Bike It
Oct 19

Came out of a restaurant to find my lock badly warped around my bike frame… but not broken. Close call.

Oct 18
Oct 13

Taking a “shortcut” back down on an unlabeled rutted path (4x speed). A bit gnarly, especially on our smooth-tired touring bikes… but no one wiped out.

An adventurous 32-mile almost-exclusively-off-road ride in Livermore, some not-even-on-the-map paths, mostly paved, some dirt, including Del Valle Park (cut down in scope due to insufficient tires for steep loose gravel and underestimating of how gnarly some side trails would be), and a stop for wine tasting.

Beautiful remote-feeling nature only 10 miles from a BART station.

Oct 05

Silent SF Sunset Ride

For a while I’ve wanted to organize a vow-of-silence sunset ride (riding together for a few hours with no talking, no cell phones / cameras / other electronics, on a secret route where you can’t think ahead but just follow, look, and listen).

After a scouting ride last weekend and a lot of dead ends, I had a route planned out criss-crossing the presidio, much of it on back trails, dirt paths, and little roads labeled “not a through street” you’d never have any reason to ride down.

A few of us did the ride together tonight… and it was beautiful. About half an hour in, riding over loose leaves among ivy-covered trees, with birds twittering and not another human ahead of me, I felt a ripple of almost disconnection from my body and a heightening of my sense of hearing.

On another hill twisting among long low greenhouses, we heard a rhythmic low thunk-boing! thunk-boing! and rounded the corner to see two very intent children playing ball— not with each other, but each kicking their own soccer ball against a stone wall to get the rebound, going in and out of sync.

Later, we stopped at a little-known overlook where a single hidden bird hopped through the bushes feet away and chirped at us, a distant siren wailed, and, as the wind changed, some strains of bluegrass from Hardly Strictly a mile away.

Fifteen minutes later we were riding over wheel-silencing pine needles, dodging massive pine cones, and smelling distant smoke as we rolled down to the Pacific ocean, catching it just before sunset.

During a break on the sand we heard an ice-cream-truck-like melody, exchanged a wordless glance, hustled to the top of the ramp— and indeed, a man in a minivan loosely converted to an ice cream truck was trying to work the sidewalk. A guy in a 90s hi-top fade with unlaced neon green and black Nikes was vocally disappointed that the truck was out of the one thing he wanted.

As the sun dipped below the… well, not the horizon, but the above-horizon fog bank, a row of bonfires crackled to sooty life. We remounted and zoomed along the ocean as dusk fell over the choppy waves, and finally ended our vow of silence at The Riptide, where a no-cover country band was playing.

A very present evening.

Sep 10

Biking in Bavaria (Main River, Bamberg)

[ wrote this up a few months ago and never posted it ]

Earlier this summer, in Germany for work, I took a day to rent a bike and go on a roughly 40-mile ride through Bavaria along the Main river.

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It was brutally hot in the middle of the day (my phone claimed 100), and I read later there was an extreme weather alert warning people not to exert themselves outside… fortunately, relief in the form of ies and aperol spritzes were at hand.

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One old waterwheel, still running…

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And finally, wrapping up the day’s ride with a traditional rauchbier (smoked) in the attractive little town of Bamberg.

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A fine break from work and chance to get some sun…

Sep 07

Dogpatch / Bayview ride

My third or fourth time doing a variant on a 10-15 mile Dogpatch / Bayview shoreline ride, including old industrial buildings, murals, urban goats, the former site of Pound SF, Tire Beach (where some sort of sci-fi-esque photo shoot was going on?), the Heron’s Head park spit out into the Bay, India Basin, Yosemite Slough, a surprise glittering UFO behind a roll-up garage door, and some more and less official dirt paths between all of these. With the excellent All Good Pizza as a post-ride stop.

I only took a handful of photos:

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[edit: more photos by citymaus are at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dianneyee/sets/72157647325098618/]

Fine weather to ride with a laid-back group of about fifteen people I know from various connections (friends, Boston, bike coalition, local music, camping, bike/transit blogging), including two kids (by which I mean children, not baby goats, though both were involved).

Sep 05

Copenhagen Bike Count

Earlier this year, biking around Copenhagen, I took a break at Mikkeller & Friends in Nørrebro. Not content to just sit outside with an excellent spontaneously-fermented beer, I found myself counting bikes as they rode by… which turned into a comparison of bikes and cars, and then an excuse to idly tabulate anything different about the bikes…

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One lost notebook returned by a bartender in Sweden a few days later (long story), and I had this quasi-scientific summary of 30 minutes of traffic:

Cars: 60

Bikes: 263 (about one every 6 seconds)

Men cycling: 127, women: 136

Bikes with a front basket: 97

Wearing a shoulder bag: 52

Kid or kid seat: 22

Riding “fast” (with visible effort): just 19

Helmet: only 7

Texting while riding: 3

Panniers and rack: 2 

Carrying a pizza: 1

one part of a livable city…

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Aug 30

Bike signal, buffered lane, Chicago

Aug 24

Biking, Sonoma County

Riding, solo, SF -> Fairfax -> Point Reyes -> Tomales Bay -> Sebastapol -> Santa Rosa.

Tomales Bay Oyster Farm:

Hwy 1 North:

Wild Flour Bakery

Kicking back on a friend’s tiki-torch-surrounded hammock outside Sebastapol

The next morning, riding to Santa Rosa

I’d forgotten my lock, but a trustworthy stranger watched my bike while I popped in for a beer:

And, rather than riding another 80 miles back, slipping my bike into the carefully-engineered compartment under a Golden Gate Transit bus…