Three-bike day

Three jobs for three different bikes today!

It appears we might get to do some mountain biking over Spring Break so late last night I dug out my neglected mountain bike to clean the chain and air up the tires. I haven’t done any mountain biking since before the kids came along; nowadays, my mountain bike (ten-year old GT i-drive 2.0) comes out once a year when there’s excessive snow on the ground. Initially, I used it to tow the kids in the double trailer, like during Snowmageddon, but the trailer was stolen so we rode separate bikes in the snow last year.

Using it as a mountain bike today was really fun! I pedaled to Woodland Park, which I’m familiar with from the annual MFG Woodland Park GP cyclocross race. I tooled around enough to determine the bike was in working order, but heading home, I got distracted by the pump track. Holy cow, that place is fun! I went through a dozen times, starting on the smallest bumps, but I graduated to some of the middle bumps the last few runs. And the banked circular portion at the end is great! Mind you, I’m no mountain biker and usually go incredibly slow until my hands cramp from clinging to the brakes so tightly–and then I speed up since I have no choice…and I’ll admit it gets more fun at that point. I can’t wait to come back with the kids!

I almost brought my big messenger bag to grab groceries on the way home from mountain biking, but decided going in normal clothes on normal bike was better so I swapped mountain bike for Little Strugger (Surly Straggler). This is the first I’ve put a pannier on the newly-welded rear rack and it seems to fit fine. I opted to take the Straggler instead of the Big Dummy since I had a short shopping list and I’d rather haul 33 pounds of bike than 75 pounds of bike when possible.

And then the third bike of the day was the Big Dummy to bag and drag the kids’ bikes to school pickup. I’m afraid we may have hit a bit of an impasse. We had planned to go to the She Bikes Cascade launch party, which was on Capitol Hill, four busy and hilly miles away, and a destination to which I’ve always carried the kids as passengers. But my five-year old has been eager to ride everywhere lately so I met them with bikes with the understanding I’d get to carry them when I felt it was too busy.

Things didn’t seem to be working in my favor for getting us all the way to Capitol Hill today. The kids usually want to leave school immediately, but today of all days, they stayed to play with friends and then with each other and I didn’t want to tear them away. They don’t see one another during the school day so it was nice to see them connecting in the playground, where they’re used to having their own, separate routines. With the day disappearing, we made it as far as Waterway 15, the closest “beach” access. The kids did bike tricks as they careened towards the ship canal while I tried to keep my cool.

This dragging-the-feet trick is called “My Mufflers are Broken”

I don’t know what this is called, but it was pretty exciting:

And this is their first and favorite trick, “Super Trick!” standard version on the left, modified on the right:

And brand new today: “Evil Foot Fenders”

The only one they skipped was “My Tall Bike” which only the five-year old can do: standing on the top tube.

I still can’t believe none of us crashed today.

Miles biked: 8.2
Bikes biked: 3

Miles biked cumulative: 124.3
Bikes biked cumulative: 4

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