The Friday Cyclotouriste

a geo-photoblog chronicling my "excursions velo"

Archive for December, 2012

On the Road……The End of the Road

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This photo from Sunday’s ride has a certain Wes Anderson/Steve Zissou feel to it, I think.

It’s also one of my favorite geotag locations. So make sure you click on the icon under the picture to see the location on a map.

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Whenever I’m standing on rocky outcroppings like this looking out onto the Pacific Ocean, I think of the words of the Beat poet Lew Welch.

Here’s the last two stanzas from his glorious poem, THE SONG MT. TAMALPAIS SINGS:

This is the last place. There is nowhere else to go.

Once again we celebrate the
Headland’s huge, cairn-studded fall
into the Sea.

This is the last place. There is nowhere else to go.

For we have walked the jeweled beaches
at the feet of the final cliffs
of all Man’s wanderings.

This is the last place
There is nowhere else we need to go.

-Lew Welch (1921-1976)

 

Have a Happy New Year Everyone!

-Nathan

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December 30th, 2012 at 10:57 pm

On the Road……Christmas Eve Day in Fairfax

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I spent most of the long holiday weekend in bike-friendly Fairfax (with my mother, brother, nephews and my brother’s extended family). Taking advantage of one splendid sunny day, I went for a short ride up into the surrounding hills — the same hills where legend has it the “mountain bike” was invented.

Make of this account what you will:

‘Twas the day before Christmas, when all thro’ the land,
not a storm cloud was in sight, not even in San Fran.

I set out on my ride with an Italian holiday treat;
’tis called Panettone, ’tis all I had with me to eat.

‘Twas packed with a thermos filled with hot tea;
but where to stop and enjoy I must wait and see.

My handlebar bag deftly handled the load,
as I pedaled my way up Bolinas-Fairfax Rd.

The summit was sunny, ’twas a true joy to be there;
yet riding down ’twas cold, so I descended with care.

Then who should I see — why it happened so quick.
But if I’m not mistaken it was good ol’ St. Nick!

I heard him exclaim, as his lugged, steel-framed bike disappeared out of sight –
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!


And one of the creation legends surrounding Panettone, according to Wikipedia:

“…a 15th-century legend from Milan gives the invention to the nobleman falconer Ughetto Atellani, who loved Adalgisa, the daughter of a poor baker named Toni. To help her, the nobleman disguised himself as a baker and invented a rich cake to which he added flour and yeast, butter, eggs, dried raisins, and candied lemon and orange peel.

The duke of Milan, Luduvico il Moro Sforza (1452–1508), agreed to the marriage, which was held in the presence of Leonardo da Vinci, and encouraged the launch of the new cake-like bread: Pan de Toni (or Toni’s cake).”

-Nathan

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December 25th, 2012 at 11:00 pm

Posted in BICYCLING CALIFORNIA

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Random Images……Sausalito Bike and Walking trail II

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December 24th, 2012 at 2:46 pm

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On the Road……Sausalito Bike and Walking trail

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It’s pouring rain here in the Bay Area and Sausalito is windy and stormy.

These images are from a sunnier moment last weekend. I’m guessing the bikes belong to some of the nearby houseboat dwellers.

This hidden trail runs a short distance along the estuary behind Sea Trek kayak rentals to the small, but lovely little beach at the end of Liberty Ship Way.

-Nathan

 

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December 23rd, 2012 at 2:45 pm

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Gear Gallery……The Faraday Porteur

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Here’s the electric bike I mentioned in a previous post.

The electronic motor is a sensible addition for a city like San Francisco. The Faraday’s other design choices are simply brilliant and informed primarily by real bicyclist enthusiasts (rather than just by engineers).

I’m especially pleased that it comes with my favorite rack design (i.e. the porteur, a front rack pioneered by newspaper deliveryman in Paris in the 1940s and 50s).

Full disclosure: it may not be apparent from these glowing statements, but I am generally biased against electronic bikes. With the motor, it feels like cheating…a little.

-Nathan

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December 15th, 2012 at 7:37 pm

Posted in GEAR & EQUIPMENT

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On the Road……Golden Gate Bridge, Bus Platform

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I snapped this on an iPhone (waiting to transfer buses) on my way home from work last Friday.

Days like this make me think I really should be riding a bicycle over the bridge to work.  But a few preconditions stop me in my tracks.

For instance, I stubbornly insist on:

  • arriving at work sweat-free
  • riding in normal clothes

With the hills and the distance (it’s a 19-mile round trip) there’s really no way to do both.  In a flat city like Amsterdam or Copenhagen it might be possible. But the elevation changes and the considerable mileage preclude a Sausalito-to-SF commute that meets this criteria.

Maybe it’s time to lighten up and just adapt. But what then? Do I carry extra clothes; shower at a nearby gym; etc.? Things just start to get complicated.

I did consider the option of an e-bike (and I really, really love the Faraday Porteur), but the battery range is only about 10-12 miles. And, I do not have access to a charging outlet during the work day.

Still, the Faraday could be the answer to my dilemma.

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December 9th, 2012 at 4:36 pm