Monday June Tenth. Tropical Storm Andrea is gone. Off to that Mystical Realm: Trek Bicycles Portsmouth NH.
Michael is a fine Bicycle Mechanic. A tremendous listener and acutely analytical project planner who understands customer requirements; and money and time constraints. Mike is a genuine Bike Guy. Pays real attention to detail.
The ride to Portsmouth is easy. Straight shot Eight Miles up US-1 Northbound. Two miles Eastward parallels that major earth division called the Atlantic Sea.
The entire trip starts in Hampton Town. A collection of rolling hills, random wind gusts, and light traffic. 09:30. The Navigator is stronger than a year ago. And acquired a general idea about bicycle gearing and shifting.
The Bicycle, A.K.A. Diesel Dark, has been geared down for local commuting. It’s easy to max top gear, Seventh, without fear of death. Still plenty fast enough for traffic blending. Shedding and stacking gear cogs: down as low as Third, then working back up to Seventh.
There are two little hill peaks. The first one at North Road shouldn’t require Second, but it’s been a hard week emotionally. Stress Weakens The Will. The second apex close to Washington Road goes a little smoother. Almost there…
The Navigator informs Mechanic there are steeper hills to be found, nearby Derry NH, and on the way to Lake Massabesic close to the town of Auburn. Also, there are mountains to be had in New Hampshire, short and tall. The Navigator explains the altitude agenda and an approximate timetable. The Mechanic says yes…
Phase One. The plan for budget mountain-climbing evolves. An almost 1:1 Low Gear will be achieved with a fresh sturdy steel Surly [brand] Chainwheel 34 t 110 BCD. That’s only Surly Number Three; but the Navigator is accountable for that. A Shimano Acero Long-Cage derailleur will allow replacing the OEM 13-28t Freewheel with something in the 12-32 range. Phase one is scheduled. Friday!
Phase Two. The 12-32 may be a Freewheel 7-Speed; or a Cassette [with accompanying rear Freehub]. That wider range cogset will connect to a new 3/32-Inch SRAM Chain [old one still has a few miles in it]. Although very reasonable, Phase Two will take a month to save up… Worth it!
Navigator keeps shipping resumes. Navigator starts another eBook. Navigator holds on.
There are tall hills and mountains, after all.