Yesterday was the Holiday Swarm on South Willamette Street for pedestrians and cyclists to get out and do some last minute shopping the weekend before Christmas. The Swarm was planned by a group of citizens to show the city, and businesses along the street, that pedestrians and cyclists are in large numbers along the road, shopping at their stores and enjoying the community along Willamette, even on days like this.
There were a lot of pedestrians and cyclists, though the video doesn’t show them all. It was taken over a short time, and lots were spread out along the entire street, shopping and eating at all the different businesses South Willamette Street has to offer. Notice all the cars out, most are just passing through this nice little section of town, skipping over these shops. I hope the businesses consider how much pedestrians and cyclists mean to them. Improvements for the street are in the works and being discussed with members of the community to help rejuvenate this section of Willamette street. With a bond measure passed last November, one of the plans is to repave and better redesign the layout of the street to be more multi-modal. There will hopefully be much better pedestrian and bicycle facilities along the road with nicer vehicle lanes to help make traveling to and along Willamette Street much nicer.
I haven’t been posting a lot lately, not because I haven’t been doing anything. If anything it’s because I have been doing too much. With the winter months coming, the day light is getting short, but I still find lots to do. Here are some photos from things Angel and I have been up to, but haven’t had time to post. Spent some time trying to make my grandma’s recipe for pizzelle vegan for Angel. It worked out alright, although they ended up a little more crunchy then they should be. I still need to spend some time tweaking it. I ended up making 2 batches, the first batter failed miserably. *reminder to self, don’t use the solid fat from coconut milk, It just melts everywhere, and doesn’t work.
I got some new rain gear for this winter season. Showers Pass makes great rain gear, the Club Convertible 2 Pants, and Club Shoe Cover are the new addition with my rain cape. The pants and shoe covers work awesome. My good old rain cape on the other hand, hasn’t ever really held up to heavy wind and rain. Maybe someday I will replace the cape with something nicer, but until then my rain cape is great for shorter rides around the city, and my rain pants and booties will do their job well.
We spent some time hiking around Mount Pisgah Arboretum. With a nice break in the weather that day, we spent a couple hours exploring around. You can watch a video of the trip in my post from yesterday, or here on YouTube.
The days around Thanksgiving were spent cleaning and setting up our Christmas tree. My mom sent me all my ornaments so we had something to hang on our tree this year. And we just lazed around a bit. I had some time to organize my work space, hang out with friends a little, meet new friend, play with tesla coils, and go to the library. What could be better?
Angel made some great baklava! It was the first time I ever had it, it was delicious, so tasty and sweet. I don’t normally eat too much sugar, and after having a bit I felt a little rush. *After writing that last sentence, I must go to the fridge and eat some more.**reminder to self, don’t eat more then one piece, again, too much sugar.
Angel has been spending a lot of time over the past year taking video footage and teaching herself to edit them. In November she even spoke at an event in Seattle, talking about how easy it is to take and edit videos with whatever gear you have.
Along with taking photos, Angel started taking some simple video with her basic Canon Powershot SD1400 IS. The camera took pretty nice video, 720p HD. She used the camera every day and it has the wear marks to show for it.
She replaced the camera in April, after the camera focusing motor started to act up and make weird noises, a couple weeks after that she accidentally dropped the camera, cracking the screen. It was time for a new one, so she bought the Canon Powershot 110HS. This was a nice up grade for her. Allowing for full 1080p HD video shooting. She has taken a lot of great photos and videos with the camera. This is what she currently uses for almost everything.
Along with those cameras, she also occasionally uses the GoPro HD Hero I picked up at an REI Garage Sale last year. We have been able to take a lot of great video with this.
With the use of these cameras, and her MacBook Pro with iMovie, she is able to make these great little videos. In the past couple weeks she has made some of my favorite videos.
In Monday Tradition, she simply filmed what she did on Mondays, when she’s not at school, and I’m at work. Featuring one her favorite places to get vegan biscuits and gravy, Wandering Goat.
Mount Pisgah Hike, last week we spent a couple short hours, while it was dry out, hiking around Mount Pisgah.
Winter Soup, This is a great short little video of her making soup. She makes a big pot of soup almost every week, then eats it thought the week. A friend had asked her how she makes it. She had a great creative way to share it with them. You can read about it, and see the recipe HERE.
You can watch more of Angel’s great videos by going to my BreadBikeBlog YouTube Channel. Most the videos on there have been made by Angel. Some she helped me with, but now because of her I can help shoot video footage and help her produce great videos.
Yesterday was Halloween, Angel and I carved some pumpkins. Nothing fancy. I prefer a classic jack-0-lantern. We re-used some past costumes, Angel went as a fox and I went as a Frog.
So every month here in Eugene there is a gathering of cyclists who ride under the full moon. The Moonlight Mash is always fun with music and friends. This month the full moon was actually on the 29th but the ride was held instead on Halloween (Wednesday the 31st) so that it would be a lot more fun. We got to ride through the neighborhood streets of Eugene, entertaining the kids and parents as they were trick or treating. We got a lot of hooting and hollering. It was a great ride. Sadly, though there were many great costumes out there tonight, due to the darkness and riding, there is not much to share in the realm of photos, but there are a couple from before it got too dark, along with the jack-o-lanterns Angel and I carved this year and carried on our bikes as we rode.
We put some spare rear red bike lights inside the pumpkins to make them glow; it worked out wonderfully.
If you are interested in joining the Moonlight Mash for a ride you can find out all the information on their Facebook Page Here.
Here is a previous post about the Moonlight Mash.
As alway, it’s nice to stop at Falling Sky Brewing for some great microbrew sodas, Watermelon Fizz, Carrot Ginger,and Strawberry-n-Spice(my favorite of the night).
This past weekend was the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show in Portland. Angel and I traveled to the show, as we always do. The OHBS was one of the first events I saw in Oregon, even before moving here. I came to visit Angel on Halloween 2009, the show was going on that weekend and we went. I have been back every year. The show was great; I really enjoy looking at all the bikes, and talking with the builders and other people at events like this.
Here are some of my favorite things from the show.
There were a lot of great things to see there, and if you didn’t make it to the show I hope you enjoy the photos. I also heard some good news about the show in up coming years. They are planning to hold the OHBS in Portland for 2013 and in Eugene in 2014, rotating around Portland, Bend, and Eugene every couple years. Can’t wait.
If you enjoy handmade bicycles, you can also see photos from our trip to OHBS 2012 photos HERE. (Now I just need to find the other photos I have)
A month ago Angel and I took our first trip to Crater Lake. I haven’t had time to post anything about the trip or the photos until now. It started out as a nice simple trip to Crater Lake, stopping off in Oak Ridge along the way. Spending a nice time climbing Garfield Peak. Then ended the day with missing our one way home and having a super long adventure. Here is a good write up Angel wrote.
Writen by Angel,
On Austin’s day off, we decided to go on an adventure, and visit Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the United States, and one of the deepest in the world. Crater Lake was formed when Mount Mazama (a volcano) erupted and collapsed in on itself, forming a caldera, that over time filled up with water from rain and snow, and is now a national park. Crater Lake is sacred to the Klamath Native American tribe. No rivers flow into the lake, and none flow out, which is a major reason for the pureness of the water in Crater Lake. The eruption that formed Crater lake took place over 7,000 years ago, however there is still thermal activity present on the lake’s floor. There is a 1 in 300 chance of another eruption at Crater Lake occurring sometimes during the next 30 years. Interesting, the lake contains a couple of volcanic cinder cones, the most visible being Wizard Island. Boat tours to Wizard Island are available in the summer months (although Austin and I didn’t partake this time!). We hiked Garfield Peak, which was 3 miles roundtrip, with a gain in elevation of over 8,000 feet! We stopped to rest a couple times, my favorite being when we found a rough rock bench in the shade of an evergreen tree, where I ate half of the sandwich I brought. I kept thinking we had made it to the top, but the trail went on forever. Despite the heat (I think it was 90 degrees the day we visited), there are still huge patches of snow present all over Crater Lake, that are shaded from the sun most of the day. I made a snowball and threw it into a puddle of melted snow. Eventually we made itto the top, and the view was gorgeous. We made our way back down, which was quicker than the way up. Because cell phone service is spotty away from the cities, both of our cells phones suffered. Mine died while we were hiking because I didn’t think to turn it off, and Austin’s was nearly dead. We headed home around 7 o’clock. We got to see a gorgeous sunset over the hills, the whole sky was pink for a little while. We were going to stop for some gasoline, but were excited when we saw that we could just make it into town with what we had in the tank. Gas is pricier the farther away from the main cities you get ($4/ gallon near the lake, compared to $3.50/ gallon in Eugene). When we reached the tunnel at the halfway point, we found it closed for the night (at 8, and we got there at 8:30), to reopen at 6am because of construction. I wasn’t that worried, mostly because I am ignorant of directions, and because we have a GPS for instances like this, to direct us to alternative routes home. Unfortunately, this tunnel is the only way to get back to Eugene, without driving back the way we had come, towards Crater Lake, or to Bend (which was over an hour away, and then nearly 3 away from Eugene). So, when we were an hour and a half away from home, we had to consider our options. We tried to decide whether it would make more sense money-wise to try to get a room at an inn for the night, than having to buy another full tank of gas to get us to Bend and home. Because Austin had to work in the morning (not to mention all the hotels we passed were full), we attempted to track down a gas station, which isn’t easy when you’re driving through national forests. My car has a small gas tank. It can hold 10 gallons or so, and I fill it up when it hits 300 miles. We were on 270, and desperately trying to find a close gas station in the GPS. The closest were 30 miles away, and with dead cell phones we couldn’t look up the phone numbers in order to call to make sure they were open. We finally got the GPS to find a Shell that was 15 miles away, and we drove there, hoping that the un updated GPS wasn’t taking us to an old station that no longer existed, and hoping that this one would be open, if it existed. This was probably the scariest part of the adventure. If we had made it there and it had been closed, we would’ve had to sleep in the car until they opened in the morning, because we didn’t have enough gas to make it to any other stations. In a stroke of luck, they were open, and we filled up the tank and asked if there were any other way of getting home without going through the tunnel. The gas station attendant told us our options were to head for Bend, or to go down to the very southern tip of Oregon, near Medford, and to come up that way. We chose Bend, because we’ve driven through it before. Forest roads at night are terrifying. We saw deer a few times, grazing at the edges of the forest near the road. The roads are unlit, so we drove with our brights on the whole way. Austin drove us to Bend, and we stopped at a Shari’s 24 hour diner. Austin and I had eaten all of our sandwiches on our hike, and were getting very hungry, especially knowing we wouldn’t be home for another few hours. I got hash browns (vegan eating on the road is very limited), and he had a bunch of breakfast food (he swapped the meat in a combo breakfast for pancakes). I took over driving home from Bend, and managed to get us home safely. For the first hour I was so nervous, there are deer signs everywhere, and elk signs as well. I’ve been in a car that’s collided with a deer, and I know the consequences. Hitting a deer in the middle of the night, in the woods, with no cell phones was not an option. I drove super cautiously. Luckily there weren’t too many other people on the roads so I could keep my brights on. By the time we made it back to Eugene (at 2 in the morning), I was more awake than when we left Bend (from all the singing, at least our iPod was charged fully), and feeling so thankful to have made it home safely. That was way more of an adventure than we were looking for.
Other than the unexpected longer trip home, the day was amazing, and to look back at it a month later I wish we had time to go on a trip like this again before the summer ends (minus the roadblock at the end, of course). Sadly, we probably won’t get to do a trip quite like this for a while.
It has been a while since my last post. I have been really busy lately, with some trips, visitors, work, moving into a new place, and Angel’s birthday. Here are just a couple photos from the past couple weeks.
Last week Angel and I went on our first camping trip of the summer. We haven’t had enough time since she got done with the school for summer. We went with two of our friends Tuesday night until Wednesday morning. This was a quick bike camping trip we spontaneously decided to do just days before. It was super fun. The weather called for some rain and thunder, and that is what we got. Even so, it was fun.
Due to the secret location of where we camped, I’m only going to post the elevation of what we did. There were some great hills with some gravel logging roads on the way home.
We left Eugene late in the evening, just a couple hours before sunset. It was a nice ride through the country with some nice hills between here and where we camped. Right before we arrived at the camping location we started hearing some thunders. And right when we got there it started sprinkling, although that ended really fast and it didn’t rain anymore that night.
The next morning one of our friends had to leave early to get back to work on time. So it was just 3 of us on the way home. We took our time because none of us had anything to get to that day. We took a longer way home, featuring some long down hill gravel roads where Angel ended up getting a rear flat tire at one point, which got patched up quickly. We got a nice strong bout of rain at one point, which let up quickly. And we only had a couple very small spouts of rain after that. We ended up coming across one of Oregon’s many covered bridges. Here is a 360° Photo from a clear cut along our route.
Overall it was a great trip and ride. Angel did super well riding her Linus Mixte 3speed, climbing most the hills with no or very little (at least verbal) complaints. Hopefully soon we can get her something with more gears. I’m just trying to figure out what frame would be great for her right now. Hopefully doing an internally geared hub again like a Nexus or Alfine 8 or maybe even an Alfine 11. I’m sure she would appreciate it. It was a great trip, and I hope Angel and I can go on more trips like this before the end of the summer.
The Ride Of Silence was last night, May 16th in Eugene. If you don’t know what the Ride Of Silence is it a ride to remember cyclist killed or injured on the road. The ride has been going on for 10 years now, and is held on the third Wednesday of May, at 7 p.m local time all across the world.
Here is what the route looked like. Other Coverage: KMTR
I grew up in central Illinois. In August of 2007, I bought my first real “adult bike” after needing a bike to save money on gas. Since then I have had many bikes. In April of 2010, after moving out to Oregon, I got my beloved Surly Long Haul Trucker. I have put a lot of good miles on the bike. This blog is about my life in Eugene.