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Showing posts from 2017

Henry's S24O

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After Sam's solo backpacking trip, Henry lobbied hard for a camping trip of his own. I was sick last weekend, so we had to delay until it was now the last weekend of summer. After raining hard Friday, Saturday was clear and perfect, and we loaded up and hit the road.

Unlike most previous S24Os, Henry was riding his own bike and even carrying most of his own gear. Progress! We took some well earned breaks along the way to camp:

I was riding my Rockhopper and pulling my Burley Travoy trailer. For my camping load, I greatly preferred this Travoy over our old kiddie trailer. Except for the weight when climbing hills, it was almost unnoticeable. By comparison, the kiddie trailer was always noticeable due to the herky-jerky effect it put into pedaling, and the sail-like wind drag. I don't miss it, even though we had many good years with it.

My Rockhopper wasn't quite as transparent for this trip. The bars felt too low, not helped by our slower pace. Also, I had just installed my…

Backpacking with Sam

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Sam's middle name is "Walker," and true to his name, he's far and away the best walker of our three kids. I tested him after the Fourth of July parade, when we walked home from our old neighborhood. About four miles. He did fine, so I started scheming for something bigger. Last weekend, we did it.

Sunday after lunch, we pointed the car towards Dayton. Our destination was the Twin Valley trail, a backpacking route that connects two metro parks in the Dayton area. We started on the north end, in Germantown Metro Park:

Our route had us walking about five miles on Sunday, camping at Cedar Ridge, and six miles back to the car on Monday. The first bit was through an open field:

and then into the Germantown Metro Park:

Most of the trails in the metro park were wide and shady, nice for walking:

The odd thing about about backpacking in a metro park is that you periodically break into civilization, where people are fishing and enjoying the park:

From Germantown Metro Park, the…

Off to the Races

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Last weekend was the Indy 200 at Mid Ohio, so three generations made the drive up US42 on Saturday to check out the races. Our first stop was the Honda hospitality tent to mooch some free water and pretzels, then we stopped to check out the display cars:

Alas, neither the Civic Type R nor the NSX is available at my pay grade, so we wandered around until we ran into a Wookie:

Why a Wookie at Mid Ohio? No idea.

We made our way around the track until we settled in to watch the GTS races from above Thunder Valley. The boys settled down at a nice spot in the shade:

We were looking forward to the GT cars, since both Henry and I like watching cars that sorta resemble street cars. Unfortunately, the race was yellow flagged for about 45 minutes out of 60, which was pretty frustrating. Sam found some interest in a camper's display:

While Henry had brought a bag full of stuff to do:

After the washout of the GTS races, we moved around to the hillside above the Esses to have some lunch and wat…

Car Camping S24O at John Bryan

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Is it still an S24O if you drive?

Over break, the kids and I loaded up the Civic and headed to John Bryan SP for an overnighter. My idea was to take the twins on an introductory mountain bike trip to the very easy trails at JB, and to enjoy camping.

Only one of those ideas mostly worked out.

Turns out it was easier to load four bikes and four people into my Civic, rather than our much larger Pilot:

The playground was our first stop after checking in:

 Then it was on to the mountain bike trail:

We made it only a few hundred yards down the very smooth, wide, and easy arboretum trail before the whining was enough for me. "Too tired! Too hard!" Kate has many athletic abilities, but apparently bike riding is not one of them.

So it was back to our site to set up camp:


I brought two small hatchets. Good thing, as they provided most of the entertainment at camp:


We took a break from camp and headed to Young's Jersey Dairy for a snack:

and a little more playing, but more whining,…

Mountain Bike Thief Alert! and Kids and Bikes

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Henry has developed a sudden interest in all things bicycle this summer. Not sure where that came from. Anyway, earlier this week, we headed to the beginner loop at Alum. He knocked off two easy laps there (4 miles), so we continued on to the main trail and rode parts of that, maybe 7 miles all in. He did great! He even rode a small ramp, which had me a bit nervous as I trailed behind him. He's really building his confidence, and was able to laugh off a brief off trail excursion. Go Henry!

Yesterday, we braved the advanced trail of P2, and Henry did fine again, only struggling a bit on some of the hills and log overs.
As a side note, I was riding my Rat Trap Pass-shod Rockhopper. That combo of a springy steel frame and supple tires has a really nice feel on the dry hardpack. No problems at all with traction.


Henry has also been riding around the 'hood with all his buddies. He asked to try one of my bikes. "Too big!" I said, but then relented and set up my size Large …