Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sunny and 68 degrees

It seems as though cycling has become our favorite family activity. We decided to take advantage of the Monday holiday and the sunny weather to do a little exploring and shopping. Julie has been wanting to check out the bay wetlands trails for a long time and I wanted to get our Costco run done by bike so we set out to do both. Our first destination was Shoreline Aquatic Center in Mountain View. You can access several miles of walking/cycling trails along the bay from here. We plan to revisit this spot all year long and see if we can travel the whole system. With a little prep work we were able to plan a pretty mellow route through Palo Alto from our Willows home to the center. We only came into heavy traffice proximity for about a mile of our 20 mile journey. We had a great lunch at the Lakeside Cafe. After lunch we spent an hour or so riding along the trails. We found mostly paved trails, but there are many more gravel ones to explore. You need to use caution while riding as the trails are very populated with other cyclists of all experience levels as well as pedestrians. Our bike bells got a workout. It was great to see so many families out enjoying the outdoors. For the trip I pulled our Burley D'lite double trailer with Emma and Sarah in tow and Julie brought along our Burley Nomad. Our next stop was Costco in Mountan View.

We left Julie's trailer empty to see what we could handle towing home. We did an admittedly scaled down shopping as our trial run. I think that we can do our full shopping by bringing our Wike Large Cargo trailer and a detailed shopping list next time, so the experiment proved successful. We were able to fit everything we bought nicely into the Nomad. There was no room left inside, but the cargo rack could have held more. I estimate that the load was in the 75 pound range and Julie really felt the difference towing it back. Check out more photos and a couple of videos from our adventure. I have to say that family cycling is proving to be more fun than words can describe. Zachary is a little machine. I think Emma will be ready to venture out of the trailer soon. Sarah would ride if we let her :) Stay tuned for more about the Wetlands trails.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Roller Skating Baby!

Our neighbor Rachael celebrated her x1 birthday last weekend. Apparently she is even cooler than I already thought as she held her party at a local roller rink on Disco night. I had no idea there was a roller rink nearby let alone one with a disco night. Julie and I had a great time and I only fell once. Not too bad for not having skated in a hundred years. Thanks to the Abdella's for watching the kids so we could go. Here are a couple of pictures of us. Note Julie's vintage jacket, it is the real deal.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Bicycling as transportation

I have been giving a lot of thought about switching to bicycling as our primary mode of local transport. This weekend turned out to be a wonderful break from the much needed rain so we were able to utilize our bicycles as our exclusive means of transport. After logging 21 miles I have come to the conclusion that this mode of transport is totally doable. I believe that planning is absolutely key and maybe that is a larger statement about life. The biggest problem that I have found is parking. There is just not much bike parking anywhere and absolutely none if you have trailers. I am thinking that we may just start using a car spot, but worry that someone will get upset that bicycles are taking a car spot and damage our bikes. Here is a picture of our caravan. If you are interested, follow the link to more photos and a couple of videos of our weekend. Bicycle Weekend 1.0