knows what’s up!
“I was the type of kid who practically lived on my bike. I joined my brother when he raced his friends, my bike painted in white with ‘Van Halen’ written in blue.”
Despite the fact that The Hives drummer Christian Grahn, 35, grew up among bikes, and despite his artist name being Chris Dangerous, his attitude towards becoming a cyclist as an adult was somewhat humble.
This past weekend Golden Saddle Cyclery hosted one of the #swiftcampout rides. I was lucky enough to be involved in it in a small part. We met at the shop and then made our way up to Mt. Lowe Trail Camp, about 5,000 feet above Los Angeles. We had two route options, one more dirt and one less dirt, and Kyle led one and I led the other. My route was up the Angeles Crest and it was long and hard. Yeah, I just said that. Long. And. Hard.
Continue reading and see more pictures…HERE!
The attached photos are from my 28 day Canton, CT to Nova Scotia bike trip with three friends in 1974, when we were 15. I’m the one with the white Motobecane T-shirt, silk screened myself in art class.
The first photo is, if memory serves, in Nova Scotia. The second was just before the group set off, from Matt’s house. Matthew Sweet with his new Motobecane Le Champion (Reynolds 531, custom fitted with Dura Ace in lieu of Campy Record). His mom had a bit of money to play with, so she bought if for him, for something like $750. I’m on my paper route earnings, self funded Motobecane Grand Touring (mid level tourer, no great specs). I can’t recall what bike David Barnhart rode, and Doug Jones had a Gitane. The third photo is one my mom took of me with my Canon TX 35mm camera (another self funded purchase), just before I rode down the street to gather at Matt’s for the full send off. The last photo, is not my actual bike, but is identical in nearly every detail except I swapped out the stock cranks for Sugino. My bike was stolen in Boston in 1985ish.
We built up to this trip for over a year with a couple of trips to Massachusetts and Vermont, and followed it the next year with a trip to Cape Cod. We were pretty hard core back then, or at least we thought so. We each had $250 in traveler’s checks for the trip, and slept mostly in people’s fields, which deals I generally brokered on the promise of no noise, no fire, and no mess. We kept our word, and only one person refused us on the trip. One elderly couple, the Tybalts, in Nova Scotia, made a meal for us the next day and we visited with them for most of the day, looking at projects in his wood shop, talking about Airstream trailers (they were very interested in them and there was a long train of them coming past the house). They, and we, were teary eyed when they waved us off upon our mid afternoon departure.
Unfortunately Matt came down with Mono in Vermont, and ended up chartering a Cessna home from Lewiston Maine! Doug and I are still close friends. He is a veterinary doctor and professor in Iowa, and visited us in Venice a few weeks back. David, sadly died a few years ago of a brain tumor. He was the strongest rider among us, and still cycled to work every day as a nurse in Eugene, OR.
I hope these are somewhat entertaining! It’s fun for me to think about those trips, as they were formative experiences for me at such an early age.
Thanks for sharing Brad!
More Cuppow Lids and Travel Mugs at the shop!