I decided to go for a ride after work last night. The night before, looking down the row of bikes on the wall, I decided to go with the single speed. The bike hadn't seen the light of day in a long, long time. I guess I have had other interests for the past few years. After pumping up the tires and lubing the chain, it was ready to go. That's the beauty of a rigid single speed.
Out on the trail the bike was exceptionally quick. Walt built the frameset eight years ago, and 29er geometry has changed a lot since then (for the better). The 72-degree head angle so popular back then is unheard of now, as is the short 430 millimeter fork length. As you can see, the rider position is definitely "racy," and so is the handling.
Up the first climb I stayed in the saddle and totally ripped it. I thought, "Hey, I'm in pretty good shape!" After a fun little descent was another longer climb that I labored up just a bit. "Maybe not that great," I thought. After the third climb I only had this thought: single speeds suck.
In the end I did enjoy my ride, but I am not sure this is the bike for me anymore. I might try a shorter stem, riser bars and a seatpost with some setback in an attempt to modernize the ride a bit. After riding the Canfield, I do prefer a more laid-back geometry now.
Our smog layer is providing some pretty sunsets:
Overall I like my Nokia Lumia phone for mobile shots. It's definitely nice not carrying a phone and a camera. Most of the time the quality is excellent. One situation where the phone falters though is whenever the sun is present in the shot. You get a lot of weird flaring. Not an issue with a real camera.