Sunday, April 26, 2009

Practice Rides

So far this spring we've taken three or four longer practice rides on the weekends.  Also, we've managed to get up before the sunrise once or twice for some nice, but short morning rides.  The firsone we were lucky enough to see the sun rise over Lake Calhoun.  

The weekend rides have mostly been a tour of all the trails the Midtown Green Way can lead to. One Saturday we biked out on the Cedar Lake trail through St. Louis Park and beyond.  The spring thaw was still battling for winter's claim over the trail and we had to traverse a number of ice covered patches and portage some mighty rivers of melting snow.  

The next weekend we decided to meet up with some friends at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska for the annual Pancake Brunch with fresh maple syrup tapped from their very own trees.  Being so excited for pancakes as well as underestimating the time and milage to get there, we forgot to eat a real breakfast before the 2 hour and 20 some mile ride.  Those pancakes were the best pancakes I've ever had.  
Really, ever. 

Post Pancake Bliss

Overall, we learned some important lessons about stopping more frequently for water and snacks.   While we didn't take much time to look around the Arboretum, the ride home was much more pleasant.

Stopping for water before catching the   Kenilworth trail home.
Note my cool Nickelodeon water bottle. Thank you Axman Surplus Store.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Stove and Cookset

The Trangia 25-8UL/HA
This is the cook set we'll be using on the trip.

It's a simple stove.  To light it just fill the fuel canister (top left) with methylated spirits or denatured alcohol, light a match, drop it in, and you're ready to cook.  The flame can be adjusted with the simmer ring (bottom).    

The stove resting inside the wind guard.

The pots rest inside the wind guard, as pictured here with the tea kettle.

So far we've boiled water and made oatmeal on Joe's front porch.  Takes about 8 minutes total.  Not bad for a small flame and cheap fuel.

The whole set fits nicely inside the wind guard.