Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Ava learns to ride a bike! (and kayaking adventures in the bay)

Hi Putz!

I'm learning to be an outdoors kid this summer, and so have been spending most of my time on non-motorized vehicles. My second day in CA (ever!) I found a tiny road bike off craigslist and started teaching myself how to ride a bike.

I'm not completely new to bikes - last summer I had to ride one to get a free burger with Formlabs, and I rode a derpy kid's bike in the yard when I was 7 - but I've never really ridden a bike before. But I'm in San Jose, so it's either car or bike to really get anywhere. Add on to that me needing to learn to take hands off the handlebars to signal turns on my commute and deciding to try clipless pedals... It's been an adventure.

Below is a jarring juxtaposition of a road bike and a big-ass tree where road bikes don't belong. 

This is from the bike trip to San Jose's rose garden, which marked the first trip where I didn't fall off the bike! Also, the rose garden is super pretty.

I've also been playing around with my kayak! This is the collapsing kayak I built last spring partially on Putz and partially at MITERS - I stuffed it in a 4ft golf bag and took it on the plane. So far the gender ratio of people curious about it has been 1:5, boys:girls. I don't really know what that means.

This is in Steven's Creek Reservoir, just a little bit west of Cupertino.

It's still a pain to assemble/take apart, but I've gotten it to around 30min. I've already identified a number of ways to make the design better, so I'm excited to bring it back to Boston.

This lake has a surprising amount of wildlife for being still essentially in Cupertino.

Google Maps had this lake connect to a creek, but when I went up that way the water level got shallow really quickly. This kayak stops moving forward at 3 inches of water.

Walked around in almost-knee deep mud trying to figure out if the creek restarted. It's probably only a thing in spring.

Found a curious structure on the way back.

Last weekend Jennie & I went to the ocean! This is at Santa Cruz wharf. Jennie rented a real kayak, which is significantly longer and faster than mine.

Sea lions live under the wharf; you can't get too close or else they'll fight you. There's also a protected kelp forest to the side of the wharf where otters live; you can't get too close or else they'll panic and die (or something)