The September Bicyclical

Wow! What spectacular cycling weather. Lately I’ve had the opportunity to ride with friends new and old, and I’ve been continually impressed by how just unbelievably beautiful it is and by how fun it is to ride a bike (relatively) quickly. Lucky!

Fun Things To Do

Yes! Cyclocross starts in September. Let’s practice! Practice sessions will begin this (9/3) and each Tuesday evening at 6:30 until it becomes too dark to mess with it. We’ll meet at Texas Drive Park, which has a nice flat area to practice skills and close proximity to Al Sabo so we can get used to riding on a variety of surfaces at different speeds. ALL ages, abilities and whatever are welcome. Cyclocross is a super-fun way to either make use of all that fitness you gained this summer or simply race around on a fall day. Regardless, fun is the name of the game.
Need I mention our two (2!) local cyclocross events this year? October 20th is the race in Kindleberger Park. It’s hard to imagine a more perfect cyclocross venue — lots of elevation change, mucho spectating opportunity, trees, grass, dirt — all of it. A mere three weeks later ( November 10th) we’re back in Markin Glen county park. This has been a very fun, very well-attended race the past two years. Put ’em on the calendar! Additionally, you might wish to check out KissCross and RunUpCX, the two organizations that help us put on our races AND offer many other race opportunities in the area.
If you look here, you’ll see a pile of neat tours throughout the month of September. Many of us see the school buses on the roads and think that cycling season is over. No! I rode in a short-sleeve jersey and short, er, shorts in the last weekend of November last year and had the time of my life. Cycling season, like youth, is a state of mind. Shoot, my high-tech phone tells me that daylight savings is in effect until November.
Are you a Kalamazoo Bicycle Club member? Do you ride on club rides? If so, please remember that evening club rides start earlier in September — 5:45. Not so with our shop ride. It remains at 6:15 until we just can’t take it anymore. You might, however, consider a blinky light.

In the Shop

Yeah. We have those fancy Vector pedals in stock and on display. You power nerds are most welcome to come check ’em out. They’re drool-proof.

We’re located in downtown Kalamazoo and we love mountain biking. We know it’s tough for customers to ride a sweet 29er or 650b around the parking lot and say, “Holy heck! I’m going to slay my foes on race weekend!” To that end, we’re making a big effort to have more mountain bikes available for demo purposes. Jamis, Kona and Scott all support us in this effort. Some demo bikes are here and more will arrive soon. Curious? Give us a holler and we’ll spill the beans.

2014 Bikes have started to arrive, particularly the new Kona cross bikes. Yum.

As alluded to above, the days are getting shorter. There. It’s out in the open now. Days are getting shorter and it might be worth thinking about a light source for your ride. We have a nice supply of rechargeable headlights — from something just right for riding in town to something that’ll embarrass a car headlight. Blinky lights for the back of your bike? Yeah, we have those, too. Armed with a good headlight on these warm, sultry mornings I’ve had a great time looking at fog in the fields, the beautiful full moon and wonderful sunrises.

The Ramble

On the shorter of our shop rides we’ve begun riding back into town on Ravine. It’s a nice gradual downhill to Douglas and is really fun to ride briskly. On a couple of occasions recently I’ve had folks in cars enthusiastically share unsolicited advice and legal counsel. One of the things I like about the folks I ride with is that they don’t get all up in arms over this kinda stuff. There are no fingers or unpleasant gestures; they (we) continue to ride legally and safely. One of my buddies even said something to the effect of, “More and more people are cycling on these roads all the time. Pretty soon people in cars are going to get used to us.” I do like this longer view.

Big Finish

This Bicyclical is about praising this summer, not burying it. We’ve had a wonderful time sharing the season with you, and look forward to some fall fun before the very cold sets in. Thank you for your patronage, support and patience as we continue to make improvements to our shop. We appreciate you very much.
Tim, Ryan, Jordan, Dave, Jim, Randy and Megan