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The Road to NAHBS:

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We hit the floor running this morning. Still exhausted and giddy from actually getting our booth together late last night. This morning was likely one of the busiest Fridays of any show I can remember. Lots of familiar faces. In general, it seems like all the builders have stepped up there quality yet again. I saw very few bikes that I would call “poor”. I am excited by some of the experimentation going on as well as by the left of craft on more “standard” machines. We had our bikes in for judging late in the afternoon. The format is [...]

Load em up, Load em in.
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The day of load-in for any show is always a mine field of hungry, tired decisions compounded by anxiety. Details that matter probably to nobody but myself. Or do they……..? We hit the ground running with a trip to the local television station for an interview about the up-coming show. The rest of the day was spent finding things we needed for our booth display. We had brought a few items down with us but really our booth this year has very consciously been pared down to only us, the bikes we rode here on and a back drop of [...]

The End of the Road
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We made it! At about 3pm we rolled into Sacramento over the Yellow Bridge to the state capital building like it was the last day of the Tour de France and we were rolling onto the Champs Elysees. There was much rejoicing and celebrating with a chocolate bar. We had obviously made good time today as all paparazzi and throngs of rabid fans had not yet thought to come out and greet us.   Today was our first real day of rain and even then it only proved to make us slightly damp for an hour or so. At least [...]

A Day of Heros and fine folks
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Some days are just filled with damn fine people and this was one for the books. The morning was un-assuming enough. We knew we had a great destination to stay tonight with IBIS founder Scot Nicol and his wife, but the rest of the day we were un-prepared for. What started as an innocent email to Scot the night before asking if he had a standard handlebar and stem we could borrow for one of the bikes when we got to his place, was replied to with Scot riding all the way out to Jenner to meet us with bike [...]

Clif Bar
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Here’s a company that really started from the roots up.  They are an inspiration for all of us small businesses. There is so much passion and belief in what they do.  It is wonderful to see a successful company that can be environmentally conscious,  community oriented, support hundreds of athletes, and provide fantastic incentive programs for their employees (including bike commuting programs and employee stock ownership!!).  Hmmm. I wonder if they need me to work for them?   Here’s Clif Bar’s Peter Berridge.  Lucky for me he was feeling chatty.  He’s got some interesting stories to tell about growing up [...]

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A nice Logical Day- Ritchey Logic that is.   We set off early this morning. Not because we had a long day, it was only 40 miles, but because we had a lunch date to meet and a long unknown climb to get to it.   One of the Granddaddies of the mountain bike had invited over for a visit. We had one of the nicest afternoons solving the worlds problems, one logical step at a time. It was refreshing to see one of the icons of the frame building world and king of the Ritchey Empire, so grounded. In [...]

Coasting all the way
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Something about careening out onto the coast, yesterday afternoon, into a blast of sunshine and surfer breeze, really made me feel like I needed to do some spring cleaning. I had an overwhelming urge for a haircut. After a glorious sleep at the Living Light Inn we were packed and ready to set off at the crack of 10. Aran on the heavier of the two machines went on ahead with Gillian Welch strapped to his handlebars (at least here music was on an mp3 player he found on the side of the road, run over but still working). I [...]

A Swervy Curvy Day
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I let Aran loose on the keyboard this evening:   This morning was a little colder than yesterday, so I piled on the thin woolen Ibex layers, including a hat, thinking I would remove my jacket in an hour or two. About one and a half minutes later I was trying to remove a jacket, a jersey and my hat while still riding. We did a steady 5 miles on the 101 before turning onto ‘Shoreline Highway’, better known as the beginning of Highway One.   This road was a dream come true. We started by climbing 5 or 6 [...]

The road less travelled
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In the spirit of true adventure and armed with no sense of direction except where we had to be that night, we set off under a beautiful blue sky, perfect temperature and a bit of a tail wind.   what a start! Grins from ear to ear. We made quick time south down the 101. Directions where easy, just follow the Pacific bike route signs. After an hour or so of blissful ignorance we thought we better take stock. Our map was only a general one of the entire western states. On this map, our whole days ride was only [...]

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Yesterday was a jumble of activity. The anticipation of the journey ahead. Fear of the unknown. We had been rehearsing for this moment of departure; this bottle of bubbly over the bow as we let ourselves glide down the slipway and  onto the coast highway. What if  we forgot something? Are the bikes really ready for this?   I have done a fair amount of touring and it is one thing to be off on your own with no real concerns other than immediate needs of travel, food and shelter. That stuff is fine. I’m used to it. It is [...]

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