Late Saturday evening my family and I returned from our annual week long vacation in Bar Harbor Maine and Acaidia National Park. Every year we hike new trails, ride new paths, do some rock climbing and do new things to eventually get through most every part of the park - we have many more years to go before accomplishing that though. Two highlights this year were:
1. While on a 21 mile ride on the carriage trails, while stopped waiting at a junction for my wife and son to catch up, a man about my age (~43) rode up to the same spot as me and took a break. Most everyone rides a mountain bike on these gravel trails which include very long and steep mountain climbs. He was not on a mountain bike nor a cross bike, he was on a Hetchins! There we were, in the middle of Acaidia National Park on carriage trails and a Hetchins shows up. Amazing. I introduced myself, explained my interest, shared the CR site/list with him. He was from England and between him and his family he mentioned they had about 12 Hetchins. His dad was a pro rider but unfortunately I forget the name . This bike was not a typical(?) Hetchins, as there were no curly stays nor ornate lugs. This bike was built by Alf, shortly before his death for the current owner. It is a time trial bike with simple French/Italian styled lugs that were pleasing and easy on the eye, flat fork crown, fastback seat stays and a simple silver color. It was well used but very presentable. Other than the clearly non-original, quickly thrown on mismatched clincher wheelset the bike appeared very original. How this gent could ride those hills, on that bike, with that gearing is beyond me. Who'd have ever guessed that I'd see a Hetchins any place other than a show, let alone a TT bike, built by Alf, still owned by the original owner, on a carriage trial in the middle of Acaidia?
2. On Thursday my daughter an I rode from the base of Cadillac mountain up to the summit in 51 minutes. For us, and me in particular this was quite an accomplishment as last year we attempted it but couldn't make it. Since last year I've dropped 17lbs and been riding pretty consistently and that made the difference. Sort of classic content is that I was to be riding my Chas Roberts with a triple but she is not yet back from the painters so I did it on my mountain bike. Next year we will do it again, with my son too (he'll be 11 then) and I will be on the Roberts.
Thanks for listening, had to tell someone!