Making tracks

Yesterday kind of got away from me somehow. It never really did warm up as advertised. But I finally got out for a short spin, and for laughs I took a Shimano CM-1000 along for the ride.

These trails start two blocks (!) from El Rancho Pendejo, as part of the Casa Grande Linear Park, and you can take them south to within eyeshot of I-40.

They tend to crowd up pretty thick on weekends, but I must have hit the sweet spot, because there weren’t all that many other folks out and about.

The recording of the Orchestrion, a mechanical street organ at The Hague (not the album/concept by Pat Metheny), is by RTB45 at

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11 Responses to “Making tracks”

  1. khal spencer Says:

    I have to get one of those helmet cams. Except the minute I put it on, folks will get to watch me do an endo.

  2. Pat O'Brien Says:

    So nice. I need to ride that route. But, I will have to use my Niner. I might not be able to keep up.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I’ve been meaning to ask, Pat — how do you like your Niner? A buddy is considering a Niner gravel bike, but the company is in the shit with vultures circling and I’ve been hesitant to recommend them to anyone.

    • Pat O'Brien Says:

      Mine is an old model, Magic Carpet Ride, that they no longer make although it was their flagship model for years. It is made from 853 Reynolds tubing, and is a traditional geared mountain bike with geometry suited for 29 inch wheels. I was an early adopter of 29 inch wheels when I bought a Gary Fisher Ferrous 29. That frame had design problems, like bowed out seat stays that my heels would hit, poor rear tire clearance at the bottom bracket that would clog with mud, and a creaky eccentric bottom bracket. I have never met an eccentric bottom bracket that didn’t loosen or start creaking under load. I bought the Niner frame and moved all the Fisher components to the Niner. I sold the Fisher frame at the GABA bike swap meet in Tucson.
      Niner used to be special with really good steel 29 inch mountain bikes. Now, it’s just another bike company. I wouldn’t presume to recommend a gravel bike since I don’t ride one, and never have. But, like you, I wouldn’t buy any Niner bike at this time.

      • Carl Duellman Says:

        I had a Niner SIR 9 after my Gary Fisher Rig cracked. The Niner was good for a while but the cable stays rusted really bad. Eventually the rear stay broke and Niner wouldn’t warranty it. I’ve had a Waltworks frame going on 13 years now with no issues.

        • Pat O'Brien Says:

          Good morning Carl. I remember what you told me (I think it was you) about watching the rear drop outs on my MCR for cracks. My MCR frame is 8 years old, and so far, so good. If I had to replace it, I would probably go with a Soma frame.

  3. Herb Clevenger Says:

    Every time you snaked between the trail posts, part of my anatomy puckered up a little. The video made it look like you only would have millimeters to spare if that. Don’t think my Appaloosa tiller would get through. What be the tire size on that bike laddie? Looks like ye rolled right over some good size rocks.

    • JD Dallager Says:

      Yeah…that’s for sure! A nice trail you have there, PO’G, and some wise line choices on a fully rigid bike. Well done! 🙂

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Those posts don’t leave a lot of room for error, gents. I can slip the Jones’ bar past the metal bollards, but only just, and the wooden trailhead gates are impassable by anything with a wider stance than a Brooklyn hipster’s fixie.

      The Cannondale Fire bar on the Voodoo is 62mm and I have trouble squeezing it past the wooden posts. One trailhead gate actually has the worst of both worlds — wooden posts set close together and a bollard in the middle. I have to stand a bike on end and walk it through that one.

      The tires are 700×42 Continental CrossRides at 40 psi. Really good rubber for the dry, loose conditions here. I can’t go any bigger than that in the rear triangle … but I’m limited to 35mm with the Steelman, so this is a nice upgrade.

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