Saturday, December 18, 2010

Now THAT was a good shakedown ride.

I just got in from the first all pavement loop on the new 'all-road' bike. The pocket droid has some interesting stats: 19.5 miles, 1814' elevation gain, 38.4 mph max speed, 15.5 mph average moving speed. The new bike is settling in nicely. I only had to stop once for an adjustment, the rear brake cable slipped, which made for a pleasant ride.
I was able to concentrate on how the bike handles rather than on the mechanical nuances that come with new builds. How does it handle? Solid. I knew already it can go in a straight line without a fight but what about switchback turns? Well descending Elk Mountain Scenic Highway answered that. It corners very predictably and doesn't drift. I can also push into the corners without it feeling like I'm on the verge of oversteering but again, it doesn't fight. The front wheel doesn't drift or feel like it's about to flop. It goes where I ask it to. Thank you bike. That's very nice of you. Oh, one more thing, disc brakes on a road bike kicks serious ass. It's just like on a mountain bike, the more confidence you have in your ability to slow down directly correlates to how fast you're willing to take that corner. Knowing that the wet and grime that usually messing with rimbrakes is a non-issue... is very confidence inspiring.

Oh, the route: from West Asheville->Clingman->Hilliard->Charlotte->College->Town Mountain->Blue Ridge Parkway->Elk Mountain->Beaverdam->Lakeside(?)->through Woodfin down to the river->Riverside->Craven->Waynesville->back to West Asheville.