Rides and Pics

The first couple sunset pics from December 29 cannot capture the real essence of what a spectacular sunset that was on our way home from the in-laws. I was wishing for 20 miles that I was a real photographer with real equipment. This was the best I could do jumping out of the car with my Canon S90 at a dead sprint before losing any color remaining.

Between barn and tree in Shelbyville, Ky

Between trees

Sunday I took a mid-afternoon ride in the parks which I thought would be uneventful. What I found, instead, was some precarious footing, especially in Cherokee. The temps and sun seemed warm enough to melt away any remaining precip from Saturday. What I found was sheets of snow and ice along Beargrass Creek. I aimed the BR for the whiter, more snowier portions, where the Paselas dug in nicely. I did experience some rear slippage climbing uphill, but it was a novel experience in a way, to ride surfaces rarely encountered, at least by me. The snow in the brakes and on the chainstay bridge and seat tube attest to the situation.

Today my plans were answered. I arose at 5.30 to find indecision as to whether school would be cancelled. The word finally came based on radar and not on the lack of precip on the ground. It became a good decision when steady snow began to fall around 7.00, at almost the exact time I was dressed and out the door. I rode for the next 3 hours all in a steady snowfall which made things more interesting as I went along. At one time I had grandiose notions of doing the full 57m Riverwalk/Levee Loop. My feet got cold after only 10m. I was playing with layering and missed that important surface. I made it to the end of the trail at Campground Rd. and turned around, knowing from there I could get in a bit more than 30m, sufficient for me in the conditions. On the return I took the old Riverwalk portion downhill from Shawnee Golf Course. It is officially closed and non-maintained, but it's certainly the best, or at least most scenic portion of the trail. I took a rest under the interstate at Portland Park and then turned my trip in towards city streets in Portland towards downtown. My route delivered me to OYLC where I had Derek tighten my loose right shifter. After shooting the breeze about the weather, politics, health care, fast food, organic food and cross training I left for Breadworks where I had a coffee and a choco milk.

  • rei base layer, pearl izumi long sleeve "tshirt", Marmot jacket. I got cold sitting at OYLC, but not at all during the ride. I'll use that combo again between 25F-35F.
  • combo of Assos windsock, Sealskinz, Lake shoe and new Pearl Izumi shoe cover. I only used this combo for a few miles, but it felt water tight and warm. I still find it slightly unsatisfying to spend that kind of money on feet for adequate but not brilliant performance.
  • Pearl Izumi lobsters. 'nuff said.
  • Performance fleece pants with compression shorts. They'll do between 25-40F.
  • Smith goggles worked well. I'll need to work with helmet retrofit a bit, but as far as eyes went, they were primo. 
  •  Nokian Bump-n-Grind 1.95" or whatev the name is. They were great in ice and snow and I'm super, duper glad Apertome was willing to sell them to me at a reasonable price. 
Didn't work:

  •  head combo of North Face headband, think polypro balaclava and RCCS hat along with goggles. It was fine, but not, if that makes any sense. Too bulky and awkward.
  • Epic Fail- combo of wool sock, Assos wind sock, shoe and toe cover. My feet were frozen by mile 10. Toe covers were soaked. I changed into the Sealskinz combo later and bought the new shoe covers there of.  It's always the feet.
  • Clif sweet and salty bar- I ate 1/2 of it, but it was frozen brick hard. What do people eat in the cold? 
Portland Canal beacon in the grey, wintry skies. On the return loop you could barely see that bridge span to the right.

Portland Canal

Snowy LHT at Riverwalk barrier. I crossed it and traversed forbidden lands on the return, and glad I did.

ice 'stache

Now closed portion of Riverwalk along Shawnee golf course. It's hard for me to express how much I liked the textures along this portion, as a gardener at least. The grasses along the left and weeds/heathers along the right contrasted so nicely with the snow. My batteries were mostly dead here so I couldn't take more pics. Fact is, all day I encountered interesting images in the snow: lights cascading and reflecting, IN disappearing in the fog, eskimo-esque numbers of varying snow qualities, the linear spatiality of I-64 above the Great Lawn. Never noticed that. Many things I hadn't noticed, including this patch of weeds along the golf course barrier. Take a look sometimes.


Pondero said…
I think the sunsets look great.

Way to get out there in "iffy" conditions.
Apertome said…
I take it you got a replacement S90 ... great! That's a great camera. You put too much emphasis on gear. Does it have a Sunset mode? Sometimes those work great, sometimes not. Worth trying. Looks to me like it was just too dark to get what you were after anyway.

Sounds like a great, snowy ride. About the feet, do you have enough room to wiggle toes/for your feet to breathe. That sounds like a whole lot of layers for a relatively warm temperature. I suspect your feet are constricted and when that happens, more layers can make the problem worse, not better. I'm just guessing here, though.
Tex69 said…
Yeah, about $150 for a refurb s90. I'm pleased but haven't used it much with such nasty weather.
Eating in the cold: Accellerade (if you can stand it—and I only like the orange) mixed full-strength in an insulated bottle, Gu gels (more like Gu putty), whole wheat fig bars, peanut M&Ms, almonds and sometimes gummy candy.

Clif bars are usually the worst (speaking from experience,) and I only eat them if I have a hot drink along to melt them.

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