Back in November when Bruce and I rode the Solvang Prelude, Serbrina and I started noticing tandems. I’d always been interested in them, but I didn’t know if she’d consider it. At the Prelude we saw a lot of couples riding tandems so we thought it might be something we’d like to try. We searched and searched and were lucky to find a used KHS Tandemania on craigslist right by our house. Now that we had our tandem, it was time to start looking for a ride to do. We found the Tour de Palm Springs and decided to sign up for the 10 Mile ride as our maiden event.
I know, 10 miles isn’t very far, but riding the tandem is different experience. We had already taken the tandem out for a couple rides, but riding in a crowd was going to be a new experience. As it turned out, the 10 Mile ride went out on the course with the 5 mile ride, which was filled with kids. I knew we’d be dodging many road obstacles.
We got out to Palm Springs early and headed over to the registration tent. As we stopped to check in I heard a hissing sound coming from the rear tire. Nuts! We just got here! Turns out that one of the previous owners had drilled out the valve stem hole on the rims from Presta to Schraeder. They didn’t do a good job and there was a burr that took out the tube. At least it was easy to find. The good folks at Incycle were selling goods and performing basic mechanical help. Incycle is one of my local shops, so it was nice to see familiar faces so far away from home. They were able to clean up the hole and get us back on the road in no time. I picked up added an extra tube to our kit just in case and we made our way to the start.
We made our way the start and waited, and waited, and waited. We were pretty early in getting there, and even with the flat we still had some time to kill. So we took some pics of each other and my in-laws.
As we started to pedal I quickly realized that I had forgotten to shift to an easy gear after getting the flat fixed. So as we pushed off we couldn’t get enough momentum and swerved to the side and had to stop. I almost took out a little girl next to us. I had been worried about the kids, turned out that they had to look out for us! Oh well, a little more push on the pedals and a quick gear change had us on the road. Once on the street we quickly started passing people and dodging kids. We were kickin’ ass on that tandem. The in-laws had left before us, so we tried to catch them, and did about 1.5 miles down the road. We missed a turn somewhere and by the time we made it back on the course we were behind the in-laws again. We didn’t realize it though, so we stopped at the rest stop and waited for them for a little while. After some time we just got back on the course and made our way back to the start, where they were there waiting for us.
We had a great time on the ride, and we are both looking forward to doing another ride. Next time, we’ll be doing the 25 miler though. I know we can do it. On the drive home we stopped in Cabazon to check out the dinosaurs and Hadley’s for some nuts. I hadn’t been to the dinosaurs since I was a kid so it was fun to see them again.