Sunday, July 5, 2009

Finally some nice weather!

It has been a rotten June and start to July! It's rain almost every day, many with thunderstorms. So finally this Saturday (July 4 20009) it was gorgeous (well it was windy but I'll take it anyway), sunny and mid-70's. We rode from Cranbury to Brielle. I was tired of visiting the Pine Barrens and we hadn't been down the shore this year. Technically we weren't down the shore yet as the shore traffic is dangerous once the summer season opens and we weren't going to play in that kind of traffic. Anyway, Mark and I decided to keep it short and not do a century as neither of us had been on the bike since the Longest Day ride (206.5 miles @ 17.5 mph avg). We also decided not to bust it like we usually try to do. When we hit the Manasquann rails-to-trails path it was full of tons of people (it's very popular). We had to be careful as there we lots of kids and dogs. There were several large groups of non-club cyclists who were all over the place. made the ride interesting but like I said we weren't busting it so no big deal. Our return ride was just as interesting the trail traffic was still busy as it was the first nice day in over a month and the 4th of July weekend. For Mark and myself we had to do battle with a head wind. Summer winds in NJ are generally out of the West when it's warm and this was no exception. The difference here was that it was quite strong. I probably should have gone to Ringo but I need to hit a bike shop and Brielle Cyclery is one of the best. Overall it was an excellent ride.

On the subject of Brielle Cyclery, I must say it's really is one of the best shops I've been to. I needed a new cluster as I had worn out the current one. I also thought I needed a new front ring as the chain was shot and I had ignored it since early June. I put the chain on two months earlier and I must have put on a lot more miles than I thought as I wore out a new chain and a rear tire (also put on with the chain). Anyway the gentleman from the shop took a look at my bike (outside) while the place was packed and busy. He told me just the chain and cluster would need replacing. He could have sold me the ring but told me I didn't need it. He said they probably last a lot longer than I thought. He was very polite and helpful. We spoke of the saddle as he's a Brooks user too. and the radical setup I have (nose down, handle bars lower than the nose). I told him it was very comfortable for me (yes it's weird). Brielle will be getting a lot more of my business in the future.