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Old 09-14-19, 08:54 PM
Pimp on a bike
gugie's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Portland, OR
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Bikes: It's complicated.

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A few have asked for my ride notes...I thought the posts were good enough to capture this event...

but my "personal journey",

There are direct flights into Glacier Park International Airport (essentially Kalispell) from Portland. It's only an hour and a half flight (hint, hint PNWer's). I took an Alaska flight, they did not charge extra for my bicycle broken down into a Trico Iron Case. Which reminds me, I need to send a shipper back to @mountaindave...I called into a couple of meetings at work on Friday morning, enough so that I could get away with not putting in a vacation day. From the airport I took a taxi to the Montesorri School that mountaindave works at, I believe I was the first to arrive for registration. I was happy to meet Dave for the first time! He was kind enough to bring out a bike stand to reassemble my bike.

After awhile others arrived, we helped set up for the Concours event that evening. One by one the Cino'ers arrived. Bob Freeman is always a fixture at these events in the PNW, and brought a triplet of Sauvage Lejunes to show, two of which he rode that weekend. @northbend showed his Holland, Hobbs, Bruce Gordon and Alex Singer. I was impressed that not only did all 4 bikes fit into his Honda Fit (wheels and pedals off) but there was also room for his and my bags and the two of us to drive to Hot Springs with said bikes that today I went with my 16 year old daughter to help her purchase her first car, a Honda Fit (she's paying for it out of her part time job). @ollo_ollo, my roomie for the weekend, @Lascauxcaveman and @Choke were some of the people I've know and ridden with more than a few times and attended as well. I also met several other members of the C&V tribe, many from the CR list that I'd read about.

[i @ollo_ollo, aka Don, coolest 78 year old ride at Cino - Matt F. Pendergast wearing an early Cino jersey in the background to the left[/i]

This was my first time in Big Sky Country, and it definitely is. Everything seems more far apart from what I'm used to. I'd like to explore more of this state! Fast forward to Monday, Matt had some time to spare prior to dropping me off at the airport, so we drove to the Logan Pass in Glacier National Park. Matt told me that this was the first time he'd driven up it, 5-6 times he rode up before. A few weeks earlier @Andy_K rode up it. I now understand why it's worth getting up at o'dark hundred to beat the cars and ride to the top - it's officially now on my bucket list.

Back to Cino, I don't have much to add to what others have written about the ride. Personally, the Saturday ride highlight was split between the Bacon Lady and lunch. Food on Cino is what Eroica California wishes it was. At around 20 miles or so on the Sunday ride back to Kila I made a wrong turn and added a short steep climb to my day, but I got back on track. Nine mile hill forced me to dismount and push more than once. Looking back to Eroica, I had to do the same thing on steep gravel roads- my lower back was hurting, and the typical fix of standing and pedalling a short distance to relieve the strain didn't work - my rear tire would start to spin. I now realize I need a taller stem on my Eroica Pimp Bike that I save for these events. My handlebars and saddle are at the same height on other bikes I often ride on gravel, and I don't have the same issue climbing similar hills.

The thing not discussed in much detail yet, the thing I can add to is the motley Symes Hot Springs Hotel. Matt and Bob talked me into staying there. When I arrived, Matt held his thumb and forefinger a quarter inch apart and said "it's this close to being too skanky" - and it is. A combination of lower economic scale hipsters and old people were constantly walking in and out of the hotel to the hot spring pools from the time the gates opened till they closed. The co-joining rooms I rented for myself and ollo_ollo were separted by a toilet and sink. ollo_ollo[/MENTION]'s room had a bath tube in it. By in it I mean right next to his bed, with only a privacy screen. One shower was available downstairs for communal use. The water from the shower was the same as in the mineral springs - slightly sulpherous - but I got used to it. Skanky and cheap, the bicyclists dream.

So my commute, daily was between Kila and Hot Springs, like so:

Friday: Kalispell to Hot Springs (~70 miles) with Matt, who btw nearly ran out of gas when he was betting on the only gas station being open at the outskirts of Kila (population 392). The pumps were on, the convenience store lights were off, but the credit card payment kept saying "see attendant". After trying all 4 pumps, a woman walked out of the convenience store, we came up with $8 cash, and Matt's Honda Fit received about 3 gallons of gas, enough to get us back to Kalispell the next day (40mph ftw!)

Soon the suffering will begin.

Saturday it was an early rise to get back to Kalispell for breakfast (too early for the Hotel), then to Kila for the ride start at 8:30ish start time. Bacon, lunch, and 60 miles or so of gravel later were were back in Hot Springs. I had a king size bed in my room, @Lascauxcaveman needed a place to crash, so...

me and Matt rehydrating after day 1

Sunday we were up and at 'em early, and had a great Cino supported breakfast, then started off on the way back. Another great lunch, martinis at the top of the last climb, then back downhill - I flatted, Matt had a front and rear flat, then I had another flat, all within 1000 yards. @Choke was johnny on the spot for all of them ready with neutral support, then raced ahead to get the martini bar set up...

Matt's Honda Fit (aka the TARDIS) was in Kila, ready for the return back to Hot Springs.

Monday ollo_ollo was kind enough to take my bike back to Oregon. Matt said he had all week to get to Wisconsin for the Coppi ride, and was gracious enough to drive me up to Logan Pass - I'm sure it was to guarantee I'd be back for that ride someday soon.

Folks, this is an A+ bucket list ride to do. Being so far away from where almost all of us live makes it even more so. Imagine all your riding buddies coming up with a bit of a whack idea to go to the middle of Montana and get someone to cater gourmet lunches, stopping overnight in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere populated by hippies, retirees, and Native Americans with the choice of staying in a tent in a grassy yard, or staying at a hotel that would make a weird and wonderful Indy movie if only a creative filmaker stayed there for the summer, videoing everything with a few GoPros, and someone says, hey, what if someone were mixing martinis at the top of the last hill, and everyone said, yeah, that's a great idea!

Yeah, that's Cino, a ride where about every hour or so @Choke drives by holding a beer out the window, asking "want one?"

Finally @mountaindave totally rocks!
If someone tells you that you have enough bicycles and you don't need any more, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
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