Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Amazing Sunset.....

This is basically the view I had when I left my last shop for the day yesterday. I definitely realize how spoiled I am to be living right here along such a gorgeous coastline.....but wow, I wonder how is it possible that I hardly ever take the time to stop and "watch" the sunset!

That will change.

The only reason I actually saw the sunset was because I knew the highway would be in "go-home gridlock" so I opted to drive along PCH. I will be doing that more often, you can bet on it! And next time, I am stopping along the coast to watch the sun dip into the water.... (if I wasn't already late for dinner, I would have!)

It was absolutely amazing and made me feel suddenly, very peaceful.

Friday, January 23, 2009

worth noting...

the eyes see more than the voice does tell.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Work the system people, work the system. here comes the "race-season" and long gone are the days of United Travel vouchers for flying with the bike to races! ...and NOBODY wants to deal with the high cost airlines have been charging for flying bikes, right?

Well here is one more reason to stand in the A/B/and or C line of Southwest Airlines. (maybe you already know this, but if not, this is worth reading).

As we all know, Southwest Airlines typically has pretty good flight rates for travel, but more notably....look at how you can work within their baggage guidelines, and FLY YOUR BIKE FOR FREE!

With the policy listed below, it could be very simple. Pack your bike in two boxes that will both fit within the 62 inch rule. If you do, your two free checked pieces can be your bike boxes, plus a carry-on, Voila! bike transport.
Or if you don't mind paying $25 each way, then check your one piece of regular luggage, plus your bike... split in two boxes. Looks like a plan to me!

Sure you ALWAYS run the risk of having your bike not make it to your final destination whenever you fly, and by putting your bike in TWO boxes the risk is doubled, ...but still i think it's a chance worth taking to get that bike up in the air for free!

With this baggage policy, Southwest beats any other airline out there! Gotta hand it to 'em sometimes...even if you have to stake your claim in line like you're trying to buy concert tickets! Just make sure you invest in some high quality BUBBLE WRAP!
Happy racing in 2009 people...rubber-side down!

Oh...and here is the official word from SWA.

# Baggage Allowance: Beginning January 29, 2008, Southwest will allow two (2) checked pieces of baggage per ticketed Customer. Size and weight limitations apply.

# Excess Baggage: Effective January 29, 2008, you may check a third bag for a charge of $25. Your 4th through 9th bag or item will incur a charge of $50 per piece, and any bag or item thereafter will be $110 per piece.

# Non-motorized Bicycles, including Bike Friday and Co-Pilot, will be accepted in substitution of a free piece of checked baggage at no additional charge provided the bicycle is properly packaged and the box containing the bicycle fits within the 62-inch sizing limit and weighs 50 lbs or less . (Maximum weight is 50 pounds and maximum size is 62 inches (length + width + height) per checked piece of luggage). The handlebars, kickstand, and pedals must be removed and placed inside the box. A $50.00 each-way charge applies to bicycles that don’t meet the above criteria. Bicycles packaged in a cardboard box or soft-sided case will be transported as a conditionally accepted item.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

scratched up, banged up, and loving it.

There is something uniquely special about coming home from an epic ride.

The high is inexplicable.

Our ride in The San Gabriel Mountains was beyond awesome yesterday. We climbed on and hike-a-biked so high up that we looked down on the buildings of Los Angeles like they were little cardboard structures...they didn't look real at all. The sky and air were so crystal clear that we could see well beyond the island of Catalina. We talked to, and met some very interesting folks who were enjoying the same views and taking in the glorious day just as we were. Although I must say am not sure if anyone else we saw almost lost their bike and body over a cliff edge (ahem....i did). That was a real humdinger of a crash and adrenaline rush...let me tell ya! That one left me in a state of awe and I instantly felt two intramuscular bruises forming, one deep inside my quad and the other deep in my gastroc (OUCH!!), but of course there was more adventure to be had so onward we went!

And was cool seeing all the people out,(most of the hikers will hike up part way from the bottom down, or they drive to the top where we rode and hike part way down from the top then back). There was a whole stretch in the middle where we basically had the trail(s) to ourselves. However, we did see one trail-runner dude who actually ran all the way up those trails from where we started! And he was smooth! Very Impressive.

As expected, The San Gabriel mountains did not disappoint. What a beautiful place.

Go there someday if you can. Go by foot, by bike, or (I think we even saw a donkey..) what the heck go by donkey. Why not?

Myself...I will take the two wheeled option as my first choice, but this is one ride you need a Camelback and lots of food...cuz baby "its a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll". Ohhhh, and by the way...the the down hill was insane. Let's just say, strap everything on tight, lower that saddle ...and hang on, because its time to go for a RIDE!

That whole day was one for the books for and the little Outlander (my nickname for my new bike) have officially had our first date. I know I know...I wrote about my first ride up at Top of the World a couple of posts ago. But that first ride, although beautiful in its own right (especially because it was my maiden voyage) ...well that ride was more like having a date for coffee or tea, you know. Yesterday was the real deal first date with all the bells and whistles...we had appetizers, drinks, dinner, and dessert.

AND going to Anaheim 2 that that was a second helping of dessert!

Saturday, January 17, 2009


I wonder what's in bloom. Find out tomorrow when we ride there! :):)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

wowwwwwwwwwww...i am in the new era :)

The latest of my rides...The 2009 Fuji Outland RC suh-weet ride.

Okay..... little miss hardtail has found a new light. May the good graces of speed and inertia protect me, for I see a whole new dimension of riding in my future!
all smiles after finishing the sunset in the background.
so beautiful.

i LOve this BIkE!

I went to work today with great anticipation. Visiting all three shops on my route, I knew in the back of my mind what was ahead....this would be MY day. I arrived at the trail head with just enough daylight to get a "little taste" of what my new world of mountain biking will be all about. I took my new bike out in Laguna, at a place called Top of The World. What a great name for a place to do a "first ride" on a new bike. I truly FELT on top of the world when I jumped on and started pedaling. It's amazing how a simple bike ride can create so much excitement!! Just me and my bike made the maiden voyage...sure I saw a few people, some with pets, some with walking sticks, and a few with bikes...but it was that time of the day when the number of people and the amount of activity on the trails was beginning to fade like the sunlight in the sky. It made for a very special and serene setting for me to "meet" my new bike in motion. I did one quick loop that included a technical trail called "Rocket", which I am still slightly tentative descending, but I was absolutely amazed at how the bike just rolled right on through it all!

Full-suspension is so forgiving!

I know I make it sound like this stuff is brand new even though the rest of the world has been on it for years and I am just NOW making the switch, so forgive me for sounding like such a dork! For me it's like I have found a whole new sport, and I could not be more thrilled about the endless possibilities that exist in the world of cycling!! I mean wow...he/she who does not ride a bike is really missing an incredible part of life and a part of history in the making. In every decade "the bike" takes a giant leap with the growing age of technology, and it's just amazing how technological advancements through time keep influencing "the bike".
I am the first to admit that I am not a technical person, but this kind of stuff (hi-tech features on modern day mountain bikes) is simply's like it's from another world (to me anyway!!). It makes me understand why bike geeks are so geeky....these designs are SO impressive!! I just wish I cared more about all the hi-tech mumbo jumbo, it's certainly fascinating and all....but the truth is, all I really care about is riding. I'm the "touchy-feely" type, who likes to hear myself breath, I like feeling my body work with the bike, I like to feel my muscles charge and fatigue, I like to feel my whole body involved in creating motion and movement, and to feel the presence, the flow and the challenge of the natural elements that surround me. Riding is that reminder that I am indeed a part of it ALL (whatever that ALL may be), and that I am indeed alive and a nutshell, that's really why I ride.

So, I will leave the fancy stuff to the visionary engineers and designers, but I will always ride my bike(s) with much appreciation for the minds behind the innovations regarding the bicycle. And on another note, I have to say....I STILL love my hardtail Ibis Mojo (a great innovation of her own time) and I will never part with her, but as I turn the page and explore a new style of riding (and racing!), I think this latest addition will take me there in stride, that's for sure.

Here we go yo.

Monday, January 12, 2009

And it was a beautiful Perigee.

One that we won't soon sure did make for a fabulous weekend.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I always said I would switch things up when my mood changes!

So on a much needed (and earned day of rest), I opted to try out a killer japanese seat I found in the garage and give it a test ride today on my beach cruise (which by the way was no different than a typical summer day, blue skies and temps in the 80's!) Anyway thought the seat was pretty cool looking and comfy! I think it's some top secret seat sample of my brother's heeehee, so I will be putting the lightning bolt seat back on tomorrow...but i am going for some colored tires soon! Thinking blue --bright blue, like the sky today. It was beautiful day....and I finally got to ride with my lovely friend Brandy (we are two working women with full lives who live a block away but might as well 100 mile from each other!) What a treat that we got to get some fresh air together... :)

And on a random side note:
There is a new ride for little miss Brendita in that box! :) :) :)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

....and the "epic adventure" continues

WOW!!! Today was my first mountain bike race in way too many years, and DANG if it wasn't probably one of the most challenging courses I have ever done! (Well for me anyway.) I have been rekindling my love for the dirt lately and riding whenever possible, but one of the major differences I have noticed between NorCal mountain biking and SoCal mountain biking is the amount of "sandy" trails there are down here (and ruts...but that's another story!!)! Yikes, riding in the sand not something I feel skilled in AT all!! Even with all the tips and suggestions, I am still not comfy in the sandy technical stuff! The picture above should give you a good idea of what some of the riding was like today!!! And the funny (stupid??) thing is I didn't pre-ride any of the course to know what the heck I was getting into. Ummm blind ambition? Perhaps. I slept until the very last possible second today, almost late enough to say never mind I'm not going...but I got my act together and made it after all even though I woke up feeling pretty cooked from climbing Palomar. How could I miss out on this cool opportunity to bring it back to the dirt!?? So anyway, when I was on the start line with super cool chicks I would be racing, I asked a bunch of questions about the course, they were super friendly...major bonus! They made me feel comfortable right away and I was instantly stoked to be there. So one thing I said was "you know I'm not all that good in the there alot of sand I should be aware of?" And they were both like "oh's not that bad at all, just maybe one section" Ha ha ha....not the case!!! In truth, they were being honest because to them it was not a sandy day on the trails since there had been rain recently, but me and my little NorCal mountain bike trained self were COMPLETELY shocked at what was yet to be seen on the backside of the course! It was nuts.. sandy, technical, rutted, blind turns, tight switchback turns, steep little grunts etc etc..all safe enough to ride..but I had such rookie skills out there with the conditions of the trails that I couldn't help but chuckle at how stunned and tentative I was!!! By lap four I was getting better....but man!, hats off to all the riders who can take the sand like it's hardpack! Hopefully, someday I will "get it". (and on another note...what the heck was up that wind!!)

Once again though, another gorgeous day on the bike, and another epic adventure...totally worth making the effort for! and I really did have a heck of a good time (and am keeping my crash average at one per-ride....just got a little scraped up!) now, it's back to the drawing board. I WILL learn to ride better in sand and decomposed granite. I have some pretty awesome teachers in that department :) It's just going to be all about "practice practice practice" :)

By the way... one of my favorite moments of the day was putting on a number-plate!

Friday, January 09, 2009

A glorious ride.

Our group today was fortunate (and crazy enough) to rise and shine early, at an hour some would still call middle of the night just to seize the opportunity to take our two wheeled pals up the infamous Palomar Mountain climb (and ahem....we did both sides!). It was a morning filled with cool peeps, epic riding, and good eats. What else could ya ask for....all by noon thirty! That's the way to spend time doing business with your shops if you ask me!! ;)
ps) the picture above is to share with you what the view was like from the top. beautiful hey....

Thursday, January 08, 2009

I'm not sure what's worse...

It's hard to say what would be a worse situation, being stuck in traffic without any food when hungry, OR being stuck in traffic feeling hungry with a whole box of gourmet cookies sitting on the other front seat ( I tried putting them in the back seat so I wouldn't see them...out of sight, out of mind. Didn't work. Then I tried just having one or two. Ugh.... but I knew they were still there! Then things got out of control when a brush fire along the freeway held up traffic even more. That was the end of my will. Let's just say I lost the battle with that little box of cookies! (if you know my son Myles...ask him sime day what a wimp I am when it comes to cookies!)

It's a GOOD thing I'm riding Palomar tomorrow though, as I should have plenty of extra calories to burn ..... giddy-up!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


So these are some of good friends who have introduced me to the world of Supermoto. I had no idea how much I would love this sport!!! The sounds, the energy, the skill, the's all so amazing! I can actually say that I now call these racers athletes! There is some serious strength, endurance, discipline and fitness that has to go along with being on these bikes even though they have motors!!!
..and how cool is that most of those guys get out on road and mountain bikes to cross train. I'm impressed. I also have to say, it's a total treat to be friends with such legends of the sport! :)

Ride on ride on....

Monday, January 05, 2009