October 2013 President’s Letter


You can imagine my surprise when, six miles into the 36 mile ride at the Annual KBC Anniversary Ride and Party on Saturday, September 21, I reached down to grab my water bottle and only felt my fingernails scratching the bottle cage.

I had left the water bottle in the cup holder on the console in my car.

Oh well, I thought, by the time I get back, the sun will have turned the water in that bottle hot enough to make tea. And it will have infused it with the delectable tang of plastic off-gas that helps ramp up the flavor in a thoroughly delightful way. There was much to look forward to.

In the moment, however, I had to deal with the possibility of riding another 30 miles with no water. Not a problem though, as I dredged up from memory a high school incident whereby my friend Buzz, a fellow member of the Kalamazoo Central cross country team, and I ran to Gobles and back during one long fall afternoon. We never had a sip of water on that epic journey.

True, I was so dehydrated at the end of the run that I couldn't see straight - and subsequently crashed through the glass storm door at my parent's house, leaving me with a scar on my underarm that I bear even today.

Things change, however, 44 years after high school ends. My body has become less tolerant of stress brought on by physical exertion, and also by deprivations of other sorts: food and water for instance. Similarly, I guess, my mind has become less tolerant of certain things and certain people. But that's another subject. Strange how the brain wanders when dispossessed of the stuff it needs...

At the top of the long and arduous Jefferson Street hill just outside Otsego, where riders on the Anniversary Ride typically pause for a water, food, and re-organizing break before heading for home, I finally cracked. Eighteen miles with no water was wearing on me. I had to ask for help.

Thankfully, others had planned and executed their excursion better than I did. Rick Whaley and Terry O'Connor each had brought two water bottles on the ride, and I tapped into their spares. These two exemplary examples of humankind have made a friend for life. They bailed me out when I was in need and that's something I won't forget. So it turned out to be a great ride after all, enjoyed not only by a rehydrated President, but by many other KBC members too.

Lavish kudos for the event go to Social Director Chad Goodwill. Chad, who had indentured two of his lovely daughters to help administer the potluck and party, laid out a worthy spread of pizza from the new Mangia restaurant in Oshtemo, soft drinks, and a bunch of other stuff I cannot remember. Thank you, Chad and assistants! Well done.

DVA's and You

It is worth pointing out that many deer/vehicle accidents (DVAs) occur throughout the year, but especially so in the fall, when mating season occurs. Blinded by lust (sound familiar?) deer run into traffic and are struck by cars and trucks. You can see - and often smell - the aftermath of such incidents along our local roadways.

I have also had the experience of a deer crashing out of the underbrush and dashing across the road right in front of my bike. It gives a rider pause to consider what damage could be done by being gored by a pronged 200 pound mammal in the throes of the rut.

So, obviously, it pays to be alert and aware that these kinds of things can happen. And for those who drive to and from KBC rides, remember that deer are most active during the morning and evening hours. A biologist friend, living in the Upper Peninsula who has studied DVAs, told me that simply slowing down while driving in areas known for deer can prevent many accidents. So do it.

And if you think these kinds of incidents occur only in the country, I want you to know that late in the afternoon this week I saw a beautiful six-point buck standing on the east sidewalk along Oakland Drive in front of the old State Hospital grounds...

The Silly Season

In October, KBC turns political. That's when individuals aiming to run for the Club's elected Executive Board positions; President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer, declare their intentions at the October monthly meeting.

If you have such inclinations, be sure to come to the meeting at 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, October 8, at the YMCA on Maple Street in Kalamazoo.

Ride on,

Zolton Cohen, KBC President


Next KBC Monthly Meeting on October 8th, 2013

The next KBC Monthly Meeting will take place at 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, Octber 8, 2013 at the Kalamazoo YMCA on Maple Street. All KBC members are welcome to attend.



The 43rd annual 2013 Dick Allen Lansing to Mackinaw Bicycle Tour known as DALMAC is over now, but you can plan to attend next year's four or five day ride just before Labor Day. The cost is $200 for the four day rides and $230 for the five day rides.

What is DALMAC? The Dick Allen Lansing to Mackinaw is a bicycle tour not a race. It originated in 1971 by former State Rep Dick Allen of Ithaca. Dick was attempting to appropriate funds for bicycling and, on a dare, he and other family and friends ventured from the State Capital heading north to the Mackinac Bridge. If his tour was successful, state funds would be made available. The rest of the story is history and over a million dollars has been provided to our state for bicycling activities and improvements.

This year, four rides were offered: a Five-Day UP ride, a Five-Day West ride, a Four-Day West ride, and a Four-Day East ride. The Five-Day UP ride ends in Sault Ste. Marie, while the other three rides end in Mackinaw City. Each is supported with SAG vehicles and overnight high school camping. Camping options include using a tent service, and staying in motels is another option.

DALMAC is staffed by volunteers of the Tri-County Bicycle Association (TCBA), and all rides begin at the MSU Pavilion in East Lansing, following roads that provide the safest and most scenic routes between cities, whenever possible. For an additional $55, your bicycle is trucked back to MSU while you ride a big bus, both arriving between 10:00 P.M. and 11:00 P.M. on the Sunday before Labor Day. Long-term parking is available at the MSU Pavilion at no charge, too.

The most popular ride is the 363 mile 4-Day West ride, which travels to Vestaburg, Lake City, Boyne City, and Mackinaw City, and includes a century ride option each day. Departing Lansing on Thursday, you travel to DeWitt for a quick stop at a bakery, the Perrington VFW Hall for lunch, then to Alma and on the Fred Meijer Heartland Trail to Vestaburg. On Friday in Lake City, you eat a Thanksgiving style evening dinner of turkey, gravy, and mashed potatoes, and a musical event is provided by the high school band instructor. On Saturday, a stop for a tasty sandwich and beer at Shorts in Bellaire is in order before tackling "The Wall" which is twice as steep and long as our local 6th Street Hill. (Suggestion: Go easy on the beer.) On Sunday, you travel through Harbor Springs with its majestic old homes on the bay, then through the "Tunnel of Trees." After a lunch at Good Hart or Cross Village, it's on into Mackinaw City to catch a shower and the bus home.

During the past 18 years, I have ridden each of the routes heading north, and in 2014, I am doing the 5-Day UP ride, so I can cross the mighty Mackinaw Bridge again. Hopefully, the sun will be bright on Sunday morning with an ore or tanker ship passing under the bridge for extra scenery. The Wednesday to Sunday ride is very picturesque, with stops at Shepherd, Lake City, Central Lake, and Pellston, before ending at Sault Ste. Marie, home of the Soo Locks. And hopefully, the weather the entire ride will be sunny with tailwinds.

As I learned in 2013, it is not about the destination, but about the journey, with cycling buddy camaraderie and stops for cookies, pies, ice cream, beer, and other goodies. What a way to cycle for four or five days and gain two pounds!

Terry O'Connor


West Michigan Recumbent Rally

For the past several years, I have hosted an annual informal gathering of recumbent bike and trike owners in Kalamazoo in the early fall. This series of rallies was instigated by the founders of Wolverbents, a Michigan-based group of recumbent enthusiasts, as well as members of the Michigan Human Powered Vehicle Association, many of whom are in both organizations.

In the past, the site of this west side rally moved around from year to year, but now we seem to have settled in at WMU's Parkview Campus, where Western generously lets us use the east parking lot. We always have the rally on the Saturday of the Wine and Harvest Festival, so we can also ride in the Vineyard Classic out of Paw Paw the next day. That means we always rally on the Saturday after Labor Day.

So, this year it happened on Saturday, September 7. We had nice weather, which is usually all it takes to get a decent turnout. The purpose of these rallies is to give cyclists of all sorts a chance to check out a variety of recumbent models and types. There are very few bike shops that stock multiple recumbent models at once, so you usually have to travel a long distance if you want to try several different vehicles. That's why a number of owners and enthusiasts from the area come together, along with representatives from Breakaway Bicycle and Fitness, providing a number of bikes available for interested folks to test ride and learn more about.

This year, we were glad to have several members of the KBC stop by, some who already own recumbents, and others who don't yet, but wanted to learn more. By all indications, the folks who came to learn more got what they came for. There were always several bikes being ridden out on the parking lot or the loop roads. It was also fun, as usual, for us recumbent veterans to get together with each other, as well as share the good news with others.

If you are interested in learning more about these comfortable and efficient bikes, you are welcome to come over to the Engineering campus next September 6. If I can answer any questions in the meantime, look me up on Facebook or in the phone book. Happy trails.

Paul Wells (right) and Rick from Breakaway help Mike Eliasohn of St. Joseph try out a Sun X-2 long-wheelbase recumbent bike.

Yes, as I have said many times, the recumbent bike is a chick magnet. This is the now discontinued Velocity2 by Rans Bicycles of Hays, Kansas.

KBC member Paul Selden shows off his used but recently-acquired and well-equipped Rans Stratus. That white bike in the background is a Taiwanese "low-racer" type of recumbent.

Paul Pancella


Reminder - Forests and Foliage Fall KBC Ride is Coming Up

The KBC Forests and Foliage in the Fall ride will be held on Saturday October 19, 2013 at the parking lot at Gun Lake State Park. For more details, see last month's Pedal Press or contact ride leader Marc Irwin at pr@kalamazoobicycleclub.org.



Kudos to MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette for covering a wide spectrum of bicycling news throughout 2013. Reporting included the events held during Kalamazoo Bike Week 2013, a bicycle-motorist safety editorial, interesting human powered vehicles, Chris Gottwald's world-record setting 100 mile ride, numerous charity related rides, news of trails, and interesting bike tours. I personally found Community Engagement Specialist Linda Mah to be very helpful and quick to answer questions.

Kudos for the great collaboration and community-mindedness shown by WMU's Offices of Service Learning and Sustainability, Lakeside Academy, Boys and Girls Club, Open Roads Project, software app developer Maestro, and Alfred E. Bike this past summer. These organizations teamed up in June to make it possible for a number of deserving area children to own a new bicycle.

Paul Selden

KBC Quick Tips

Quick Tip #21: Treating Road Rash

"While talking to a retired doctor about a case of road rash and a bruise the size of Texas that I recently acquired, I got a great couple of tips, well worth passing along. To keep from washing off a newly-forming scab when in the shower, wrap some clear plastic food wrap around the area. To keep the plastic wrap from falling off, you can use some rubber bands to help seal each end. I found that some trial and error is involved to get the rubber bands to be appropriately tight as a seal, but not too tight. I also found that I could re-use the wrap if I let it hang-dry on my towel rack. With me, it looked as though the scab was still getting somewhat damp (condensation? trapped perspiration?), but much less so than if I left it unprotected, and it always dried out to looking "normal" again after showering. Regarding the huge bruise - at my age, I take low-dose aspirin daily as a precautionary measure. The doctor informed me that doing so increases the chances for more severe bruising. However, it also reduces the chances of a dangerous clot forming in my legs, due to the bruising. Consult with the proper medical professional to get your own advice about dealing with such matters, but I found these tips to be both helpful and informative in my own case." [Paul Selden]

Quick Tip #22: What to Wear in the Fall?

"Layers, Layers, Layers. The amount of layers and the thickness of the layers will depend on the weather, but if you have layers you can start peeling off clothing if you get too warm. Fall temperatures can often fluctuate, so being able to open zippers, take off arm warms, and then put them back on is key. Keeping your core area at an even temperature is the trick: consider a base layer to wick the sweat away from the body (prevent chills), a mid-layer to keep yourself warm and a jacket/vest to break the wind. Other fall clothing items are long pants, knickers, knee warmers, booties, ear warmers, long-finger gloves, and arm warmers." [Source: "5 things to remember before heading out for your first fall bike ride"; www.cyclingandrunningforwomen.com.]

Please submit your Quick Tips on bike maintenance, fitness, training, tours, etc. to educationchair@kalamazoobicycleclub.org. Our KBC community of enthusiastic cyclists appreciates it!

Renee Mitchell, KBC Education Chair

Monthly Meeting Minutes

The September 10, 2013 meeting of the KBC was called to order by President Zolton Cohen at 7:00 P.M. Those in attendance were: Zolton Cohen, Michael Krischer, Terry O'Connor, Jon Ballema, Tom Keizer, Marc Irwin, David Jones, John Olbrot, David Bere, Mike Boersma, Pete Post, Paul Selden, and Mary Gerger.

John Olbrot gave the treasurer's report:

Checking Account$7,852.40
Certificate of Deposit $11,128.18

John reviewed the final financial information for the 2013 KalTour.

John mentioned that, in accordance with the KBC's continued commitment to give the Kalamazoo Valley AMBUCS chapter half of our KalTour's profits, he delivered a check for $1,026.64 to that organization.

There were no other Committee Reports given during the meeting.

David Jones presented a possible "win/win" solution for recycling bicycle tubes and tires, an idea he has been working on for several months. He has been in communication with area bike shops and a gentleman who would do the actual recycling of the tires/tubes. A donation of non-perishable food items for the Kalamazoo Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry would be required when someone dropped off their old tires/tubes at participating Kalamazoo area bike shops. The intent would be for the old tires/tubes to be recycled into playground mulch. David's idea was greeted with a great deal of support by all members present. He will be following through with his idea and providing more information in the Pedal Press and at subsequent meetings.

Zolton Cohen and Jon Ballema led a discussion related to the KBC's interest and involvement in cyclocross activities. There will be more discussion and further information on this topic forthcoming during future meetings and in the Pedal Press.

Zolton discussed the possibility of revising the KBC monthly meeting schedule. The pros and cons of doing so were considered by those present and this topic will be revisited during a future meeting.

It is hard to believe another year has flown by, as Zolton announced the upcoming KBC Election of club officers, held annually during the November meeting. Those interested in running for a position should "toss their hats/helmets into the ring" during the October meeting. The Executive Board elected positions are: President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary. Those members wishing to serve another year in their Executive Board appointed position should contact Zolton by e-mail.

Director of Road Safety Paul Selden spoke on behalf of League of Michigan Bicyclists (LMB) representative and KBC member David Jones regarding two Michigan Legislative bills relating to "Vulnerable Roadway Users" (bicyclists, pedestrians, etc.) coming up for a vote before the Michigan Judiciary Committee on September 11, 2013. Paul said these bills have bipartisan support and encouraged all KBC members and friends to phone or e-mail their local representatives urging them to push the bills through our Michigan Legislative system. Paul also summarized ongoing discussions with 61st District Representative Margaret O'Brien on related topics. Please contact Paul with questions on this topic and also contact him with regard to the identification of dangerous potholes in your riding area.

Jon Ballema complimented KBC members participating in a recent Monday night Lawton ride, mentioning their increased attention to bike safety.

LMB Representative David Jones urged KBC members to submit their favorite bike ride routes to the League of American Bicyclists (LAB) website.

David also mentioned that the League of Michigan Bicyclists has a "Survivor Story Telling Project" page on their website where riders can report stories about their bike/motor vehicle accidents: www.lmb.org/story.

Zolton adjourned the meeting at 7:56 P.M.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mary Gerger, KBC Secretary



The electronically-distributed KBC Pedal Press comes out on or around the first of each month.

If you have an article or a notice that you want to go into the PedalPress, please e-mail it to the newsletter editor, editor@kalamazoobicycleclub.org by the 20th of the month before its intended publication.

For example, if you'd like an article to be published in the November edition (distributed during the first week of November), have it to the newsletter editor by the 20th of October.


Active Subscriptions:

New members:

Mary-Frances Oliphant

Expiring memberships:

Ethan Alexander · Lee Anderson · Christopher Barnes Family · Lyn Brown & Dan Hoff · Paul & Linda Bruneau · Larry Kissinger · Michael Krischer · Renee Mitchell Family · Kenneth Polidan · Patty Rawson · John Shubnell Family · Mike St. Clair

Renewed memberships:

Terry O'Connor · John & Teri Olbrot Family · Dave Bruininks · Robert Allwardt

David Jones, KBC Database Manager

Editor's Letter - Century Riding while the Riding's Still Good

My quads were burning and I looked down to make sure that I had not inadvertently set my cycling shorts on fire. Observing that I had not, I made the assumption that this sensation was due to exertion. I was on the tail end of my second century ride in six days; the pace, once again, albeit with the wind, had risen above 22 mph, and I had left my A legs at home. In normal times, I would not be doing two centuries as part of the group that I sometimes ride with during the weekend; the pace, as previously noted, can be hard, and the recovery slow, at least during the remainder of the post-ride day. But these were not normal times.

This was the last Saturday in September, the end of a string of nice days, while the previous Sunday had also been reasonably nice. September could be less stingy when it comes to nice days; October is even stingier, November stingier still; and December, well, December makes a pre-Christmas Ebenezer Scrooge look like a Fezziwig with a wad of cash after a good day at the track. At this time of year, nice days cannot be ignored and yard work can wait.

Which was why I was riding my second not-so-easy 100 mile ride in six days. The pace during the first third of that first ride, to South Haven and back, was scorching, but we then settled into something that was more conducive to a regular breathing pattern, at least some of the time. It also helped that I had brought along some good legs that morning. For the second ride, I was not as fortunate. The official start of this ride was at the Shell station on the northern outskirts of Three Rivers, although most of the riders were planning to ride to Three Rivers from points north, including me. I thought that my legs were rested; thanks to a rare business trip, I had not ridden for two days earlier in the week, but during my solo ride to the Shell station, I could tell that my quads and hamstrings were not quite right, and even my lower back had decided to make its presence known. So when we began riding to Emma, Indiana, our lunch stop destination, I knew that this ride had the potential of not becoming one of my fondest memories.

Due to the headwind from the south, however, we were reasonably cautious during our ride to Emma. I even won the Indiana state line sprint; which might have been due to the fact that no one else contested it. Very soon after crossing into Indiana, we were in Amish country (welcome to Indiana - The Horse Pie State), and the ride to Emma was pleasant and uneventful. We passed a few buggies and were passed by a car whose occupant reveled in the sound of his machine, suggesting the possibility of a breakaway Amish sect that had renounced all the trappings of modern life except for muscle cars.

So, maybe it was the slice of peanut butter pie that I probably shouldn't have eaten. More likely, it was the now-to-be tailwind. Whatever the reason, we left Emma with wheels soon ablazin' at 24 mph, and my stomach was not happy. Very soon, my legs were not happy. As we approached the Michigan state line, I took the lead and tried to "control" the pace, bringing it down to 20 mph, but that was too slow for the four alpha riders among us, who hammered up the hill over the Indiana turnpike, and left the other three worse than beta riders in the distance. And, yes, I was one of the dropped riders wearing the scarlet delta.

Shortly thereafter, we regrouped, but my legs were never quite the same. This didn't stop me from taking a pull at the front of the group for a period of time between White Pigeon and Three Rivers, because I had still had my pride after my good sense had fallen out of one of my jersey pockets. But let the record state that my pull was certainly not a 24 mph pull.

By the time we arrived back at the Shell station to begin the last stage of the ride, my quads had reached an understanding with the rest of my body. Be nice to me and I'll be nice to you. And for a while, this was the case ("Imagine all my muscles, living life in peace, you-hoo-ooo-ooo ...."), which had a lot to do with the fact that no one was pushing the pace. But just south of the Kalamazoo County line, a couple riders (and you know who you are) couldn't contain their exuberance, and the pace shot back up over 22 mph, at least for a few miles. My quads were not amused and, soon, the rest of my body wasn't, either. However, by the time we reached VW Avenue, the pace slowed, and the ride again became relatively pleasant and uneventful, up to the time that I turned off on a side street to arrive back at my house, 101 miles later.

So, this was not the best century ride I've ever experienced, but it was also not the worst, and if I had to do it again, I would have. And I'm also planning to ride another century in October. Maybe it will be better than this one, maybe it won't, and maybe that's beside the point. The point is to do some long rides while I still can, because there will be fewer and fewer opportunities, at least until 2014. And then, it will be spring, when yard work can still wait.

Rick Whaley, KBC Newsletter Editor

Some Upcoming Rides of Interest

Saturday, October 12. Colorburst Bicycle Tour. Lowell, MI. 17, 30, 62, 100 paved, 62 gravel. www.rapidwheelmen.com/colorburst.html.

Classified Ads

NEW: Cycleops PowerTap SLC+ Power Meter (with accessories) - $2,000 (Best Offer). Accessories: Electro Pack, CycleOps matching front hub, Salsa skewers, Mavic Open Pro rims (hubs currently strung within). Cassette Type: Shimano. Electro Pack: YES.

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* Displays and records:
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* Power (current, average, max.)
* Heart rate (current, average)
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* Energy expenditure (total kjoules)
* Ride distance (miles or km)
* Ride time
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Contact Fred Hoffman at good2go49001@yahoo.com or (269) 312-2036.

NEW: Garmin Edge 705 - $250 (Best offer). Garmin Edge 705/Bundle Item is a GPS-Enabled Cycling Computer. Includes Heart Rate Monitor and Speed/Cadence Sensor. Contact Fred Hoffman at good2go49001@yahoo.com or (269) 312-2036.

2012 Jamis Nova Pro 'cross bike (54 size). Carbon fiber seat stays and fork; road bike oriented 50-34 chainset paired with awesome 11-32 climbing cassette. Tremendous all-purpose bike: road, trail, dirt/gravel, and cyclocross, but way lighter than the typical hybrid. Brake and stay clearance for even wider tires and fenders, but works great with narrow tires. Tires and rims unused except for bike shop test ride. Almost new brake pads with relatively few miles on them. Maintained by Pedal Bicycles including full tune up this winter. Includes two bottle cages and original owners manual. Selling to make room for a touring bike so putting it on Ebay or Craigslist by the end of June if I don't sell it here first. Purchased for approx. $1530 - will sell for about half what I paid: $775. For detailed specs, see http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/road/nova/12_novapro.html. E-mail directorroadsafety@kalamazoobicycleclub.org to discuss.

Shop Notes

Alfred E Bike

320 East Michigan, Kalamazoo, (269) 349–9423

Billy's Bike Shop

63 East Battle Creek Street, Galesburg, (269) 665–5202

Breakaway Bicycles

185 Romence at Westnedge, Portage, (269) 324–5555,

Custer Cyclery

104 North Augusta, Augusta, (269) 731–3492

Gazelle Sports

214 South Kalamazoo Mall, Kalamazoo, (269) 342–5996,
One hundred yellow mats. One hundred bodies in motion. Join Gazelle Sports for Lole Yellow Yoga! Tuesday, October 8, 6:00 P.M.at Arcadia Creek Festival Site. Join us afterwards at Gazelle Sports for refreshments and 20% off your Lole purchases.

Johnson Cycle Works

5309 Gull Road, Kalamazoo, (269) 226-0001.


611 W Michigan Avenue, Kalamazo, (269) 56–PEDAL
info@pedalbicycle.com and www.pedalbicycle.com

Team Active

22 W Michigan, Battle Creek, 1–800–841–9494

Village Cyclery

US 131 in Schoolcraft, 679–4242

Zoo City Cycle & Sports

4328 South Westnedge, Kalamazoo (269) 552–3000


Bicycling Safety Disclaimer

Important: Riding a bicycle is an inherently dangerous activity. There are risks of injury or death. You could ride over something and fall, or get hit by an automobile or strike or be struck by another bicyclist. There are many other dangers to bicycling as well.

While nothing can eliminate all risks associating with bicycle riding, to minimize the danger, make sure you and your bicycle are in good riding condition. Know the rules of the road and also of the group you're riding with, and ride in a manner consistent with the protocols of that group. Always wear a bike helmet, use bike lights if riding in the dawn, dusk or dark, and consider purchasing and riding with additional safety equipment such as reflectors and rear view mirrors.