Chilly Hilly

Did the course only once. Chuck Ayers gave me a sharp look when I told him I did it twice last year. Maybe that factored into my thinking. But a bigger factor was that this year, I did CH on a single speed. With 34/16 gearing into 700C x 32, it's a bit stiff up the hills. After 33 miles of that, I was --What's the word? Tired.

Oh, and it was cold this year. Didn't get rained on like later riders, but did get hail and a little snow. A little windy too, as in fight-to-keep-your-bike-up windy.

A nice day, all around.


An embarrassment of debris riches

What are these things? They look like springs. They're steel (magnetic), their ends are sharp, and they were strewn in the bike path on Dexter. I picked up all I could find, but I'm sure I missed some.

I'm pretty sure they're the remains of tire chains. People in Seattle get only sporadic practice in snow and ice, but sometimes it's very slippery and Seattle is a hilly town. So people put on tire chains, but because they don't get practice, they buy lousy tire chains and put them on wrong. The result? Shredded tire chains make a wreck of the paint on a quarter panel, before spilling their guts on the roadway. Since the City takes a mild interest at best in street cleaning, late winter Seattle streets are a debris field of tire chain guts. Cars run over them until they end up where? In the bike lane.

So I and every Seattle biker gets to dodge bits of what look like purpose-built malice because why? Two reasons:
- Lousy tire chains that ought not be legal to sell.
- A city that cleans the streets approximately never, despite the fact that it would make the city money to clean.



More debris, fielded

More debris. In this case, a nasty piece of galvanized flashing or some such. Lots of sharp edges. I rode around it in the bike path for two days, so on the third day, I stopped and picked it up.


Debris Field

In winter, Seattle roads are a debris field. The cause is a combination of winter conditions, stupidity, and the City's antipathy towards street cleaning.

As usual, I try to single-handedly make things better, with mixed results.

So I have a personal rule: the third time I see the same piece of hazardous shite in the roadway, I have to stop and pick it up. (Unless it's a broken bottle, in which case I sweep it out of the path of bikes and pedestrians, and hope for the best. I'm just not willing to pack beer-soaked glass in to work.)

Today's find: some weird metal bracket that seems purpose-built to cause flat tires and pedestrian injury. Nasty