11 March 2012

Bike Expo!

Time to play tourist! Jesse and I bussed up north with our bikes for Seattle Bike Expo on Saturday.  [If I'm in the picture, photo credit goes to Jesse.]

It's so scenic!

The Expo was held at a shipping terminal north of downtown and best reached by bicycle.  Bike Works, a local non-profit bike shop, was running a controlled bike parking area right by the main entrance and we were happy to donate a few bucks for convenience and security.

Gratuitous Courage Classic promo shot

We saw tons of cool stuff, but this was the coolest bike there. A Co-Motion 'Divide' built up for the 2012 North American Handmade Bicycle Show. Drop bar, 14-spd internally geared hub with belt drive (rear sprocket is a prototype for this hub), 29er tires, dynamo hub and front light with plug-ins to power peripherals, and a limited edition Gilles Berthoud shifter. The bike is a showcase of what Co-Motion thinks an off-road touring bike can be.


More WOW.

Later we found my friend Brynnen and her Madsen. Several parents loaned their bicycles for this family cycling display and, to my surprise, they were pretty much the only ones at the show of their kind. No box bikes!

Our rain cover is still going strong!

Jesse took this wood-framed Revolo for a parking lot test ride. He said it is surprisingly stiff and was amazed he was riding a wooden bicycle. Wave of the future?

We caught most of the lunch talk, which featured Elly Blue (among others), offering us new perspective on the cycling gender gap.

@EllyBlue on the mic

 I bought a few of her zines. Can't wait to read 'em!

The World Bike Relief booth was inspirational. Empowering students, health care workers and entrepreneurs in many African countries, these bikes are designed specifically to hold up with little or no maintenance in a rigorous environment. (Those are 13 gauge spokes and that rear rack can hold 250 lbs.) The bike costs a mere $130 if you'd like to donate one.

After seeing the Divide, Revolo, and WBR bikes, my mind started to wander off-road.  This guy from Missoula was more than happy to let me see the world from the seat of his custom quad. I didn't think to ask for a test-ride.


But then we discovered 'Bigfoot'. That's right! In Seattle!


This was my first time EVER riding a recumbent and, yes, those are 3.8" tires (squishy!) As a newbie, it was a little tricky to ride, but I managed to do a lap without crashing. Many thanks to Lightfoot for letting me take it for a spin. Here's the audience they're targeting with this bike:

How does one top riding a Bigfoot? By chatting with a real living legend; local blogger and bicycle guru Kent Peterson. I've been reading Kent's Bike Blog and conversing with him on twitter for a while, but we'd never met in person. I didn't tell him, but he's one of my heroes. I think he's one of my sister's heroes, too.

With our minds jam-packed with bicycle geekery, we rode [nearly] all the way home to Tacoma. It was a fun trip.


melanie said...

I think the Bigfoot is exactly what I need f my commute in Philly. So much positive energy in this post!

Kent Peterson said...

Now I'm thinking the Bigfoot could be the first recumbent to race the Tour Divide...

It was very cool meeting you. I gotta get down to Tacoma some time soon.

Robert De Palma said...

You wont regret it Melanie.It puts a whole new perspective on bicycle commuting and I have been commuting 7 miles a day to and from work,all year long. I live and work in Northeastern New Jersey and the Bigfoots robust frame stands up to all of the worn roads up here. Good luck!I hope you get one!