Monday, February 23, 2015
Back to Bicycle Commuting
Mount Vernon Trail bridge near National Airport - solid ice
Last week Monday was a holiday and the government (and my job) were closed due to weather. The remainder of the week I went to work by Metro. It was the first week when I worked the "full week" (or as much as was available to work) and didn't ride one single day to work on my bicycle. Ugh.
Today I took my heavy yellow monster and rode to work. The trails in Arlington and roads in DC were fine, but the Mount Vernon Trail was not great. In the morning some of it was slushy, which presents traction issues if you slow down. The temperature fell during the day and most of the way was frozen solid on the way home. I ended up riding more than I would ever do otherwise using the small ring on the front of this old mountain bike, spinning very slowly in the lowest possible gear.
This bike has 1.95 inch wide mountain tires that have studs - amazingly it is possible to ride along at a slow steady pace on conditions like this bridge without difficulty - frozen ruts are the biggest problem.
Since I stopped to take some pictures and stopped somewhere else to talk to a guy and generally was riding pretty slowly, it took me close to an hour and a half to do what should take 45 minutes at most in regular weather.
An odd trade off with tire pressure - I ran with the tires at 50 pounds per square inch, which is somewhat too soft for the miles where the roads or asphalt trails are bare but is certainly too hard for conditions like what is in the photograph. A compromise, but not a great one.
Somewhat embarrassingly I will take Metro again tomorrow, because it will be colder and I think I am up for this every other day but not every day.
Where is spring?!?