Your April 2013 Bicyclical


Is there stuff to do on a bike in this town? Yes. There is.

  • The Ft. Custer Stampede is this weekend. What’s that? Your sweetie is running the marathon or half marathon? If you race Sport, you don’t start until a very civilized 12:30, so you can cheer on your beloved AND get some of that sweet mountain bike action. It’s all here.
  • Sometimes I have to think that the best thing to happen to cycling in Kalamazoo is the KRVT. The friends of the KalHaven and Kalamazoo River Valley Trails sponsor the Trailblazer on May 11th. You can ride on the trail. You can ride on the road. You can ride darn near anywhere between 25 and 100 miles. Data is here.
  • Kalamazoo Bike Week is May 13-19. More below.
  • The Kalamazoo Bicycle Club’s Bike Camp starts Tuesday, May 14th. This is a fantastic introduction to road cycling and the sport. Tell your friends and neighbors.
  • I have XTERRA fever and there’s only one way to get rid of it: Last Stand XTERRA. Lots of options for your triathlete, your duathlete and your trail runner. Check it out.
  • Now that some warm weather is here, you’ll be totally tuned up for Tour de Taylor on June 15th. 12, 31 and 62-mile routes await you and let’s not forget: all proceeds benefit the Make A Wish Foundation of Michigan.
  • Is it too early to think about the Kal-Tour on June 30th? I think not.

Bike Week

It’s almost here, and it looks just great. Note the updated website. Note the fun things to do. Seminars. Rides. Movies. More rides. Oh, and there’s that ride to work thing we’re doing.

If you’d like to try commuting during bike week, we’ve come up with a plan that might help. We’ll provide showers and toilets ( courtesy of ) Bike storage and a valet (that’s right) will be at the shop at 7:00 each morning to assist folks in finding their way. You’re welcome to a shower. You can leave your bike and gear. You will need to pick up your bike and related accouterments by 6:00. This will be super fun. I hope you have a chance to take advantage. Questions? Concerns? Call 269/56-PEDAL or write.

Shop Rides

 ‘Tis the season. We get a lot of calls about our shop rides, so I thought it might be a good idea to clarify what we’re doing and what you can expect. Here it is.

 Mountain Biking

 Mountain biking is fun, and this is a good time of year to hit the trails. I’ve been to Fort Custer the last few Sundays with friends and enjoyed myself enormously. The grip on the trail is fantastic (for a wuss like me).  The sights are great. One day we saw a huge hawk on the ground not ten feet from the trail. Another day we looked up at a great horned owl in a tree.

SWMMBA (Southwest Michigan Mountain Bike Association) is our local mountain bike club/chapter/thing. For years, SWMMBA’s primary focus has been Ft. Custer, but the times they are a-changing. Many are the opportunities for new trails in our area, and SWMMBA is exploring and acting on these opportunities. If you like to ride through the woods, I would vey much encourage you to join SWMMBA. Your $30 dues goes to trail building and maintenance. Additionally, your membership allows SWMMBA to demonstrate that mountain biking has demand in our area.

What’s New in the Shop?

Koki. Cool panniers, seat bags, front bags and more. I’d been thinking about Koki since the first time I saw it at Interbike (bicycle trade show), but never pulled the trigger. A customer asked if I’d order panniers for her, giving me the push I (apparently) needed. Now that the product is in the shop, I’m impressed with its style and versatility. Check it out.

The bike generating the most interest as of late is the Kona Rove, a steel, disk-brake cyclocross/gravel road bike. It’s still quite new and a bit scarce, but it sure is pretty and the ride is so smooth. Fat tires with a steel frame is a tough combo to beat. If you click on the link, be sure to watch the movie.

100% of our mountain bike brands — Jamis, Kona and Scott — now have 650b hard tails. Cool. Here’s a fun movie.

We have a bit of change going on, personnel-wise. We bid Brittany fond farewell and good luck as she takes a new role with her “other” company. Megan is a groovy young person who is working very hard to figure out how Brittany kept me organized over the past year. Also joining Team Pedal is Randy, a grad student with time on his hands this summer and some serious bicycle mojo. Megan and Randy are both super nice and welcome additions to our posse.

Here’s another fun movie.

And another about shorts. Yes. In fact we did pay extra for the movie star.

Big Finish

You might not believe it, but I actually deleted a bunch of words from this missive. I didn’t intend for it to be so long, and my hat is off to everyne who made it to the end. Now that something approximating seasonal weather is here, next month’s post might be three or four sentences long. If you’re lucky.
Thank you. Pedal is nothing without its customers, and we sincerely appreciate your business.
Until next month,
Tim, Ryan, Jordan, Dave, Jim, Megan and Randy