Monday, May 20, 2013

New handlebar day!

The last year I'd realized I actually didn't like my handlebars very much.  They were close to what I'd been hoping for but I never actually achieved the position I'd originally been shooting for - upright enough to be comfy, while maintaining efficiency.  I was efficient (ESPECIALLY downhill), but never upright as I'd have liked.  So recently I changed out my handlebars for the third time, and spent longer than I'd care to admit installing them yesterday.  It's now rocking the Nitto Albatross, a handlebar legendary for its comfort.  Without further ado, the most recent incarnation of the Long Haul Trucker!

I also added the Brooks bar tape I received for Christmas and swapped the brake levers out (a necessity of these bars).  I think it looks rather spiffy if I do say so myself!

To celebrate I took the bike out on a joyride into north-central Austin, something I enjoy doing when I'm not busy telling everyone else how they should ride bikes (answer: any damn way you want).  As I headed south on one of my favorite streets, I noticed they'd upgraded the bike lanes and added some traffic calming.  IN NORTH AUSTIN!

One of the more frustrating things about Austin is the amount of attention given to the area surrounding downtown - I'm a city of Austin resident but we don't get the cool upgrades they put in east of downtown, over the river, and on the south side.  It's easy to feel ignored and left out.  So little things like this warm my heart (though I'll faint of shock if I ever see this in the land north of 183).

In terms of how the new handlebars ride, let me just say they're awesome and make my bike everything I hoped it would be.  Even though these bars are usually set up with grips, I used tape so I can utilize the whole handlebar.  The top of the curves is actually pretty excellent for standing up on hills.

As I rode, I more or less ended up at my friends' house, and swung by the best gas station in the world to pick up a 6 pack before we had pizza and watched a movie together.  In the words of Ice Cube, "Today was a good day."

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