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Big Beer  //   Friday - April 9, 2004

A big ol' bottle of this Three Floyds Imperial IPA was a little surprise my wife grabbed for me yesterday. Big and powerful in taste, reminds me of one of the Barley Wines we brew. Not as hoppy as I would expect for an IPA that's on steroids, but there is plenty there. It's just that the alcohol flavor is more prominent. No mention of the percentage on the bottle or their web site, so who knows what it is. Coppery color, bottle conditioned. Good for slow drinking. This one came in a 22 oz. bottle, not sure about 6 pack availability.

- riderx

At the Movies  //   Tuesday - April 6, 2004

Finally got to check out the Triplettes of Belleville on Saturday, a cycling related cartoon released in 2003 and in theaters now. Very cool, very stylish. It's in French, no subtitles, but there is very little speaking. Which is good since I can't speak French. The story is told through action and expressions and is a good time. Recommended.

- riderx

Making Lemonade  //   Monday - April 5, 2004

It was bound to happen, the unleashing of the April showers. The rain has been relentless for the past few days. The Wed. night ride was rained out last week and the skies unleashed right into the weekend. It looked like a things would clear out early Saturday morning (at least temporarily) so the plan was to hit things reasonably early.

On the road by 9am, the trails were obviously not an option. But, I've got something up my sleeve. With so much wet weather this fall and winter I've been searching out fire road stashes to at least mix in some off-road riding in with the asphalt. Powerlines and pipelines exist nearly everywhere and they must be serviced. This usually means some sort of dirt, crushed stone or rock infested access road. The stuff that holds up to rain and if it doesn't, you aren't really hurting anything since it's a road. I've dubbed most of these rides "Adventure biking" since we don't know where the stuff will lead many times and we just go with the flow.

The Trossenator and I mount up the big wheeled bikes for this adventure. He's running a Karate Monkey with his custom 5 speed drivetrain and I'm on the 42x17 fixed Crosscheck, both running semi-slicks since we'll be on the road for the most part.

We put in around 35 or so miles, 7 or 8 on fire road. The fire road is new stuff and most of it turns out to be pretty cool, following a swollen creek, offering some nice rolling hills and covered with lots of rocks to keep things lively. We wind up having to traverse two railroad bridges in order to get across some water crossings (Don't try this at home kids!) that would otherwise have required a swim. One was a spur leading to a warehouse and appeared unused based on the rust on the track surface, but the other one is in constant use. Five minutes after we are off the tracks comes a loaded freight train rolling at a solid clip.

Sure, it rained on us a bit during the ride, but it beat sitting on the couch watching the idiot box.

- riderx

 

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