_ The end of 2011 was unseasonably warm with daytime temperatures in the mid 50s. I was fortunate enough to be able to get out and ride on Friday and Saturday. I know that winter weather and snow aren’t far off, so I’m putting the finishing touches on my new duo-speed snow bike. More on that later. Meanwhile, here's a couple of warm-weather-in-December pics with a gratuitous shot of some Ironweed bags.
Should be finishing the first incarnation of our front rack-mount randonneur bag in a day or so. I hope to post some pics this week. Stylistically, it will match perfectly with the panniers. We also have a rack-top trunk bag in the works. I think it would be optimistic to think we'll get both bags into production and out by the holidays, but I'm an optimistic person!
Meanwhile, let me share a pic from the Bike Librarians' breakfast ride this morning. The weather was fantastic, but we had a fairly brutal headwind on the return ride. Hope to get a few more of these Sunday rides in before the first blizzard!
This past Sunday, a few of the veteran (code for old guys) bike librarians got together for a breakfast ride. The weather and the fellowship was spectacular. The ride included a fair amount of gravel so we were thankful for Saturday's rain, which kept the dust down and the road smooth! Even Donald's delicate vintage Motobecane handled the rocks with grace and dignity. Who knows, maybe this becomes a weekly ritual!
I went out for a ride today with my oldest daughter. She's fourteen and turns fifteen this week. I'm amazed that she's still willing to go on a ride with her father. But rides like this are pretty meaningful to me. She's a great student, promising artist and an all-round wonderful kid! She is also a Leukemia survivor. Diagnosed in 2007, she has been off treatment since July 2009. In some ways, she's still trying to overcome the ravages of the two half years of treatment. But today, she showed her strength and determination by climbing some pretty steep hills in extremely hot and humid conditions!
I stumbled upon the Ironweed campsites at Saylorville Lake this past May. I was on a day ride with friends from Des Moines to the High Trestle Bridge; a former railroad bridge that's been converted for trail use. It spans the Des Moines River valley... an impressive one half mile long and 13 stories high! I believe RAGBRAI will be passing over the bridge this summer.