Friday, October 5, 2007

Weekends are for getting Radical

Japan is a beginner cyclist's dream.

The road cyclist gets miles of unpocked smooth asphalt, physical separation from cars, wide lanes, and steep but mercifully short mountain climbs. Plus, the speed limit is usually under 50KPH (which is about 30MPH), and everyone drives sub 2,000 pound cars.

The amateur BMX rider gets huge urban areas that are absolutely packed with little 2 foot drop-offs, ledges, and curbs of all kinds. There are so many well-maintained geometric oddities in these cities that I can't figure out why some doofus with a 20-inch bike hasn't started jumping off of them.

And for the mountain biker, well, Japan is 90% mountains, and nobody seems to care about mountain biking so you have the trails to yourself. You seriously can't swing a dead cat in this town without finding a dirt trail into the mountains.

Anyway, these thoughts occurred to me during my weekend jaunt. Here are some pictures:

Oh damn!

This was some random logging road I found. It was pretty gnarly, with lots of deep sand, thick mud, huge ruts, and big rocks and branches all over the place. Mark Weir famously said "I'd shit out my liver before I'd push my bike." Well guess what? I'm not him, because I hiked a lot of this quagmire.

More trail.

Tires-eye view maybe?

Yep, this is the middle of nowhere. And yet there sits a fully operational vending machine, poised in case one of the two farmers wants a soda.


Tom said...

Great pix. Maybe your parents will buy you a top of the line mountain bike for Xmas. Have you ever had to stop to ask directions?

Nate said...

No way man, you don't need directions when you're not going anywhere in particular.