Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Getting ready to camp, August Recap

I usually prepare for camping or backpacking a few days early. We're doing the S24O Sunday into Monday and right now it looks like a relatively small turn-out. That's fine with me either way.

I don't know if I ever wrote about it here, but a while ago, Planet Bike sent me their "Keep On Keeping On" rack, a lightweight, strong utilitarian bike rack weighing in at just over a pound but being rated to carry 55 pounds. I've been using it since June, but never have gotten around to really loading it up. It doesn't have a spring-clip (sad panda) but otherwise, it's got the features I like. You know, like rear supports that don't turn my panniers into spoke-food?

I figured I'd load up my stuff (click to see an annotated version of what everything is)
The Lab-O-Ratory

And make sure things were all good:
The Lab-O-Ratory

Looks like all systems are go. Then, I found out that my wife would like to spend all weekend camping. So we'll be heavy camping (propane, coolers, etc) Friday and Saturday, too.

I found out cDude was planning on cooking over campfire. That's not a bad plan, but the wood you can buy at Hillsdale lake is usually green, uncured wood that's nearly impossible to start. I told him I'd rig up a penny stove to see how he likes it. Just in case. The end result was one that uses the jets coming out the side so that the pot can simply rest directly on top of the can for support.


Crappy composite, I know... but it shows how it works.

It brought 2 cups of water to a boil in about 4 minutes. It's certainly not a world record, but it's faster than the one I made last year.
Rolling boil

The thing I love about these soda can stoves is that you just need 2 cans, a razor or pair of scissors and a finishing nail or small drill to make them. Well, and a penny or some other round metal object to act as a pressure valve over the filler hole. The fuel is really the most expensive part. Mark my words: knowing how to make these things will make you a hot commodity during the zombie apocalypse. Or something.

As for August... it was awesome and crappy all at once. I logged 275 miles commuting, and more for errands. I didn't have a cyclometer the entire time. I'm pretty sure I got more than 300 miles total this month. I'm not too worried about counting them this year, though. The mornings have been stellar:

The Lab-O-Ratory

The afternoons have been everywhere between the 70s and over 100 degrees, with one day sporting a heat index near 120! Multiple traffic closures and detours have slowed I-35 down to a slog. In the mornings when I'm riding along I-35 and with the direction of traffic, I'm often riding faster than the cars on the highway are moving, for extended periods of time. This has, of course, resulted in a lot of motorists rat-running the highway and opting for the side-streets such as the ones I use to get around.

Also, some old guy on a $2,800 Serotta Colorado keeps passing me every morning. At least he's friendly, but yep, I'm still slow.

August Tunage on heavy rotation:
First State - As You Were
Gravity Kills - Guilty
Barlow Girl - Enough
Golan Globus - Blazer (2005 Radio Edit)
Burn In Noise - Raca
God Lives Underwater - Rearrange
Stabbing Westward - Save Yourself
Duran Duran - Ordinary World
Grand National - Talk Amongst Yourselves (Sasha Involver Remix)
Madonna - The Power Of Goodbye
First State - Reverie

1 comment:

Tim O said...

Duran Duran? Really?? ROFL

OK I do like "Hungry Like the Wolf"....

Sorry I didn't make the camping trip...several excuses but bottom line I needed to chill out some last weekend. We'll plan to make the next one :)

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