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As many of you are aware, I recently came into the possession of an old Schwinn road bike. All the components are original OEM, with the exception of the pedals (which I replaced over the weekend) and a PlanetBike Blinky7 strobe. The original plan was to take my time getting used to riding a road bike and continuing my maintenance plan a little at a time. Late last night, I decided that I would ride to work today (What better day to start something new than on a Monday, right?) Well I woke up this morning to heavily overcast skies and a light rain. Nothing too bad. I had already decided on which route I would take, and with a bit of Carpe Diem gusto, threw on a light jacket and set out on my rusty old gal, the Blinky7 strobing away.

I knew the ride would basically be uphill through the first three quarters of the way, and thought I knew what to expect. DISCLAIMER: The definition of "uphill" is shockingly broad. I suddenly found myself halfway up Pike's Peak, with nowhere to turn around and barely anywhere to stop (The route I had so cleverly decided upon was the most direct, with the most traffic and the least sidewalks).

Then the rain started (as in, REALLY started). It was pouring. I continued the long, slow climb. Another surprise is how quickly a rider can downshift through all 10 gears and be left with nothing, except when my bike would decide to shift into the big ring for me. Lungs sucking in wet air, legs burning, I could finally see the crest of the hill. Or so I thought. With all the sweat and rainwater blurring my eyes it was hard to tell

After dodging traffic and coasting a short ways downhill, I had finally made it. I was wet. I was cold. I was tired. I was hot. I was sore (let me reiterate the part about the original seat combined with riding on roads after a New England winter). And boy was I filthy.


I loved it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, Hack!

And as long as I don't have a massive coronary on my next commute to work, I should definitely be available!
 

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Laughed when I read this. Not laughing @ you, mind you, but with you as I felt/feel your pain and exhilaration of the daily commute on a not so great day.:D

So even afterwards comes the rolling eyes and the talk of the idiot riding his bike in the rain, etc... More love/hate :cool:

Gotta love it,

Bravo on the commentary btw
 

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Almost everyone has a hill. It may or may be the most difficult hill in your area, but its a hill you have to regularly climb. Sounds like your hill is a lot like my Booger Hill. Booger Hill really to look at isn't that much of a hill, but its a couple of miles long. Going down hill its a blast. Not really that steep but allows one to really feel a bit of a sensation of speed, if you can do that on a bike. Going up it starts out very gradually and really doesn't look that tough. But its a bit like the energizer bunny, it keeps going and going and going. The as you are beginning to think it will never end, the hill gets steeper. Not really steep, but I'm tired at that point just as it gets tougher. It is a welcome sight when the stop sign comes into view at the end of Booger Hill. I don't like this hill, but its probably one of the best training hills in the area so I ride it anyway.
 

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That's awesome. I hate when you get to that lowest gear and discover that there aren't anymore!

I've actually ridden up the road from Manitou Springs that passes the turn off to the Pikes Peak tollway. If your route was anything like that, I feel for you!
 
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