Commute Day ONE: Scouting Report

Today marked the official beginning of this year’s route to 100 commuting days. Despite the picture above, it was a very good ride in albeit a little cooler than I usually prefer. Top layer included: Merino wool base layer, cycling jersey and nylon cycling jacket. Bottom layer included: Cycle shorts, Merino wool XC Ski socks, and MEC Mercury tights. Extremities covered by XC ski gloves, tight skull-cap and GORE shoe covers. As I always say, there is no bad weather just bad clothing.

As with every year, I like to put out a Post Easter Lachine Bike Path scouting report. So here goes:

  1. Lakeshore to 55th Ave in Lachine: All clear although a little sand / gravel at places.
  2. 55th to Fur Trade Museum: All clear, some wet / icy patches that are easily passable.
  3. Fur Trade to Info Centre bridges: Large snow accumulation, must be walked across for anything narrower than 32mm tires.
  4. First Ave to Dollard Bridge: The initial path is a mess but clears up nicely after the public toilet, mini soccer fields. Dollard bridge is wet / icy but passible.
  5. Bridge to Bridge Sections: Some snow accumulation in the shaded first section and the rest is clear but as has  large amount of twigs covering the path. Should be fine for 25mm and wider tires.
  6. St-Gabriel Lock to Atwater market: Very clear and mostly dry.
  7. Atwater Market to Wellington: Some snow accumulation on the south side paths and in the underpasses. easily passable.
  8. Wellington to Peel: The North side path is still closed due to construction of the new condos. I made my way to Notre Dame and then up Peel at my earliest convenience. The City and Federal Parks commission needs to sort out this section ASAP as there are many new condos going up and cycling in this area in simply not safe.

So there you go, there is a rain forecast for the next two days and a warm weekend that should wash away and clear up whatever is left over. I therefore declare the commuting season open!

How a GPS Monitors a Fall

This morning on the ride in, I took a fall and hit the pavement pretty damn hard. Lucky for me the damage is mostly road rash, a few bruises and a battered ego as I blatantly ignored the “Glissant” sign right before the wet wooden bridge I was attempt to scream across. In all fairness it wasn’t the bridge that got me but rather the sudden contact with pavement that my wheels were obviously not prepared to grip into.  I’m sure I’ll be fine after a few days of healing. I’ll obviously have to repair the bike shorts, replace my gloves as well as my grip tape but at least the bike is in good shape and the wheels stayed true. Thank god for commuting on a bike with no fragile parts.

So after cleaning up and ingestion copious amounts of bold coffee, I zoomed in on the GPS data from the fall. I’m actually quite impressed at how quickly the Garmin adjusted to the sudden change in speed. The fall obviously lasted a few seconds at most, but what is interesting is how detailed the slide is and the sheer anger as I pulled the bike back up, gave it the once over as well as spraying water over my knee and moving on.

The rest of the ride was no fun at all but boy did I ever slow down for those damned metal bridges and the other wooden one by Peel Basin. As the leaves start to cover the path and the morning dew takes longer to evaporate I will have to readjust  my pace… again. I guess my summer of Strava segments might be over.