Category Archives: tadpole riders
We often hear/read that line about one thing or another making us look fat. Frequently it is meant to be funny. But, hey, being fat isn’t funny … nor is it fun. Those of us who are fat, especially obese, are our own worst enemy. I ought to know. I have been fat most of my adult life. I come from a family that are mostly overweight. This was mostly on my mom’s side of the family. I was always normal weight as a child. I weighed 140 pounds when I graduated from high school. I started gaining weight when I reached about 22 years of age. This was while I was in the Navy. It has been a battle ever sense … one which I have not done very well in winning. I have lost all my excess weight about 3 times, but always gained it right back and usually more. On one of my weight loss attempts I got down to 135 pounds. Here is a picture of me in the Navy before I started gaining weight. I think I was about 20 years old here. As you can see I was still normal weight. I didn’t usually wear coveralls, but I was on this occasion as I was about to work on a nasty job which could easily ruin my work uniform.
Although I am talking mainly about myself in this posting I want to address the subject of being overweight and exercise. I don’t think it is any secret that here in the United States we have a serious issue with obesity. Just looking at people in most any direction or place we see it. (It is pretty hard not to see it.) And the tadpole triking scene is no exception. In fact, it seems that the majority of tadpole riders have an issue with their weight. We turn to our trikes as a form of exercise in hope that we will lose weight. Some do, but many don’t. I am among those who haven’t done very well losing weight no matter how much riding I do (and I have done a lot). I have talked to others who have told me the same thing. I am sure most of us have heard the saying … Calories In, Calories Out. The bottom line here is simply that exercise alone is not enough. It is far more about what we eat and how much we eat. It takes a whole lot of riding to burn off the calories of unhealthy meals, snacks, soda pop, milkshakes, candy bars, etc. And most of us who are overweight do not eat healthy foods like we should.
I love cheeseburgers, french fries, chocolate milk shakes, candy (especially chocolate), ice cream, cakes and pies … you know … all the foods that taste so good but aren’t good for us. A few years ago I tried to go the vegetarian route. At first it was okay and I definitely lost weight eating nothing but vegetables, fruits and nuts (the foods God told us that He gave us to eat). However, it didn’t take long before I grew very tired and dissatisfied and longed for meats and other unhealthy foods again … foods that I have eaten all my life. So I went back to my old lifestyle and gained the weight right back. I had lost about 50 pounds eating “bible foods” and I felt great. The original foods God provided for man were grains, fruits, nuts, and vegetables. “They constitute the diet chosen for us by our Creator. These foods, prepared in as simple and natural a manner as possible, are the most healthful and nourishing. They impart a strength, a power of endurance, and a vigor of intellect, that are not afforded by a more complex and stimulating diet.” (see Original Bible Diet)
Recently I lost 30 pounds after the knee joint replacement surgeries. I was encouraged and thinking I would be able to continue losing weight. However, it didn’t take long before I gained back 20 of those 30 pounds rather quickly. Recently I have lost 4 pounds, but it is a battle ground and I am not doing well at it. As much as I would like to, I can’t blame my trike. It is not what makes me look fat. When I point a finger at it I have 3 fingers pointing back at myself. Nope, it definitely is not my trike that makes me look fat. It is easy to try to put the blame somewhere … anywhere … rather than simply admit we like food and don’t discipline ourselves as we need to. I stand guilty. How about you? Yeah, I know. Now I am medlin’. Sorry!
As much as I love riding my trike I know I greatly limit myself being overweight. Hill climbing is where it is most obvious. Pedaling a lot of weight up a hill is slow going and makes it extra difficult. When I am riding with friends they don’t slow down nearly as much as I do. Yep, all that extra weight makes a huge difference. I often wonder how I would do if I weighed 140 pounds again. I would like to think I could out perform my friends I ride with. (And I am pretty sure I could.)
So what’s the problem you ask? Well, I lack the motivation and self discipline needed. I confess it. Shame on me. I have nobody or nothing to blame but myself. I certainly can’t blame my trike. It has done an amazing job hauling my fat carcass around all of these years. I have to sort of feel sorry for it because of all I put it thru. I just recently discovered that I have two more broken spokes on my left front wheel. I have had a lot of broken spokes and have come to the conclusion that most of this is probably the result of the load the wheels carry. Hard cornering with a fat tub aboard tends to break spokes.
Nope, my trike doesn’t make me look fat. I make me look fat. I acknowledge it. I am guilty. I really need to eat a salad for lunch and probably supper too. (And without any dressing on it!) ( … but a cheeseburger sounds so much better.)
Some riders have FAT trikes while some trikes have FAT riders. Hmmm, another fact of life. Well, fat, normal or thin … do your best to …
ENJOY THE RIDE!
and don’t believe the saying “Thin may be in, but fat is where it’s at”
It’s a lie!
The Niterider Saber 35 taillight is among the available offerings nowadays. I can’t say much for the mounting strap they use, but the price is right … $16.99 with free shipping on EBAY. And it is BRIGHT! The 35 stands for 35 lumens. With a built in lithium battery it requires recharging using a USB cable plugged into a standard 5 volt USB outlet whether it be a computer or a power adapter (transformer).
LED lights are everywhere these days and that’s good as they are a superior light, economical, bright and long lasting. That being said, not all lights are created equal when it comes to the power usage and battery life. This video tells what to expect as far as how long the battery charge lasts in each of its modes.
I have written articles about taillights before. There are lots of taillights available nowadays … far more than there were when I bought my taillights. At the time I bought one of the very best taillights available … the .5 (half) watt Planet Bike SuperFlash. I paid about $25 each for them at a local bike shop several years ago. The best price I can find on them at this time is $23.75 with free shipping at ModernBike.com. They are not as bright as this Niterrider light, but still I do highly recommend the Planet Bike SuperFlash taillights as they are sufficiently bright and very economical to operate. (I tried to find the lumen rating of the SuperFlash taillight, but didn’t have any success. If you happen to know what it is please comment and let me as well as others know.) The triple AAA batteries last a long time in them. I use rechargeable batteries in mine most of the time. Just carry extra batteries along with you and you don’t have to worry about being left in the dark. With the Niterider taillight it has a built in lithium battery which requires recharging from a 5 volt USB outlet. That is not very practical when you are out riding. And the Niterider taillight doesn’t last nearly as long per charge as the Planet Bike light. On the most economical mode it only lasts 12 hours whereas the Planet Bike lights I have last about 40 plus hours on its most economical flash mode. (BTW, the newer version of the Planet Bike SuperFlash lights supposedly last more than 100 hours on flash mode and is visible up to one mile. I have the older version.) So on flash mode the Niterider light would last long enough for one or two long daily rides, but you would have to recharge it each day or two if you used it long each day. That doesn’t appeal to me.
If you park your trike somewhere near a 120 volt electrical outlet you could use a power adapter outlet to plug a USB cable into to charge the light on the trike. Of course, the light is easy enough to remove from its mount to take to a place to charge it. Anyway, I like the brightness and the price. I just don’t like the mounting strap nor the short battery power.
Here is a look at the Planet Bike SuperFlash taillight. It has a far superior mounting system than the Niterider taillight.
One factor with all taillights and headlights to consider is the built in lenses as they can make a big difference in how well the light performs and can be seen. The pattern of the light as far as spreading out and being visible from the side vs. straight behind. The Planet Bike taillights have superior lenses which really make the “measely” .5 watts perform as well as lights which are far more powerful. That appeals to me since the battery life is so great with these lights. Planet Bike also offers a 1 watt version of this light. They are slightly brighter, but they also require more battery power and therefore don’t last as long as the .5 watt model does. Personally I don’t think there is enough noticeable difference in brightness between the two to justify the sacrifice in battery life. Also the one watt model has a “white-clear” plastic cover instead of red which I personally don’t care for. I don’t think it is nearly as noticeable as the red plastic. Actually much to my amazement I just found the one watt model available thru Ebay for less than the .5 watt model. It is only $19.94 with free shipping.
I just read that Planet Bike has a USB rechargeable version of the .5 watt SuperFlash taillight. It also stated the brightness of the newer USB rechargeable is not as good as the older original lights like I have. The newer light only produces 3 lumens which is extremely poor. Fortunately they do still offer the model which is powered by two AAA batteries.
Here is an interesting video showing how well the Planet Bike Superflash work even when up against a far more powerful light being used for comparison. Remember, we are only talking about .5 watts here.
Another factor is whether or not the taillight offers much side visibility. Some lights offer very little or none at all. The Planet Bike SuperFlash is superb in side visibility. There is a video by a customer review on Amazon which demonstrates how good the side visibility is.
I will say this … if you are after high visibility in daylight there are taillights which are superior to either of these. I have written articles about taillights previously.
Of course, I also highly recommend the use of effective highly visible safety flags in addition to the lights. I have written articles about this subject before. Many times I have had people comment to me that they saw my flags before they saw my flashing lights … from any direction. And, of course, side visibility is going to be very limited if you only have lights. Good safety flags can be seen from the sides and can make a huge difference in whether others see you or not.
Right along with safety flags of high visibility is wearing high visibility clothing.
I started out writing this article with the intent of it being just about the NiteRider Saber 35 taillight, but I ended up drifting over into writing about the Planet Bike SuperFlash taillights. I guess it is because I have been so pleased with mine. I love the long battery life which is somewhat rare with bike lights. I have seen other brands which have very poor battery life. Their brightness only lasts for a very short while in comparison.
I just found what looks to be identical to the Planet Bike SuperFlash taillight on EBAY for only $10.87. It doesn’t have Planet Bike shown on it however, so my guess is that it is an illegal copy (knockoff) probably made in China. If that is what it is I would caution you that it may look like the real McCoy, but may be lacking in quality … especially the lenses I spoke of. If that is the case, then it would not be as bright nor as visible. Also the battery life may be lesser. Then again, it may be very good quality. I would be leery of it myself.
Lastly here is another video of the Niterider Saber 35 taillight.
In all honesty, if I were in the market for taillights today I am pretty certain that neither of these choices would be my pick. There are just so many lights available nowadays and several are extremely bright. Riding at nighttime in darkness I would be quite content with what I have now. Riding in the daytime which is what I do I would prefer one of the brighter taillights that are available. But for now I will continue on using my Planet Bike SuperFlash taillights as they still work fine and have served me well.
I have posted a little about Matt Galat’s trike adventures previously, but haven’t been doing much more in the way of updates, etc. on him. You can read and see videos about him on this blog. Here is a listing of my previous postings from most recent to oldest:
Steve Greene’s TrikeAsylum blog has been doing a good job covering all that is going on so I figure there is not much sense of my doing so also. I myself usually do all my “keeping up” thru his blog. Those who have been following Matt’s story know that he has already started out twice on his world tour via tadpole trike which will take him thru about 100 countries from China to the United States. Both times thus far he has had to interrupt his trike journey. The first attempt ended when he was hit from behind by a big truck. He received a broken collar bone out of that mishap. After surgery, recuperation and reoutfitting he started off on his second attempt, but it ended when he developed knee problems. Some more time has passed and he has been recuperating in anticipation of round three. Meanwhile another adventure he had planned during his world trike tour was to climb Mt. Everest. No, not on his trike, but on foot. He did attempt it, but that too ended prematurely as he had some problems develop and had to turn back. Never the less, my hat is off to him for even attempting it. Not many of us would be up to doing something like that. But Matt is no ordinary person as you can see by just looking at the “selfie” he took I have shown below.
Matt is a great photographer and videographer. The picture above attests to that. 🙂 (Can you ever forgive me, Matt?) Seriously Matt creates some great videos which are always well done and interesting. You can check them out HERE.
Here is one video which pretty much covers his story up until now …
If you are interested in his attempt at climbing Mt. Everest you can watch his video HERE. And HERE is the Google Maps Street View of the route thru the small village where the climbers walk to and from the base camp of Mt. Everest.
I am sure that we all wish him well and that he will be able to continue on with his epic journey safely and successfully completing it. And may we all just …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Matt just announced July 25th, 2016 that his current plan
is to restart his world tour trike journey in April 2017.
Is life flashing past you? Maybe you need to slow up and enjoy life at the speed of a tadpole trike. I find it most rewarding and rejuvenating. God has said in His written word (the Holy Scriptures, the bible) that our life is like a vapor … here today, gone tomorrow. That certainly is true and the older we get the more we seem to notice it and agree with it. We eventually get to a point where we say to ourselves (and perhaps to others) … “where did our lives go? It seems like it was only a few years ago I was young and vibrant … able to do things I can no longer do … and remembering lots of differnet things in our past. There is nothing wrong with being busy just so we aren’t too busy. Being busy is better than being lazy and unproductive. Still though balance is needed in all things.
One of the great benefits of riding a tadpole trike over a bicycle is the ability to somewhat safely “take in” more of our surroundings from our perch on the seat. Of course, like anything else there is a time we can do so and a time we need to pay full attention to our riding … for safety’s sake … ours as well as others.
Many of us know who this guy is. He refers to himself as “trike hobo”. That is somewhat fitting as one of the meanings of hobo is a carefree wanderer. I am sure he would readily testify as to the enjoyment he has experienced while riding his trikes.
If you are a person who tends to speed along as fast as you can go maybe you need to hook up to something to slow you down like this triker did. (No, he isn’t really hooked up to the railroad car.)
So whether you are an international triker, a national triker, a regional triker or a local area triker like me by all means take advantage of the time spent in the saddle and enjoy all that you can each and every time you are out. Yes, enjoy life at the speed of a tadpole trike. And do all that you can to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Hayley Mills had a hit song, “Let’s Get Together”, back in 1961. Of course, it had nothing to do with cycling, but never the less it comes to mind when I think of the subject here. I don’t imagine that many of us are in a position to do this, but we are all invited to a gathering as recumbent riders at the 2016 International Recumbent Meeting in the Czech Republic sponsored by Azub. On this website there is a form to fill out if we plan on attending. Here is a video of last years event and here is the video description:
“As every 5 years AZUB is going to organize a big event in Uherský Brod this September as a little celebration of AZUB`s 15th Anniversary. Many of you may remember great meetings in 2005 and especially in 2010 when we welcomed over 200 riders in Uherský Brod and we hope to host even more people this year.
Of course, that the meeting is open to recumbent riders with any recumbent, not only AZUB. It does`t really matter what you ride on. Important is the way you do it. Or better to say that important is that you like recumbents. That means that we will welcome recumbent riders with any recumbent and also their partners, children and friends with classic upright bikes, kick bikes, tandems or whatever.”
I am somewhat confused by what I read about this event. It says one place it is every 5 years and another place it is an annual event. I don’t know what is correct. If you know perhaps you can comment and straighten me out.
I am sure it would be interesting and fun to attend. But alas, I will have to settle for watching the videos available.
Here is Azub’s webpage, Recumbent World, where you can register your existence and location as a recumbent rider. You can let others know they may have someone near them who they may be able to contact and ‘get together’ for riding. Their motto is … ˶ Find each other. Ride together! ̋
There are lots of local area groups listed for the purpose of “meeting up” to ride together.
Note: I want to state upfront that when I started writing this article I was under the impression that this tadpole trike journey was still ongoing. It was not until after I completed writing the article that I discovered that the ride was completed in August 2014. I have made some changes in what I wrote in an attempt to try to reflect this, but I can’t assure you the reader that everything will be clear and accurate. I am still a bit confused myself. Never the less, I think you will find it an interesting story.
Dan says ‘cycling is therapeutic and gives him purpose’.
Dan McGuire is a determined tadpole rider who indeed is an inspiration as well as a challenge to the rest of us. I think he is approximately 83 now. Dan is stricken with Parkinson’s Disease as well as arthritis, scoliosis and something weird with his eye according to his daughter. She writes “Canada is his playground” and it sure looks like he is making his way around its vastness. He started this current journey in 2013. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’t in 2007. Dan has been a longtime cyclist with several accomplishments in the past. This was approximately a 10,000 km (6214 mile) trike ride he set out on at approximately 80 years old and he did it alone although others have accompanied him on parts of his journey.
You can read his daughter’s article about him HERE.
And HERE is Dan’s Facebook page.
Note: Although his journey ended in 2014 the following webpage appears to be still up and functioning as far as I know … And HERE is a webpage where you can donate on behalf of Dan to help Parkinson Society British Columbia. Their statement is that they are “there for those in need. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff is committed to offering support, sharing reliable information and raising funds for programs and research. We receive no government funding, so we rely on you. ” Dan has a personal goal set to raise $10,000 for this organization. On this webpage you can also leave a comment for Dan to encourage him and wish him well.
Upon further reading about Dan it appears that his journey across Canada was successfully completed in 2014. It just goes to show ya that you have to be careful what you read online. 🙂
Dan, I don’t know if you will ever see this and read it, but I just want to say thanks for your commitment and effort in raising awareness and demonstrating that life isn’t over just because one becomes affected by Parkinson’s Disease. Your journey was (and is) indeed incredible and my hat is off to you. I don’t know your current status as to whether or not you are still cycling, but I sure hope you are and will be able to continue to do so for some time yet. You are an encouragement and inspiration to the rest of us to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
A tadpole rider who goes by the name of “Mojave Johnson” is planning on going to do a solo, uninterrupted, unassisted circumnavigation of the lower 48 States on a Catrike Expedition recumbent trike. He is doing this in an effort to raise money for research for spinal cord injuries.
Here is his statement: “A good friend of mine was left paralyzed after an accident in 2009. He’s taught me a lot over the years, and he’s been a great friend. This ride around the country will be dedicated to him. The plan is to collect $60,00 or more to be donated to research and/or rehabilitation for people with spinal injuries. We haven’t decided which organization yet, but I’ll keep you posted. My plan is to do a circumnavigation of the lower 48 States in an uninterrupted, unassisted solo trip. I’ll be riding through 33 or 34 states (my route isn’t set in stone) over a period of about 190 days (5 months). I’ll be starting from Southernmost Point in Key West, FL, and riding clockwise around the country back to Key West. I’ll be leaving at the end of March, and I hope to be back in Key West by the end of September.”
If you would like to donate to this cause you can do so by going to his GoFundMe page.
And HERE is his Facebook page.
March is half over so that means the start of his journey is not far off. I certainly wish him well and safety while on his adventure. That is quite an undertaking.
Here’s his TENTATIVE list of stops. This list could very well change before or during the Expedition, but he says he has to start with a plan, so here it is… (The elevation shown is for each day’s destination.)
Day 1: Key West, FL (elev 18’) to Key Largo, FL (~105 miles; elev 7’)
Day 2: Key Largo, FL to Cooper City, FL (~80 miles; elev 9’)
Day 3: Cooper City, FL to Naples, FL (~100 miles; elev 3’)
Day 4: Naples, FL – REST DAY
Day 5: Naples, FL to Bradenton, FL (~100 miles; elev 6’)
Day 6: Bradenton, FL to Inglis, FL (~130 miles; elev 16’)
Day 7: Inglis, FL to Perry, FL (~103 miles; elev 46’)
Day 8: Perry, FL to Tallahassee, FL (~52 miles; elev 203’)
Day 9: Tallahassee, FL – REST DAY
Day 10: Tallahassee, FL to Panama City Beach, FL (~110 miles; elev 10’)
Day 11: Panama City Beach, FL to Pensacola, FL (~100 miles; elev 102’)
Day 12: Pensacola, FL to Pascagoula, MS (~100 miles; elev 10’)
Day 13: Pascagoula, MS to New Orleans, LA (~ miles; elev -7’)
Day 14: New Orleans, LA – REST DAY
Day 15: New Orleans, LA to Houma, LA (~63 miles; elev 10’)
Day 16: Houma, LA to Lafayette, LA (~100 miles; elev 36’)
Day 17: Lafayette, LA to Orange, LA (~ miles; elev 7’)
Day 18: Orange, LA – REST DAY
Day 19: Orange, LA to Humble, TX (~100 miles; elev 90’)
Day 20: Humble, TX to Sugar Land, TX (~60 miles; elev 100’)
Day 21: Sugar Land, TX to Halletsville, TX (~85 miles; elev 233’)
Day 22: Halletsville, TX to San Antonio, TX (~95 miles; elev 813’)
Day 23: San Antonio, TX – REST DAY
Day 24: San Antonio, TX to Castroville, TX (~70 miles; elev 758’)
Day 25: Castroville, TX to Uvalde, TX (~55 miles; elev 942’)
Day 26: Uvalde, TX to Del Rio, TX (~70 miles; elev 1002’)
Day 27: Del Rio, TX – REST DAY
Day 28: Del Rio, TX to Ozona, TX (~96 miles; elev 2349’)
Day 29: Ozona, TX to Ft. Stockton, TX (~107 miles; elev 2997’)
Day 30: Ft. Stockton, TX to Van Horn, TX (~120 miles; elev 4042’)
Day 31: Van Horn, TX – REST DAY
Day 32: Van Horn, TX to Ft. Hancock, TX (~70 miles; elev 3579’)
Day 33: Ft. Hancock, TX to El Paso, TX (~60 miles; elev 3800’)
Day 34: El Paso, TX to Las Cruces, NM (~45 miles; elev 3908’)
Day 35: Las Cruces, NM – REST DAY
Day 36: Las Cruces, NM to Hillsboro, NM (~78 miles; elev 5180’)
Day 37: Hillsboro, NM to Silver City, NM (~57 miles; elev 6142’)
Day 38: Silver City, NM to Safford, AZ (~115 miles; elev 2953’)
Day 39: Safford, AZ – REST DAY
Day 40: Safford, AZ to Globe, AZ (~80 miles; elev 3500’)
Day 41: Globe, AZ to Phoenix, AZ (~90 miles; elev 1117’)
Day 42: Phoenix, AZ to Wickenburg, AZ (~60 miles; elev 2057’)
Day 43: Wickenburg, AZ – REST DAY
Day 44: Wickenburg, AZ to Blythe, CA (~114 miles; elev 295’)
Day 45: Blythe, CA to El Centro, CA (~103 miles; elev 39’)
Day 46: El Centro, CA to Julian, CA (~62 miles; elev 2100’)
Day 47: Julian, CA – REST DAY
Day 48: Julian, CA to Poway, CA (~60 miles; elev 515’)
Day 49: Poway, CA to Newport Beach, CA (~80 miles; elev 25’)
Day 50: Newport Beach, CA to Los Angeles, CA (~75 miles; elev 1084’)
Day 51: Los Angeles, CA – REST DAY
Day 52: Los Angeles, CA to Palmdale, CA (~82 miles; elev 2657’)
Day 53: Palmdale, CA to Lake Isabella, CA (~103 miles; elev 2513’)
Day 54: Lake Isabella, CA to Camp Nelson, CA (~53 miles; elev 7000’)
Day 55: Camp Nelson, CA – REST DAY
Day 56: Camp Nelson, CA to Sequoia Nat’l Park, CA (~79 miles; elev 2100’)
Day 57: Sequoia Nat’l Park to Fresno, CA (~107 miles; elev 325’)
Day 58: Fresno, CA to Turlock, CA (~107 miles; elev 101’)
Day 59: Turlock, CA – REST DAY
Day 60: Turlock, CA to Sacramento, CA (~99 miles; elev 118’)
Day 61: Sacramento, CA to Chico, CA (~104 miles; elev 203’)
Day 62: Chico, CA to Burney, CA (~140 miles; elev 3195’)
Day 63: Burney, CA – REST DAY
Day 64: Burney, CA to Yreka, CA (~100 miles; elev 2595’)
Day 65: Yreka, CA to Shady Cove, OR (~80 miles; elev 1406’)
Day 66: Shady Cove,OR to Crater Lake Nat’l Park, OR (~52 miles; elev 6178’)
Day 67: Crater Lake Nat’l Park, OR to Bend, OR (~113 miles; elev 3623’)
Day 68: Bend, OR – REST DAY
Day 69: Bend, OR to Mt. Hood, OR (~110 miles; elev 3821’)
Day 70: Mt. Hood, OR to Portland, OR (~48 miles; elev 263’)
Day 71: Portland, OR – REST DAY
Day 72: Portland, OR – REST DAY
Day 73: Portland, OR to Chehalis, WA (~100 miles; elev 243’)
Day 74: Chehalis, WA to Des Moines, WA (~86 miles; elev 91’)
Day 75: Des Moines, WA (Seattle) – REST DAY
Day 76: Des Moines, WA to Cle Elum, WA (~89 miles; 2107’)
Day 77: Cle Elum, WA to Wenatchee, WA (~68 miles; 668’)
Day 78: Wenatchee, WA to Wilbur, WA (~97 miles; elev 2161’)
Day 79: Wilbur, WA to Spokane, WA (~74 miles; 1946’)
Day 80: Spokane, WA – REST DAY
Day 81: Spokane, WA to Sandpoint, ID (~73 miles; 2102’)
Day 82: Sandpoint, ID to Libby, MT (~96 miles; elev 2097’)
Day 83: Libby, MT to Whitefish, MT (~105 miles; elev 3029’)
Day 84: Whitefish, MT – REST DAY
Day 85: Whitefish, MT to Browning, MT (~96 miles; elev 4377’)
Day 86: Browning, MT to Great Falls, MT (~124 miles; elev 3323’)
Day 87: Great Falls, MT – REST DAY
Day 88: Great Falls, MT to White Sulphur Springs, MT (~100 miles; elev 5012’)
Day 89: White Sulphur Springs, MT to Big Timber, MT (~92 miles; 4094’)
Day 90: Big Timber, MT to Billings, MT (~90 miles; elev 3125’)
Day 91: Billings, MT to Ranchester, WY (~120 miles; elev 3767’)
Day 92: Ranchester, WY – REST DAY
Day 93: Ranchester, WY to Buffalo, WY (~53 miles; elev 4587’)
Day 94: Buffalo, WY to Gillette, WY (~80 miles; elev 4555’)
Day 95: Gillette, WY to Spearfish, SD (~100 miles; elev 3647’)
Day 96: Spearfish, SD – REST DAY
Day 97: Spearfish, SD to Keystone, SD (via Mt Rushmore) (~72 miles; elev 4331’)
Day 98: Keystone, SD to Wall, SD (~75 miles; elev 2824’)
Day 99: Wall, SD to Murdo, SD (~83 miles; elev 2293’)
Day 100: Murdo, SD to Highmore, SD (~100 miles; elev 1886’)
Day 101: Highmore, SD – REST DAY
Day 102: Highmore, SD to De Smet, SD (~103 miles; elev 1727’)
Day 103: De Smet, SD to Garvin, MN (~99 miles; elev 1391’)
Day 104: Garvin, MN to Mankato, MN (~98 miles; elev 829’)
Day 105: Mankato, MN – REST DAY
Day 106: Mankato, MN to Rochester, MN (~89 miles; elev 997’)
Day 107: Rochester, MN to La Crosse, WI (~73 miles; elev 668’)
Day 108: La Crosse, WI to Richland Center, WI (~66 miles; elev 732’)
Day 109: Richland Center, WI – REST DAY
Day 110: Richland Center, WI to Cambridge, WI (~88 miles; elev 851’)
Day 111: Cambridge, WI to Waukesha, WI (~49 miles; elev 820’)
Day 112: Waukesha, WI to Milwaukee, WI (~18 miles; elev 614’)
Day 113: Milwaukee, WI – REST DAY
Day 114: Milwaukee, WI to Chicago, IL (~90 miles; elev 595’)
Day 115: Chicago, IL – REST DAY
Day 116: Chicago, IL to South Bend, IN (~105 miles; elev 709’)
Day 117: South Bend, IN to Montpelier, OH (~95 miles; elev 854’)
Day 118: Montpelier, OH to Freemont, OH (~89 miles; elev 628’)
Day 119: Freemont, OH to Cleveland, OH (~83 miles; elev 656’)
Day 120: Cleveland, OH – REST DAY
Day 121: Cleveland, OH to Erie, PA (~110 miles; elev 652’)
Day 122: Erie, PA to Derby, NY (~75 miles; elev 670’)
Day 123: Derby, NY – REST DAY
Day 124: Derby, NY to Henrietta, NY (~89 miles; elev 562’)
Day 125: Henrietta, NY to Fair Haven, NY (~73 miles; elev 279’)
Day 126: Fair Haven, NY to Redfield, NY (~62 miles; elev 999’)
Day 127: Redfield, NY – REST DAY
Day 128: Redfield, NY to Old Forge, NY (~61 miles; elev 1727’)
Day 129: Old Forge, NY to Newcomb, NY (~64 miles; elev 1585’)
Day 130: Newcomb, NY to Fair Haven, VT (~78 miles; elev 383’)
Day 131: Fair Haven, VT to Plymouth, VT (~40 miles; elev 1415’)
Day 132: Plymouth, VT – REST DAY
Day 133: Plymouth, VT – REST DAY
Day 134: Plymouth, VT to Andover, NH (~69 miles; elev 646’)
Day 135: Andover, NH to Conway, NH (~71 miles; elev 466’)
Day 136: Conway, NH to Brunswick, ME (~83 miles; elev 64’)
Day 137: Brunswick, ME – REST DAY
Day 138: Brunswick, ME to Kennebunk, ME (~71 miles; elev 65’)
Day 139: Kennebunk, ME to Derry, NH (~72 miles; elev 280’)
Day 140: Derry, NH to Worcester, MA (~59 miles; elev 482’)
Day 141: Worcester, MA – REST DAY
Day 142: Worcester, MA to Windsor Locks, CT (~81 miles; elev 151’)
Day 143: Windsor Locks, CT to Highland, NY (~98 miles; elev 173’)
Day 144: Highland, NY to East Stroudsburg, PA (~87 miles; elev 477’)
Day 145: Highland, NY – REST DAY
Day 146: East Stroudsburg, PA to Philadelphia, PA (~106 miles; elev 40’)
Day 147: Philadelphia, PA – REST DAY
Day 148: Philadelphia, PA to Airville, PA (~105 miles; elev 254’)
Day 149: Airville, PA to Washington, D.C (~110 miles; elev 72’)
Day 150: Washington, D.C. – REST DAY
Day 151: Washington, D.C. – REST DAY
Day 152: Washington, D.C. to Fredericksburg, VA (~93 miles; elev 153’)
Day 153: Fredericksburg, VA to Surry, VA (~120 miles; elev 51’)
Day 154: Surry, VA to Elizabeth City, NC (~91 miles; elev 9’)
Day 155: Elizabeth City, NC – REST DAY
Day 156: Elizabeth City, NC to Hatteras, Island, NC (~109 miles; elev 2’)
Day 157: Hatteras, NC to Newport, NC (~118 miles; elev 19’)
Day 158: Newport, NC to Wilmington, NC (~78 miles; elev 39’)
Day 159: Wilmington, NC – REST DAY
Day 160: Wilmington, NC – REST DAY – planned optional extra day
Day 161: Wilmington, NC to Myrtle Beach, NC (~95 miles; elev 19’)
Day 162: Myrtle Beach, NC to Moncks Corner, SC (~84 miles; elev 53’)
Day 163: Moncks Corner, SC to Hardeeville, SC (~107 miles; elev 20’)
Day 164: Hardeeville, SC – REST DAY
Day 165: Hardeeville, SC to Brunswick, GA (~90 miles; elev 10’)
Day 166: Brunswick, GA to Jacksonville Beach, FL (~94 miles; elev 11’)
Day 167: Jacksonville Beach, FL to New Smyrna Beach, FL (~98 miles; elev 10’)
Day 168: New Smyrna Beach, FL – REST DAY
Day 169: New Smyrna Beach, FL to Sebastian, FL (~107 miles; elev 9’)
Day 170: Sebastian, FL to Lake Worth, FL (~114 miles; elev 35’)
Day 171: Lake Worth, FL to Kendall, FL (~96 miles; elev 8’)
Day 172: Kendall, FL – REST DAY
Day 173: Kendall, FL – REST DAY
Day 174: Kendall, FL to Islamorada, FL (~72 miles; elev 9’)
Day 175: Islamorada, FL to Key West, FL (~83 miles; elev 5’)
Day 176: Key West, FL – CELEBRATION DAY!!!!!!!
Matt Galat is getting to be pretty well known as time goes along. His ambitious undertaking of riding his tadpole trike on a 5 year long journey covering more than 100 countries as he goes from China to the United States is indeed an amazing and challenging adventure. Most of us could never make such a journey, but we can take advantage of what Matt offers us thru his excellent videos and writings about his journey. His website has a new look which is phenomenal in itself. He has done a great job with it.
Those who have already been following Matt on his journey probably already know of the two set backs which have occurred on his first two attempts. The first one ended when he got hit by a truck and received a broken collar bone as a result.
After healing up and totally re-outfitting with a new trike and trailer he started off again.
That attempt ended when he developed a knee problem. Since then he has been working toward getting into the physical condition he will need for his next planned adventure … climbing Mt. Everest before he continues on his trike journey.
Matt’s videos and narrative are always very well done and interesting so I highly recommend them to you. Follow along keeping up with his epic adventures. There are several different ways you can do this. Here are some of them:
I can see that this journey Matt is on has already brought on some changes in him … good or bad … you be the judge. Hey, it just might grow on ya’. 🙂
I would say that this is a clear cut case of photoshopping going on.
(Actually it was done with an fun image app.)
Some people leapfrog from place to place while others tadpole. This couple are tadpoling thru Europe. Chuck and Susan Atkinson are travelling by tadpole trikes on a European adventure. Visit their Facebook page to read about it and see their many pictures. We may never be able to do what they are doing, but we can do so vicariously thru them. Here are a few pictures of their adventure starting with a picture of the two of them.
Here is Susan posing with a bike mechanic.
Chuck passing roadside mowing crew hard at work.
Notice the flags of the various countries they are visiting.
These are just a handful of the many pictures available to see. Many are of beautiful scenery as they traveled along. We can enjoy what they have provided. I wish them well and safe as they continue on their adventure. May they be able to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Woe is me … me is woe … well, anyway winter is upon us and many of us don’t or can’t ride outdoors when winter comes. I used to try to ride thru the winter, but I gave it up as I found that all too often I could not succeed at it. Either my trike would not go thru the snow or the trails were closed due to weather caused problems. So this is the third winter I have moved my trike inside the house and set it up in the living room on an indoor trainer right in front of the big screen TV set which is hooked up to a computer with internet service. That means I can pedal away watching most anything I care to which helps immensely breaking up the otherwise extreme boredom of stationary exercise … something I can’t stand. As you can see here in this picture I am riding along a paved bicycle trail compliments of YouTube.
Indoor trainers come in various types. Nearly all of those available are made for bicycles and not for trikes. That is not to say that they won’t work on a trike. They may or may not work correctly. I had to make modifications to mine to get it to work on a 20 inch wheel. No doubt the best one available for trikes is made specifically for trikes by Sportscrafters. They make two models which in appearance look much the same. The difference is how they work. One is just a resistance roller which sells for $199. The other is designed to mimic actual riding conditions and give the “rider” more of a work out. It sells for $249.
I would love to have one, but I already have the “other type” which I am probably stuck with. Here is a picture I just took of my setup.
This type of indoor trainer is far more common. However, it is not made to accommodate 20 inch wheels. As I already stated, I had to do some modification on it in order to get it to work and it just barely works as things barely make proper needed contact. It does work though. Anyway, there are lots of different manufacturers of this type of indoor trainer. Actually I bought mine slightly used, but still in like new condition from a friend. I bought it not to use as an indoor trainer, but rather to use as a work stand to hold the rear wheel up off the ground so I could perform maintenance/repair work on the back end of the trike. In fact, I had even removed all the extra parts on it which had to do with using it as an indoor trainer since I didn’t use it for that for the first few years I had it.
Keep in mind that we live in a bicycle oriented world and most products which exist were designed for bicycles and not for tadpole trikes. Perhaps this will change as time goes along. Right now Sportscrafters is the only indoor trainer I know of designed specifically for trikes.
Some folks are making their own set of rollers to use. Some have used industrial (commercial) conveyor type rollers.
Some have purchased rollers and made their own.
Some have used other things to make their trainers.
People have used PVC piping with roller bearings inserted.
Others have used Teflon coated or stainless steel food rolling pins.
Some have made their own wooden rollers turning them in a lathe.
I have not had any success finding a video about a DIY roller indoor trainer for trikes. Everything seems to be for bicycles. Here is one of the better ones I have found …
I have thought about making one myself, but truthfully I probably never will.
BTW, if you lift the back end of a trike up onto some sort of an indoor trainer it is a good idea to also lift the front end up the same distance so that the trike remains level and you sit and pedal normally. They make lifting devices (riser blocks) you can buy or you can just use whatever you have available. I have used books, bed risers, and now I use a 2 inch thick concrete block broken in half… one under each front tire.
HERE are some examples of what is available to buy:
The Kinetic one has 3 different heights to select from. There are other brands like this as well. I don’t know about these various products and what tire widths they will accommodate.
Keep in mind that our trikes are designed so that our feet just barely miss the ground as we pedal so if you raise the back end of the trike up there is a good chance that your feet will be hitting the ground as you pedal.
I would really much rather be able to ride outdoors. Woe is me! I am trying to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
(even if I have to do it indoors … as much as I hate it.)
All of these people and many thousands more have one thing in common. They are all showing the “recumbent smile” which just comes naturally when you ride a recumbent bike or trike. You can even Google “recumbent smile” and get quite a few search results. All you gotta’ do is search for images of tadpole trikes and most of those you see with people seated on them will be displaying the infamous recumbent smile. You can even search on YouTube for recumbent smile and get some results. Here is one them …
Here is a mother’s first ride on a recumbent bike:
And here is my wife’s first ride on my Catrike Trail trike:
Doesn’t she look like she is thoroughly enjoying herself?
I apologize for the poor video quality. It has been recopied a few times due to various reasons and with each copy the quality deteriorates.
Those of us who ride recumbent bikes and trikes have good reason to smile. We are super comfortable and having great fun. That is a winning combination. And more and more people are discovering this and joining in. They too are experiencing the infamous recumbent smile.
Here is a picture of a couple of friends I let ride my trikes for the first time:
As you can see they too are all smiles. They had a blast riding them.
Lastly my grand niece who recently arrived with her family from the Philippines to live here in the United States rode my Catrike Trail. You can see her joy written all over her face.
There is just no denying it … there really is something to this phenomena known as recumbent smiles. So if you are holding back making the plunge into recumbents this ought to entice you further. I mean, who doesn’t want to wear a big smile as a result of having reason to? Buck and Roy were “pickin’ and grinin'” … which is fine, but nowadays we are “ridin’ and smilin'”. It helps us immensely to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Matt Galat recently posted a video on YouTube that I am sharing here as it is something that tends to stir me wishing I was there sharing in the experience.
I have been watching some videos of a South Korean triker who rides a Catrike 700. In the one video I just finished watching I noticed the people he was riding by as several of them turned to look at his trike as he rode by them. Yep, tadpole trikes definitely attract attention.
He has several videos available to view. Click HERE to see what he offers.
Another thing I noticed is that the area he is riding in has nice bike/pedestrian trails some of which must have been expensive to build and perhaps a bit challenging as well. I like his whirlygig safety flag.
I am sure most of us who ride tadpole trikes can attest to the fact that the trikes get attention and admiration quite often from many different people we encounter. Some are curious and want to ask questions about them. Whenever possible it is a good idea to take the time to answer their questions as in doing so we are being good ambassadors for our chosen means of cycling. We have the opportunity to educate others and help them to know more about these awesome machines. And just maybe they too will join us in riding in comfort and fun.
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Today is Veterans Day and I don’t want to let it pass by without posting something about it. As an eight year military veteran myself I know the sacrifices involved in serving in the military. I appreciate those who serve and want to say thanks for their service. I am a firm believer in “giving honor to whom honor is due” and so I salute my fellow veterans.
Yeah, that was me at about 18 years old. I was looking down at a young child who was also wearing a navy uniform of sorts and we were saluting each other.
I have often thought about how neat it would be to have military veterans riding together in a Veterans Day parade with each former serviceman flying the flag of their particular branch of the military.
There are organizations which exists to help reach out to military veterans who need help coping. A part of their therapy is recumbent trikes. … “ROLLING THERAPY”
ForgottenNotGone.ORG is dedicated to helping save veterans and their families from the destruction of suicide. Feeling alone,forgotten and abandoned, causes 22 veterans a day to take their own lives in the United States.
I am sure many of us know about Matt Galat’s amazing trike journey that is underway once again … starting over after his first attempt ended unexpectedly while still in China thanks to a big truck hitting him resulting in a broken bone in his left shoulder. Matt is all healed up now and re-outfitted even better than before. Here is a picture of Matt with his new rig.
He calls his endeavor JaYoe. JaYoe! is a Chinese phrase meaning “add fuel”. Matt has many great videos he has already created and now he offers a podcast to listen to.
The JaYoe Nation Podcast follows Matt as he makes his way from China all the way to USA on the seat of his recumbent trike. This podcast gives you a chance to see the in’s and out’s of what goes into traveling around the world. Learn about the places, people, and cultures as well as the gear and personal journey’s that take place during a tour like this.
Here is one of Matt’s most recent videos … laughingly entitled “REBOOT”. That pretty much sums up what is going on concerning his world journey.
The JaYoe Travelogues follow Matt as he rides his trike from China to USA … through 100 countries as he ventures and captures what he is ‘seeing, doing and meeting’ along the way.
If you are interested in following Matt’s journey around the world, visit the following links…
Way back in the year of our Lord, 2011, a rather unique event took place here in the United States. A group of velomobiles gathered together in Portland, Oregon to participate in the ROAM velomobile tour from Portland to Washington, D.C. ROAM stands for Roll Over America. They averaged about 125 miles per day. The vast majority of the velomobile riders who completed the tour were from Europe, most particularly the Netherlands and Germany. Their route they were travelling brought them thru Fort Wayne, Indiana where I live so I made the effort to go to the city park where they would spend the night camping.
I saw many of them as they pulled in to the campgrounds. It was summertime and every single one of them were totally soaking wet with sweat inside their velomobiles. They looked like they had just climbed out of a swimming pool with their clothes on. When I saw that I was really turned off to velomobiles as far as riding inside one of them. I sweat enough out in the open air on my tadpole trike. I could not handle being in a mobile oven.
I was looking over this velomobile pictured above and talking to the owner and builder of it. While I was there a friend of mine happened along with his video camera. He was producing a video about this event and conducting interviews with the riders. I was asking questions myself which were captured on the video’s audio. I did not realize at the time that my friend was producing this video. Otherwise I would not have done this. He said it didn’t matter as my questions were good questions anyway so it didn’t mess up his video taping.
Here are some more pictures of this particular trike:
Just a reminder that you can click on any of the photos to have them open up in their own window where you can see them full size. To return to this page just use your browser’s back button.
In this last picture you can see my trike sitting in the background with my yellow and orange flags sticking up above the open cockpit of the velomobile.
While at the city park checking out all these velomobiles rolling in I befriended a German rider who was in need to new chain for his velomobile. I took him to a local bike shop (before they closed) so he could get the chain he needed.
Here are some of the velomobile riders posing together.
And here they are lined up for photo shoots in the nation’s capital.
And here they are riding down the streets in Washington, D.C.
Also if you are interested in reading websites about this event you can check them out HERE.
If my memory serves me correctly they started out with about 50 riders from 7 different countries. About half of them were from Europe and the rest were from North America (U.S. and Canada). Most of those who were from North America dropped out along the way for one reason or another and it was mainly the Europeans who completed the tour. I think there were 30 some who completed the event.
I talked to several of the riders and some of them reported that coming thru the Rocky mountains they exceeded 70 mph downhill. One of the riders wrecked while travelling along at about 25 mph when he encountered “rumble strips” the second day out. He described what happened HERE. What I don’t understand is this is reported to have happened on I-84. My question is ‘what were these velomobiles doing on an interstate highway?’ It is my understanding that it would be very much illegal for them to be on an interstate highway.
Here is a video with Gary Solomon of the Laidback Bike Report interviewing Rolf Garthus. Rolf and his wife, Barb, are the owners of the Hostel Shoppe in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. Hostel Shoppe is reported to be possibly the largest recumbent sales business in the U.S. The Hostel Shoppe also hosts the annual Midwest Recumbent Rally. I really enjoyed listening to him tell about how and why he got into recumbents and especially tadpole trikes. He shares about how the Hostel Shoppe business was started and its history. And he shares about several other things of interest to those who have an interest in tadpole trikes. Rolf reports that they sell 3 to 4 more recumbent trikes than they do recumbent bikes. I have heard this before from other sources.
Rolf is in his 70s now which has brought on some physical changes and limitations as aging does for most of us. Never the less he is still actively riding and attests to the comfort and joy of riding a tadpole trike.
Rolf, Barb, and their employees are helping to get multitudes into recumbents. I am glad to see it. Let’s all …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
Here are a few somewhat unique videos showing some homemade side by side tandem tadpole trikes as this family travels along on them.
And here is a video showing the assembly of the adult trike.
Here are the two boys riding along on their side by side tandem trike.
Here is a short video showing some of the detail of the kids’ trike.
And if you enjoy watching these videos HERE is a link to all the other YouTube videos by this person.