Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Snowy riding


Just got home from a 30 minute, fairly nerve-wracking ride home. Let's call it tension in slow-motion. I left work in a sort of middling sleet/snowstorm with about 1.5 to 2" of fresh mess on the road. It was out ahead of the plows, mostly just an already driven-on mix of packed snow and slush here and there.

Cruising along at an average of about 9 mph, I was sort of shimmying around in the car tire tracks for several blocks until I finally got to some road with a fairly undriven strip along the side. This stuff is much better to ride in as it kind of holds you in place better than sliding around in some hard packed stuff that the cars have had their way with.

It's fairly shocking (well, I guess it's really not), just how little cars seem to notice or care that you are making your way in a pretty precarious fashion on two wheels right next to them. I had a sort of vague visualization of slowly sliding over and getting my leg run over or my head crushed by a tunnel-visioned driver at about 18mph. The slow horror! I guess it helped me keep focused though.

I am just a little bit proud to say that I did not tip over at all in my 4.2 mile commute and kept a cool head at all times. It was ALMOST fun at times, those times being when there weren't any cars around (few and far between).

Anyway, kudos are due to a couple of things:
-Schwalbe Marathon tires. Kept a pretty good grip in this "wintry mix" from hell.
-Fenders. Let's hear it for "wheelbrows!" I am a big proponent.

Here are some pics from the end of the ride beginning with a shot of the conditions from my front porch. Feast your eyes on this mess my southern friends!

Days are getting longer again anyway. Only 3 weeks until Austin!

And just for good measure, here is my annual winter message once again (actually one more kudo here to the intrepid and unknown snow sculptor who crafted this masterpiece).

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