This past Saturday Bob suggested that we go look at bicycles. My current bicycle is a 26″ Huffy ladies bicycle that we purchased in July 2006. My agility is not the same as it was 10+ years ago (or even the same as it was a year or two ago!). I can’t step into my bicycle. I have to swing my leg over the seat to mount and dismount. Doing so causes me hip pain, as I mount and dismount. I had been looking at low-step step through bicycles online. I didn’t want to purchase a bicycle on line, though, as I felt it necessary to ride the bicycle to determine whether or not it met my physical limitations and was comfortable to ride.
Our first stop was at Walmart to see what, if any, step through bicycles were available. We found one step through bicycle. The step through portion of the bicycle was still too high off the ground. I couldn’t lift my leg high enough to step through.
Our next stop would be in Jamestown, but we were hungry. We stopped at Sheetz for a light lunch. We each purchased a meat and cheese package with beverage. We ate our lunch, at Sheetz, at an outside table.
After lunch we drove to Hollyloft Ski & Bike, located in Jamestown NY. Upon arrival at the bike shop, I asked if they had any step through bicycles. The salesman, whose name was Tom, showed us a bicycle manufactured by Specialized. In the showroom I determined that I could comfortably step through and mount / dismount the bicycle. The salesman suggested that I take the bicycle for a test drive. Tom fitted me for a helmet. I have never worn a helmet, while riding a bicycle. I rode the bicycle, first, in the parking lot. Tom watched. When I completed my ride around the parking lot, Tom adjusted the seat to fit me.
It was time for a longer test drive. There is a dead end street next to the bike shop. I rode the bicycle to the end of that street, changing gears along the way. The bicycle has seven gears, with gear 1 being easier than gear 1 on my current bicycle. I liked how I sat upright on this bicycle, how the gears operated by the click of a lever, and the big tires that seemed to give me more balance.
You guessed it. We purchased a Specialized Low Roll bicycle. We accessorized the bicycle with fenders, rack, mirror and a computer. The computer is about the size of a watch. It records trip statistics–average and maximum speed, time spent on trip, and miles ridden. I now have a clock in front of me, while riding. I can erase each trip’s statistics. The odometer, however, maintains the total miles ridden. Oh, I purchased a bike helmet as well. We had to return to Warren for the bike carrier. While we were gone, the bike shop installed the accessories and tuned up the bike. Great service all around!
We returned to Hollyloft and picked up the bicycle around 3:30 pm. We carried Bob’s bicycle with us from Warren.
From Hollyloft we drove to Allegany State Park near Salamanca NY. We entered the park via the Quaker Lake entrance. Our first stop was at the Quaker General Store, where we ate a light dinner. Bob had a BLT wrap; my dinner was a hot dog.
After dinner we drove to the Red House Lake Beach parking lot.
We rode around Red House Lake (a distance of approximately 3 miles).
I believe the temperature, which was in the mid to upper 80s, the hot sunshine, and what I wore to ride caused me to be grounded a couple times during our ride. I wore jeans and a t-shirt. I believe I got overheated. I felt weak, faint. I was breathing heavier than normal, finding it difficult to catch my breath. My chest hurt too, although that may have been caused by indigestion.
This wasn’t the best ride, but I do really LOVE my new bicycle!