09 February 2015

More PDX -- Bike Shops

Well, a week in Portland visiting my parents.  The first trip to Portland in awhile, and the first without a bicycle in a long while.

It rained pretty much every day during my visit, so I did not miss the bike much.  Not that a little rain would have kept me off one if I had had it with me!  I saw plenty of hardy Oregon "ducks" commuting in the pouring rain.  Should have snapped some photos.  At least on my last visit to central/downtown Portland, I snapped a few photos of commuting rigs:
A Portland commuter rig.  Fenders a must.  Big solid lock - standard.
Another example -- even with the (rare) drop bars you need fenders.  Really need them.
I did visit a few bike shops during my stay, and stopped by to see Bob Kamzelski, one of my 2012 UBI instructors, at Bantam Bicycles.  Bike shops:

1. Clever Cycles. I stopped by to get some rainlegs rain chaps.  Really a great idea, and I am sure I will get to test them out soon on a long rainy ride.  A nice shop with its own focus.  I also got a nice Ibex brand button down LS wool shirt here - nothing to do with cycling, but a very nice casual garment.

2. River City Bicycles.  A major bike shop.  They have some great looking 1970s and 1980s bikes hanging from the rafters, with explanations ... first commercially available bike in the U.S. with carbon fork, etc., etc.  Very nice.  Lots of River City Bicycles' jersey types ... But I already have one that I like better than the others I saw (and which I use regularly).  I was looking for and asked about their best iPhone holder for use on a bike ... and the guy who helped me persuaded me to his preferred approach -- use a Cateye Strada Smart -- leave the smartphone in your pocket, and read the data on the Cateye cyclecomputer. Stay tuned for a report once I get it set up.

3. Universal Cycles.  I wandered in as I got to Bob's workshop early.  As the name suggests, a somewhat soulless looking store selling mostly online.  They may be part of the Universal Group -- related to Universal Exports, the company James Bond worked for with all the cool equipment.  They are more focused on mountain than road.  On the plus side, they are open early for commuters, and they do carry Ortlieb bags as well as all the Portland essentials (full wall of fenders, reflectives, rain gear, etc.).  I could get an Ortlieb Ultimate 6 Compact to use with my existing handlebar bag attachment, on rides when I do not need the size/weight of the Ortlieb Ultimate Classic but still want an easily removable handlebar bag -- a kind of man-purse for the bicycle, complete with shoulder strap.

4. West End Bikes.  This store is Specialized-dominated and expensive.  I did not buy anything.  But I did need to wipe the drool from my mouth as I walked around and looked at some of their high-end offerings.

Also saw some new bikes from The Bike Gallery when I signed up for Cycle Oregon and attended their kick-off event -- they are a sponsor.  I gave my Dad the $10 off coupon I got, since he uses one of their stores.

And I did see a little blue sky on the last full day of my visit.
The clouds closed in again quickly.
By the way, what is the deal with Kale and Quinoa?  No one ate these when I moved to Japan a decade ago, and last year when I was in the U.S. every restaurant was pushing them.  Now they are even in the airport sandwich shops.
Salads:  Left - Quinoa, Right - Kale

1 comment:

Hjalti said...

re: #2 It looks like you can't use your phone GPS map if the device is in your pocket, correct? That would be an issue for me.