Moving On

The original purpose behind The Fourteen Percent Ride has long since been fulfilled. So, I've decided that Mighty Proud will be the last posting. It just seems right.

But, don't worry. Or maybe you should. In any event, I plan to continue. I'll keep riding. And writing. Click here to come along in my new blog ~ The Long White Line. <-- check it out!


As I've ridden for the last two years, I've picked up on the fact that Shirley, my darling wife, has been more worried about my safety than impressed with my "accomplishments." How do I know this? Well, when I'd come back and tell her, for example, that I'd hit 53.6 mph going down FO, she'd reply, "I don't want to hear it." Being the sensitive sort I figured out, after many such comments, that just maybe we were not on the same page here. But last week, she told me that she would "greatly reduce her focus on the 'fear for my safety' issue." We talked about the tour, looked at some maps, researched nutrition suggestions on the internet, and so on, just enjoying the idea of the ride. How nice is that? Thank you, Shirley!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Powerful Pullers

Riding down the river again, getting lots of practice in the big ring. Saw 16 trains going by on the 112.4 mile trip to Prairie du Chien and back. Powerful locomotives pulling long strings of cars, mostly loaded with containers. I visited the GE Locomotive manufacturing plant in Erie, PA a couple of years ago - business trip. Massive machines. Sixteen cylinder diesel engines with pistons as big around as a basketball. The crankcase holding over 400 gallons of oil. The diesel engine drives a generator, providing power to the electric motors, one for each wheel. We even got to take a ride on one of the locomotives on a test track at the GE facility.

I also went by two tows during the ride. I'm not as fast as the trains, but I could pass the tugs pushing their barges along the river. You see a lot when you ride. If you aren’t pulling up a long, hard hill, when pretty much all you see is the asphalt going slowly by your front wheel. It was a spectacular day. Deep green trees on the Minnesota side, blue skies reflecting in the dark Mississippi waters. This is why I don’t ride a fat tire Schwinn and drag a brick around the block.

Total ~ 1104.4 miles

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

16 Tranes and what do you get? Another day older fighting wind and wet . . . oh, TRAINS! Right. Good job, Jack.