My Happy Thought

The Caprock Canyon Trailway, 2005. From left, Clark, me and Chris

Enough of this Coronavirus talk. Today, I want to talk about my happy thought, the birthday present I gave myself this year.

I’m talking about a Diamondback, Hardtail Mountain Bike, complete with aluminum frame, 27.5 inch wheels and disk brakes, all new features for me.

I have a long history with mountain bikes, starting at age nine when I removed the rear fender from my Western Flyer, making it a prototype of things to come. In the 80s, still before there were many mountain bikes, I owned a Schwinn Mesa Runner, its knobby wheels and straight handle bars a foretaste of what was to come (still no front shocks or really wide tires).

In 1999, I bought my first real mountain bike, a Bianchi Lynx at a pawn shop in Amarillo. It still had no shocks, but after a few years of bumpy rides, I had a pair installed on the front. In 20 years, I’m guessing I put well over 40,000 miles on that bike. And I discovered the pleasure of rails-to-trails—old railroad right-of-ways where the crossties have been removed and a more bike-friendly path created (most are still too rough for road bikes).

Anyway, in recent years, there has been an explosion of new rails-to-trails around the U.S. I don’t know if I’ll put 40K on this bike, but I intend to give it a try.

So, weather permitting, every day I’m out on the I-27 service road, enjoying the outdoors and conditioning for those rides to come.

And, if you have a good rails-to-trails near you, please let me know about it. Maybe you can join me.

2 thoughts on “My Happy Thought

  1. Mike, That Diamondback is a smart choice. I agree with your decisions as to riding. Have ridden rails to trails, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, canyon areas of Utah, Tijuana Estuary (Imperial Beach), not a long ride, but scientifically interesting. Several long rides in the Los Angeles/Hollywood area (great surfaces & hilly). Continuing to ride the ol’ Gary Fisher Mt. Tam. I share the “Happy Thought!”

    1. Be safe had medical call yesterday , someone your age lost control of his New bike on hill ,went landed in large rocks. Broken shoulder, deep cuts on legs, packaged him for EMS took about one hour of major pain before bus arrived. Take care little brother.

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