Thursday, October 13, 2016

Houston's Energy Corridor Getting Dutch Inspired Intersections

Today the Energy Corridor Business District just announced that intersections at Highway 6, Eldridge, and Dairy Ashford along the I-10 frontage road will get new pedestrian and cycling friendly redesigns.  The article goes into detail but this video is a great explanation of the design coming soon to the Energy Corridor:

                                        Video explaining "Dutch Junctions"

Friday, September 16, 2016

HTX Bike Fest 9/17/16- Rain Or Shine!

Tomorrow is HTX Bike Fest.  Last years festival kept getting cancelled due to rain but the organizers are saying tomorrow's festival goes on rain or shine.  We made it our to the festival two years ago and had a good time.  This year there will be over 50 bike industry vendors, a swap meet, gold cup races, and plenty of bike ramps, and flatlanders doing their thing.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Photos: Houston Bicycle Museum

Some photos of the Houston Bicycle Museum.  They are located at 1313 Binz St, near the Houston Kids Museum.

Signed Eddie Merckx and Team 7-Eleven Caps

Tour De France room.

Penny Farthing
See the peg just above the rear wheel?  That is what the rider would use to step up to the seat

1940's or '50's Campagnolo quick release and derailleur

1985 Bianchi Centenario

1963 Cinelli

Brooks saddle with bar from seat rail to the top tube

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Pictures: George Bush Park Still Flooded

George Bush Park has been flooded since April 18th.  Today's June 18th email alert from the USGS has the Barker reservoir at 90.87 feet and it needs to get to 84' to be passable.  In the past when the park has flooded it seemed like the park lost about .50-.75" of water per day.  If that is true we are six to eight days from being able to ride through the park again.  If we get no more rain- please please please!

USGS Chart of elevation of reservoir water at Barker Reservoir

I decided to check out the park and see what it looked like after being under water for two months.  Below are the pictures of my ride.  I entered the park from the FFPS soccer fields on the West side of the park. I've never seen it this flooded and, unless a lot water is let out from the reservoir, I have a hard time seeing the path clear for weeks.  Again, everything is conditional on NO MORE RAIN!
Warning side as soon as you enter the multi-use trail from the bridge that leads to the FFPS soccer fields

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Velodrome Training Sunday June 19th

The Alkek Velodrome is having another training session this Sunday.  That's Father's Day so it could be a perfect bucket list present for the cyclist Dad.  You can find more details on the Velodrome's Faceboook Page and I have written about the training in the past 

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Memorial Park Criterium Is Back

The Memorial Park Criterium series is back and running through August 31st.  Let's hope it isn't rained out like the Bear Creek Crit series was this last May.  I wrote about the Memorial Crit Series two years ago.  It is a nice night out in the park, enjoy. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Velodrome Training

Houston's Alkek Velodrome  has a training program that will certify you to race in the velodrome. The next training session is this Saturday May 21st Noon to 3:00 PM.  You can get the details from their Facebook Page which gets updated more than their web site.  They provide the instructor and bike you just need to bring your enthusiasm and bike gear.  At $20 this course is a bargain.

Ever since I first saw velodrome racing in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics I have wanted to try pedaling on the banked oval and was able to check this off the bucket-list a couple years back.  My course was designed to run Tuesday & Thursday evenings over two weeks.  We had rain delays and dates got moved around.  By the end of the sessions our group of maybe 30 had whittled down to 6 graduates.  I haven't raced since but am happy to say I gave it a try and completed the training.  Some advice:

  • Get ready to ride.  There wasn't a lot of time spent getting to know you or chit-chatting.  It was hi see that line? Stay above it. Enter the track here and exit there. Now get on your bike.  We went around the warm up circle in the middle of the track a few times (my first time ever riding fixed gear) and then we were on track.  It was a little unnerving.
  • Relax.  After each session my forearms were killing me.  I was squeezing the handlebars so tight because riding fixed geared, no brakes, on a bank was such a strange feeling.  When I finally relaxed and enjoyed the experience my arms and hands eased up.
  • I would recommend bringing your own pedals.  When I did the training I was too lazy to take the pedals off my road bike and used the old school pedals that were on my loaner bike and wore my running shoes.  Trying to get my foot into the clips on a fixed geared bike I couldn't coast was hard.  For a couple sessions the clips I had were really old and laid smashed against the pedals making it impossible to slip my foot in.  I was already the slowest Fred (damn straight I wore my mountain bike helmet) out there and hearing the instructor yell at me to "get in the clips" didn't help.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Bike Month & Bike To Work Day

Once again it is Bike Month featuring Bike To Work rides throughout the city.  You can get the details at Bike Houston.  Here is a list of events.

Rides & Events
May 6th Bike to Work Texas Medical Center
May 12th Bike to Work Greenway Plaza/Galleria
May 13th Bike to Work Sugarland
May 19th Bike to Work Energy Corridor
May 19th Bike to Work NASA
May 20th Bike to Work Downtown

May 21st Bike to Work Woodlands

I have skipped this event the last couple years but am going to make it a priority this year.  My concern always around this time of year, and what has stopped me from joining this event in the past, is lightning.  I don't mind riding in rain, sometimes it draws out some boyhood fun, but I'm not looking to get zapped.  Also George Bush Park is flooded and will probably stay that way for a few more weeks meaning I have to ride around the park and deal with more cagers.  Usually in the morning if I leave early enough it is fine, but the evening sometimes can be a bit of a hassle.  Hope to see you out there on your bikes.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

MS-150 Packet Picked Up & Ready To Roll April 16 & 17Packet

MS 150 rider packet and goody bag

Went to Memorial Park and got my rider packet for next weekends MS-150 ride.  This year with Houston's petroeconomy in the tank raising the required $400 minimum was much harder.  I also heard ridership will be down to about 11,000 riders.  I''m looking forward to seeing if I notice a difference on the roads with less riders.  Also with the Waller County Sheriff announcing his deputies won't support the ride, and his new zeal for ticketing cyclists, it could make that part of day 1 interesting.  I'm not going to mention his penchant for losing machine guns or the very tragic death of Sandra Bland in his jail.

Waller Sheriff ready for the MS 150

Route map

Friday, April 1, 2016

BPMS150 Bike Inspections Free Until April 8th

If you are riding in the BPMS 150 ride this year, now is the time to get your bike inspected.  Inspections are free until April 8th at all official MS 150 Bike Shops.  After April 8th the inspections are $15.  Once your bike passes inspection they will put a sticker on your stem and the sticker entitles you to free labor on any repairs you may need during the ride.  Last year I didn't get an inspection and when the cleat came off my shoe a guy working a repair booth screwed it back in at no charge.  So I'm not sure how important the sticker is, but if you have some free time, why not get the bike looked at for free?

Yesterday I got my inspection at the shop where I bought my bike The Bike Route in Sugarland.  When I dropped it off I told them the derailleur was missing every once in a while when shifting and they went ahead and fixed it.  I have to admit I cringed a bit when paying $15 for them to tighten a cable I could have done myself.  But after riding today, my bike is so damn quiet and smooth, I would say it purrs but that's too loud.  It feels like a brand new bike again.  Greg at Bike Route does some damn good work and sometimes you do get what you pay for!  So get your inspection and hopefully enjoy a smooth ride.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Grand Parkway Ride Pictures

A friend passed along these photos of last weekends Grand Parkway Ride.  He said the road was smooth, uncrowded, and fun to experience sans cars.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Sheriff Hands Out Tickets At Bluebonnet Express

Last Sunday was the Bluebonnet Express ride that starts and stops in Waller, TX.   This is one of the most popular BPMS 150 recommended rides and hosts over a thousand riders. Unfortunately the Waller County Sheriff decided to brag on their Facebook page about issuing 25-30 tickets.  As a percentage of riders the ticket count is pretty low.  What I don't like is the the Waller Sheriff Office has decided to boast about writing tickets and basically play into the car vs bike tensions.  The comments on the page are dismal as expected.  This is how public officials are supposed to behave?

Friday, March 4, 2016

Grand Parkway Ride- Ride On Brand New Freeway!

Now is prime season for riding in Houston.  The weather isn't blazing hot and humid and there are a bunch of organized rides leading up to the largest charity bike ride in the USA the- MS 150, including the Bluebonnet Express and the Tour De Houston.  Bluebonnet Express is a really well organized ride run by the Northwest Cycling Club and the Tour De Houston is nice because the route changes yearly and allows for seeing areas of Houston from the perspective of your bike you may not otherwise see.  But I am really excited about the Grand Parkway Ride.  This March 19th the new Grand Parkway Freeway will be closed to car traffic on a 12.5 mile section between Hwy 59 and I45.  You know this road is going to be smooth and fast.  And having the option to ride your bike on a road that will be closed of the bicycles is a great opportunity.

Upcoming Rides:
MS 150

Bluebonnet Express 

Tour De Houston

Grand Parkway Ride

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Draft Of Houston Bike Plan Released

The other day I passed a group of cyclists who were stopped at the end of George Bush Park and I heard one of them say, "I've heard that from the last 4 mayors".  I'm sure they were talking about the newly released draft of the Houston Bike Plan and the new mayor stating he wanted to make Houston a more bike friendly city.  The release of the plan has generated a good amount of publicity.  Bike Houston had their annual meeting last night and the release of the draft was a major part of the agenda.   You can read more at the following links:

The plan has it's own web site:

Bike Houston is a major driver of the plan:

Local papers have written about it:
Houston Press

Houston Chronicle February 23 article

Houston Chronicle  February 22 article

Houston Chronicle  February 21 article

Local TV:


And here is a report from January on PBS News Hour

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Bike Houston "Why I Bike Houston" Campaign

Bike Houston has short video "Why I Bike Houston" where people discuss why they ride. They are encouraging everyone to add a video or photo of why they ride to their social media accounts.  I'm gonna have to think on what I post...check it out.

Why I BikeHouston from BikeHouston on Vimeo.