Spring is here, so spring on your bike today!

The weather very definitely plays a big part in my own cycling repertoire.

I know true all-weather cyclists will laugh at me for saying this, but I only really like cycling when the weather is dry….ok, if I’m caught out in the middle of a rainstorm, then there is not choice but to battle on regardless.

Cycling in snow I don’t mind at all, having had years of experience in those weathers when I used to reside in London, UK and Ontario!

But let’s get back to the present. For the past few days, the weather has shown unmistakable signs of warming up, which was my wake-up call to get my ike cleaned up and ready for this year.

I have always been an avid cyclist, and as we speak, I have 5 bikes…yes, that’s the truth!

Three are road bikes, with curled over racing handlebars, one is a hybrid mountain type, and the last one is a full-blown mountain/trail only job.

I always get asked by so many people as to what kind of bike they should buy. In short, it mainly depends on a set of factors, namely how often you will be cycling, what kind of areas will you be using it in, and how much of a budget you have put to one side for it.

If, like many people, you will be using the bike mainly in town, but with occasional forays into hiking trails or rough ground, then I would suggest you go for a hybrid type.

This will be perfect for general around-town use, and will also be capable of handling all but the very serious trails.

Just such a bike is the MEC Midtown bicycle.

It is a home-grown design, so you can be sure that it has kept jobs and resources in Canada rather than overseas. Beginning with its tapered aluminum frame, all th way to the very high quality Shimano 9 speed gear train, this bike is easy to maintain, parts are available very easily, and comes with MEC’s Rocksolid Guarantee and Bike Service Agreement….which is unique as it means you can bring your bike to any MEC Bike Shop for free adjustments and minor maintenance for a year after purchase….isn’t that something? And at just C$500, with a saving of 23% over the regular price, you cannot go far wrong!

See it here….

🙂

 

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Best camping stove around!

You know, when was the last time you remember that you set up your camp, hauled up that tent after what seemed an eternity, got everything sorted out finally, and then….the heavens opened up!

No problem, you say….I’ll get my stove going and cook up something hot to burn away the raindrop blues. You get the stove out, set it up, light it and….phut, phut, phut! You see a flame and get the pots ready…meantime, the damn thing goes out, and try as you may, you can’t get it going again.

I can see you smiling and nodding your head! It’s happened to all of us at some time or other.

So it was wonderful when I finally trashed my old stove for something really solid, reliable and wonderfully engineered.

 

It’s a WhisperLite International stove and cost me just under C$100, which is not a lot to pay for the service it gives…take it from me, it’s been everywhere with me and hasn’t failed yet.

It’s been to Snowdonia in the UK when I did a trip there, on a trek out of Katmandu in India and of course all over the many trips I do in British Columbia.

Takes just seconds to set up, vitally important when your standing in rain that seems someone up there in the heavens is really determined to soak you thru and thru with his bucket loads of water!

Water for your tea, coffee, soup or what-have-you boils very quickly indeed, and if one the very odd occasion it needs a clean up, which you should be doing regularly anyway, it’s done very simply and swiftly.

Not only that, if you find you’ve can’t get your hands on gas, it’s designed to use several different fuels….in India, it ran perfectly happily on kerosine (paraffin).

All in all, a stove that I haven’t been able to fault. I got mine at my favourite camping shop in Vancouver, MEC.

😉