good day in the store and I had about an hour to go before I was off until next Tuesday. I’ve been playing Xmas music all day. But just today. Usually I’ve had to listen to it for a week now but this year was just this one day. Very acceptable.

So about 3pm Saturday the crowds got thin and I just sat and listened to the music. And thought about how lucky I was to be here. It was a very relaxing moment. Just closed my eyes and listened to old school Christmas songs. And then I was eager for Christmas. For the time spent with family and friends. I dont have a lot going on Xmas eve but its going to be a all day thing on Xmas day. All the kids and grandkids. Looking forward to that now.

I may be the last to get in the spirit in my family. My wife has been in Christmas mode 24\7 since some time in the first week of December. She’s the one who does all the work. I just show up and watch it all go down.

Saturday Breakfast Ride

Saturday started with a cold beach ride with the group. I could not do the entire ride as I had to get to the store but it was a great ride. This was only about half the group. Some fancy picture editing on my part here. The beach was prime like back in the old days.

On Sunday (Christmas Eve) I still had the entire day to myself. So I woke up slow and headed in town for some coffee. Around noonish I was motivated for another beach ride.


Just a little snow enhanced the Christmas Eve ride. Just enough to cover all the ice on the beach and make things nervous. Happy to report I did not go down but had a few slips that I saved (skillz).

So glad the beach is back this winter. At least for now. You can only go 5.4 miles before you have to turn back but thats a good hour ride. Rode the beach two days in a row. Its been years since I did that.

Right now the woods are nice to ride too. Snow covered and firm. But I just like to ride the beach if its available. I’ll hit the woods here soon. But not too soon as the temps dropped into the negative. Was -6 this morn. Will be -2 for the Tuesday nite ride so Im bailing on that. Neg 2 ride is possible in the daytime but at nite? Thats nuts. Im too old for that


I’ll pull out this pic every now and again. I think it was 2008.


Eric’s head was so cold he found a plastic bag blowing around on the beach and put it on his head under his helmet. It acually helped. Good times.

Those were the days. Im not sure if I could even do that anymore. I guess I dont have to as I did it once and have pics.

With the temp so cold this morn I was the only one in the park this morn. So I’ll take a little pride in that.


Was a bit cold on the beach wearing shorts on but doable. I inspected the ski trails and we need maybe 4 more inches of snow to groom. I hope that happenes this winter.

It looks like the below zero stuff will go away in a couple days, maybe get to ride Thursday in the teens.

With the Holidays over and no snow on the ground the next two months could be pretty slow. However things here will be super busy. I have a lot on my plate in Jan\Feb. I really cant say any more publicly but can real soon. Most of my close friends already know.

Stay warm.


Anatomy of a Beach Ride

Not sure how much time I will have tomorrow so I’ll post my Holiday post today as Ive found a spare hour this morning.

Yesterday I had my fourth beach ride of the winter. I think thats about all I had all last year. These rides are fun and quick and easy to do before work.


You always find weird things on the beach. And dead fish. Something must be wrong with this one as there were no gulls working on it. Actually I would think I find more of this than I do but Im sure the gulls and eagles grab them before I get to ride past them. I’ve seen some furniture, some kids toys and the occasional balloon. And always wondered if they came from across the lake.

The scenery cant be beat.

And its just a nice change of scenery. While riding in the woods is awesome its nice to bomb down the beach right next to the water. Almost always just staring out over the water to the point of running into something. Its a bit surreal. But we have been doing this long before fatbikes. Our Saturday morning group rides have been doing this for as long as I’ve been around which is close to 20 years. Back then it was all MTB’s, now fatbikes.

You dont need any float over the frozen sand so I pump my tires up to 15psi. Like a road ride. Most of the houses along the lake are summer homes. But a few are full timers. Almost all of the time when they see us pass its a friendly wave. Its rare to get a little guff from a beach homeowner but its happened in the past.

End of the line.

Here is the end of the line these days. Its 5.4 miles from where we get on. Back in the day, like 10 years ago, we could ride 15 miles before we turned around, maybe more as we never really tried to go much further than that.

But higher water has cut down that mileage. Last year it was even worse so Im glad to have the 5.4. Its a nice hour ride that fits perfectly in the time slot before work.

Today is Dec 21st. Winter Solstice. The shortest day of the year.  Days start to get longer now.  And once again we are heading into the Holidays with not enough snow to play on. The weather dudes were calling out 6 to 8 inches today and tomorrow. Now its 2 to 3. And maybe some rain. Then, after the weak system leaves Saturday temps fall below zero at night. Which is typical. Temps warm up to rain, then plummet. We ride on frozen dirt or ice. I complain about this a lot. I dont think I’ll stop very soon.

Im not sure when I’ll ride this weekend. Maybe Saturday morn but not long as I need to be back in store for all the Christmas bikes to be picked up. And if the roads are slushy like last week I’ll pass. Who knows… maybe another quick beach ride.

The Christmas Eve is Sunday and I have no real plans and thats nice. Just relax and watch football. Maybe a short ride in the woods solo. Christmas morn is when it all go’s down for me.  All the kids and grandkids plus others later. With Christmas on Monday its nice to have two days off in a row. That’s rare for me.

So thats my Holiday in a nutshell. I hope to ride a little, Im sure I’ll eat a lot and sit a lot. But I guess thats what the Holiday are for. If I dont post till next week have a great Holiday.


Late Weekend Update


Ive been sucking at taking pictures of late. No real reason.

Saturday we did out breakfast ride. Roads were slushy and crappy. Note to self: Do not ride a fat bike on slushy salty roads without a fender. With the big tires I could feel the crap piling up on my back as we rode. I just was not feeling the entire ride so I bailed halfway and headed back. Not the most enjoyable ride. But a ride nonetheless.

Sunday was much better as we headed to our local park to ride the snow filled woods and the trails were well rode in. I think I rode on snow more this year by the third week of December than all of last year. The trails were firm, smooth and fast.

We are just into a warm spell today so we rode again Monday (yesterday) morning before the temps got the best of the snow. Another great ride. I sure do miss riding on snow on our home turf. Its nice not to have to drive 4 to 5 hours to do so.

But thats going to be the extent of my riding this week. All the Christmas bikes arrive tomorrow and I have a ton to build and accessorise before the weekend. I might even have to call in some summer help for this one. That along with the ski stuff going on now that there’s snow on the ground. Selling some ski stuff too.

Had a nice walk on the beach this moring.

It seems we are going thru another winter thaw. Early winter predictions had is colder with more precipitation. So far, that is not the case. With temps hovering above freezing last nite, closer to 40, I spent some time in the park this morn to see if what little snow we had would survive and it appears it will. The temps will drop this afternoon. Heading for lows in the single digits in a day or so.

Then on Thursday and Friday is a system coming thru that could dump almost a foot up north. But here its the same old thing.. the low comes in, temps rise ands it rains, then leaves and its single digits again. Same thing as last year. I guess this is the way its going to be from now on.

Time to move north.

It is said there is a chance the low will come thru farther south allowing colder air here but I’ll believe it when I see it. When the weather dudes say that its always rain. Always.

Anyway, I had a nice walk on the beach this morn. I could be wearing a tshirt it feels so warm. But thats just me.

However the temps are looking to plummet tonite so I will try a beach ride in the morn. As you can see from the video there seems to be a lot of exposed beach today, but who knows tomorrow. But I’ll give it a try for sure.

Id better get to work.