Sunday, September 26, 2010

Mountain bike “flat...”

Would you go on a medium length trip in your car, knowing that you have no spare wheel in the back? Probably not, right; yet, that's what I've been doing with my mountain bike until... yesterday! I was betting that the odds were low, and they certainly were, because after 6 years of regular mountain biking and over 200 sorties, I finally got the flat I deserved, while I still was almost four miles away from the house. I dismounted the entire tire on the spot to find out that my “repair kit” couldn't help, so I let my spouse go ahead and complete her course while I alternatively walked and carried my bike the rest of the way. This was a powerful and memorable lesson.

Arrived home, I attempted to repair the faulty wheel and discovered that I apparently didn't hit anything sharp that could have punctured the inner tube. Its rubber had simply become a little too old and too brittle (that's right, it was already in its sixth year.)
The morale of that story is from now on, I'll carry my hydrating back pack including a hand-pump and a spare inner tube; I'll still have my repair kits, but patches are not the magic cure they are purported to be. That's right, between the two us and our four wheels we'll now almost have a “spare;” just like a car!

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