Desire and opportunity have oozed together the way they often do. This time, manifesting themselves in the form of Christoph, a friend we met in Patagonia when Jan and I were there in March, 2014. Hard to believe two years have passed since that fortuitous meeting in a small campground in Puerto Natales, Chile. At the time, Christoph was pretending to be a pack mule, hitchhiking with Laura through South America, carrying a big back pack. He has since seen the light, bought a bicycle and has come to the Pacific Northwest to cycle down the coast to San Diego.
Over the last few months, I’ve spent more of my hard-earned cash on upgrading one of my bicycles. I’ve had new wheels built for the Surly ECR, including Velocity Blunt 35mm rims, a Rohloff Speedhub in the rear, a Shutter Precision dynamo hub in the front and 60mm Schwalbe Big Apple rubber on both. It should be a sweet ride with a minimum of maintenance needs (famous last words).
We unpacked Christoph’s bike and put it back together to go for a test ride around the city, one of my favourite loops: from our home on 30th Avenue down Ontario to Olympic Village, west along False Creek, across the Burrard Bridge and through Stanley Park, across the Lions Gate Bridge, east through North Van, stopping at Lonsdale Quay for a fish and chips lunch, across the Second Narrows Bridge and west along the Portside bike route, up the hill to Adanac and a stop at Bomber Brewing to “pump up the tires.”
Then, with the tires pumped up, north on Mosaic to the 10th Avenue bike route and east for another stop for refreshments at Main Street Brewing. You have to remain hydrated. It’s one of the most important things about cycling.
The bikes were performing flawlessly. Not so sure about their riders, but I think we’re ready to hit the Pacific Coast Trail.