Saturday, September 24, 2011

Junk Miles on Surly Pacer = Big Fun

Finding the time and energy to run has been difficult lately. This week the wife and kids were sick so I spent three days as a full time nurse/custodian cleaning up vomit and diarrhea. Its not easy being a dad some days. So today, I had about 40 minutes to grab a quick run or ride. Considering there's nothing even remotely close on the racing calendar I'm interested in, I decided to just go have some fun and take some pictures, logging the so called "junk miles" which by the way I don't really believe in.

The loop I chose to do is one I've done countless times, both running and biking on various bikes. It seems like this could be a regular quickie loop I'll do on the "Green Machine" Surly Pacer. It is just so much fun to noodle around on and then just stand up and sprint for the heck of it. I was having so much fun that I didn't even remember I brought the camera until I was over halfway done with the loop, so on that note, I grabbed a quick shot of the view from the top of Roosevelt Hill west of Nampa.

After topping out on Roosevelt, there are a variety of options. Sometimes I just turn around and do it again for some good hill training. Often I'll turn right and go around Lake Lowell. But today I just coasted on down to the Deer Flat Wildlife Refuge while I enjoyed the sunny weather and smooth road surface (smooth roads are a rareity in Nampa, I'm sure they'll chip seal it soon enough).

Prior to building my Pacer, I was riding around on my Neuvation and experiencing rather consistent speed wobbles going down even moderately steep hills. I can now descend in confidence, as the burly Surly goes downhill like a champ.

There were quite a few boaters on the lake today. However, I have a secret fondness for sailboats, and I feel that if I lived near a coast I'd spend some time learning how to sail a bit. I did nab my merit badge in Boy Scouts for sailing, so I guess I am an expert ;)

If you just walked outside today, you might have a hard time identifying that its late September. The high was in the 90's today and there was the normal summer haze in the air as a result of living in a densly populated valley in the dry west. However, if you pay attention to the cars and pickups putting around with all their decor, you will quickly understand that it is football season and that the BSU Bronco Nation is widespread. Case in point...

After stopping to take a few more photos (most of which didn't really turn out the way I wanted) I took the gravel/rough chip sealed dam road back towards home. The Pacer was lovely on the rough stuff, although I'm still not a fan of riding a road bike on gravel. Perhaps with some wider tires. I'm running 23 mm tires at the moment, but I think I could easily fit
28's with no problem. Maybe this winter.

In conclusion, there really are no such thing as "junk miles" when there's nothing to train for. If its fun, then mission complete. Today it was nice just to soak up a bit of summer on a great bike.

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