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- Quick trip: Trek Transport+
- Installing quick-release pedals: MKS Lambda--Ezy Superior
- Lightweight bicycle tool: Fix It Sticks
- Pedal up: a conversation with Dean "Bareback" Mathias
- Katy, Rock Island, Greenway trails unaffected by Supreme Court rails-to-trails ruling
- Follow 16incheswestofpeoria on WordPress.com
Rick: We’ll always have the wind. Maybe not tomorrow or next week, but whenever we ride.
Ilsa: Yes, the wind. And in the mornings, perhaps less of it.
Rick: You’re getting on that bike with zip ties where you belong.
Ilsa: And you, Rick…
Ilsa: Try to keep up.
Downhill warm up, smooth roads, 65 degrees, Santa Fe Burlington Northern train clearing the crossing one minute before I needed the same space, tailwind chasing me on the way home, thunder upon arrival and light rain 15 minutes after that.
Took the picture just south of the old 10-mile time trial dogleg toward Truitt and, eventually, Chillicothe.
Might need to trial it again and see what difference 30 years makes.
You may have missed the story in class due to the machinations of the international bicycle wheel lobby, an organization with members professionally incapable of recognizing a bicycle without wheels–including the Canadian design.
But consider the genius behind the machine.
No bearings, no wheels, no moving parts–just a reshaped and inverted bicycle fender propelled by a flattened stick.
Some folks call it a canoe.
It’s simple. Efficient. Capable of long-distance transportation of people and freight and designed, like all bicycles, for the specific terrain at hand: in this case, water.
Where do you want to go?
Across the Great Lakes? Take a canoe.
Hudson Bay? Canoe.
From Chicago to New Orleans? Canoe.
Eleven-mile road loop west of Chillicothe, Illinois?
Okay, not a canoe.
The solid portion of the Earth really does seem to demand the complexity of a bicycle with wheels.
But a pair of fenders still goes a long way.
The bike is parked at the top of Miller Hill–just before the road twists down the bluff to meet Hallock Hollow and the Illinois River valley.
Country redbuds are out in full glory; their city counterparts always get a jumpstart on the season.
Returning home, I notice the first wave of what promises to be a good crop of dandelions–important early forage for honeybees.
And yes, I’m one of those kind of gardeners: I’ll pull a dandelion if it cozies up to a favorite flower or vegetable, but other than that, let a thousand blossoms bloom.
After all, you can’t make wine from bluegrass.