Patrick Strahm, Biel, Bern, Switzerland

A Week On Different Wheels

this week was spent on different wheels. tuesday started with an evening spin around my regular weekday loop, followed by two fat-bike rides thursday and friday. those evening rides all required lights as nights are falling ever quicker. saturday i saddled up on my gravel grinder.

thursday, i read the sad news that robert choi, founder of volagi cycles, had a collision with a motor vehicle while cycling and was very seriously injured. a recovery fund was immediately set up to offset his medical and recovery costs assosciated with this tragic accident. i’ve never had the chance to meet robert and have only exchanged a few emails with him and other folks at volagi, but he was very much on my mind while out on the trail. he’s in stable condition now and i hope he’ll quickly recover fully.

friday, i pushed the fat-bike out the door once more for a rock crawling session across my favorite trail in plagne. sitting on a bike with 11 gears, i attacked a different ascent to plagne than i normally do on my singlespeed. the climb is much shorter, straighter and a whole lot steeper. to sum it up, the climb hurts. it’s a long battle to keep the pedals turning, the bike moving and quite often to keep the front wheel planted on the ground. it was great fun and a great workout. once at the top, the rock and root-spiked trail above the tall rock wall followed. i always enjoy the challenge this trail poses on my 29er single-speed. doing it on the fat-bike however is a whole other experience. the tall rocks and bumpy roots don’t have to be avoided, they often lend themselves to become the playground for new lines taken. the few rocky uphills where my 29er easily capitulates when it doesn’t get the line just right, those uphills are suddenly easy. the fat-bike takes these climbs slowly. no matter what stands in front of the wheels, it stays the course and makes it over it. i could honestly see a fat-bike being my year-round bike. it may be slower, but it’s a whole lot more capable than anything else.

saturday, the forecast called for rain in the afternoon. my black volagi gravel grinding machine has been neglected for a while and it was time to get it dusty again. i left for a loop i do regularly that allows for easy route changes. i took a different way to the halfway turnaround point and stayed the regular course to get back home. clouds rolled in and grew darker and denser. luckily, the first raindrops only started falling on my very last mile through town. i couldn’t have timed that ride any better.

once in a while i look around what people do with the strava api and this week i ran across two cool web-based apps. one is storyteller, which allows you to add a story to your ride. although i use strava, i’m not hugely interested in the numbers part of the site. elevation, time and distance are the few things i look at, but power, heart rate and so on are things i don’t even bother to measure. every ride however has a story that can be told in words or pictures. strava now lets you add photos to an activity, but only using their mobile app. there’s no web-based image upload yet. and when it comes to putting your ride in words, the description field just doesn’t do it. that’s where storyteller fills the gap. in my point of view, strava needs this natively.

the other very cool api use is, which takes the activity you’re ridden and creates a google earth like video. maximum speed, highest elevation and photos taken are added to the video at the point where they occurred. you can even embed those videos in your own blog. very cool!

a reblog from a week on different wheels.

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Just In Time
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A Week On Different Wheels
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Great Saturday morning gravel grind before the rain arrived. First raindrops started to hit when I rolled through town back to the house. Couldn't have timed that better.
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Patrick Strahm, Biel, Bern, Switzerland