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2019! The “How was your commute?” thread!

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2019! The “How was your commute?” thread!

Old 11-13-19, 11:27 AM
  #1726  
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The polar vortex arrived in NYC yesterday as predicted. There was a chance of snow, so the city salted the streets, and that turned out to be unnecessary. I hope we have warm rain soon. I decided not to ride because snow and night are a bad combination. I had a dress rehearsal in the evening. I took the subway. A fellow singer/friend asked me if I'd ride back to Manhattan after rehearsal, so I said sure. We grabbed a couple of Citi Bike bikes. I thought our sense of adventure was admirable. But it turned out to be a very bad idea. I'm not acclimated to the cold yet, so I got cold AND I lost my warm hat at college yesterday. Even worse, my friend had some medical condition in the middle of the cold, windy ride. She felt faint and couldn't continue. We stopped at a 7/11 so she could warm up. I docked my bike and went back to meet her. I docked her bike and walked with her to her home to make sure she made it safe. It was really weird how the faintness just came on. Our theory is that the sudden cold shocked her body. It shocked mine, too, and I think I won't ride today, either.
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Old 11-13-19, 11:47 AM
  #1727  
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
unfortunately, part of the bike path through Skokie had been plowed but not salted, so it was an icy mess.
If it was 17F this morning, it was probably lower teens overnight, too cold for salt to have any effect. But they should have sanded the path.

Here, it was 13F this morning with a good 15+ MPH headwind. Would have been just the kind of day to use the bike elevator, but it was down at end-of-day yesterday. Checked in with my boss before leaving home; he usu. takes that elevator, but he didn't try today, so I didn't chance it, since it means an extra 10-15 minutes of backtracking if it's down. Supposed to "warm up" to the 20s this afternoon, so, oh joy, it won't be "too cold to snow". And of course, the snow clouds are gathering as we speak....
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Old 11-13-19, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
If it was 17F this morning, it was probably lower teens overnight, too cold for salt to have any effect. But they should have sanded the path.
the MUP i ride on passes through 3 different municipalities, all of whom are responsible for their sections of the path. the city of chicago and the suburb of lincolnwood had plowed and salted their sections, and they were in pretty good shape, but when i got up to Skokie, they had only plowed, not salted, and that's where i encountered the icy mess.

i've never seen sand used on the path, or anywhere in chicago for that matter. it's all salt, salt, salt, and yet more salt.
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Old 11-13-19, 12:56 PM
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Meanwhile in the Central Valley of CA, we are having near record highs.
The ski weather bloggers are barely talking about storms, they just want to see it cold enough for the resorts to make snow. I've been looking forward to trying skiing with my kid this year, he's mature enough to try it now.

I'm enjoying the head-AND-handlebar light setup.
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Old 11-13-19, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by liampboyle View Post
Evening commute 11/12/19 16° - the bike had warmed up enough in the office that I was able to get it back on the largest chainring on the front and the 4th largest cog on the rear. After I had gotten it that far the bike decided it was a fixie. so I got to ride the whole way home in one gear.

Morning Commute 11/13/19 14°F - Sunny but cold, I ditched the cycling gear for jeans and a sweatshirt under my jacket. That was almost too much. Still riding the bike as if it was a fixie (because she won't shift to larger cogs in this weather) so commute went a bit slower than usual. It's supposed to warm up to around 40°F so maybe I'll have gears to choose from on the way home. It's looking like I'll need the cables replaced so I might as well get the Jones H-Bar I've been wanting and have the new handle bar and the cables all done at one shot by the LBS.
A few years ago after suffering through many of the same shifting problems I replaced the stock cables on my old winter bike with Jagwire stainless steel cables and lined housing. That put an end to the friction caused by rust and ice. Shifts great now and the cables will probably outlast the rest of the bike. I liked the cables so much that I replaced the cables on my hybrid with the same ones.
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Old 11-13-19, 01:26 PM
  #1731  
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Originally Posted by Tundra_Man View Post
A few years ago after suffering through many of the same shifting problems I replaced the stock cables on my old winter bike with Jagwire stainless steel cables and lined housing. That put an end to the friction caused by rust and ice. Shifts great now and the cables will probably outlast the rest of the bike. I liked the cables so much that I replaced the cables on my hybrid with the same ones.
THANK YOU!!!! I'll be looking for those cables rather than going with the stock Shimano stuff.
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Old 11-14-19, 08:46 AM
  #1732  
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
the MUP i ride on passes through 3 different municipalities, all of whom are responsible for their sections of the path.
Mine's only two, but the longest section managed by the DPW of Indianapolis has different crews responsible for 2-3 sections. It's maddening! They will clear a section and absolutely stop at their intersection boundary. I know for a fact DPW has a dartboard with my picture on it because I publicly complain via Twitter... a lot!

A balmy 27F this morning with just a trace headwind. It might actually get over freezing this afternoon and I saw the forecast for next week is unseasonably warm temps. Consistency is my new fantasy
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Old 11-14-19, 10:47 AM
  #1733  
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Yesterday, I took the subway to class because it was still damn cold and windy, and the previous night was a bitter memory. After class, I had to cross town for a rehearsal, and public transit would have been annoying and slow, and the distance wasn't great, so I grabbed Citi Bike. The weather was still unpleasant, but it was OK. After rehearsal, I definitely didn't want to ride Citi Bike six miles in the cold, so I took the subway home.

Today I got that feeling I have had in previous winters "cycling in the cold is too damned hard" but I knew my mind was playing tricks with me. So I decided to ride. Besides, it's a little warmer and a lot less windy today. I decided to take my Lemond racing bike with 650b tires. The rear tire was flat, so I took the tube out and didn't find a leak. Pumped it back up, and it's OK. I couldn't find my mild winter weather gloves or my tubular scarf, dammit. I wore summer gloves, but my hands started hurting during the ride, so I put on my harsh winter weather gloves that I had brought. The ride was really fine, and I can't figure out why I'm so much faster on my racing bike. Maybe the saddle position favors me and I should duplicate it on my regular commuting bike.
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Old 11-14-19, 12:09 PM
  #1734  
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Originally Posted by liampboyle View Post
THANK YOU!!!! I'll be looking for those cables rather than going with the stock Shimano stuff.
You can also get shielded cables that have a plastic tube that houses the tensioned cable runs, and special ferrules to hold that tube at the cable stops. I bought some by mistake a few years ago.

Tundra Man's new fat bike has internal routing of a full length housing for the RD, no FD, and hydraulic brakes. So it's only fully exposed cable right at the RD. My bike is very similar, they are cousins.
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Old 11-14-19, 12:41 PM
  #1735  
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
You can also get shielded cables that have a plastic tube that houses the tensioned cable runs, and special ferrules to hold that tube at the cable stops. I bought some by mistake a few years ago.

Tundra Man's new fat bike has internal routing of a full length housing for the RD, no FD, and hydraulic brakes. So it's only fully exposed cable right at the RD. My bike is very similar, they are cousins.
Nice.

Evening Commute 11/13/19 32°F - I think my headlight is starting to give up the ghost. Not holding a charge very long, and drivers don't seem to notice me coming towards them as easily. I had a couple close calls with pull-outs on this trip.

Morning Commute 11/14/19 32°F - I was able to do a couple of shifts, before the rear derailleur froze up. Fortunately, I was anticipating that and had gotten to a comfortable gear first.

Since the household's "holiday fund" just opened up repairs can be made soon. I just ordered the new handlebar and as soon as that arrives, I'll take the Kona into the LBS for her new cables. Going to insist on the Jagwire with the lined housing.
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Old 11-14-19, 03:52 PM
  #1736  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Today I got that feeling I have had in previous winters "cycling in the cold is too damned hard" but I knew my mind was playing tricks with me.
Thing is, we shouldn't be getting that feeling when there's still FIVE WEEKS left of FALL. This is just plain bizarre, and doubly so that it's almost everywhere in the CONUS.
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Old 11-15-19, 08:34 AM
  #1737  
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
... there's still FIVE WEEKS left of FALL. This is just plain bizarre, and doubly so that it's almost everywhere in the CONUS.
What? It's not winter yet?! The weather people reported earlier in the week that we'd be having a warmup with unseasonably warm temps. It's 27F this morning. Weather people, you're fired
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Old 11-15-19, 09:02 AM
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Evening Commute 11/14/19 43°F - warmed up enough I could shift again

Morning Commute 11/15/19 26°F - Bike went back into Fixie mode.

Coming up to the pictured intersection I went to merge from the bicycle lane (highlighted) to the straight lane of the intersection, and traffic just would not let me over. Such is life riding stroads.

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Old 11-16-19, 04:21 PM
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Three or four weeks ago I installed a new front tire on my bike with the plan to eventually install the former front on the rear. Last weekend I went to install the rear, couldn't find any of the tools I had used, specifically a KMC set of tire levers that combine into a chain tool, and a Park core remover. I replaced the Park with an Amazon chinese cheapie and I had plenty of other levers. Today the mystery solved itself... found one (of course only one) of the tire levers in the leaf pile in the street. I'd left them on the truck bumper after I used them.
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Old 11-18-19, 08:34 AM
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Evening Commute - 11/15/19 37°F - Bike was able to shift for about two miles before it got stuck again.

Morning Commute - 11/18/19 39°F - Over the weekend I reversed the directional tires so they are no rotating the correct direction (I had them backwards after the last flat repair, and rotation), cleaned and relubed the chain, tried to degunk the derailleurs a bit (third floor walk up apt, I have have to use the rag and bucket method), and I hit the shift cables with some WD-40 followed up with White Lighting Wet chain lube. She seemed to shift pretty well on the way in, but it wasn't quite cold enough to really see if my problems are over. I got some new convertible cycling mittens that I wore for the first ride this morning, again not really cold enough to really test them out but my hands were sweating fairly well by the third mile. We've had some spotty light rain this morning and I was hoping to test the water resistance but I had dry conditions for the entire commute.
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Old 11-18-19, 12:53 PM
  #1741  
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didn't ride today... My knee seemed to be hurting after my Gravel ride this weekend avg temp 40ishF and 65.5 miles on wet power sucking gravel. I cant tell if it hurts from pedaling the whole time or because i hit my shin on my bike rack before the ride.

I need to clean the bike and drivetrain before I ride tomorrow but it is 45 and raining today. yuck
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Old 11-18-19, 08:10 PM
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As I approached the ostensibly-pedestrian overpass, coming down it was a cop car in full searchlight mode: a park ranger. “You seen a guy running around in a hospital gown?”
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Old 11-19-19, 07:57 AM
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Raining yesterday and the roads and paths are still wet. Since the snow and cold temps came so early there are still tons of leaves around including on my bike. It looks like I just raced in a cyclo cross event. 30F this morning and not raining at the moment but supposed to start up again shortly. Yay...
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Old 11-19-19, 08:21 AM
  #1744  
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
As I approached the ostensibly-pedestrian overpass, coming down it was a cop car in full searchlight mode: a park ranger. “You seen a guy running around in a hospital gown?”
That's awesome.

Reminds me of nine years ago on Memorial Day when I was out for a run. Suddenly three cop cars converged on me at an intersection. Apparently a gas station had gotten robbed about five blocks away and the suspect fled on foot. And also, apparently, my body shape makes me look more like someone who runs because they held up a convenience store than an athlete.

The cops were very professional and quickly figured out I wasn't the suspect they were looking for. But they did ask me if I'd seen anyone else running in the area. Unfortunately I hadn't.
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Old 11-19-19, 09:43 AM
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Evening Commute - 11/18/19 42°F - Shifting was still seeming to work alright, but again it's below freezing I tend to get those issues. The "spongy" brakes I noticed on my morning commute turned into no brakes about two blocks from home. Fortunately that was just the rear brakes and I didn't have to fully Fred Flintstone all my stopping. Since I don't have a bleeder kit for Avid brakes, it looks like it's a run to the LBS for repairs. I suspect I ended up with air in the lines from when I was cleaning and lubing the chain over the weekend.
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Old 11-19-19, 12:12 PM
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Back home, back on the bike. Back to wondering, "Why can't my fair city pave its streets like some other places I've ridden?"

Also, it's cooler. But I skipped the 19F morning here, it was down to 51F where I was last week. The kids bundled in winter coats with their hoods tied up looked so cute!
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Old 11-19-19, 06:25 PM
  #1747  
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One morning in early September I woke up to find a very painful mass had popped up on the top side of my foot literally overnight. It was initially misdiagnosed, so I spent more than a month taking meds and doing treatments that did nothing to help. Eventually they took x-rays which showed it was eating into the bones. It was decided that it needed to be cut out to find out what it was. My doctor was concerned that it could be advanced cancer. Thankfully, it turned out to be something "painful and annoying, but not terribly serious".

Today was the first time I rode my bike to work since early October. It will be a while before I get my fitness back. 36F, dark, wet and foggy. There's a bit of a tunnel to go through on my commute. When I got to the start of it someone at the other end stood up. When I got close I saw they had a bike leaning against the side of the tunnel and some bags on the ground. I stopped and asked if they were OK or needed help, but they ignored me and went back to whatever they were doing.
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Old 11-20-19, 07:35 AM
  #1748  
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I missed Thursday and Friday last week due to having a cold and not wanting to push it. Usually that wouldn't bother me, but I also had a running race on Saturday - the Charlotte Marathon. Yep, 26.2 miles. It was a windy day which made for some miles with headwinds, some with crosswinds and some with tailwinds. I then also skipped biking on Monday due to sore legs. But did bike to work yesterday and today.

Damp roads from overnight rains. 40F felt warmer than I thought it would and I got a little warm by the end. Unzip the jacket a little and I was good. High of 60 today will be nice.
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Old 11-20-19, 08:56 AM
  #1749  
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Yesterday was my first commute since the time change, and I'd somehow neglected to charge up during the entire 3 weeks off. I actually considered bringing my spare battery pack and thought naw, it'll be ok. I was running late...

So halfway home I had to do the smartphone flashlight thing just to see the path. I only saw two people on the way home so at least the embarrassment was limited.
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Old 11-20-19, 11:40 AM
  #1750  
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This morning's commute gave me a stiff headwind after a two-day break from our usual windiness. I stopped to take a picture, and my phone battery died suddenly. It's worn out, so it has a tendency to collapse at nominal levels of 30%. So I missed half of the ride's record and my picture. Oh well.
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