motorharp: line drawing of kid with glasses intently reading (Default)
During a previous Birthday Hike to Cape Disappointment, gorthx and I discovered... The Discovery Trail!  We decided to try it this year.  On bikes! Most of the trail is a flat, wide strip of pavement that goes through the dunes along the Washington coast - great for cruiser-style bikes. The first part of the trail was very hilly, not all paved, and COVERED WITH NEWTS - not the best combination for a 3-speed street bike. 

It was about 8 miles total, and I'd probably skip the first 1.25 miles of trail with the 300 feet of elevation unless I had a better bike. The trail starts in The Port of Ilwaco (still don't know how to pronounce that) which was small, but not so small it didn't have a knitting store!  There are several off-shoots on the path along the way with parking areas, so you can jump off and on the trail pretty easily. It winds through several different habitats - rainforest, swamp, dunes. There are also several art installations and placards that make this a fun trip for nerds, hello.

I checked the previous day and the weather didn't look that great, but the actual rain was supposed to stop around 11am, then just be cloudy. We got to the parking lot around noon and it was definitely still raining. We ate our usual Whole Food sandwiches in the car, bracing ourselves for the weather. As soon as we got all our rain gear on and bikes ready to go, it stopped raining.

Our main interest in the trail was seeing the giant whale skeleton.

Whale skeleton in Long Beach, WA

As you can see, the whale skeleton was not-so-giant. Apparently, it's been vandalized over the years. Thanks, people! 

The second main attraction was the carrot cake I had been feasting on for a few days prior to that. IT WAS DELICIOUS! I love carrot cake and I found a recipe in "My Two Souths" (combo of Indian and Southern American cuisines) that is amazing, with tons of cardamom and black pepper. I am already having a really hard time waiting to make it for my birthday again next year.

We got almost to the end of the trail - the last quarter of a mile was impassible due to two feet of water.

We turned around and rode back with a tailwind (yes!). The whole trip took about three hours, and as soon as we got back in the car, it started raining again. :)

motorharp: line drawing of kid with glasses intently reading (bookworm)
Yesterday, since it was cool, I did a bunch of hot stuff:

- made zucchini chips, tomato chewies, roasted sweet potatoes in the oven
- dyed two sweaters on the stovetop with dye that I managed to order so it arrived yesterday, the one cool day this summer
- laundry
- harp
- fiddle
- rode my bike to leather store to get suede to make slipper soles to turn felted wool socks with holes in the soles into slippers
- went to fabric store to replace leather needles and get buttons for one of the sweaters.
- Cut and sewed the leather, punched holes around the edge, and crocheted around the soles of the slippers

The amount of stuff in my knitting basket is now level with the top as opposed to a foot above it.

And this sweater came out great!

On the list for today is buy new camera! So I can stop having to use my ipod!

As well as get motivated to rewire my headphones so I can move forward with critial listening and editing of harp music and maybe not be depressed about that anymore.
motorharp: line drawing of kid with glasses intently reading (bookworm)
The "Annual" Maintenance on my bike has now been moved way up in priority and received a title change to "Fixing my Bike" due to the shifter cable breaking and leaving my bike in the hardest gear.1 I could ride it as a single gear, but... meh.

I need to:
4/7 install new shifter cable (ordered today, should be here 4/5) - need to recheck how it's connected, instructions were... vague. I got it adjusted perfectly right out of the gate, which never happens. Then it started slipping on the ride home, so I'll be working a little harder on my way to work this morning, and hopefully have the energy to check it after getting home.  I missed the hole in the bolt the first time around that attaches the cable to the connector, so that is all working now.
4/1 inflate my tires
4/1? rebuild headset, or at least get new bearings Is it ok that I used 22 bearings on the bottom and 21 on the top? Must be, because it's moving smoother than ever and now there's no play in it.
4/9 re-grease the geared hub - didn't really regrease the hub, just put oil in the capped hole and in the end of the axle, wiped off grease on outside.
4/10 check the front axle It looks great! No longer getting bent during use.
4/14-15 grease/oil things - brakes and shifter cables, pivot points on brakes, pedals, bottom bracket, chain, bolt threads
4/14-15 adjust things - pedals, hanger set, brakes (check chain length and lubricate while overhauling hanger set). Either my chain ring or crank is bent, this needs to be fixed. Or maybe even the bottom bracket.

ETA: New chain or remove link from chain. Need to research this. My chain/pedal crank is not completely round? Sticks in some points. Twelve double links of a new chain are exactly 12". If more than 1/8" over, chain needs to be replaced. If replaced rear sprocket needs to be replaced or reground. Chain for internally geared bike may be lubricated with cycle oil by soaking it and then wiping off the excess.  My back sprocket has 19 teeth and front 48, book recommends 21 for a 46-tooth front front sprocket and 26-inch wheels.  I could certainly use a new front sprocket. Book also says best gearing is top gear 76-in, normal gear 57-in, and low 43-in.  Mine is 87-in, 65-in, and 49-in.  I like how hard the top gear is, so I'm not sure I'd want to change it. And the low gear is already too easy, I'm thinking 43 would make me eat the handlebars. Removing the chain requires no special tool, you can just pop off the master link. Nice. ETA: The chain is exactly the right length and the master link does indeed pop off and on. And can easily drop down things like drains.

1. Fortunately, AFTER I had ridden up the 1.4 mile hill and was at the pinnacle so I didn't quite give myself a heart attack getting the rest of the way home.


motorharp: line drawing of kid with glasses intently reading (Default)

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