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Bicycle parts

We're just days away from leaving for our trip to the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan — it's not a cycling vacation, even though I am taking a bike — and I've got a pile of odds and ends to clear from my mind before I can truly be in relaxation mode.

— Serenity saddle

I have to tell you I'm really liking those Specialized Power Comp saddles I obtained back in April (click here for "From where I'm sitting" posting). And my backside is a lot happier too. As you might recall, I ended up putting them on four bikes — my Trek 920, Trek 2.3, Trek Domane, and Specialized Crux — and, boy, what a difference. I know someone who purchased a pricier Power Comp model, but he was disappointed and liked the kind that I have better. Basically, he said the more expensive saddle had less weight, which is nice. But it also had less padding, which meant less comfort.

— Conquering Cadillac

I sure hope so. I've registered for another 100-mile Cadillac Challenge, which takes place on October 2 on Mount Desert Island, here in Maine. With an elevation gain of between 6,000 and 7,000 feet, it is certainly a challenge. I believe this will be my third go-around, but the first time without any of my usual "partners in crime." While the century is limited to 100 riders, I'm sure I can make some new friends.

— Gliding with Guy

I ran into Guy B. the other day and cruised with him for a few miles. He is a legend on a bicycle in this part of Maine. Watching him pedal his two-wheeled machine, you would never know that he will be 77 years old this coming November. He just glides along smoothly, with very little effort — and he's fast. If anyone was going to top me when it comes to mileage, it would be Guy. And sure enough, he's already about 500 miles ahead of me this season. Guy is just a really nice guy ... and a regular reader of my blog. (Click here for Guy's profile from April 2019.)

— Trail mix

A good portion of my rides finish up on the Kennebec River Rail Trail. A few observations, with mixed feelings: I'm always amazed by how many people are still "connected" to their cell phones, instead of enjoying the peaceful surroundings; the route is getting a lot of use, especially by cyclists; having said that, more and more e-bikes are showing up, which I'm not so sure is a good development.

— Clothes make the man

I've been pedaling my Trek 920 on a regular basis; trips downtown to the post office, bank, and bakery. Also, I often ride it to work at the bike shop. It really brings back memories of riding as a kid, mostly because I'm dashing around in regular clothes — instead of being kitted out in spandex and other cycling attire. It's just a nice change. But I'm still using a helmet and flashing lights.

— Tour trivia

This year's Tour de France is underway, with the first three stages taking place in Denmark. That tiny country, which is only about twice the size of Massachusetts, has 7,500 miles in bicycle lanes and trails. And more than half of those living in Copenhagen, its capital, commute by bicycle. No wonder they say, "The bike is a Dane's best friend."

There, now I can go on holiday with a clear head. I'm really looking forward to biking in the U.P. with my good friend Jon C. and others. I'll recount all of my cycling adventures, with accompanying photos, when my blog postings resume on Friday, August 5. Until then, stay safe!

If I'm not riding a bicycle, you can usually find me tending our many flower beds.

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