Once again, circumstances prevented me from joining my Saturday morning ride. These were pretty good circumstances, so I really can’t blame anyone.
Today’s ride assembled at the usual spot, and as Sunday’s seem to be, only the fast group came out in numbers. Apparently Ron, who is a strong rider, a fun and helpful guy, and rather spontaneous asked some club members to go on a long ride today,. Long, I don’t mind, but I can’t keep up with their pace. Instead, the slow and the unenthusiastic took off for the bakery that I featured a couple of weekends ago. The ones that didn’t want the long ride planned to do an extra loop once past the bakery. I wasn’t sure that was going to work out for me, but I figured I would wait and see.
I should back up a bit, and let you in on a bit of a secret. I appear to have the powers of premonition. You see, as I was taking my girlfriend home last night, I mentioned that I really should get some tire patches. My tires are getting old, but I can’t tell if they are too worn. She then asked me about getting flats and I explained that it usually happened once a year and that I had tubes and tools to take care of it. I just didn’t have any tire patches in case I ripped my tire.
Of course, I said this long after the bike shops were closed. Maybe I was just being paranoid.
Well, wouldn’t you know it, at about the thirty km mark, I hit a pothole and developed a flat. Terrence, the newly back to riding friend stopped to help me. I called out mechanical, but he was the only one to stop and help. After investigating, it was unclear if my tire was punctured, but the tube was flat. He identified some weak areas in the tire that had definite cuts, but not badly enough to keep me from riding home.
Since the group had taken off, and Terrence was still not up to mid season form, we headed back. He invited me to his place, which was on the way, to use his foot pump. I had hand pumped up the tire, and done a decent job, but it was less than the pressure I normally ride on. Oddly enough, Strava gave me a number of PRs.
At Terrence’s house, we pumped up the tire to the proper pressure and he gave me a tire his son had used on his bike for a season. It had more grip than mine and looked as if it had done light duty on the front of his bike. He suggested I get two new tires and keep that one as a spare.
All told, I rode about 60 kms, but I could have rode more and I should have ridden more. I am making progress, but short rides like this one at a less than fast speed are not going to help.
I am going to buy two new tires. Any recommendations? I need a good tire that won’t easily puncture, is good value for money, and is easily found. I am not racing, but I don’t want them to slow me down. Also, I am currently on 23 diameter tires, I could go up to 25, but is all the hype to be believed?
I have been checking out prices online and my local shops, but there seem to be quite a range.