Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The First Rides On The Tandem

A quick note: A friend took a pretty terrible spill this last weekend. She broke several ribs, her collar bone, and a punctured lung. She spent a couple days in the hospital and is now at home.  I just wanted to wish her a quick recovery. So heal up soon Cynde! And damn it! Keep the rubber side down from now on.

On top of the Mt Angel Abbey.
Well this last weekend my Super Smokin' Hot Wife (SSHW) and I finally got a chance to take the tandem out on the inaugural ride(s)! After a long wait with wheels and parts coming and going, going and coming. It was great to get out there and ride it.

It did take us a little getting use to. We've ridden tandem before. But it's been a couple years and the timing of shifting and notification to the stoker of what's up the road is one of those things takes some time to develop (IE Figuring out each other's idiosyncrasies.).  When you're ridding down the road and you see a pot hole or an object that you would normally just ride over with no problem. The person in the stoker position (The one in the back.) can't see any of that. So when you hit that bump they get jolted pretty hard. Shifting is much the same. If they are putting pressure on the pedals when you shift gears it can really mess with them.

The juxtaposition of that is the stoker needs to be as still as possible. If they're back there wiggling around you immediately know it.

Like wise it's a serious fairytale that either captain or stoker can just let the other one do all the work. You can be gliding along pretty effortlessly on a flat road and all of a sudden feel like you're trying to climb Mt Vontoux in man gears. It's a very delicate balance that needs to be held.  I guess maybe that's why some people call them divorce bikes....

But I'm happy to report that both of us are still talking to one another. As well as being excited to take it out on more grand adventures together in the near future.

Saturday we took a lovely loop with a hand full of friends. We left Salem and headed to Mt Angel to take in the views on top of the Abbey (One of my favorite rides when I was a kid growing up in Silverton.). Then meandered to Silverton via the Gallon House covered bridge. Ate some sugary things at a quicky mart and then jig-jogged our way back into Salem. Lovely weather, great people and a thoroughly fun time.

Sunday my SSHW and I rode south down to Jefferson. Consumed some more sugary things and rode back home.

The only thing even remotely unpleasant about the second ride was that we were both sore from the previous ride. Our inner thighs and hamstrings we not happy with us at all. I think that it was a combo of a slightly different riding position, wider bottom brackets (Q-factor), and new (Same models) saddles.

Or we're both just out of shape. Which I guess is possible too.

But all in all I think the new tandem is a resounding success! I am looking forward to a bunch of rides with my love. As well as our boy's and friend's that have an interest in hopping on board.

Rubber side down,

Big E


  1. ...and the best part is that we all get to tag along behind you. :)

    1. But it's really hard to tag behind my self. Unless I went in really tight circles...