Sunday, June 22, 2008

Amarillo, a cycling friendly city?

Surprisingly, that answer is yes.

I was there over the weekend for a wedding. Sharon and Gracie were part of the wedding party, that meant I had some time to kill. Figured I could either watch crappy cable on TV, or find a way to bring a bike and have some fun with my downtime.

Obviously I chose to bring a bike...

After careful consideration I chose to bring the fixed gear. Mainly because it is super easy to take apart and stow away. Glad I did. There wasn't much room left in the van we rented after 5 females and 2 guys + luggage were on board.

Woke up early on Saturday morning to get in some miles. Unfortunately an incredible storm decided to squat over my chosen playground. After a couple of hours, it slowed down enough so I could get out. Threw on the funny clothes and headed off into the great unknown.

I'm serious about the whole unknown part. Last time I went to Amarillo, I was 12 years old. So I was in a strange town that I had little knowledge of and no map. Fortunately I have a pretty good sense of direction and at least had the good sense to know my starting location.

While I didn't bring a good camera with me (kicking myself over and over and over), I did have the phone with me. Took a few pictures.


Cool thing about this town, there are bike routes and bike lanes everywhere. I was impressed. I first headed South. Went to the edge of town, then headed back a slightly different way to try and find downtown.

Downtown isn't huge, but it's pretty cool. Cobblestones everywhere. Rough cobblestones. Here's a pic from downtown...


Also found historic Route 66. Rode it from one end of town to the other...




The other cool thing was random signage. Everywhere I went I saw these odd signs everywhere. I wish I knew what they signified. Anyone???


My personal favorite:



I had a fantastic ride, with fantastic weather. Drivers were incredibly friendly and the roads were nice. I wish I would have had a couple of extra days to tool around with my bike and a better camera (like my medium format). There were so many great things that I wanted to take pictures of.

Ended up with around 50 miles. A fast 50 miles on the fixed gear I might add. 44x16 is really working out on this bike. Almost makes me want to put the 48 tooth ring up front.

p.s. The wedding was pretty fun too.

5 comments:

Steve Ballmer said...

I prefer to be chaufered

Hasty! said...

Chauffeured?

How do you think I got down there?

After all that sitting I needed to do something.

ExcitableBoy said...

The short answer is the signs are an art project commissioned by a local eccentric millionaire. (I believe he's also the one who's responsible for 'Cadillac Ranch')

http://daveholmanstravelblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/off-beaten-track-daves-top-ten-cities.html

Hasty! said...

An eccentric Texas millionaire? That explains the Kinky Friedman lyrics...

Thomas said...

his name is Stanley Marsh...fwiw...just found your blog...glad to see another Big Dummy Owner...now if trying to bike in my neighborhood weren't quite so sketchy...damned thugs and their pistols...