Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Mountain Bike for Touring

Good mountain bike frame design for bike touring offered in a classic Diamond Back Ascent EX circa '91.
If there was ever a good reason for installing dirt drop bars on a mountain bike one designed for touring settled that conflict of adding road style drop bars to a mountain bike. 

For more information regarding the Origin8 Gary2 Bars visit Biketourings' Review and build of this rare design.  Bike's original stem and flat bar did not complement the long top tube in a way to provide comfortable performance or handling, particularly for the long haul.  By replacing the stem and adding the dirt drop bars this is a very nice bike for just about any type of riding.  By adding the Kenda Small Block Eights in 26 x 2.35 the tires provide nice cushion and roll efficiently and effectively over most terrain.  

mountain bike for touring and commuting
Mountain bike for touring with dirt drop bars
Some bikes beckon to ride them and this is one of those that when you're walking past it you want to hop on it and take it for a spin.  I have some experience with short and shallow bars but the dirt drop bars flare out a bit and with a 530mm width I was concerned they might be a bit wide.  They are very wide but surprisingly comfortable as the brake hoods are not too wide and is where I would place my hands on longer jaunts through the countryside.  

test riding mountain bike with dirt drop bars
Test rode the build with handlebar bag full of photo equipment and loved the way it handled.  
Components For this Build Included:

mountain bike for touring with dirt drop bars
'91 Diamond Back Ascent EX mountain bike for touring

Monday, September 22, 2014

A Week Riding a Different Type of Chain and Dodging a Storm

Picture of bike commuter with stormy weather in background
Staying out ahead of the storm we had fun getting some photos with our bikes.
It was exactly one week ago when Lisa came to tell me about the neighbor's tree falling onto the power line between our properties.  When I went to take a look my little portable bike workshop looked to be in harm's way.  There was a large dead tree on the other side which had come down on top of the neighbor's tree and which was the real threat to damaging the dome's fabric cover.  
Picture of trees down on dome bike workshop
This was what I "saw" (no pun intended) when I looked out at my little dome bike workshop.
Picture of bike workshop with pile of tree branches
After removing most of the downed limbs with a sawzall and a pole pruner
I decided to keep my distance from the power line and focused on removing anything which seemed to pose a threat to the workshop.  Needing to remove several tree limbs before I felt comfortable dropping the larger dead tree without it snagging on other trees.  Importance of cleanly dropping a dead tree that was tangled with two other green trees cannot be overstated enough.  After a full day and a half of using the Corona Dual Action Tree Pruner with 13" Razer Saw and cleaning up the huge mess in our yard it was time to get a chainsaw.  After much research and learning about the effects of ethanol on small high performance engines I decided on the Echo 16" Chainsaw and if it gave me any hassles while cutting the limbs that were cut down then I would return it.  There were so many mixed reviews regarding chainsaws it seemed that fuel mixture and storage was more of an issue than anythings else.  FYI a recommended mix is a good quality two cycle oil and 91 octane fuel with no more than 10 percent ethanol.  Evidently there are gas stations selling E85 gas which contains 85% ethanol and should be avoided.  One expert suggested not even purchasing gas for a chainsaw there as there might be a bit of that in the station's hose even if they sell e10 fuel as well.
Our neighbor's tree resting on power line between our properties, after a week nobody has come to take care of it. 
Last Saturday we had a scheduled pot luck dinner gathering for the folks who help with the organic food co-op at our store.  I missed out on our get together due to the tree resting on the powerline and stayed home as I was told the situation had been reported and someone was going to come take care of it.  After our landlord had come by he reported it and so did our neighbor.  So, after a couple days it was time for me to get to work on protecting my workshop.  Tree removal, cutting firewood and limbing trees is nothing new to me.  Coming from the Northwest where I used to have a landscaping business I sold firewood and cut my own firewood for several years.  Those skills also came in very handy in Colorado where a wealthy rancher observed my consideration for the natural surroundings while felling trees on his property and wanted to hire me to make snow mobile and atv trails.  Anyhow, I had sold my tools for that type of work a few years ago after leaving Colorado and it had been years since I used a pole saw pruner.  Though I am in very good shape I wondered how much I would be able to do in time allotted to remove the heavy limbs and dead tree before a forecasted storm rolled in. 

Another thing about this type of work is I was paid a good sum for it.  As it requires quality tools, experience and skill so that damage to property is kept at a minimum.  To say nothing of personal injury to workers or others.  After getting over my initial anger and frustration of having to contend with the situation we decided I should assess tthings and get the required tools.  I needed a good quality pole pruning saw first.  And I don't care who you are those things are tough to use and cheap ones are dangerous.  Seventy bucks later I have a 14 foot Corona which has a 13" saw blade capable of cutting through six to eight inch branches which is what I really needed to get some of the weight off of the powerline without putting myself at risk in any way, shape or form.  The trick of course was to cut the heavy limbs so that when they dropped it wouldn't damage my little bike workshop. 

Picture of bike mechanic running a chainsaw
Sure glad we were able to locate a good chainsaw for getting the dead tree off of the roof of our store.  Tree was threatening to fall on my bike workshop and dropping it on to roof of store was the safest thing. 
Picture of Echo 16" chainsaw and tree cut up
Echo 16" Chainsaw is a good quality chainsaw for what we needed to do. View from roof with bucked round of same tree in background. 
Considering I worked hard at this clean up project for three days solid it was of no surprise when I felt as though I had strained a muscle in my back.  Actually I really thought I would have a lot more sore stiff muscles particularly from the pole saw pruner.   If I walked away with anything from this project it's that I'm in much better physical condition than anticipated and there's certainly nothing wrong with that.  Went for a gentle six to seven mile ride as I allow my back to recover and confident I will be returning to work and bike commuting this week.

Picture of small portable bike workshop with rain and flooding
As soon as I completed removing and bucking the last of the tree from the roof, severe weather storm hit and we felt very satisfied with keeping our little workshop from taking a hit. 
As I mentioned before, it has been a bit over a week now and our neighbor's tree is still laying on the power line.  Weather is clear and sunny with no wind, perfect work conditions for removing the tree from the power line.  Perhaps the whole "don't mess with Texas" slogan isn't the "power line" they intended it to be, bu rather an excuse for them not to go to work.  If that sounds a bit cranky it's because I am.  After pulling a muscle in my back and needing a few days to recuperate, including a couple of sleepless nights with back pain I thankfully have taken care of my own and that's good enough. After it's all said and done I'm actually grateful we had an excuse to get a new chainsaw, the smell and sounds brought back some fond memories of living in Washington.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Success, Building a Bike for Someone to Love

I have built quite a few bikes over the years.  Some for folks who truly appreciate how a bike can enhance their lives and some for people who didn't care about their bike and were riding it because they had to for transportation.  Both actually have their qualities of appreciation as the latter holds a rather detached mode of practicality and shrewdness.  A common sense perspective holds true with a bike, it is the most affordable means of transportation and contributes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

For aesthetically charmed bike aficionados the range of appreciation can seem and often is more of an obsession as popular photos on the internet depict.  My reason for pointing this out is in the retail industry (in particular customer service) of bike repair work it is of first and foremost importance to understand what it is that the customer wants.  A customer shows up wanting to achieve some element of personal success, whether that be getting a flat repaired, replacing uncomfortable handlebars or some bike bling gadget. In any case part of the real satisfaction of working in the bike industry has been to help people effectively succeed at achieving their desired objective.  When the customer is a bike lover of sorts and their enthusiasm for all things bike exudes from their aura it's especially nice to help keep them keeping on.  When a pragmatically induced no nonsense commuter is aided in a fast and cost effective manner the pleasant reward of their satisfaction carries a dry enthusiasm much more subtle than a bike lover yet there's a sense of a similar level of satisfaction. Pretty cool.

When I found someone to love and spend my life with building a bike for her has been the most rewarding experience for me as a long time lover of bikes and the years spent servicing them.
Picture of mountain bike frame being built in workshop
Found a neat old steel lugged '89 Peugeot Canyon Express mountain bike frame and fork to build for Lisa
I have a keen knack for finding bikes worthy of refurbishing or building and Lisa is used to seeing a good number of bikes come and go from my little shop in our back yard.  So when she saw me bringing this frame home she didn't think much of it.  I had been looking to build her a second bike and wanted it to be a surprise.  Criteria I had set was a bike that would be a bit more versatile for casual trail riding and bike commuting keeping in mind that she is a bit of a novice rider so something she would feel more confident and comfortable on than her 700c wheeled Trek touring bike.  Deciding a 26" mountain bike with appropriate frame size would be ideal I was also looking for something with some "personal touches".  Implementing my previous customer descriptions of pragmatism and aesthetically pleasing helped to define a method of moving forward and getting her the proper bike.  
Picture of steel lugs on older mountain bike frame
Beautiful Lug work of older Steel Mountain Bike Frames
When I found this '89 Peugeot Canyon Express frame and fork only I jumped on it. Not only was the bike a steal at forty five bucks with nice paint, straight frame, little to no rust, excellent condition but it has been a perfect fit.  This was a very fun bike to build as I was also able to find a nice Suntour Alpha 3000 component group on ebay lending a touch of retro classy quality for simplicity and trouble free shifting and besides that the components just look so cool on an old steel framed mountain bike.  
Picture of Vintage Suntour Components
Suntour Alpha 3000 Component Group 3 x 5
Picture of Suntour Thumbshifters
Quality, dependable thumb shifters from Suntour
Getting the wheelset together was a different matter.  I thought certain I had a wheelset for the bike in my workshop and luckily I did.  However, the front spokes were a bit rusty though still solid and the wheel trued just fine and though I had a rear wheel to match it didn't have an axle and was so wonky I wasn't sure it would be able to be trued.  After some considerable effort I was pleasantly surprised when the wheel responded to my truing technique, success!
For all other parts such as saddle, stem, tires and handlebars and especially the rear axle thanks to the guys at Unite Bike Supply who rounded the stuff up and shipped it quick, as always excellent service.

We all have our ups and downs in life, sometimes it can feel like we are left alone to deal with seemingly horrible challenges without much needed support.  Does having a bike in one's life solve all of life's problems simply by going for a nice quiet ride?  Maybe, but just knowing there is a bike available to get on and play without playing any games is more often than not enough of a simple pleasure to find our way through life's messiness, like traffic for instance.  : )

Well, that's enough of my bit of gentle bike banter, here's how the bike looked when I first completed the build.  It has since had lights and handlebar bag added, trekking bars with 25 degree sweep and have some fenders to add.  When Lisa tells me how much she loves her bike.  I believe her.
Picture of vintage mountain bike for commuting
Lisa's '89 Peugeot Canyon Express Steel Lugged 26" mountain bike for commuting.

Picture of smiling woman with new bike
Success, Built a Bike for Someone to Love.
Lisa loves her bike and I love her, I call that Success.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

To Go Clipless or Not to Go Clipless, Is Not a Real Question

Good ol' Shimano Dual Pedal
Seems when I go shopping or consider new bike commuting equipment I automatically evaluate two criteria.  Versatility and convenience.  Quality is a given I don't ride with "junk" though my wife might argue that after I've shopped garage sales but that's not an issue.  Anyhow, this idea was inspired by Kent's Bike Blog regarding "Clipsplaining".

I have spent many hours around bike work stands and heard all sorts of opinionated banter from very savvy bike folks including very talented bike techs.  Using fenders as an analogy while managing a shop in one of Colorado's mountain bike mecca areas one of the techs like to spew his blatant disdain for fenders, knowing I commuted to work everyday with fenders of course.  "Fenders are useless, they just clog with mud".  My convertible fenders have toolless removal when needed.  So, with the clipless pedal I have my own silly banter as a form of good humored retaliation.

My dual platform SPD pedals in photo combined with Nashbar Ragster II sandals are an excellent combination for me.  Sure that provides a clipless option but with the sandals being so comfortable for walking I can also pedal the platform side.  When that type of conversation rears its' debate I like to comment "oh ya, I've got the clipless thing, but I don't use them for that, I just like the dork sporty look while kickin' it at the coffee shop".  That always gets some quizzical looks, particularly when I add similar comments regarding my Bell Metro Helmet complete with set of bike geek accessories.  Most often I would get myself to chuckling so hard the boys knew I was jerking their proverbial "chain".  Nonetheless those sorts of exchanges usually ended with someone suggesting I "get the old school chip off my shoulder".  Fun stuff, never anything really wicked intended with that bike banter and ultimately nobody really gave a shit as I was the only employee at that shop bike commuting everyday.

"You know how it is, I enjoy a good clipless pedal as much as the next person, but still, where did the platform pedal come from?  Oh, that's just a little something I put together when I got home from work last night.  Works really good for kicking the shit out of it".
Picture of bike commuter with clipless pedals and sandals
Kickin' it with dual SPD pedals and sandals.  

Convenience of a Good Handlebar Basket.

Picture of three quality handlebar baskets for bike commuting
Three Quality Handlebar Baskets for performing a variety of bike commuting tasks.
I like a good handlebar basket as much as the next person particularly that sweet smell of lacquered wicker warming in the morning sun.  Handlebar baskets are sort of considered to be the "ugly duckling" of handlebar cargo accessories.  Most folks opt for a handlebar bag or go Porteur style.  Sure there are some practical considerations that I will blatantly ignore it in defense of the tried and true let's go on a picnic Mary Poppins and don't forget your bike shorts 'cause we gonna haul some shit!

But seriously there is something uniquely advantageous about a handlebar basket that other handlebar cargo units lack in one of two areas, namely versatility and convenience which might imply it's the lazy person's method.  Looks can be deceiving and just because most handlebar baskets don't possess a sporty design lending to a rugged or slick image of a cyclist there are some baskets that are worth their weight in whatever you can cram jam into 'em.  That's right, baskets are lightweight and can hold a lot, making them versatile and convenient and if that's not sporty enough for ya then check this out. 

Picture of Dahon folding bike with handlebar basket for bike travel
Sporty looks and inherent versatility of a Dahon folding bike remain unimpaired by the addition of a large handlebar basket. 
I know, excellent example though the fact the Dahon has a new chain contributes to the bikes' potential to deliver an elegant stride, still where did that handlebar basket come from?  Not Dahon, no that's an aftermarket Sunlite Rattan Basket that's been knocked down, bent out of shape, repaired, glued and still hauls ten times its' weight with ease.  Perfect complement to a folding bike that needs some cargo toting apparatus and can be easily removed with the quick release gizmo.  Pretty nice having a removable basket, stashing your bike goodys and folding a bike like the Dahon for ease of traveling.

Three of my favorite handlebar baskets are pictured below.  First is a home made wicker job I found at a thrift store for two bucks and attached with some velcro.  Yes, it's very sturdy while riding is excellent quality wicker.  Sprayed with a coat of lacquer and it will last for years.  Next, the Sunlite simply because it has earned its' reputation in these parts for dependability.  Finally, my personal favorite reminds me of being a kid when I used to speak with a lisp. Yep, that's my "bagsket".   Detours delivers some uniqueness with their Town and Country Grassy Basket.  I call it it a bagsket as it has a water resistant storm collar liner like a high quality stuff sack with a drawstring.  Complete with carrying handles, quick release and a fricken snap on rain cover it's the handlebar bagsket for bike touring. 
Picture of Detours Town and Country Handlebar Basket with Rain Cover
Detours Town and Country Basket with Rain Cover
However, with all the technological advancements applied to a good old fashioned handlebar basket sometimes the simple rustic charm and elegance of a good ol' basket design best suits the character of a bike's inherent style. In the photo above the old steel lugged cruiser needed something different than the fancy flair of the Detours Basket and so fitting for a rejuvenated retro classic.
Picture of old steel lugged bike with handlebar basket
'60's Puch with classic style handlebar basket
 Links related to this topic:
The Handlebar Basket Effect
Building on Success with DIY Handlebar Basket
Detours Town and Country Review
Review of Origin8 Classique Cargo Carrier

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Beginning of Bike Friendly, Even Though........

Picture of bike improperly parked at bike rack
One of these bikes is parked properly at the bike rack, do you know which one is right? Hint, it's not the one on the right.
Hey, I like a good bike parking rack as much as the next person, except possibly the fine folk who hogged the parking rack like a jealous lover.  Thought of leaving a note on their bike, " the bike rack is not your bitch (non gender specific) you can't take it home, you have to share it with us other bike folks so it can stay slotty, not slutty".  Then I realized the person would most likely have no idea what I was talking about as folks here many have never seen a bike parking rack before.

And that's basically how my bike commuting night was going under some beautiful moon light.  Then I decided to pedal on out to the bookstore for some evening relaxation, smoke my pipe, chat a bit and before I could sit down to relax this happened.
Ankles red and swollen from mosquito bites that swarmed only on my ankles while riding.
Now I realize the title of this blog is Natural Biking but I gotta tell ya, I felt something very "unnatural" swarming around my ankles while I pedaled.  Kind of a warm tingling sensation as I had received dozens upon dozens of bites but only around my ankles.  Guess they didn't like my hairy legs much for as I would reach to swat and rub away the nuisance I felt dead mosquitos being brushed off from the hair on my legs.  When I finally decided I had enough and turned my bike toward home I saw the explanation for the dead insects.
Picture of mosquito truck spraying insecticide
Mosquito truck spraying insecticide out the back of the truck, that's what the spew is.  
Well, there was no way I wanted to breathe in that crap so I had to stop and wait for the chemical scent in the air to dissipate.  I was none too happy about it and decided my peaceful moonlit night time bike ride was all but ruined.  That's when a few beers are called for.  Not bad and I don't know if this town will ever be considered "bike friendly" by bike advocacy standards but I still am, bike friendly.
After all, when I got home Lisa took care of it with one of her Essential Oils in her kit.  I don't know much about the stuff, but man did it help to get the swelling and itching out.  Thank you honey, should have read this other blog article before leaving, how ironic is that?  Can hardly believe the first pack item is mosquito repellent!
Picture of doterra essential purify oil for insect bites
doterra Purify Oil for treating bug bits extracts toxins from bites.
Picture of mosquito bite relief after using doterra essential oil
Next day after treating bites with doterra essential oils, stuff works very nicely and I was able to get to sleep that night. 
Before and after photos are beautiful, after all not going to scar these beauties.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Fun Lovin' Bike Remodel, a Bike for All Seasons

'93 Bridgestone MB 1 mountain bike
My '93 Bridgestone MB 1 before replacing fork, saddle, handlebars, stem, grips and tires.
I am so enjoying this old Bridgestone and very pleased with how it came together.  Found it on Craigslist in pretty rough condition with a stripped threaded steer tube on the old Rock Shox suspension fork.  It would have been nice to get a Ritchey Logic fork to match with the original frame and I will continue to check ebay for one.  In the interim I found a very inexpensive solution from Sunlite.  I was a bit skeptical at first considering the limited options available in a one inch threaded replacement fork so I was very pleased with to find two options.  A fork from Breezer was also available so I went grabbed one while they were still available.  Although the Breezer fork cost twice what the Sunlite fork did I went with the Sunlite fork for its' threaded eyelet options thinking I would need them for front rack and fender.
Picture of Breezer one inch threaded mountain bike replacement fork
Breezer one inch threaded replacement fork 
As it turned out I didn't have to worry about that after all as the folks at United Bike Supply had some very inexpensive convertible fenders that still offer full rear tire coverage.  A product I didn't know was available and figured I would need something with fender stays to install to protect the front derailleur.  That is really what fenders do for me, protect drivetrain components and reduce maintenance of cleaning and lubing.  Particularly because I enjoy having different bikes to ride, most of which have fenders. Besides the inexpensive fenders they also took care of my rear rack needs with a very inexpensive aluminum rack.  Although I wouldn't feel comfortable loading it with much weight it has nice top length for carrying a tent and sleeping pad.  I really appreciate United Bike Supply for their unique ability to turn up inexpensive accessories when having "the best" is just silly.  I don't require bamboo fenders and consider it impractical for commuting and touring.  I would rather have something versatile and less expensive but not necessarily disposable.  I decided I would try to get a front rack from Old Man Mountain surprised by the money I had saved including the quality budget commuting tires and saddle.

So, intending to splurge a bit on a front rack for touring I found what I was looking for from Minoura.  Think Old Man Mountain and Surly Nice Rack and I have the Minoura FRP 3000.  Beautiful front rack that I was able to mount to the brake bosses and fork drop outs with quick release skewer.  I got a really good deal on the rack as it was available at the warehouse without all the hardware for installation including the quick release skewer, which as it turned out a rear skewer works just fine.

Picture of mountain bike for touring
My '93 Bridgestone built for bike touring and commuting with Minoura FRP 3000 Front Pannier Rack.
After replacing the original Ritchey handlebars and stem with a shorter stem and trekking bars my remodeled version of a Bridgestone MB 1 is more fun and comfortable for use as a touring bike and commuting.  A friend commented "I know that's an unassuming but powerful bike".  I love hearing comments like that especially from someone who wouldn't be considered a "bike person".   There's something so accurate about that statement as when I ride this old Bridgestone it mellows my mood, softens me a bit yet doesn't slow me down.  Those are some very nice qualities which I feel defines and accurately describes a bike for everyday commuting and when it's that sweet it's even better for taking on a nice meandering bike tour.

Seems to me I have been happy without even realizing it though not because I have taken happiness for granted.  It's more of a definition of terms being contented or happy and there really isn't much difference as it would probably be very difficult to be content without some elements of happiness.
Picture of mountain bike for touring with racks and panniers
Bridgestone Touring and Commuting Bike

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Matagorda, Texas Bike Friendly Beach Camping, by Rideon

Matagorda Bridge over Colorado River
Matagorda Bridge over the Colorado River
Matagorda Nature Center on the Texas Gulf Coast provides fun beach camping for the entire family.  With most folks heading to Padre Island, Galveston and Surfside (respectively) we opted for a new area.  

Approaching Matagorda to get our beach camping permit, which is good for the entire year at a very reasonable ten bucks I took one of our first photos of the trip.  A calm cool breeze settled in to the area and for seasoned south Texas campers it is very welcomed weather.  During the summer mosquitoes and humidity are reported to provide some of the worst camping conditions of any other outdoor climates.  

So, with a minivan full of excited teenage girls and a trailer full of their stuff to match we trolled about looking for a place to settle in and enjoy both the Colorado River as well as Gulf Coast waters.  One of the niceties of Matagorda providing both salt and fresh water for boaters and fishermen as well as beach combers and folks like us who enjoy pedaling our bikes around such diverse and scenic waterways.

For more information about visiting Matagorda, TX visit their site. Our first night and morning was rather uneventful other than when the wind picked up, which I had expected as it seems to me anywhere along the coast tends to be a bit on the breezy side of things when temperatures are a bit chilly.  Lisa would not be deterred by the girls'
Lisa's Organic Orange Brownies baked in Dutch Oven

insistent pressure to make her ever popular orange filled organic brownies before finding a camp site.  But when they insisted she use a grill more exposed to wind than any other grill in the picnic area Lisa began to shift her mood and that's typically when I decide to intervene a bit. After a bit of a pep talk and some help with getting the grill going to cook with she settled in until the cool mellow breeze turned down right cold.

Finding a pleasant camp site was easy enough and we were able to get a small cozy fire going to chat, cook dinner and Lisa was able to warm herself before turning in for the night.  She was so pleasantly surprised to see I had brought my itty bitty portable cookset so that she could be treated to coffee in the tent.  That's love.
mountain bike touring and beach camping
Making early morning coffee bike friendly beach camping in Matagorda, TX

As luck would have it, we met a woman who know all about bicycling the area, what parts of the beach to ride, how to get to town without having to ride over the bridge with full narrative of each ride she referenced.  So we grabbed our bikes and headed for town and as it turned out the woman never rode her bike to town and had no idea where the rugged access road along the Colorado River went, certainly not to town.  Lisa was a bit peeved that the woman would lead us on a wild goose chase like that, luckily our very long detour was covered as I kept snack food, extra water and tools in my pack and on my bike. We appreciate our fenders for commuting and touring, but with the mud so thick I had to remove a rear fender for the tire and mud to clear.
Mountain Bike touring along Colorado River
Luckily I had tools to remove the mud clogged fender

Fatigued and upset these little micro adventures are much more enjoyable when your with someone who has such a good attitude about it all.  My partner Lisa borrowed my bike for parts of the ride where navigating the rutted muddy road wouldn't be at all challenging.  On the way back to the campsite I began to get a bit concerned about her enjoying the day as Lisa was obviously tired.  But she made it back to the Nature Park area when I decided it was safer for me to pick her up when some very thick fog rolled in creating limited visibility. 
We made a cozy fire to gather round and chat about the day, cooked some good grub and all in all managed to have a very nice time.  Even when the 40 mph winds blew in our last night beating our tents around and blowing camp chairs about, my coffee remained untouched on the fender of our trailer and provided a good laugh amidst the chaos of the wind storm.  Tents held up fine, no damage to gear or equipment and most importantly nobody was hurt.  
bicycle touring along Colorado River
A pleasant and scenic ride along the Colorado River in Matagorda, TX