Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Sick custom car rack for a bike....just not your average bike!

The morning commute....

Here's what I saw this morning, and yes, sometimes it's just a bike ride and not too much happens.  So you make up the content as you go!

Spring is here and there is actually bike traffic in my neighborhood!

Bike to work week is coming soon.  Giant piles of pancakes will soon be served in this location!

Technically, the sign does say 2 hour parking....however, just because the sign is on the sidewalk doesn't mean you park there!  I guess this is following the law to the letter!

What's happening with 4th and Prater.....a complete street review!

If you want to know what they're planning for this through town connector, stop by the bus station tonight!  Getting this right will help make Reno a much better bicycle town.  So make an effort to drop in and and throw your support and comments behind the program!  Here's the scoop from KTVN:

Monday, April 29, 2013

Banking and bicycles.....I guess we should all switch!

Ok, back to normal bikey content!  I came across this little video over on Streetfilms.org.  A little strange, but if you're a bank angling for the outdoor crowd and environmentally friendly folks this should do the trick!

Weekend Carnage!

Well, there was no bicycling this weekend.  Instead there was pure carnage!  The Preacher and his wifey, their nephew, the gentle giant, and I headed out to the pig rock area to do some shooting.

It looked something like this:

Setup....quite the arsenal!
Muzzle loader lessons.
Pistols and Shotguns and Clays....
Preacher's wifey was deadly....she will now be known as the assassin.
When preachers snap...watch out.
The nephew in action with a Ruger 22.
Many water bottles and cans met their untimely demise on this day!
 I realize this strays from the usual content.  However, if motorists knew just how many guns this group of cyclists was packing, perhaps they'd give us just a bit more room on the road, eh!?  And yes, that is a joke people.....

Friday, April 26, 2013

Falling in love via a dooring!

Circle Century!

Very cool and a little crazy.  A guy up in Portland did a century around Ladd's Circle (relatively famous in Portland).  The thing is the circle is only 0.15 miles long, so he had to do 660 laps!  The support crew is truely awesome and it's worth a view.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Bike to Work Week.....it's coming soon!

If you haven't already dusted off the bike (and given how little snow we got....did you even put it away), now's the time.  Go take a warm up ride, because it's only a few weeks away!  Also be sure to register....it's over at bikenevada.org!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Frickin' tall Tall Bike!

Found this over at BikePortland.org (from a Sunday CicLAvia event in LA):

Riding this thing would just be straight up scary!

Touch screens in cars to be limited.....DUH!!!!

These things cause me nightmares when I think about how people already drive.  Brilliant idea auto manufacturers, let's put a touch screen computer in every car!  On a daily basis (normally intelligent) people prove they can't handle driving a car.  If you disagree just look around on your commute home and see if you don't see someone talking on a phone, eating, doing makeup, or even reading / texting.  They're pretty easy to spot as they sit through the green light in front of you or slowly drift into your lane! 

Fortunately, it looks like the feds are planning to mandate some limitations on these things.  Depending on who wins it looks like the touch screens will lock after 12-20 seconds or 6-10 touches.  In my opinion the damage / death will already have taken place in those time frames, but at least they're thinking about it!

p.s.  If you don't think 12-20 seconds is a long time.....try driving with your eyes closed for this length of time!

Here's the article I found at KTVN:

Ever wonder where the money goes (in terms of transportation $$)?

Well, here's the latest bicycle and pedestrian spending from the RTC.  I've just pasted in one page that focuses on the new addition to the cycle track out in Sparks, but there are many more projects that have bicycle infrastructure involved.  Here's the link.

Reno Rambler post on Cool Bike Accessories.

Ok, so this is taken directly from Reno-Rambler's site (and he deserves all the credit for finding it), but it was cool enough that it deserves a repost!

Now I'm not saying I'd get all these things, but you have to admit you said "Wow, I'd use that!" to at least one of them!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Hot tub by bicycle....and a funny commercial to boot!

I'm not doing a whole write up on this because (as you can imagine) this service has a limited delivery range (which does not include Reno).  And.....I have a hot tub.  But I do hit Clever Cycles when I'm in Portland (and they are awesome) so here it is.

Swept up in the moment.....

Ever wonder why the bike lanes are so full of debris?  I mean Reno actually has a pretty active schedule for their street sweepers and I see them out and about.  So why is it that the bike lanes never seem to get any better? 

Well let's consider the layout of our newer streets (meaning the streets with bike lanes).  Many have a parking lane (9 ft wide) on the far right, then a 3ft bike lane, and then the primary traffic lane (11-13 ft).  For a total of ~24 feet of "lane" in a single travel direction.  The normal street sweeper is approximately 10 ft wide.  So, even if they make two passes in a single travel direction, the first sweep (pardon the pun) is curbside to keep the gutters clean and the second pass is in the primary travel lane.

The result is each pass leaves the middle of the bike lane just outside the brushes and on top of not being swept, it builds a nice little buffer of additional debris flung up by the brushes themselves.  The whole scenario looks a little like this....(sorry crappy cell phone pic into the sun)....

So this is the "first" pass, now envision the second pass in the location the white car is in....notice the gap in sweeping is the bike lane. 

This will be presented at the BPAC (Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee) this week to see if we can get a modified sweeping plan in place!

Friday, April 19, 2013

What I will not be doing this weekend!

Keystone meeting and other stuff....

Well, we (wifey and I) attended the NW Neighborhood Association Board meeting last night about the future of Keystone Canyon.  Mostly this development is a done deal.  It was started back in the late 1990's when our brilliant city counsel approved the development (thanks mayor Cashell).   The only question is what shape it takes.

It was originally planned as a senior center type housing development.  Not great, but certainly a relatively mellow vibe.  The current plan is UNR student housing....about 750 students....assuming they don't double up in rooms (a big assumption).  This also means parking problems....that you know will spill over into our trailhead parking.  There's also the question of basically building right up to the trailhead with a very vague "buffer" described in their plans.  The last gripe is traffic on McCarren and getting in and out of Keystone (the road and the canyon).

The public was out in force highlighting these issues.  Many people spoke and the developer and our city counsel member (Naoma) were there to hear it.  The only question is were they listening!!!  Time will tell.

Here's the KTVN blurb about it (sorry about the stupid commercial):

KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

In other shock news....I rode my bike to work....and I took a picture.  It's a crappy cell phone picture showing that there is good in the city!  Here are AT&T employee's out cleaning on the river trail where it passes behind their building.

For location reference this is right where you have to ride down the stairs on the river path looking back to the West.  There are often bums hanging out / sleeping here and they leave all manor of "interesting" things.  So a hearty "Thank you" to AT&T and specifically these guys for cleaning up the mess.  You make downtown a little better with each days effort!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Better write up than mine on Keystone Canyon development...includes contacts!

Keystone Canyon Trailhead Threatened by Apartment Development
For Immediate Distribution and Action

Trail users and neighbors were surprised to learn about plans for a major apartment complex adjacent to the Keystone Canyon trailhead.  The 200 unit complex slated for construction in summer 2013 will permanently change the character the area’s most popular public outdoor recreation area.  There has been little public notice.  If you use this area, attend a public meeting this Thursday April 18 at 6 pm at the Mc Queen Fire Station, 7105 Mae Anne Ave and submit written comments to the officials listed below.

The Poedunks, Washoe County Parks, the Forest Service and neighbors have worked for 12 years to make this trailhead what it is today yet there has been no effort on the part of the developer of City planners to reach out to groups involved.  Major concerns include:
·         Adequate buffer of open space/native vegetation—there is no buffer to the west.  Washoe County park planner recommends 30 foot natural open space buffer between the trailhead and development.  The City proposes places a 20 foot wall, aka graffiti magnet, between the development and parking area with no buffer. This radically changes the character of the existing trailhead.
·         Adequate public parking and access—this is the area’s most popular public outdoor recreation area.  The small existing parking lot will become overflow parking for the development preventing public access. 
·         Erosion control—erosion and drainage issues in this particular location could significantly impact the integrity of the trail and trailhead.
·         Traffic flow in and out of the area—the McCarran interchange in this area is notoriously hazardous and used by pedestrians, bicycles, and motorist to access the trailhead.  There have been no safeguards put in place to ensure safe pedestrian and bicycle crossing to the trailhead.  Increased vehicle traffic in the area will make this even more hazardous.

Action Needed:
·         Attend meeting, speak at public comment requesting more public input on the above issues.  Thursday April 18 6 pm, Mc Queen Fire Station, 7105 Mae Anne Ave. Bring comments in writing.
·         Submit your written comments to
Vern Kloos, Reno City Senior Planner, kloosv@reno.gov
Claudia Hanson, Reno City Planning and Engineer Manager, hansonc@reno.gov
Neoma Jardon, Ward 5 Council Person, jardonn@reno.gov
Barbara Di Cianno, Community Liaison, diciannob@reno.gov
Fred Turnier, Reno City Director of Community Development, turnierf@reno.gov
·         Call Planning Commission members
Dennis Romeo, Chair........................... 326-8863  Jason Woosley, Vice Chair .................. 326-8862
Doug D. Coffman................................. 326-8864   Kimberly Laack............................. 326-8858
Paul Olivas .................................... 326-8861         Dagny Stapleton ............................ 326-8860
Kevin Weiske ................................ 326-8859

 See Map Below: 

Driving....but at what cost.

There was an article over on nbcnews.com yesterday about the cost of driving.  Here are the numbers from the wrap up:

What are you likely to spend to own and operate other types of vehicles?

· Small sedans will average 46.4 cents a mile, or $6,967 for all of 2013.

· Midsize sedans jump to 61.0 cents a mile, or $9,151.

· Large sedans will average 75.0 cents a mile, or $11,248.

· An all-wheel drive SUV will cost 77.3 cents a mile, or $11,599.

· Minivans will average 65.3 cents a mile, or $9,795.
They don't give a nice clean spread sheet to show exactly how they calculate these numbers but here are a few costs that rose last year:

Insurance costs are expected to rise 2.76 percent, to an average $1,029 annually – although that can “vary widely vary widely by driver and driving record, issuing company and geographical region,” AAA says.

The biggest increase, according to the Your Driving Costs study: Maintenance and repairs, which are expected to jump by 11.26 percent from last year, to 4.97 cents a mile. Expect big increases in both parts and labor – and you’ll likely pay a lot more this year for extended warranty policies, as well.

Here's the comparable numbers from owning a bicycle.....

- Bicycle will average $309 a year based on the clearly outline spreadsheet below.  Or 10.3 cents a mile (if you rode 3000 miles/year).

I'm not saying this is a fully researched comparison.....In fact I think some of his replacement times could be lengthened to keep costs down even further.  Any which way you look at it, the bike wins this type of comparison hands down!

College housing to be built (basically) on top of the Keystone West trailhead!!

There is a public meeting for the proposed KEYSTONE STUDENT HOUSING PROJECT this week. I don't know about you....but I'm really not that keen on having a huge apartment complex on Peavine....period!  It will be an eyesore, just like the two house that are already sitting there.  If you want to tell the city we don't want it, plan to stop by and put in your two cents!!

Northwest Neighborhood Advisory Board
Thursday, April 18, 6:00 p.m.
McQueen Fire Station, 7105 Mae Anne Ave.

There will be a presentation on the Keystone Student Housing project at this meeting. The developer and City planning department will be there. PLEASE TRY TO ATTEND.

The current trail head is circled (roughly) in red.  So if you don't think this will affect your low key mood when heading up the trail guess again!  So if you're ever going to attend a meeting this is it!!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Weekend Warriors....(well,socially anyway).

What did you get up to this weekend?  We ended up participating in a house warming / birthday party for one of our friends.  Of course it involved bikes.  Here's the round up.

Packed to the gills.  This is the exact reason you need an xtracycle!  Contents include but are not limited to:  1 growler of beer, 2 bottles of wine, two sweatshirts, a lemon custard pie (that arrived undamaged...thank you very much), a tub of whipped cream, a tub of artichoke dip, a box of crackers, enough tools to build a bike, etc.....

Our friend from work (we'll call him TCL) tagged along to the shindig cause the hostess is single and pretty darn cute!  This meant we rolled out an extra ride (his first 29er experience).

When we arrived drinks were poured and food was passed around.  Shortly thereafter the Preacher joined us (with more delectable beer) and some questionable fashion choices.....I'm not talking about the shirt (that I love)....look lower (not there you sickos)....the toes!

The preacher had just returned from a trip to visit his niece....whom he had promised a manicure / pedicure date as a christmas present.  I'm not sure how her toes looked, but he was obviously proud of his (prominently displayed in birkenstocks)!

Merriment ensued for the rest of the evening....here's the proof.

And for the record, the guys were very mellow....it was the wifey(s) and their cohorts who led the charge!

The birthday girl (in polka dots) and her partners in crime, just before the bicycles were called back in to service to transport us all home. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

How to sell a car.....use bikes of course!

Bikes move me!!!!

I guess the real question is what are they more effectively advertising.  I see more seconds with bikes on screen than cars!  I'd say it's really more of a commercial for bikes.  Not bad for a car commercial.

Friday, April 12, 2013

It's Friday!!

Or perhaps....

Driver/Rider Education....the right way to do it!

I just saw this over at Reno Rambler and it's too good not to repost.  No wonder cyclists and drivers get along so well over there! (Well, besides the fact that most of their drivers are also riders.)

"Debris" in the bike lane....

So even though there hasn't been much in the way of posts this week, I have been riding every day.  I mean it is spring and the weather is pretty much perfect, so what can you do.   Lately, I've been noticing the "stuff" that ends up in bike lanes.  Now I expect the dirt and debris.....

However some of the non "normal" stuff really leaves you thinking.....What stuff you ask?  Well, lately, it's been nuts and bolts, like literally nuts and bolts that I can only imagine come from cars.  Nuts and bolts that come from cars and serve important functions, like holding said car together....or keeping the wheels on!!!

There aren't just a few either, I counted at least 15 on the way in today (and my rides is only 6.5 miles).

It really has me thinking that drivers on cell phone may be the least of our problems.  Now we have to worry about the guy who isn't just not paying attention and drifting in to the bike lane, but might actually not be in control of the car that's drifting into the bike lane!

So, while I don't really think this is a "real" problem.  Take a look around the next time you hit the road.  What do you find in the local bike lane?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Reno weather!?

What the heck....snow, then beautiful sun, then rain (over 3 days).  Kind of hard to plan what to wear for the morning ride vs. the afternoon ride.....or even from day to day!  Definitely keeps things interesting for the ride!  Here's a quick pic of the good weather from yesterday.

Monday, April 8, 2013

How much are you driving?

A great little video that points out we're driving less and it's not just because of the economy or gas prices!

The perfect thing for a bike lane?

Ok, it's been dead around here again.  Pretty much that means work is taking up too much of my time.  Sorry about that....but it's not gonna be much better this week. 

Anyway, here's something I saw out in Arches National Park (which seems like forever ago).  It's not amazing or mind blowing, but it sure is practical at keeping cars where they belong (e.g. in the lane they are supposed to be driving in....and not the bike lane)!

I realize that in the picture this is just used to keep cars on the road (and off the gravel where pedestrians walk), but think of the potential!!  What if everywhere there was a bike lane striped they had these suckers instead of just a painted line!  I know you'd have to have breaks so bikes could enter and exit the lane, but the protection from a driver mindlessly drifting into a bike lane would be invaluable!

Anyway, think about it.....would you like this idea or not?  I'm thinking of proposing it to the RTC at the next BPAC meeting.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Moab....the rest of it.

I've been dragging the Moab thing out too long.  You've seen most of the biking and then there was a ton of hiking.  If we'd have been planning the trip (rather than just going on a weeks notice), it was going to be Skinny Tire Festival, ton of hiking, wrapped up with a half marathon.  Due to the changed time table we didn't get to do the 1/2 marathon (it was sold out).  So, since it went right by our camp site we spectated.  It was surprisingly fun!

So anyway in no particular order, here's a bunch of the rest of the pics (with moderately sarcastic comments).

Somewhere in Arches National Park....

Shockingly....also in Arches.


Ditto...finally getting a handle on the panorama function!

Still in Arches (this one was ruined for me by a screaming child in the arch and some gashole idling his diesel the entire time we were there....which you could hear for the entire 1/2 mile hike).  Sorry if you love screaming children or the sounds of diesel engines.

Ice off the Canyon wall on the Negro Bill Trail framing two cute girls!
Corona Arch...with a group getting set up for a really big rope swing!  I have a sweet video but it's too big for blogger....sorry.

The half marathon on a closed coarse along the Colorado river.  A comment....I've never spectated a race before.  Runners come in absolutely every shape and size....and the rate at which they run is not determined by shape or size!!!
This was our cheering crowd for the 1/2 marathon.  We were about 3 miles from the start....so we reminded them they had already burned one beer worth of calories!  Many runners must be alcoholics, as this comment was greeted with cheers most of the time!

Bumps in the Road.

Today is my first day of riding in about a week.....so this isn't about actual bumps in the road.  It's figurative bumps in the road (e.g. life).  In my case it's called don't get super ambitious while shoveling in the garden with a shovel designed for someone the size of a hobbit.  Bad for the back and potential hernias!

Here's my proof that I'm fighting the good fight.  A picture of the absolutely awesome morning.

I know it's just an average (maybe even sub-par) shot of downtown, but when you've been relegated to the car and highway traffic for a week, this sure seems great!  I'm certainly not 100% but even if I have to take it easy I'll be relishing the ride with new appreciation for a while!