Bike on Board – Why Renting Might be the Way to Go

fragile1We understand that your bike is your baby, that you can’t possibly think of riding anything else on your biking tour, whatever the cost! But cost isn’t the only thing to take into consideration … imagine what can happen to your beloved bike en route to its destination! Here are a few stories that might make you consider keeping your bike safe and sound at home.

 

1. Nervous about flying my bike, I called the airlines the night before and asked their customer service about policies regarding bicycles. She informed me that if I pack it in a box within the allotted measurements, and as long as it was under a certain weight, that it will be OK. So I paid to have my bike packed according to the guidelines and even double checked the weight at the weighing scale when we got to the airport…it all looked good to go. When I reached the check-in counter, the lady asked me to open the box! She then proceeded to tell me that she would need to charge me $150.00 for overweight and bulk size. WHAT???!!! I explained to her that I had called ahead of time and specifically had my bike packed and weighed according to the guidelines THEY gave me, but she wouldn’t listen.   I ended up having to not only open my packed bike and cut down the box(that I paid to have packed that way), but I also opened my other luggage to arrange stuff for the next hour to make sure every thing was within their weight requirements. What a pain!

2. Bikes on a plane? Easier said than done. I recently returned from a tour of the Balkans. The plan was to land at Sarajevo, cycle to Split in Croatia, ride up the coast and across to Ljubljana to fly home. But that isn’t exactly what happened, because the airline mislaid my bike. After a suspiciously long wait at Sarajevo airport for the cardboard box I’d carefully packed it in days earlier, I was told it was still in London. Two frustrating days later,  Germanwings finally delivered a now very tatty box containing a travel-weary bike. The frame was dented and scratched, the rack bent, the gear lever minus its plastic end and my bell was broken. And because of the delay I had to take two trains to catch up, so missed a lot of my planned riding.Fear not, the trip was salvaged and I enjoyed lots of sun, sea and sightseeing, but it was slightly tarnished. Annoyingly, this also happened the last time I flew with a bike – although that time the damage was limited to two chainrings and a set of handlebars.

3. My pedal spanner and multi-tool were deemed weapons at the airport recently, despite having no particularly sharp parts. I argued that my laptop would probably be more dangerous if I decided to hit someone with the corner of it, but no, because they were metal and ‘tool-like’, I had to throw them away :-( Very frustrating. I had flown with my multi-tool before and it got through with no problem, but apparently this time they felt it was a security risk. Strangely enough, frying pans were no problem!

4. The worst instance for me was on Air France. My bike-in-a-box actually went missing for a couple of days. Then when it showed up, it looked like it had been stomped on by elephants. The cardboard was ripped open down one side and the rear wheel was bent completely out of shape.

5. I just came back from a road bike trip in Colorado. Here is a brief summary of the costs incurred to bring my bike w/ me:
Flight 1: – I was in a rush and had to ask my bike shop to break it down and box it: $15 for the box and wrapping stuff + $35 for the service
I had to take a cab straight from the bike shop to the airport instead of the subway: $50 vs $2
Flew with Jetblue: $50 fee because the box was slightly above 50lbs (even though it was below the  62″ requirement)
Lesson learned, on the return I shipped my bike with professionals. I used the box the bike shop gave me + bought some wrapping paper + use the plastic covers from the 1st flight. I shipped it from Vail in Colorado to Manhattan. Cost: $40. The bike arrived without a dent or scratch in the box 4 days later. No hassle, no hidden fees.

Imagine arriving to your Escape Adventures vacation destination with your bike waiting and ready for you. No pesky customs agents,TSA or airline reps to hassle with, no hidden airline fees, no bulky bike box to cram into the back of a taxi or rental car… Escape Adventures can take these issues out of the equation by renting you a quality bike for your next tour.

Bike Travel Tips
-From Bike Tips on http://www.theguardian.com

• Add extra layers of cardboard to the corners of your box and use plenty of Duct tape to hold it tight.
• Take extra tape in your hand luggage – customs may need to look inside the box, and aren’t required to help you seal it up again.
• Take off pedals, wheel skewers and anything else pointy that may puncture the box.
• Use lots of padding – foam pipe cladding from a DIY shop is perfect for protecting your frame and very cheap.
• Change to the biggest rings at the front and back – this will take up as much slack as possible in the chain and tuck the derailleur in.
• Once you’ve removed the wheels, protect the frame by using the plastic clips that come attached to forks on new bikes – if you don’t still have yours ask for some at the local bike shop
• Weigh your bike – if you’re over the allowance weight you may be stung with a large surcharge. Bathroom scales are perfect for this – but make your life easier by boxing it up first, as it’s not easy to balance a bike on one when it’s built up.
• Mark your seatpost with a bit of tape – this will help avoid any fitting issues at the other end.
• Pop any small, loose items like pedals or skewers in a small sandwich bag and selotape it to the inside of the box. If there’s a small hole then you could lose them.
• When booking your flight look carefully at bike surcharges, which vary hugely.
• Over-sized luggage can take a long time to check in, so arrive early or you may find your box has not made it on to your flight, even if you have…
• Forget flying with your bike altogether and rent a bike from Escape Adventures or get the pros, like Bike Flights, to help you transport your bike to your destination.

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Departures Article

Departures Article

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Do You Carry Altra?

Now we do!

Las Vegas Cyclery is excited to announce the newest member of the
running center’s shoe family… Altra!

altra logo

For months, Las Vegas Cyclery and Running Center has been receiving calls asking “Any chance you carry Altras?”.  Yesterday, LVC was finally able to answer “YES!” as Altra made its move into the Las Vegas market. Currently one of the only, and certainly one of the first stores in Las Vegas to pick up the Altra line, this highly anticipated addition had people knocking at the doors to grab their pair.

With Zero Drop technology, Altras help the foot hit with a softer, more natural landing, allowing for less heel strike with each step, which in turn reduces joint impact. “Altra running shoes with Zero Drop technology are the most innovative, comfortable barefoot/minimalist running shoes available today. Zero Drop™ footwear offers runners the world’s first fully cushioned, foot-shaped, training shoe without an elevated heel. This unique platform allows for a more natural foot strike and a more efficient, comfortable ride.” – http://www.altrazerodrop.com/

The running center at Las Vegas Cyclery, headed by Coach Sylvia Mosqueda, has been rapidly gaining credentials in the Las Vegas running circuit.  To expand on its reputation as a premier store for runners, Las Vegas Cyclery brought in Altra shoes to enhance what the running center has to offer. Runners not only have a great selection of the Altra line to choose from, but they are also able to hone in on the perfect shoe for their foot, as Coach Mosqueda provides foot analysis’ and fittings to LVC customers.

As for me, I had to immediately pick up my personal favorite, The Intuition 1.5, which earned Editor’s Pick for Most Innovative in Competitor Magazine. I’m excited to head out and pound some pavement in these guys, my feedback soon to come!

The Intuition 1.5

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Feeling inspired by the participants of the Diamond Kid Triathlon!

Ask any kid participating in the 7th Annual Diamond Kid Triathlon on Saturday “what made you want to come out and compete like this in the Vegas summer heat?”(although to be fair, weather conditions were actually perfect!) and I guarantee their answer will include “because it’s just fun!”. And it was!

Diamond Tri 1

It was my first time observing a kid-sized running/cycling/swimming competition like this, and honestly, I didn’t know what to expect. Sure, you have your weekly soccer games and softball practices, but a triathlon for children is definitely in its own category.  The personal drive and stamina one has to have in order to push the body to compete outside of a team setting, in my opinion, takes the meaning of willpower to a different level. Challenging oneself in this manner can be difficult as an adult, so it was definitely incredible to see the Diamond Kids putting forth so much effort with the heart and spirit you would expect from a full grown pro-athlete!

Diamond Tri 3Diamond Tri 7Diamond Tri 6

Aside from the individual determination displayed by the athletes, the show of sportsmanship was admirable. As each child finished their portion of the race they would join the parents in cheering on and celebrating the other kid-athletes as they pushed through up-hills and raced across finish lines.  Then you had the parents themselves, who’s pride was palpable as they hurried from sideline to sideline to clang cowbells and shout encouragements to the participants.

All in all, the Diamond Kid Triathlon should make any member of the running, cycling and/or swimming community in Las Vegas feel proud and perhaps,even, inspired to try a tri!

Marcy

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T.J. Lavin and our Wheelapalooza Grand Opening

T.J. Lavin is a legend in the BMX world of cycling.  He’s also a local here in Las Vegas.  I remember watching the Dew Tour Championship back in 2010.  I made sure to watch T.J.’s run.  I watched that day in horror as did thousands of fans when T.J. crashed.  I’ve seen enough catastrophic crashes in my day to know that T.J. was seriously injured.  I had a knot in my stomach and watched in disbelief as they carried him off on a stretcher.  It has been a long road to recovery for him.  He’s a great inspiration and wanted to share this video of his recovery with you all.

I hope some of you local folks will be able to stop by and say hi to him at our Grand Opening this weekend.

Carol

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Wheelapalooza features local indie artists

LVC Supporting local, independent artists, athletes, and environment.

LIVE LOCAL ARTISTS: In order of appearance, subject to change, check back for updates.

SATURDAY

SUNDAY

  • Stephen Hawking Experience (psychadellic rock)
  • Stage Luminous (reggae fusion)
  • Green Valley Jazz Combo (uptempo jazz & rock)
  • Fisher Family Banned (pop alternative)
  • RedHill (indie rock)
This weekend we at Las Vegas Cyclery are proud to feature an ecclectic mix of local independent artists from
indie rock to punk to rockabilly, reggae, jazz, psychadellic, pop, to alternative, singer-song writers.
From professional bands and independent singer song-writers to student musicians attending the Las Vegas Academy and Green Valley Jazz Programs, to the mysterious, never before heard of…Fisher Family Banned.  Just kidding.  A couple of people may have heard of the FFB, just never actually heard us.  We don’t consider ourselves a real band, we just play one in real life…at home when nobody’s around…to try to learn hard stuff like work and cooperation and NOT YELLING!  But like the groundhog on a sunny day, if you’re lucky, and the elements are just right, you might catch a glimpse of a rare performance between work, school, church, bike tours, scooter tricks, and sports, because sometimes it’s fun, and sometimes we like music, and sometimes we like to Love Out Loud.  And so do our friends…like the LVC gang and the guides and the bands listed here, and like all our great biking buddies whom we hope to see this weekend.  Come watch, listen, ride, run, eat, and have fun. We hope to see you all this Saturday or Sunday because we won’t be having another grand opening for a long, LONG time.  In the meantime, check out these other fun bands:
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Fisher Family Banned
Redhill Band: Las Vegas Cyclery mountain bike customers, friends, and neighbors from Blue Diamond, Firefighter Mike Davis, Stage Rigger Joe Reid, and their 2 firefighter friends have made the big step from rockabilly cover tunes to all original songwriting and performance with a fresh new modern beat.  Even though we all loved it when they rocked the house before, the all new original material rocks a tighter, smoother vibe.  Good luck at your upcoming battle of the Bands!
Screen shot 2012-09-05 at 8.32.33 PM
Bass Player Joe’s bike
 

Najja Dread and the Lion Pride: always a good groove to put everyone in a great mood.  The easy swaying rhythms of original and cover reggae by Najja Dread and his band have been heard from downtown First Friday to the Hard Rock Cafe, to the Lifetime Fitness Red Rock Rally.  Lead guitar player Dave Kruleski’s is a friend and customer of LVC as well, sporting several bikes and scooters along with his favorite climbing gear. His wife, Jenn just won second place pro in Bootleg Canyon this last weekend.  Congrats on the great riding Jenn and the great music Dave, Najja, and the rest of the Lion Pride. video
Jesse Pino (review by Punks in Vegas)
Singer/songwriter Jesse Pino is no stranger to the music scene. The Vegas native musician/martial arts instructor first started making music seriously in 1998-99. At age 15 he formed the melodic punk band Nadaclue. Heavily inspired by the bands of Fat Wreck Chords and Epitaph, they gained a fair amount of popularity capturing kids with their fast, driven beats, hook-laden song writing with solid harmonies.
Soon after Nadaclue’s short lived 2 year span, Pino spent the next 10 years (2000-2010) on guitar and backup vocals for Las Vegas’ much-loved 5-piece rock band Left Standing. Sharing the stage with his two older brothers Chris and Danny Pino, Left Standing serves up a welcome dose of alternative electric rock as well as incredible acoustic sets.
In 2010, Jesse decided to step out on his own and pursue his own creativity. Comfortable with a full band backing him, or just an acoustic guitar in hand, he continues to craft his own signature blend entering the arena with a sound reminiscent of Dan Andriano, Dave Hause, and musical idol Joey Cape. Pino released The Burn EP in 2011 and is currently writing music for his first full length album.
-written by: Steven & Ashleigh Matview of Punks In Vegas
Bobby Meader
Of his recently completed album, We are the Blues We Write, September 2012, he said, “This album is a compilation of almost two years of writing, and about 8 months of recording. The process has been so ridiculously fun and difficult, I wouldn’t change it for the world. Check out my thoughts.
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Las Vegas Cyclery and Escape Adventures Grand Opening March 9th & 10th

 

GO-postcard-front (3)

Only two more weeks before the Grand Opening of our new shop. I was lucky enough to start working for LVC back in 2008.  I’m not gonna lie.  I was a bit concerned about working with a bunch of hairy legged, laid back, mountain biker  dudes.  I’m a middle aged roadie chick(woman).  How was this ever going to work?

I use to refer to the old shop as “the cave”.  It always seemed so dark in there.  That was because of the 300 plus bicycles hanging from the ceiling.  We use to joke about wearing hard hats just in case that rickety old ceiling decided to give in. 

Now here we are in this beautiful green, Leed Platinum Net Zero building with more than double the space.  The sun shines in, like we’re being blessed from the heavens on a daily basis.  Jared and Heather Fisher are big dreamers.  The Field of Dreams quote, “build it and they will come” is so true.  Thank you to every one of our customers, new and old who made all of this possible.  

My fear of how will this work??  It worked because all of us at LVC have a love and passion for the bicycle.  We love to get people started and keep them going on whatever type of bike they prefer.  From small children, to the “round the block” folks,  to the top triathletes, mountain bikers and roadies.  We just want to see people riding their bikes and having fun.

We hope to see you all on March 9th and 10th for a weekend of bike riding, fellowship and great fun!

Thanks so much!

Carol Vails

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