This page reflects my interest in bicycling.

You can access my bicycling blogs via the pulldown menus on the inner site navigation bar above. Some of my favorite routes are listed at bicycling routes but this is a work in progress.

In the above photo, I found an osprey feather while completing the ViewTrail 100 ride during my Challenge Weekend 2010 on August 15, 2010.

BicyclesOpen accordion icon
As a young child, my favorite biycle had a banana seat and high rise handlebars. Then as a teenager, I had a Univega, which introduced me into road cycling. My last road bike was a Fuji.

Prior to May 8, 2008, I rode a dark purple paint-splattered 1990 Yukon Giant mountain bike. Though I didn't do any mountain biking, I found it rugged and reliable. Certainly not fast or lightweight but certainly good enough for the kind of biking I did. I rode it to college every day.

On May 8, 2008, the bottom bracket of my Yukon Giant snapped. I salvaged the parts I could, using them on other bikes or just giving them away.

I replaced my Yukon Giant with a Trek 7200 15-inch hybrid bike. I got lots of accessories too, including fenders, parallel handlebar end grips (not sure what they're really called), front and rear lights, rear rack, saddlebags (left and right), front basket, pedals to accommodate riding shoes with clips, cleaning gear, extra tubes, and a new helmet. I hoped this bike would last me another 17 years but it only made it to 12, from 2008 to 2020. During the last few years, there were several trips to the shop for non-trivial repairs.
Trek 7200

During the Novel Coronavirus-19 epidemic of Spring 2020, a lot of folks were buying bikes and many stores were in short supply. My first choice was the Trek Verve 1 Disc but I could not find any in my size and the color I wanted. It had great reviews and was only $490. I looked at other bikes and wanted to get a Jamis Allegro Sport for $530 but I could not find any in my size. I considered the ultra-comfortable Giant Cypress DX for $550 but I could not find anything that said how much it weighted. So I ended up getting a Trek Verve 2 Disc hybrid for $650 plus tax. It is similar to the Trek Verve 1 but with upgraded components and lighter weight. Interestingly, the Trek Verve 3 is heavier than the Trek Verve 2. I did my first real ride with this bike on May 10, 2020. The photo at the top of this page is of me and my Trek Verve 2 Disc.

As of 2023, I ride about two or three times a month. My riding is more suited to a road bike than a hybrid but sometimes I like to ride on the rail trails and not have to worry about treating my bicycle with kid gloves. It is very rare for me to ride with anyone other than Norma so speed is not much of an issue. When I ride alone, which is usually the case, it is for exercise and just to get outside.
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EquipmentOpen accordion icon
Some folks want the latest and the greatest equipment to support their hobbies. I might be that way when it comes to kayaking and paddleboarding but that's pretty much it. The stuff I list below is gear that I have found very useful, practical, and (most importantly) economical. Lightweight and fast is nice but I'm more concerned about comfort, safety, and enjoyment. I may never win a race but I'll ride more frequently if I am having a good time.

Bontrager Rear Mount Adjustable Kickstand: I can't tell you how many times my bike have tipped over with a center-mount kickstand, especially if I am carrying a lot of stuff. But that has never happened to me with a rear mount kickstand. This one works particularly well with my Trek Verve 2 Disc.

Lystin Bike Handlebar Extender: A lot of things are meant to fit on a bicycle handlebar but there isn't always enough space for all the things I want. This handlebar extender ensures I can carry everything I want.

Macally Aluminum Bike Phone Mount: This mount allows me to carry a smart phone so I can listen to music when I ride.

Sunlite HL-L109 3-Watt Headlight: This is a very nice, bright, basic, inexpensive headlight. It has two modes: steady and flashing. It uses four AAA batteries that are easy to change.

Sunlite TL-L505 5 LED Rack Mount: This is a good, inexpensive taillight that mounts to a rack. I purchased two: one for my bike and one for Norma's. The racks are different but it worked for both, though I needed a corner bracket for the latter. I got them to mount securely and then tested them out, comparing them to my old light. Both have five LEDs and they were similar in brightness to the old one if you are directly behind the light. But as I moved to the side, the Sunlite was noticeably more visible. Even directly beside the Sunlite, it was still very visible. I think it would be difficult for a car to NOT see the Sunlite tail light. I highly recommend it. Just make sure to press down hard when you secure it to the mount. There should be an audible click. It uses two AAA batteries that are a little awkward to change. But it is well worth the money.

Swagman Trailhead 3 Bike Fold Down Bicycle Hitch Rack: My previous bike rack was a hitch mounted Yakima. It was sturdy but not well suited for my low Subaru Impreza. It stuck out too far and hung too low so that I had to inch my way down the driveway or over speed bumps for fear of it bottoming out. A roof rack or a rear window mounted rack was not suitable since I wanted to be able to also carry two kayaks. First, I tried to modify my rack by shortening the part that sticks out of the hitch. I tried to saw off about six inches so it wouldn't stick out so far but the steel was much too hard. I ended up ruining several metal-cutting blades on my power saw before I gave up. I looked for other rack options. There weren't many out there. But eventually, I found something that met my needs. I purchased the "Swagman Trailhead 3 Bike Fold Down Bicycle Hitch Rack" in 2013 from for $153 after shipping. The part that enters the hitch curves up to increase clearance from the ground. It is sturdy and sticks out far enough so I can still open my trunk hatch without having to lower the main vertical bar on the hitch (though I could if I wanted to). It isn't often I am really excited about a piece of gear but this hitch rack has made me worry-free when I transport my bicycle(s) via car. The only thing I don't like is that it is advertised as being a three bike carrier but it only fits two hybrid bikes. Maybe it will fit three skinny racing bikes but for the average rider, don't expect to fit on more than two. But my experience is that is the case for most bicycle racks. Tents, rafts, and chicken coops are similar. If it says it is made for N, then expect it to fit N-1 or N-2 comfortably.
Swagman bicycle carrier

Vibrelli Bike Floor Pump: I've had various bike pumps that let a lot of air out when I attach or unattach the valve, but not this one. If you don't like to waste time/effort when pumping a tire, this is a great pump.

Zacro Oversized Bike Seat: Call me old school but I still like a bike seat with springs. I have yet to find anything more comfortable.
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DaphneOpen accordion icon
In January 2018, Daphne became a huge part of the lives of Norma and me. I wanted to find ways to include her in the outdoor activities we love so much, including bicycling. I looked at commercial dog bicycle carriers. There are several for toy dogs where they are turned perpendicular to the direction of travel and sit/stand near the handlebars. I also found numerous carriers that get towed behind the bike. But I wanted one where Daphne could face forward and see where she's going...not where she has been. I found none so I decided to make my own.

First, I bought a heavy duty metal front rack that would easily support Daphne and whatever carrier I designed.
Bicycle with front rack

Next, I drilled an extra hole in the front rack so I could run two bolts through which could secure a platform. The platform is slightly longer than a typical corgi.
Front rack with platform

Lastly, I designed a cage that would accommodate the height of a beagle. It is secured to the platform with four bolts/wingnuts that could easily be removed. The cage attaches to low walls with a long hinge. The other side has a clasp to allow for one-handed opening.
Front rack with cage

Here is the dog bicycle carrier I made.
Carrier with Daphne

Other than sitting in it, Daphne never got to go for a ride. I deemed it unsafe. On a test ride without her, it was fine as long as I went straight or made very wide turns. But the carrier extends too far forward, making steering difficult. It barely stands up by itself with the kickstand. Not all my engineering endeavors are successful. But as any researcher knows, we learn from our failures. I also learned why I couldn't find anything I wanted just isn't feasible.

I ended up purchasing a Sepnine 2 in 1 Small Sized Comfortable Bike Trailer Bicycle Pet Trailer/Dog Cage. Norma installed it on March 29, 2018 and later that day we took Daphne for a short ride around town.
Daphne in Sepnine carrier

How do I like the Sepnine carrier? It seems well built and I like the fact that it has plenty of ventilation and suspension to make the ride a little smoother for Daphne. I also like the way it looks. My biggest complaint is that it is very heavy. But that's incentive for me to get stronger on the bicycle. The weight isn't really an issue on flat terrain but hills are a bitch.

Daphne doesn't enjoy being in the carrier. She would much rather run free. She complains the most when I am pulling her and she can't see Norma, or Norma is too far back. But if we stay close together, then Daphne is usually fine. I guess that is her corgi herding instinct.
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