Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Truncated Foothills Loop (2015-04-27)

A couple punctures and returning home to switch bikes forced my plans to change.

That bridge is basically why I did the ride.

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More after the break…

Last week, I ran into an issue where the bolts in my Ortlieb bag were popping out. They weren't particularly tight before then, so that was my fault to a degree, but they were a little loose when I got the bag (its sibling had no such problems). One bolt had already been lost on the road before, and getting replacements takes a while, so I found a tutorial to fix it. I got the stainless hardware and sealant, and this was the end result.

I'm going to leave the others alone for now (beyond already having tightened them). I may change my mind later on, though.

Ride to Ruin

I started at about 05:00 like usual, riding Red Miles, and headed south through Downtown. Unfortunately, I ran into an issue while nearing the end of my leg along 2nd Ave. I also saw a lot of police cars, but that had nothing to do with it (unless all the broken glass was caused by some event).

While I tried to figure out some way to make it work, some random guy on the street started chatting with me. He was a bit shaggy, but so was I.

I ended up making a boot out of a receipt, but it was obvious obvious that I couldn't ride on it.

It was a real shame, since I just got the tire (Marathon Supreme) a week ago, and it felt so much better than the Marathon Plus tires I had been using for a while. Oddly enough, the 35mm of the Supreme tires I have on Stormy Skies (and had on Turkey Gravy) have seen a lot more distance without issue.

My discourse mas to head home and switch bikes. I do have another 32mm Marathon Supreme as a spare, which I would put on Red Miles the next day, but I'm opting for regular Schwalbe Marathon tires for Red Miles in the long run. They're less harsh than the Marathon Plus, but much more durable than the Supreme.

Taking the bus home was the right move, as the tube didn't hold.

When I got home, I noticed that the pressure in Stormy Skies's rear tire was low, so I pumped it up.


After switching bikes, I went across the Ballard Locks as it was after 07:00 (their opening time). When I got to Magnolia, the pressure was really low again, so I took a closer look at the tire and found a tiny metal wire stabbed into the tread. I really should've checked that when I got home, but oh well.

Unfortunately, it was almost impossible to get the wheel out.

I did eventually manage to destroy and remove the spring (which I don't see as a necessity), and replaced the bad tube. I was then on my way, a few hours later than usual.

I took 15th Ave W/Elliott Ave W to Alaskan Way, then eventually made my way to the West Seattle Bridge and took the Duwamish Route to the Green River Trail. I did this because my usual plan only works when traffic is light, and it was too late in the morning for that.

When I got to the Green River Trail, I found lots of people parked in it here. It looks like someone ripped the plastic bollards out and turned it into parking. Nice job keeping track of things, SDOT/Parks and Recreation.

I took the Interurban Trail when I got to it, and was continuously fighting a headwind.

I then took the C St Trail when in Auburn, and then the E Valley Highway to Sumner. Since I didn't have any spare tubes at this point, I stopped at the local bike shop for some (both 32mm and 35mm). Too bad I won't be able to use a Presta valve adapter with them, since they have smooth valve stems.

I finally got in sync with my fit, at least for a while. The saddle was cushy, but the shape wasn't ideal for such a high position.

The next leg was along the Foothills Trail to South Prairie. I was starting to run into knee discomfort along the trail, unfortunately.

Upon leaving the trail, I took the highway for a little bit, then left it at Lower Burnett Rd.

Foothills Trail Closure

I had heard from a friend that there was a way to get to the western end of the 'Missing Link' of the Foothills Trail, and found it. I wanted to see this part of the trail again since it was closed due to a downed tree destroying a bridge.

The last little bit to the trail was a tad steep.

And indeed, this was the westernmost end of the pavement.

I could see the gate past the end of the pavement.

The trail was covered in moss due to disuse.

Riding up a couple bridges, I first saw this sign.

The bridge was in perfect condition, so I just went around the sign and kept riding until…

Yep, I'd found my subject.

There was a path around the destruction, but I didn't want to risk it.

I just turned back and headed the way I came.

Once back at Lower Burnett Rd E, I headed over to where the trail goes over it so I could get a better view of that sweet arch bridge.

And then I kept going until I got to Fettig Rd.

There was a bit of a climb there, of course.

I then made my way to Buckley on the highway, and continued until I got to Enumclaw. As it was getting a little late, I decided to turn back and take SR-164 to Auburn.


Along the way to Auburn, I saw the White River Amphitheater for the first time.

The rest of the ride along this road was pretty quiet. I wasn't feeling too well since the fit had just gone out of whack with regular riding.

I stopped at Zola's for coffee to help me home.

Once done with my coffee, I headed through downtown Auburn to the Interurban Trail, and took that all the way to Kent, where I did my typical jump to Oakesdale Way and then the Lake Washington Loop.

Still annoyed by the construction in the Montlake Triangle, I took Boyer Ave to the University Bridge, then the Burke-Gilman Trail home.

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