Archive for Cycling

Biking Saguaro National Park

Biking the Saguaro National Park was beautiful! This is a bike ride (or drive) that I would recommend to anyone in the area. It’s beautiful and full of the famous Saguaro. Coming in at 8 miles with only 500 feet of elevation gain, biking the Cactus Forest loop through the Saguaro National Park is super casual. Towing Maxine and stopping to take a bunch of pictures took us an hour. You share the road with cars but we found everyone to be super respectful and slow. Everyone is there to slowly cruise through the beautiful park.

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Santa Barbara to Dana Point Family Bicycle Tour

Z, Maxine and I just rode or bikes from Santa Barbara to Dana point and we loved it! We camped a couple nights, stayed in a couple hotels and visited at least 10 playgrounds along the way. Please enjoy our montage video which is mostly Maxine enjoying herself during our stops. ^_^

Biking in Sedona is awesome

Since we are working on building our bicycle touring legs we figured it would be awesome to drive to Sedona, camp out for a night and then hit the road on our bikes!

We headed up on Friday toward a location we found where we could camp for the night. We found a free camping site near Sedona and setup camp just in time for it to get dark. The moon and stars don’t get any more clear then when you’re in the desert on a cloudless night. It was beautiful.

We’ve visited Sedona a few times to wander around town and hike some of the beautiful trails. Most recently we hiked the Brins Mesa trail just north of town so we are quite familiar with the amazing landscape Sedona has to offer for hikers and bikers. Although we haven’t ridden the mountain bike trails yet, once Maxine gets a little older we will surely tackle them!

This time we decided to park in town, ready our bikes and just ride around. Before we covered our first mile we managed to find breakfast at SaltRock Kitchen. Getting there was fun as it felt like we were biking down a 15% grade for a block. We paid for it after breakfast though!

After breakfast we decided to head out 179 south and go as far as we could comfortably make it. Riding around town Sedona doesn’t have bike lanes but the drivers there didn’t seem overly rushed in to running bikes over. After leaving town and getting on 179 you’re graced with a massive bike lane for miles. Alas, this is where I recognized that I’m not a Tour de France candidate. Towing Maxine’s iGo Weehoo Venture with her in it adds 60+ pounds to my ride. After going up a couple hills on 179 I now know how it feels to be a really large person attempting to exercise. We didn’t even make it 6 miles down 179 before I punked out and wanted to turn back. Despite how difficult the ride is, it sure was beautiful though! Here’s our whole route on MapMyFitness. All together we only rode 13.6 miles.

Maxine loved stopping at the scenic views and trail heads.
She’s a climber!

After writing this post I realized we didn’t take any pictures of the amazing scenery that is the reason most folks even visit Sedona so let me Google that for ya! It is extremely beautiful out there! Whether you want to sit around and eat, hike, or do any kind of biking, Sedona should be on your list of places to visit. It’s got our stamp of approval.

Tweaking my brakes at a one of the bike repair stands along 179


We love our bikes!

Biking is one of those activities that’s just hard not to like. It’s zero impact, takes very little effort and is quite inexpensive to get in to. We’re loving it and will surely consider ourselves “cyclists” in the years to come. That’s why I’m writing this post, to showcase our current bikes and the costs we encountered to get started.

My Trek 8000

I ride a Trek 8000 that was given to me by an awesome family friend back in 2016 and I’ve been riding it regularly ever since. I’ve commuted to work on it, taken it down nearly every rating of mountain bike trail there is and careened over the handlebars many times. I’m convinced that as long as I’m able to recover from whatever crash I get in to, this bike will too.

When Steve gave me the Trek 8000 it was ready to go sans pedals. At the suggestion of my brother-in-law, I purchased a set of Time ATAC clipless pedals from craigslist since that’s what he used so I would also be able to ride his arsenal of bikes. Lewis (My brother-in-law) gave me some shoes for the cleats to bolt in to. A couple years later I replaced the grips. All together I’ve got less than $100 in my bike.

Z’s REFLEX

Z has been riding a few different bikes to try and get a feel for what she likes. She started out riding a Schwinn cruiser that was given to us by another awesome friend and has since upgraded to a mountain bike. She’s convinced that mountain bikes are the best – we just need to get her a slightly smaller frame.

We’re scheduling a bike fitting for Z so we can setup her current bike as best as it can be setup for her and learn exactly what size bike would serve her best. Once we get all the other numbers sorted out, Z is really interested in acquiring a Trek 920.

We bought Z’s first mountain bike on Craigslist for $50 and put a $20 seat cover on it so we currently have $70 in her ride.

Maxine’s CoPilot & WeeHoo

CoPilot Model-A

Maxine has a few options when it comes to riding. Right when she turned one year old we purchased a Copilot Model-A on Craigslist for $100. It was brand new and definitely served the purpose. After a couple rides we fitted a car seat carrier in which was significantly more comfortable and potentially even safer.

WeeHoo Venture


As Maxine approached two years old we wanted a tow-able device that engaged her more. After researching a few options we decided that we wanted a WeeHoo Venture so we saved up and watched for a sale. After we saved up the funds to purchase one Z emailed Weehoo asking for a bundle sale on the Venture and sure enough a bundle sale popped up on their website. After purchasing the WeeHoo Venture, Maxine hasn’t ridden in the CoPilot. Unfortunately her legs are too short to actually pedal but she enjoys our morning rides none the less.The bundle cost us $500 which included the WeeHoo venture, kick stand, all weather shell and mounting gear for two bikes!

Ride what you have

So far, we are loving our foray in to riding as a family and I expect our collection of bikes to grow in both volume and quality. We’ve been riding about 40 miles a week with our short morning rides and already have our first bicycle touring adventure scheduled for October and are super excited for it! I think my last post was a couple years ago but hopefully my next post follows our awesome trip in October. ^_^