Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My New Ride

Reminds me of the Huffy I rode as a kid...

So, my daughter and I were at Valley Bike and Ski shortly before my birthday a month or two back and I saw this bike hanging from the ceiling.  Its knobby wheels looked improbably large and there were no derailleurs - it was a single-speed mountain bike!  This is the KHS Solo One SE.  The tires are in fact 29 inches in diameter instead of the usual 26 (note to self: buy some spare tubes).  As I rode it around the parking lot I realized that for the first time in over 30 years I didn't have to worry about what gear I should be in.  My daughter must have have told her mother about the smile on my face because on my birthday my new ride was waiting for me in the backyard when I got home from work.  Operating the Sole One SE is simplicity itself.  To go faster I pedal faster.  To ascend hills I stand up and climb "out of the saddle" instead of shifting down and down and down as I attempt to keep my RPMs in the 90s.  I can only go so fast on the downhills before I reach the limits of the gearing combination, so I spend more time coasting, just like I did as a kid.  I had contemplated getting a one-speed street cruiser for fitness riding and knocking around town but the Solo One SE also lets me take it offroad, where the larger diameter wheels seem to soften the trail.  I have little trouble keeping up with other casual riders both on city streets and off the road.  Yes indeed, simplicity itself.

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