The Surly LHT went out for a test ride today, from town back to the farm – a distance of just 45km which seems much further psychologically, but realistically is fairly similar in length to most other segments of 45 kilometres, and so didn’t take much more than two hours, even with my loaded panniers on and an unpleasant headwind.
In the end I got distracted with the riding and did not take many photos. Well, not only distracted with the riding, I also developed a gripping fear of getting catheads (or caltrops, or whatever you want to call them) stuck in my tyres, so I couldnâ€™t leave the road to prop my bike up anywhere, as anywhere that wasnâ€™t road probably had catheads. Not that the road was free of suspicion either. But the reason I was so anxious not to get a puncture is all due to the war of the wills I’m currently engaged in with my cantilever breaks, which I’m learning to hate with a vengeance. Yes I KNOW they’re simple. So simple that the relatively obvious act of un-doing them so you can get the wheel off, or re-connecting them so you have brakes again, seems almost impossibly for me and invariably ends with me wanting to kick them in frustration, but instead I just glare and beg a passer-by to help me.
So all photos were taken while standing over the bike, or while holding the bike with my spare hand. Combined with a fixed 50mm lens to shoot with, photo opportunities were rather limited.
I rode with both front and rear panniers on for the first time, plus the handlebar bag which is really really handy, and Iâ€™m not sure why I as so keen on avoiding getting one previously. Probably the fact they tend to look quite dorky, and my bikes have always been far too fashionable to stand bearing such a thing.