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Mike’s Expat S – France, Belgium & Pike’s Peak

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

This is Mike and his Expat S at the top of Pike’s Peak.

And here’s Mike’s Expat pointed up one of the storied cobbled climbs of northern France.

And here is Mike’s Expat S at the foot of the Kemmelberg in West Flanders, Belgium.

Mike does cool stuff and makes us look good. Thanks, Mike and big thanks to our friends at Bike Doctor Waldorf for collaborating with us on such cool builds.

He says:

I thought I’d pass along a couple of shots from the adventures I’ve had on the last bike you did for me.  It saw lots of early-season action during the Polar Vortex before heading out to Belgium & France to ride the Tour of Flanders route as well as the Paris-Roubaix Challenge Sportif.  That was followed a trip out to Denver in August to ride & watch some of the US Pro Challenge as well as climb Pikes Peak.  The bike has been a rock star throughout, so I’m looking forward to many more great trips with it!  I’m currently registered for the Bike Four Peaks stage race in Austria this June with the newest build, so it’s going to get lots of love too!

Thanks!

Mike

On the Road – The Blayleys in Ireland, Part I

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

John says, in his ever-softening Irish lilt, “I am always trying to describe Ireland to people, and one of the things I say is ‘it’s just a rock, stuck in the ocean.’”

John Bayley and Pamela Blalock, collectively the Blayleys, are fixtures here in our Boston cycling community. We know of no couple who log more miles in a year than these two, everything from the Mt. Washington Hill Climb to Dirty Kanza to rambling tours of John’s home country. This fall, they spent three weeks day-tripping around the Emerald Isle, riding out and back from John’s home in Dublin, before heading to the west coast and then north to Donegal, a pilgrimage of sorts to many of Ireland’s natural, national treasures.

This churchyard sits in an idyllic corner of County Meath, north of Dublin. Many of the old buildings in Ireland can be hard to date just based on appearance. Some are quite old. Others are classic reproductions built in an older style by the wealthy landowners of the 16th and 17th centuries. Some are ruins. Some are museums. And they are all beautiful.

This is Ducketts Grove built in 1830, near Carlow, 60 miles south of Dublin. Surrounded by farmland, the approach to the old estate house is flat, if the road surface leaves something to be desired.