Sunday, May 18, 2008

For anyone who was wondering

Date: May 17
Mileage: 12.1
May mileage: 633.5
Temperature: 43

Geoff finished this year's super-low-key version of the Kokopelli Trail Race, 143 trail miles from Moab, Utah, to Fruita, Colorado. He said he came in sometime after 5 p.m. today, which I think equals 17 hours and change. He said he rode most of the day with Dave Chenault and Fred (Wilkinson?), and the three of them finished pretty close together about 45 minutes behind Pete Basinger and Chris Plesko. Not sure about the other finishers. It sounds like a pretty brutal race. I just thought I'd post the report here since it's uncertain when he'll be blogging again.

I spent the morning fishing with Brian. We came up empty, again, which I guess is pretty typical for this time of year. I don't mind at all. I'm not much of a cook and don't even know what I'd do with a king salmon if I caught one. I just like to be out on the water, breathing in sea air, laughing at Brian's "old days of Juneau" stories and looking for wildlife. A humpback whale rolled up beside us, mere feet from the boat. It blew a spout of water and we could look right down into its blowhole, it was so close. It dove and came up once more about 50 yards away, kicking its tail up for the deep dive. I tried to snap a photo but the camera's delay netted not much - a bit of a tail fin. I posted it anyway.

Also, I received a copy of "Zinn and The Art of Mountain Bike Maintenance" in the mail courtesy of Dave Trendler at It came just in the nick of time, as the brakes on my road bike went out today. Both of them, at the same time. I nearly rolled right into traffic off the Juneau-Douglas bridge, just about the busiest intersection in town. I had to coast home from work, keeping my speed under 10 mph and using the rubber on the bottom of my shoes to stop. I wiped the brake dust off my rims and adjusted the lever tension as much as I could to no avail. I know how to replace brake pads but there's still rubber left on the current pads. It doesn't make sense that they wouldn't work at all. There must be something else wrong. I hope Zinn will show me the way. And if Zinn can teach me how to fix my mountain bikes (and my road bike, which is really just a mountain bike with skinny tires), then Zinn can teach anyone how to fix a bike. When I take the time to try, I'll let you know how it goes.


  1. See if Brian will take you out to the Icy straights for halibut.
    Now thats an alternative workout!
    And it taste so good.
    Free to Wander
    Free to Roam

  2. Jill,

    If anyone can teach you to work on your bike it will be Lennard Zinn. The cable housings are different between the brakes and the derailleurs. If you use derailleur cable housings on brakes the linings will shred out through the ends of the housings and the brakes will fail. The linings on the brakes cable housings are spiral, but the lings on the derailleur cables run in the same direction as the cable. Combine that with the fact that the brake cables are thicker than the derailleur cables and you have a receipe for problems. I learned lesson that the hard way coming off a mountain pass in the Gila National Forest. If I had read my Zinn maintenance and repair manual first I would have known better. Good luck with everything!

    P.S. We are leaving on Thursday and starting our GDMBR trek Friday morning. I can't wait! I will update my blog as the opportunities arise.

  3. The fact that you know so little about bicycle maintenance that you can't DESCRIBE the problem with the brakes properly is scary....really really scary. Read that book !. So far you've gotten lucky by not having a crash, hurting yourself, or being stranded out in the boonies by lack of bike maintenance...your luck almost ran out today. If anything, even if you DON'T learn how to fix your own bike at least you'll know what to look for on it when something is worn out or about to fail.

    Of, and riding a steel bike fram through rain, snow, salt water and sand is going to ruin your bike eventually. Unless you have a rear fender the spray off your back tire will wind up going down the seatpost, into the frame tube, then make it's way into the bottom bracket area where it'll rust. You can count on salt water accelerating this process, as well as sand getting into the chain and wearing it out it faster, and also rust in the cables.

  4. Ug. What's with all the anonymous lectures this weekend? I think I need to take a few days off from blogging.

    By the way, Bob, good luck! I'll be checking in from afar.

  5. Very good call Jill. However, if you do take time off we will miss you. Anon really likes to lecture.

    The whole bike maintenance thing will come in time. It just takes practice and patience. Believe me, I'm no expert and I'm not going to pretend to be. Happy you came through unscathed. I lost brakes on my mountain bike last summer, half way through a ride. I have discs and had no stopping at all. The guys waited for me at the bottom of each hill just to see if I could negotiate the turns without crashing. I was applauded each time, but it was scarier the hell.

    Happy to hear Geoff is doing well. I wish I could get out west sometime soon to ride some of those trails. It looks absolutely awesome.

    Nigity - "Always keep a smile in your heart."

  6. Jill,
    Just so you know, many of us find Anon's lectures abnoxious and unnecessary. Sorry you have to hear from people who insist on teaching you lessons... maybe it is just because they care about you and wouldn't want to see you hurt... It is incredible how you can begin to care for someone you don't know after reading their blog...

    Don't take too long of a break--please!


    I thought this had an interesting take on the exercise
    mentality between and average user and an professional athlete. Very cool.

  8. I have to admit - I was sort of hoping that Anon from your last post was someone you knew who was being weird, or trying to be funny, because you'd recognize who it was... but from your comment I guess that's not the case...

    while I can't blame you for wanting to distance yourself from those fairly inappropriate and misguided comments, I hope they won't make you take too long a break, cause, like someone above said - we'll miss the pretty pictures and the insightful commentary...

  9. fixin is fun and nearly maintenace free.

  10. Jill,

    You can change the settings on your comments page so that "annoy-mous" comments are not accepted. You always have to sign-in. That is the way it is on all forums and that is what I do on my blog.

    Everyone is welcome to their convictions and opinions, but identifying yourself is good manners.

    Besides, the rest of us need the literacy practice. So please keep writing, and we will keep reading.

    (Two and half days until I leave for my GDMBR trip!!!)

  11. Anonymous posters suck.

    So does neglecting your bike, but at least it's not anonymous.

  12. Hey Jill- Mom told me some lame loser gave you some pointless lecture on fixing your bike, so I had to get on and get the scoop. Okay so I added in the loser part... but let's face it, he is. I know for a fact you are an inspiration to a far greater audience than a target for pathetic advice.

    "The people who matter don't mind, and the people who mind, DON'T MATTER"

    I love you sister. I'll be watching for updates.
    xoxo Sara


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