Archive | September 2010

30DoB day 30: Water taxi

28 miles cycled today! We swung by Dutch Bike Co. to get my rubbing fender fixed and have a snack, and then cut through the locks to eventually reach pier 55 (via pier 50 since I neglected to read the details of the water taxi substitution). We rode the water taxi to West Seattle and then biked to Alki Beach. The Argosy Sightseer was filling in for the damaged regular boat so that was cool. Instead of bike racks, there were bungee cords along both sides and they held the bikes in snugly.

On the way home I passed another cyclist on the way up Gilman. Granted, it was a homeless guy laden with bags and bags of recyclables, but it still felt rewarding to pass someone. Then we got caught up watching boats at the locks for a while. The lockmasters liked the Bobikes and gave the boys boat-safety-themed coloring books. Score!

We had a great victory on the way home. Brandt loves the Ride the Ducks amphibious cars (or “boat cars” as he calls them) and on a few occasions we’ve seen passengerless boat cars in Ballard and I’ve figured their overnight parking lot is somewhere in the area. Today we saw two of them and chased them down to their roosting spot. I’d never trespass onto a private dock with the car, but it doesn’t feel quite as illegal on a bike. So we biked onto the dock, but didn’t make it all the way down to the end. I was curious to see them all snuggled in, but the Hazardous Materials sign and guys in clean suits scared me off.

30DoB day 28: South Lake Union Park

We stayed close to home in the morning with our first errand a bike-up ATM trip, which I think is my new favorite bike activity. Then we hit the children’s bookstore where we locked up to bicycle-shaped bike rack to play on their train table.

After waiting half the day for the sun to make its promised appearance, we eventually gave up and napped and then cycled down to the new South Lake Union Park where we discovered many new bike racks and lots of open space (though much of it was roped off to protect the immature grass).

It was cool riding home during evening commute time as we saw a lot more cyclists than usual. A hipster sat up in the saddle and applauded me as I huffed and puffed my way up Westlake to the Fremont bridge. I guess it’s not really that much of a hill if he didn’t need to hold onto his handlebars to ascend. I got a couple more cheers riding up Stone and a woman in a minivan slowed down to roll down her window and congratulate me. A gal could get used to all this attention. Brandt was pretty intrigued and said, “Mama, hear that??” each time someone spoke to me. Oh, and the sun finally came out around 7pm, shortly after we got back home.

30DoB day 27: Phinney success

I made it to Phinney without walking the bike! 84th is indeed an easier hill than 83rd. The only problem is that it’s one way the other direction, but it’s nice and wide and empty and I don’t think my .0001 mph at the edge of the road would scare any oncoming cars.

It started drizzling as soon as we left the house so I went searching for a dry parking spot upon reaching the Phinney Neighborhood Center. I thought I found one under the stairs (and proudly took a picture of it), but I would have been better off leaving the bike exposed once the rain stopped and the dripping started. However, I saw a legitimately dry spot deeper under the stairs so provided I can squeeze my way back there, we’ll be fine next week.

30DoB day 26: Apple Store

Took the boys to the Apple Store in University Village this evening to get my broken iPhone looked at. We usually take the Burke Gilman Trail to the west so it’s always an adventure to head east. It was quite adventurous this time as it was some sort of orientation day and the University area was teeming with teenagers wearing name tags milling about unaware of cyclists.

It was nice having the bike at U-Village because I can never find my way around so I easily circled a few times before pulling up to a map. That would have been impossible by car and taken much longer on foot. Yeah yeah yeah, I’ve been to the Apple Store once before, but I’ve got zero sense of direction.

The college freshman were off the path by the time we headed home, but there were tons of bugs out and I got one in the eye–yuck! We took a small detour on Northlake Way to better see the boats. There’s a bit of a bike path down there, but also lots of sharp rocks so I think we’ll stick to the BGT from now on.

On the way up Stone Brandt dropped his water bottle. That was a first. But it wasn’t too bad circling back and picking it up. Between that and missing two lights it was quite a relaxing uphill ride.

30DoB day 25: Book run

Finally, a real ride! Not a big ride, but a real errand-running trip: the boys and I rode a mile and a half (round trip) to the library to return some books before heading out on our camping trip. Like the ATM, the book drop is also easier by bike than by car.

30DoB day 24: Double blah

Spent the morning at the zoo tiring out the wee ones and contemplated trying to find an unattended cargo trike to borrow and pedal, but chickened out (and didn’t see one, anyway). The afternoon was spent packing up for a one-day camping trip so my ride of the day was the smallest one yet, just up and down the driveway. I’m bummed for having done two lame rides in a row so I’ll just have to make it up next week.

30DoB day 22: Monorail

Today was sunny as well as special: World Car Free Day. We started out with a ride to the Space Needle. I’m still trying to figure out the best route there. Next time I think I’ll see if I can manage the hill up Dexter, but then we’ll miss out on the view of Lake Union. Today we trespassed through an open gate to watch the Seattle Queen paddle boat fueling up. Good stuff.

To mix things up a bit, we hopped on the Monorail. It was really easy with the bike and the elevator at the Westlake Center is right by the Monorail stop and pretty big–we fit with a family with stroller–so even easier than the Light Rail. From Westlake we rode down Pine to Pike Place Market and then down to the Waterfront. I’m starting to like riding around downtown.

I was feeling pretty proud of myself finding my way home along the Elliott Bay Trail–I tend to blindly follow the leader when I’m riding in a group. I found my way to the locks, but by following the bike signs I ended up on an incredibly (for me) steep hill. The good part is that we found the wooden bridge that crosses over the train tracks this way, but I think it’ll be our only time taking that route.

30DoB day 21: Luminata

Tonight we rode to Luminata, the Autumnal Equinox Lantern Parade put on by the Fremont Arts Council. I expected to see a lot of bikes there, but there were only two of us. Granted, I was planning to walk over, but I hadn’t gotten my ride in yet. I remember the other guy from last year: he had neon flowers all over the place. The Bianchi was a bit fancied up with four lanterns and two night lights adorning her.