Friday, May 30, 2008

Disaster averted

Lately it seems like I've been writing a lot about the things that have gone wrong on bike rides. For once it's nice to write about something that could have gone wrong but didn't. Last weekend, a few of us were planning a memorial day ride through the Boise mountains. The route we had planned was about 150 miles, very few of them flat.

As I was getting my bike cleaned and lubed for the ride, I looked at my rear tire and noticed this:In case you can't tell, that's the casing of my tire exposed through the rubber. The tire has about 1500 miles on it, and I knew it was getting worn, but I hadn't been getting any flats, so I figured I'd keep riding on it until it became a problem. The smart thing to do would have been to buy a replacement tire to have at the ready when the problems arose. But I am not nearly practical enough to do something like that, even though I thought about it on dozens of occasions.

Fortunately, I noticed it before the ride began. Unfortunately, all the shops were closed by then. It took me exactly one phone call to find a replacement tire.

"Hello, Ladd?"
"Yeah"
"Hey, I've worn through the rubber on my rear tire. Do you happen to have a spare sitting around?"
"Let's see, I've got a cyclocross tire, a 28 from my daughter's bike, how about a new 23--Vredestein Fortezza?"
"I'll be right over."

He could have charged me whatever he wanted, and I'd have paid it. But he stocked up on those tires when they were on sale and said $25 would be more than enough (he initially suggested $20). Aren't friends great? Especially the kind that ride bikes. Then again, I don't think I have any of the other kind.

Unfortunately, we called off the ride due to thunderstorms in the mountains and did something much shorter instead. Oh well, at least I have a good tire now.

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