Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Ice Fog & Dill Pickle (2015-11-28)

I was hoping to get a good century ride in, but the weather wasn't cooperating. I ended up bailing and hanging out at my parents' place for a couple hours before going out again. The latter part of the ride was much more enjoyable.

This was my first ride featuring a custom Dill Pickle Gear bag I had ordered even before I'd gotten the Swift Industries bags I'd been using since July. It took a while to get done, and it sort of fell by the wayside until recently. The bag had arrived the previous week, but I didn't want to open it quite yet…until the night before this ride.

More after the break…


I started at about 05:30 due to sleeping in a little. And after some bad times in recent memory, I had the sense to wear a balaclava on this ride.

It started off a bit cold as I headed east along the Burke-Gilman Trail, mainly due to the thick, icy fog. I had to turn off my helmet light in order to see.

Even though I tried to be careful to not stop for too long while eating, I did cool off some, and only thirty minutes later, I had to find a place where I could warm my hands. They had turned purple from the cold and I could barely grip the handlebars. Thankfully, the restaurant in the public golf course between Kenmore and Bothell was open enough.

Some older guys were planning on golfing despite the conditions. One of them was wondering why the fireplace wasn't going, and insisted to the guy running the restaurant that there was no burn ban in King County despite there being ones in adjacent counties. As it turned out, there wasn't a burn ban, so I had the privilege of sitting in front of warm fireplace while drinking coffee.

After I left, I continued on along my way…only to have my hands turn purple and painfully numb shortly past Woodinville.

I ended up turning back at that point, as I knew this was going to be an utterly miserable day that could've resulted in injury otherwise. That seems to be a theme for me lately, but mainly because the conditions are getting rather bad this time of the year.

I left the trail via downtown Woodinville and passed through the Monte Villa Parkway business park. Even though my food alarm went off there, my bottles were frozen solid so I couldn't really eat anything. I just kept on my way toward Canyon Park.

Once at my parents' place, I just hung out for a while trying to warm up.

While there, I looked into fairings, but decided that building one would be a better option as my handlebar bag would get in the way otherwise. (I also think that the new, taller bag made things worse by directing more frigid air right into my hands while I was riding.)

Since the blotches are peeling off now, it likely has to do with my losing 'battle' with tent sealant the previous night.


I left at about 11:00 and headed through the North Creek business park, then north along SR-527 to get to SE 164th St. Once in Mill Creek, I stopped at the southern end of the North Creek Trail so I could find a better way to get into the shoulder up a steep ridge climb on SE 164th St.

I then climbed the ridge and made my way to a north/south street that would get me to the next crossing of I-5 south from there, as SE 164th St is a nightmare of a freeway crossing. It took a bit of wayfinding, but I did make my way to Maple St, which the Interurban Trail uses to cross I-5.

Once on the other side of both I-5 and SR-525, I just went south along the Interurban Trail.

And then I stopped to visit a friend for a little while before he left for work.

From there, it was largely a descent down into Ballard, where I visited a couple shops to ask about shimmy and building a fairing.

After I was done at the shops, I just headed home to finish the ride. I still do plan to do the century later on, but when it's not as frigid out. Ice fog isn't good riding weather!

Post a Comment