Friday, June 29, 2012

Another great morning visiting my HP. As I sat on my fav bench I watched a eagle fly past. Great way to start the day. Even this day as I am wiped out from the festivities yesterday. Im sure the heat had something to do with that also. But race day in the streets of Sheboygan means a long day for me. But I think a good day was had by all.

I thought there was a pretty good turnout as spectators were lined up pretty much all the way around the course. The air conditioning in the store was a popular item as temps hit the mid 90's.

Store on a corner this year. This was early in the day.
The store was right on a corner this year and that was a nice change. While other parts of the course had issues, this corner was relatively safe all day. 

But that was yesterday. This morn I get to a store full of tents, chairs, leftover food and bikes strew everywhere. It will take two people an hour to straighten up.

Now my sights turn to the impending ride up to my Secret Training Camp up in northern Wisco. I have already pushed departure one day later to Wednesday the 4th. Not sure if that day will make it tougher to ride with increased traffic but whatever.
Not only do I have to prep me, and the bike. But the store also. I will be gone a full 10 days so I have to try and plan ahead and put the guesstimated order in today. The get it all on the floor Mon\Tues. Also, besides me and the bike I have to get my stuff together for the Fam to drive up and meet me on Saturday the 7th. That means prep the road, MTB and my wife's bike too. Pre pack all my other stuff that I will need during that week that I dont take with me on the bike.
Next four days will be nuts for me.
Will see how that go's.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012



Another wonderful training ride in prep for my ride next week. The sun was out and temp were (still) cool. A pending heat wave will soon be here. About 2.5 hours on the Trucker. Its working great. Love it.
When touring I ride a bit different than when Im on the Domane or in a group. When touring its about time on the bike, not speed. A rule of thumb I do is if Im going over 15mph I stop peddling or soft peddle. Under 12mph start again. When your loaded down with 70 pounds of stuff you would not believe how much you can coast. And you need to take full advantage of that if your in the saddle 6+ hours a day for multiple days. Then gear down on the climbs and take your time going up. Like I have a choice in that respect. I do that anyway.

In spite of whats all going on at the store the next few days Im trying to stay focused on all my tasks, although I think I will miss a few things along the way.
Today, I will focus on the Dairyland race hitting the streets around the store tomorrow. Besides all the store stuff like tents, chair and whatever, I will help in early morn setup of the course also. Tomorrow will start at 7am for me and wont end till 9pm. For the most part, the store does not make any money. With the streets closed nobody stops in to buy a MTB for their kids. So its more of a party day. All my family and friends stop in to sit under my tents, eat my food and watch some races. Its a fun day.

So no post tomorrow. I wont get in another ride in until Saturday morn. As soon as the race is over I will switch focus to the tour\training camp. But not before.


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Lone Kayak. 840am

Busy times. The store is rockin', the Dairyland Tour is full swing and Im prepping for my week of touring up to my yearly secret training camp. The bike races will be running past the store on Thursday and it will be food tents and chairs. Besides all of that Im looking for some time to ride.

Throw in my knee and Im a bit stressed and am aggressively looking for some time away from the store. Getting a bit burned out. Its been 10 hours a day working for too long. My week long secret training camp in northern wisco cannot come soon enough.

Just need brain to slow down a bit and plan my shit.

I need a personal assistant.


Monday, June 25, 2012



Another day where I will try to use as little amount of words as I can. Another stellar morning in the HP. Sun was shining off the water. Awesome.
That was short and sweet.

So all the speculation of my knee problems came to light Friday with a visit to the doc. Multiple pics of my knee reveled that I no longer have any cartilage in my right knee. Its bone on bone. It cant be repaired. I need a complete knee replacement. Bummer.
This knee was repaired once before as a teenager. I was racing motorcycles and wrecked it pretty bad. Had cartilage removed in 1978. This is because of that and I guess its remarkable that it lasted 34 more years before wearing out. My other knee is fine.

So as I stared at the ground while getting this news the doc introduced me to the drug cortisone. While the replacement is inevitable, this drug might be able to let me hold off to when its best. If there is a best time for such a thing. He stuck a big needle in my knee and unloaded a boatload of the stuff. That was Friday noon. By Saturday morn it felt much better. Only about 20% of the pain remained and I rode a little over 2 hours and a little over 30 miles. I would say I finished with less than 10% of the pain from the day before.

Sunday I grabbed the Trucker and laid down some 40 miles with 3 plus hours in the saddle.
Pretty much pain free.
I can feel a "pressure" but really no pain. So steady as she go's. Doc says I cant hurt it any more so I can do as much riding as I want as long as I can take the pain.
So.... next weeks tour up north is on. I leave next Tuesday the 3rd and will ride north to Eagle River, then west to Sayner where I will meet up with the Fam on Saturday the 7th. 
Doc says I can have up to three of these cortisone shots total. I already used one so I hope two more can get me thru the summer. As long as these shots help with the pain I wont slow down much. Thats the plan anyway.
I will lay down a few more rides with the Trucker as I always "train" for what Im doing next and since its the tour then that means ride the Trucker full time till I leave.
So thats what I will do.
By the way, the Brooks saddle feels great.
Its Monday and I have a shit ton of bike stuff to order.
Work is calling.


Friday, June 22, 2012


Another stellar visit this morn. However cut short by a bus load of kids. I do understand Im not the only one there during the summer months and I should be riding here instead of driving by now anyway. Its all good. I'll share the HP during the summer months.
I'll find out later today how much riding I will be doing in the near future as the knee doc appt is this morn. Im optimistic and Im usually never optimistic.

Last nite I did visit Milwaukee and watched the first Dairyland series race. Perfect weather and good racing made it a good choice. I had a good time.
I got to park alongside one of my favorite teams vans.

Many of the riders\teams were still at nationals so the fields will grow after this weekend. 11 days in a row for this series. I'll visit a few more.

Then, of course, they come to me next Thursday and race right past the store's front. And side. The store is now on a corner as they changed the course from years past.
That should be fun.

As in every Friday I set up my weekend rides about this time but cant. Good or bad knee Im riding a bit in the morning but not with the group. Just an hour or so solo. Then working in the store till 4.
After that I have no plans the rest of the weekend.

I'll take it as it comes.


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Just might have a lot to talk about today. So lets get started.
1: Todays HP visit was a good one. My first spot was taken but I had my backup spot all to myself. The heat is gone and all my senses were filled with just the cool breeze, sounds of crashing waves and coffee. Can morning get any better?

2: Last nite I went to bed with my knee in such pain. My wife wanted to shove a bottle of ibuprofen in me. This morn, I wake up to find thats its feeling the best in a week. Strange. Still, somethings wrong in it but I could actually walk on it. Almost without a limp. I have a appt with a orthopedic doc tomorrow morn. And it just so happens he is in our riding group. We have a great group in that way. Two doc's, auto mechanics, cops, carpenters and a bike store owner (thats me!) amongst other noble professions. I believe we are still missing a lawyer. But  overall we are pretty much hooked up with stuff. The lack of pain has me in a better mood. That thing has been hurting non stop for over a week now. My bike tour in two weeks has hope!

3: Today starts the premier road race series in Wisco. Tour of Americas Dairyland starts down near Milwaukee. The same series that races right past the store next Thursday the 28th. With my knee feeling better today I might drive down and watch tonite. In the past, the hot series in Wisco was Superweek. Superweek in its heyday was one of the best tours in the States. Many euro rides and teams. Lance raced here in '96. Cadel also raced the series one year. Sadly, the series priced itself out of Wisconsin for the most part but now runs a lot in the Chicago area. There is a couple Wisco races but nothing like before. And I believe they do not pull the euros like they did either. While Dairyland tour is nice I still miss having 5 riders in a break and none of them speaking English. Very interesting stuff. Cant believe its almost July already.

4: There is no number four.

Im in the store till about two, then staffed it so I can cut out and take a break. If I dont head to beertown to watch the race I might just ride a little since my knee feels better and Im seeing a doc in the morn anyway. 
And thats all I have to say today.


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

file foto
In the last few days a couple people have commented to me to the effect of keeping the lake pics coming. Really, I thought you were all getting a bit bored with it. I have in my computer quite a stash of lake pics. I could delete several hundred and have several hundred left. I will do that someday. When you take random pics like I do you get quite a few that could be deleted. Someday.

Yesterday bike ride went...just OK. It seems that no matter what I do with my damn knee, ice it, stay off of it, ride on it. Nothing changes. I rode two hours in constant pain. Not a sharp pain but a nagging pain.
Not sure what to do.
I iced it several times in the store the rest of the day and nothing changed. Im going to ignore it for a little while longer but for sure something is up in there. Im still in denial. Woke up several times last nite to pain.
My tour up north is in jeopardy. That's in two weeks from today. Im going to need to ride at least 6 hours per day for four days. Im planning on riding up to Eagle River from here, then over to Sayner to meet the Fam. This is the week every summer I call Secret Training Camp. One week in the north woods with my MTB and roadie. Beautiful riding on both bikes up there. Am looking forward to it.
Or am I.
It just so happens we have a ortho surgeon in our riding group. We talked briefly and he would see me as soon as tomorrow. Think I will.

Another awesome day in the life of a bike store owner as I have my accountant in house this morn. He usually stops in once at the end of the year to close my books but this year he's coming to do at least half. And he's $125 bucks and hour so he gets my undivided attention. For real.

Thats a real fun morning.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Huge rain last nite had these mini rivers feeding the lake. 815am
Back to my stellar HP visits. And when the heat is up the visits get nice due to the fact that it like natures air conditioner here. The lake always cools the park off and in spring its a nuisance but times like these its awesome. You can feel the temp drop as you get closer. Had my coffee here this morn and will be back soon on the bike. But today I am a bit troubled.

Seems while loading\unloading tents and stuff this weekend I tweeked my knee a little. Like all guys I just ignored it cuz it will go away. It has not. Its worse. Much worse.  I did have another mini vacation in the works this week to replace my crappy one a few weeks ago but thats all off. Im scared to death that I might need some surgery on this thing and that would be devastating right now. Its wrapped. And Im trying to stay off it for the most part. But in an hour Im going to try and ride on it. If that go's badly Im in to see an ortho doc. With the results something I dont want to hear.

I did ice it last nite and it feels better. Man, getting old is a pain. Literally. Time will tell. I did have surgery on the same knee many years ago and feel like it might be time for some maintenance on it. If so, maybe I can ride it out till winter??
Im kitted up and heading out on the Domane as we type.
Report tomorrow I guess.


Monday, June 18, 2012

We burn furniture. Check your living room.
The grad trying to put out grass fire out side the fire ring.
This long weekend came and gone in a flash. It pretty much started Friday morn with the gathering of tents and stuff and ended this morn with the returning of the tents and stuff.

In between was a high school grad party that was bigger than some weddings Ive been to.

Really, things went well and everybody was well behaved. And I'm glad that's over.

Preparing food and beverage for almost 300. But per my calculations we had about 140 show. Not disappointed at all.
I did get out on the bike for about an hour and a half on Saturday morn. That was nice. I hoped to repeat Sunday morn but did not make that work. Since it was Fathers Day I just did nothing all day. Unless you count picking up the yard, taking down tents and putting out all the small fires around the yard. I was moving pretty slow and this morn moving even a bit slower as the lack of sleep usually does not hit me for a day or two. And having been pretty much out of the store since Friday morn has my desk filled with crap to do.  And me with no ambition.

The bouncy house was a hit.

So really the last month has been geared toward this event and now I can get on with my summer and my life back to its boring day to day events.
Today was a brief visit to the HP and was the first time there since last Thursday.
It didn't change much.
Might hope for a ride this noon but its kinda windy so I might work ahead to set up tomorrow.
Back to bike stuff.....


Friday, June 15, 2012

Not much to say today. Riding will be at a minimum this weekend despite the awesome weather. Saturday is my youngest daughters Grad party at the homestead.
Today will consist of picking up rented tents and setting up.
Picking up bouncy castle house and setting up.
Ice, coolers, drinks and food for almost 300.
God help me.
Small road ride Sunday morn to unwind.
Have a good weekend.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Cartoon pic. 845am

Soon my morning visits to the HP will change. For the good and bad. Theres a point during the summer when I ditch the morning car visit for a morning bike visit. As good as that sounds it does change the dynamic of the visit. I really enjoy my morning coffee on the beach. And when its all bike I ditch the coffee and have it later in the store. Its a fair trade.
My free time go's opposite of what you might think pertaining to the store. When its slow Im here alone. But when its busy like now thru September I can afford help and don't hesitate to bring extra body's so I can relax a little. Again, its a perk a bike store owner must take to make this whole thing worth it. Kinda payback for all the 10 hour days January thru April. And also postpones the blog entry until later as Im riding when I usually was typing. Todays ride was from about 830 to 1030. Sun in abundance. I little windy but a nide road ride on the Domane. Hope this continues now thru the end of summer.

Last nite I attended the Wednesday Nite Worlds Social Ride and it was like a blast of fresh air. A bit slower and easier than the norm. Very enjoyable. We rode about 35 miles with a 17.5 mph average. Not that bad. Hope this lasts a bit longer but Im sure it will turn back into a beat down drop ride in time. Until then Im in. Except for next Wednesday as Im going back up to Door County to finish our mini vacation from last week.

Time to go sell some bikes.....


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I had this long drawout post on this past sad weekend. But after I read it and after the memorial ride we took to the crash site Monday nite I deleted it. Slowly life will go back to normal. Some sooner than others and some not entirely. So I thought about something normal to do and write about.

And that was grab the MTB and head to the local trails. I hit up Greenbush for a rocky ride of a little over an hour. Its quite a bit more enjoyable for me when Im not in zone 5 and ready to go over the bars at any moment. Still, too many rocks out there but manageable when I can take my time over them. It was a month gap between riding the Superfly and thats just not right. I got out Sunday morn too. Its going to be late July before I get to race the thing. So I have awhile yet to put in some more time on it. I do better racing a MTB. The tough efforts are shorter. I can push some good wattage for a short time but put me on a long drawn out climb and Im off the back. Plus I do have a little bit of skilz in the woods. My background in motoX helped with that. So I do look forward to later this summer to spend some quality zone 5 on that bike.

 In the back of my mind today is a small tour I want to take up to our yearly week in Northern Wisco. The week I call Secret Training Camp. That will be the week starting July 7th. 
As of today. I will be planning to leave 3 or 4 days before the fam and ride up. Its about 245 miles. Thats only three weeks from today. Sounds like a long time but will go fast Im sure. Im planning. More later.

Nice ride yesterday. Sun in my face and iPod in my ears.

Tonite is the Wednesday Nite Worlds Social Group ride. The same weekly ride that we lost Troy on last week when I was out of town. Im going to try and make it. Im pretty sure it wont change much.  Maybe increased safety will be on some minds for awhile. That's a good thing. Even tho last weeks accident had nothing to do with how the group rode. I expect to get dropped at some point.
The more things change the more they stay the same.
Either way I will have fun and get a workout.
Both good things.


Monday, June 11, 2012


Taking a break.

I do have more to say about the awful weekend we all just went thru. Im actually working on a pretty big post chronicling all my thoughts. In a day or two.  I really want to talk about something fun to break things up this morn so its the rest of the scoup on Washington Island today. 

This Island has been a vacation spot for years. The amount of "summer only" residents and retired people here are high.
Time and life just slows down here. All the permanent residents wave to you as you ride by. Not just a few. ALL of them. Its like you went back in time to the 50's. No one is checking facebook on their iPhones. Since we were their in the middle of the week the traffic was non existent. Really, by bike is the only way to go around here.
Approaching the island
One of the parks had these fossils. Very cool.
I had the Trucker along. Had to remove the front rack to get it on top of the car but that was just fine. You can ride around the entire island, hitting every corner, see all the parks and landmarks with putting on less than 30 miles.
The only way to get there is a ferry service. Its was 52 bucks round trip for us. It takes about 35 minutes per trip. All the locals stay in their car and read. Tourist like us get out and walk around.
Ride home had us sharing the boat with a gasoline tanker.

Its not like there is a lot to do there. Its not a resort. Definitely would have issues if I did not bring a bike. But why would you not? Its a place to go just to relax. Everyone there is laid back and relaxing. The coffee shop was full every morn. People were relaxing. Everywhere you look people were relaxing. No cell phones were ringing. I left mine in the cabin.
We just rode from park to park. Beach to beach. And to the coffee shops.
This would not be a week long thing, but perfect for a weekend or mid week mini getaway.

I will do this again. Not this year anymore. But someday. We did have plans to hit up Rock Island State Park. Yet another island beyond Washington. Yet another ferry ride. However, no cars or bikes allowed there. All by foot only. So we still have a reason to go back.
And we will.


Friday, June 8, 2012


Our home in Washington Island

You need to ferry over to the island

You also need to hit up all the coffee shops.

Its funny on how I try to find things to write about. Today Im trying to find the shortest way to say. So I will start at the beginning. The trip to Washington Island started great. Weather was perfect, little cabin was cool. We got there Tuesday around 7pm and took some time driving around the island. Its not that big. Less than 10 miles in either direction. Wednesday morn we suited up and spent a majority of the day riding to various places around the island. Of course stopping at every coffee shop we could find (only 2). Beaches and towers and other cool stuff. We stopped to have lunch. And got back to the little cabin, had some dinner and planed either kayaking or hiking for Thursday. It was a good day and was looking forward to tomorrow.
Then I got the text. And phone call.
More on my time on the island later.

A terrible accident on our Wednesday Nite Worlds group ride. Several riders got dropped off the back, much like I do almost every Wednesday ride. As the riders were short cutting to get back on the dropped group of three got hit by a car from behind. Ben, who works at my store was in that group. Along with his best friend Troy. And a third who I will not mention to respect his privacy.
While the two others were banged up but OK, Troy took most of the blow and sustained fatal injury's and is gone. I got this info sitting on the picnic table outside out little cabin. My mini vacation was then over. All I could do is think about Troy and his family. And cry.
We stayed the nite and I tried to maybe hang out there longer on Thursday but I was just too bummed. Of course my phone never stopped ringing that morning.  We packed up at 9am and came home. Just a little bit early. We all know stuff like this happens but when it hits close its devastating. Our entire group will not be the same and maybe never will be. My thoughts go out to Troys family, and to Ben who had to witness his good friends death. Really, my thoughts go out to all involved. The entire group and the two others at the scene.

I will miss Troy. He was in the store often talking to Ben. He was good conversation in the group and had a great smile. When he smiles you could not help but smile back. If I had been on that ride, I would have fell off the group and also been in the small group off the back. I wish I was. If I had been I could have enjoyed Troys company one more time. Would have been worth the risk. Now begins the weekend that we say goodbye. Its going to be a tough 48 hours upcoming.
RIP Troy.
"All our light that shines strong only lasts for so long" DEXTER HOLLAND 


Tuesday, June 5, 2012


815am Packed and ready to go.
Its time for a much needed mini vacation. Im out till Friday. I have been in the store pretty much everyday since  the first week of January. And I can feel every bit of that. 
Today's HP visit was short and sweet. Sun and warm breeze.  Even with the wind off the lake. When the lake breeze loses its punch its officially summer here. No more riding west to get out of the cold.

Im packing the Trucker to ride around. I had to take the front rack off cuz it would not fit in the car rack. Bummer but only four bolts needed for removal.

Me and the Mrs are headed to Washington Island off the tip of Door County, Wisco. Its only a two plus hour drive. However, after she gets off of work we have about 3 hours to make the two and a half hour drive to get to the last ferry crossing of the day so there is a potential for disaster here.
I like the excitement of living on the edge.
So the car is packed and at around 245pm I will be zooming 75mph north.

Just in the store till about noon taking care of some loose ends. For the most part I just told my three guys to "handle it" and discuss work shifts amongst themselves. I had very little input. I plan on forgetting I own a bike store for a few days.
On tap is, and not in any order is as follows: Bike riding, hiking, restaurant going, kayaking and napping.
We originally planed on tenting at the campground but opted for renting one of the campgrounds new little cabins. Its has limited water and electricity but thats about it. So its like a glorified tent. Should be cool.

Weather looks auwsome. Im pumped.
So this is it till Friday.
Peace out.


Monday, June 4, 2012

835am Lone kayak.
Pretty good weekend. Busy. Saturday had me rolling with the group and I did not do so bad. I did get dropped pretty bad twice. Both on climbs. Both times the group waited. I did fall off the back a few more times but found some help and got pulled back in. A very enjoyable workout for me. Said this a million times but I need more of this. Legs were pretty sore. A good sore. I'll consider it an awesome ride.

Sunday had me off the bike and attending my youngest daughters high school commencement.
She's down in the blue area.

I know I don't put a lot of family stuff on this blog. Mostly due to the fact I like to keep most of that stuff private. But my life is not always about bikes. Believe it or not. Having one of your kids ending high school is a pretty big deal. Having your youngest is even bigger. While it ends an a 13 year era for them, this one ends a 25+ year era for me. I now have no children in "regular" school. She is continuing her education. Just another deal to remind me of how old Im getting. I got a little emotional.

Today Im setting up a ride ride out to the park. Im riding the Trucker as Im going to use it while I take a few days off this week and heading out of town for a well deserved mini vacation.
More on that tomorrow.


Friday, June 1, 2012


145pm Yesterday
 Yesterday I finally got out of the store for awhile and took that time to put in a few miles on the stores new Moonlander, which is a bigger version of the Pugsley.
Bigger wheels and tires. When put next to the Pug, makes it look kinda small.
But when is big too big.
Maybe never, but first impression might have me liking the Pug better. While the bigger shoes made for a better ride in the sand, it was not a huge diffidence from the Pug, but noticeable.
What I did notice a ton was the huge resistance on the road. I know, this is not a bike made for the road whatsoever. Neither is the Pug. But the fact is I have about a 4 mile road ride to and from the beach. And with the Pug I could lay down 15mph pretty much all the way there and back.
This thing had me struggling with 11mph. 12 max. The wheels are not only bigger but tread pattern has this bike a bit tough for me to get to and from the beach.  Again, I understand that was not what Surly had in mind when designing the bike.
But even in the woods I was way more nimble on the Pug. I can take the Pug on a "normal" MTB ride. The Moonlander would take quite a bit more effort to do that.

End of line. No riding on State land. Bummer.
True, the bigger tires did work a bit better in the sand. But not a ton better than the Pug. Just a little. And thats what its purpose in life is anyway. In that regards it performs better than the Pug. But if Im looking for a all around fat tire bike to do it all, Im leaning toward the Pug right now.

Im not ditching the Moonlander by any means. I think I will look for another tire combo to help out with rolling resistance. There's a few option out there.

And who knows, maybe I will embrace the increased resistance and use it for good and not evil. I always said if you want to train for fitness you should do so on a Pug, or Moonlander. Twice the heart rate with half the miles per hour. Think about it. Give that pro rider in your group one of these to ride and he\she will stop bitching about lack of heart rate. We have a few of those in our group. You know who you are. Ride a Moonlander. Get your workout in. 

Today being another cold dark morning. Bummer. Last few days had me running the heater in the car on the way to the park and work. I refuse to bring or wear a jacket. Screw that.
This weekend I will hit up the group road ride tomorrow morn and stay in it as long as I can. Its always a gauge of my fitness and I get pumped to be able to hang even 10 more minutes that last week. Sunday has my youngest daughter's high school grad ceremony and stuff. So that will be a busy day with family. Bike ride would be short and a bonus that day.

Have a good weekend.