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Today May 2024

😫 lost my rear flasher after 14 years of faithful service, it bounced out of the saddle bag loop as I have fitted a new rear rack to carry my commuting stuff. Is anyone running a seatstay mounted flasher they can recommend? Want bright but don't need radar,brake lights or motion sensors.
 
I've thought about getting this Cateye double duty reflector w/flasher combo with good reviews. However, it does automatically sense ambient light and motion. I guess for convenience and to maximize battery life. I think the Traffic Law requires either one red reflector or a constant, non-flashing, red light after sunset so I run non-flashing seat post light and a flasher on the back of my helmet.
 
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I have the Cat Eye Rapid Auto . I usually have it in steady-on-when-in-motion-in-the-dark mode. Thanks to this accessory it's attached to whichever saddle-bag I'm using at the time. In many hours of attachment, it did once fall out; but even so I think that the bag cushions vibration so that it's less likely to fall from there than if it were instead attached to a seat-stay.

These days I rarely ride for more than an hour at night: the rear light is for tunnels and for the ends of rides. The battery is fine for my purpose but I wouldn't rely on it for long night rides.
 
I'm going on an undemanding ride to Nippara tomorrow; if any of you might be interested in joining, PM me this morning or afternoon and I'll give you the details.
 
Can anyone identify the brand of my old wool socks? I have had them for years. They're worn out now so I want to replace them. Thank you for any clues...

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So....
I have been on 100% dad mode outside of work. This results in literally no rides over 30km and that has only happened a couple times this year.
Softball season with my oldest completed on Saturday and I now have my Tuesday/Thursday/Saturdays back.

Saturday evening, my oldest and I did a little 9km bike ride form the house to the beach to look for shells and then grab dinner in Hayama.
She did great and even rode up the 9% rode up 45 meters to the neighborhood with no complaints!
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Then yesterday I took both of my girls to a closed section of base to have a zero traffic rode to teach my youngest daughter how to ride.

Success! She is not proficient and didn't fall yet.... but she was able to keep going in a straightish line for a considerable distance while i jogged next to her.

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I just reread the post... I am sure you guys know what I meant... but damn... rode/road form/from damn....
 
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On Sunday I rode my May Century (166 km, on Strava). Unlike a few of the recent rides I managed to leave early in the morning (06:15).

It was overcast and not too hot. At Tomin no Mori it was only 15 deg C. Three weeks ago I had headed to Hinohara but too late in the day to do a full Tomin no Mori - Lake Okutama loop so I wanted to do it this time and get a bit more climbing than the last few rides.


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I stopped at a conbini a couple of km before Musashiitsukaichi for coffee. I saw many people in Akiruno busy with picking up trash and putting it into bags. A guy I met outside the conbini told me he had also just finished the trash collection. Locals in the area do that twice a year, once in May and once in September, before and after the main tourist season, he explained.

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I made a second stop at Café Kana Kana, about 1 km before Rt 33 crosses the river up to the tunnels over to Hinohara. The cafe is set up in vintage aluminium trailers (you may know Airstream but these are a different brand, Spartan). I had a teriyaki chicken burger and a coffee. The cafe is popular with bikers. For cyclists it's not ideally located because it's a bit too close to Musashiitsukaichi - most people would pass at what feels too early in the ride to stop, or too close to the goal on the way back.

But the food is decent and the guy who runs it is very friendly. He's into vintage stuff of any kind, from these trailers to classic bicycles.

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To my out of shape legs the climb to Tomin no Mori felt hard, especially the last two km. At the trail head I bought some pickled plums for my wife and ordered ice cream and coffee for myself. After that and some rest, I could continue. Nightingales were singing in the forest along the road to Kazahari toge (elevation 1146 m).

At the toge I met a group of Indonesian cyclists who had rinko-ed and then cycled starting from Chiba that morning.

I loved the descent down to the lake. I stopped at one car park that overlooks the lake and dam from an elevation of 1000 m. I counted a total of 25 motorcycles in the car park. There were many on the road too, often going fast. At one point I saw a guy walk by the side of the road and picking up black bits of plastic. Parked not far away was a van with the hazard lights flashing and the rear hatch open. Inside was a motorcycle, secured with straps. Presumably the guy was cleaning up after a motorcycle accident and the bits he was picking up were missing from the motorbike in the back...

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I did not see any monkeys on the way down to the lake but at the second bridge I spotted a really big adult macaque walking on the rail of the bridge. I passed it and then took pictures. After he had jumped off onto a tree I noticed two other monkeys coming my way, one adult and one that looked like a kid. The little one later disappeared under the bridge.

I cycled on to Ome. I headed for "Sherpa Kebab Curry Naan and Bar" at Ozaku station where I had both mango lassi and hot chai with my dinner. Due to the cool weather I hadn't really drunk that much water all day. I got back to Tokyo Setagaya by 22:00.

With this Century ride I have only three more months to go until I reach 12 years of "Century a month". That seems a good time for me to close the challenge and no longer care about distance goals after that.
 
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I recently completed a bike tour through Japan, including a climb up Fuji. We took the Takizawa forest road up, traversed to 5th Station, and then descended 707.

I keep seeing this hand-wavingly referred to as the "illegal route" and am curious what is the official policy? As far as I could tell, the signs posted on the gate at the top of Takizawa rindo do not prohibit bicycles.

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I keep seeing this hand-wavingly referred to as the "illegal route"
Who says!? I've done that ride several times. It's fine but you are on your own - if you have an incident any help is going to take a long time to reach you! If any part is illegal it's probably riding down the Subaru Line without paying the toll!

How recently did you go and how was the volcanic ash buildup on Takizawa Rindo?

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Who says!? I've done that ride several times. It's fine but you are on your own - if you have an incident any help is going to take a long time to reach you! If any part is illegal it's probably riding down the Subaru Line without paying the toll!

How recently did you go and how was the volcanic ash buildup on Takizawa Rindo?

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Thanks for the response! I saw it mentioned as such on a few of the Strava rides that I stalked for beta, as well as a couple sites discussing climbs in Japanese alps. Your feedback comports with my experience--that aside from the little sketchiness (by Japanese standards?) involved with taking the back way, it's perfectly bikeable. The guy at the toll booth just waved at us as we flew through after dark, heh.

We were there about two weeks ago (https://www.strava.com/activities/11407812057) and the ash seemed to have been mostly graded. Maybe a couple inches deep in spots? We were rolling gravel bikes with 40s but road bike with 28s would have been not much different. It was very close to dark by the time we got to it, so my recollection is mostly that it was not an issue.
 
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