Strolling Amok

Pops goes on tour.

Archive for the category “E-Bike Pack Mule”

State of the Intrepid – E-Bike Carrier System

The Evelo Aurora cannot be carried by a top-tube carrier, so a wheel hoop carrier is called for.

The Evelo Aurora cannot be carried by a top-tube carrier, so a wheel hoop carrier is called for.

The Hollywood Racks HR1450E Sport Rider SE2 2-Bike e-bike carrier that I use at the front of the truck has required about as much attention as a new refrigerator/freezer. Once you yank the anti-rattle handle that keeps it tight in your hitch receiver a few times during the first month, that’s about it for “maintenance”. I’ve already covered this carrier’s features on my Evelo Test Mule page, so I’ll pretty much keep to usage effects over the last two years.

The wheel hoops are easy to adjust to fit different sizes of bike. I've reversed the rear pair to better support my BOB bike trailer.

The wheel hoops are easy to adjust to fit different sizes of bike. I’ve reversed the rear pair to better support my BOB bike trailer.

The Hollywood carrier supports the bike at the wheels, and the hoops can be quickly adjusted from side to side in order to accommodate various bike wheelbases. You just loosen a large knob, slide a hoop, and retighten. For my purposes, final adjustment required some finesse, so that the bike’s cranks would clear the vertical tube and also center between the truck’s headlamps. Two height-adjustable hooks (of which I use only one) drape over the bike’s main tube. Adjustment is instantaneous thanks to a simple squeeze lever at each Read more…

A Busy Weekend

A tree, just like any other tree, only long-dead.

A tree, just like any other tree, only long-dead.

One thing that had conveniently skipped my mind is that although the Overland Expo is great, the following weekend may have a team roping competition to watch, but it also brings hordes of holiday campers to Mormon Lake.

The area where I was camped had some very, very big pines downed long ago, most falling in the same direction, as if a storm had blown them over long ago.

The area where I was camped had some very, very big pines downed long ago, most falling in the same direction, as if a storm had blown them over long ago.

The lower area where I was pretty much filled up, and a parade of fifth-wheel toyhaulers began making their way up the Read more…

One Day Evelo E-Bike Sale

Here's mine.

Here’s mine, prior to the transformation.

Here’s the short and sweet version. If you’ve been seriously contemplating getting yourself an Evelo e-bike, the Aurora model being the basis for the Awesome Strolling Amok E-Bike Pack Mule, you now have a troublesome decision to make. Keep saving in a methodical fashion or, ready or not, save yourself some significant money.

“Cyber Monday”, today, from start to finish, the deals ramp up, depending upon how much money you spend.

  • $2,500 or more nets $375 off (coupon code CM375 at checkout),
  • $3,000 or more returns $450 (coupon code CM450 at checkout),
  • and $4,000 or more discounts $600 – plus a lock, pannier bag, and multi-tool (coupon code CM600 at checkout).

All of these earn a 2-year warranty, which extends the standard 18-month one. The coupon codes are the key to the whole thing and are fully explained on Evelo’s sale day welcome page here. I won’t get credited with referring your purchase via that link, but that’s okay. The important thing is that you save some serious dough if you’re already planning on acquiring one, or if you have some kinky either/or brand comparison where a lower price would swing the choice. Of course, you also have the option of going there through my own affiliate link or the Evelo logo on the right side of every page here, and simply entering in the appropriate discount code to do exactly the same thing. But at midnight tonight, those discounts go comatose, so don’t fiddle around too long.

If you already own an Evelo of some sort, like me, join me in grousing and whining. If I’d had such an opportunity when I got mine, I’d have saved a neat bundle, making the cost of the big motor and NuVinci 360 gearless hub hurt less. If you don’t own one or your significant other is making covetous noises, the sale prices make it possible to include such options that you might not normally be able to swing. If you want to read an evaluation of those options, you can go to my Pack Mule Page and saw your way through it, or breeze through Evelo’s guide to electric bicycles. I wouldn’t normally post this type of promotional stuff, but this is another one of those things where if I didn’t, someone out there might have wished I did. So here ya go.

“All About E-Bikes” Resource Online

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This is just an informational post for those of you who think of e-bikes and their variations as mysterious black boxes, making the decision of what to get or even whether to get seem overly confusing.

Evelo has recently released their Complete Electric Bike Buyers Guide online. It’s a non-gritty, informative overlook of what’s available, and why. Written for those who are non-conversant in Geek, it’s a pleasant and informative read. Naturally, being an Evelo publication, it just happens to include and explain those features which Evelo’s e-bikes have, too. And of course, by the end of the book, you’re funneled onto a page that shows off their various models. Can’t blame them for that.

With eleven short chapters, it makes for a fairly brief and complete read that I think will help people who want to know more about e-bikes in general, rather than have to gather it by rubbing up against one Google search result after another. Sure, it pushes e-bikes as the savior of mankind, but that’s because Americans are way, way behind both Europe and China in their e-bike acceptance and utilization, and always will be.

That’s because of both attitude and logistics. NYC, Evelo’s hometown, has even banned all e-bikes, in that same “magic demon” spirit with which it greeted the arrival of the horseless carriage over a century ago. Fortunately, they represent the exception rather than the vanguard of incremental urban progress. U.S. cities and towns have long chased growth in such a way as to separate and distance residences from businesses, making automobile ownership nearly mandatory for employment.

Still, some younger urbanites have made an effort to buck this trend, and have located themselves within biking distance of work or school. The American Dream of suburban home and car, along with the expenses and frustrations of same in the nightmare of commuting, have opened up a viable market for e-bikes. Between those and recreational riders, Evelo’s guide is a help to understand what the e-bike option is all about. The above link takes you to the first page in sequence, though a link at the upper right of the Guide page called “All Chapters” allows you to see an index so that you can pick through only those parts that you’re most interested in. It’s worth a look. Have fun!

Return of Evelo Explorations

Though your attention is naturally concentrated on the trail itself, it pays to stop and look around!

Though your attention is naturally concentrated on the trail itself, it pays to stop and look around!

[Caution for cellular data users: this post contains a heap of photos, and although they are all low-resolution pics, those readers on more restricted cellular data plans may want to wait for a WiFi hotspot before clicking on the “more” link that pulls down the whole post.]

Today’s post is about what I saw in Green River, Wyoming as I went further along a trail that I had originally hiked along. I include these posts because, well, I spend time exploring on my Aurora e-bike, and getting out there in one fashion or another is what it’s all about. Since I don’t do postcard scenic masterpieces or flower closeups, what I saw, you see. This trip meandered along miles of up and down, and I arrived back at camp both Read more…

Revenge of Evelo Exploration

Sunset, and the full moon is riz.

Sunset, and the full moon is riz.

This is just a post about a 24-hour period, a nice sunset and view into the valley, followed by rampaging vermin at 2 in the morning. Ahhh, nature! A hastily-deployed trap got him sometime later, since the worst thing that can happen is for the critter to return home and tell his buddies about the bonanza. If that happens, it’s party time.

I reviewed the Defiant’s Vermin Defense System after breakfast, and determined that since the high frequency repellers were Read more…

Evelo Explorations

High over Green River, Wyoming are loose strings of trails that are great to explore on a suitable bike.

High over Green River, Wyoming are loose strings of trails that are great to explore on a suitable bike.

Given some delightful weather and a mild breeze, it looked like a good a time as any to discover an alternate way to get to town, other than Wild Horse Canyon Road, also referred to as White Mountain Road on some devices. I figured that an alternate would probably be preferable, since passing vehicles produce huge plumes of enveloping dust on the main dirt road in. A recent pass by a grader on the nicely-graveled top section has made the surface so loose that biking it takes considerable care and power – you’re better off riding the wide dirt ditch on either side.

At this elevation, that look leftward is quite a treat.

At this elevation, that look leftward is quite a treat.

My online map of the area showed that there was a trail branch that dropped right into the middle of town. The Defiant is encamped right at a trail intersection leading to it. Considering that a vehicle occasionally turns in to head down it or return, it seemed like a possibility. But it wasn’t a certainty. Both GPS and online map accuracy is Read more…

Scouting Campsites

Care to camp here? It's a camping circle, not a trail.

Care to camp here? It’s a camping circle, not a trail. (These are all cellphone pics.)

Yesterday, I decided to hop onto the Aurora e-bike and see what other campsites existed, and how they may relate to the Defiant’s peculiarities. The first time I came here, it was immediately before sunset and the pickin’s looked pretty limited. I had driven about a mile further than where I ultimately settled – where I am now – and almost had some excitement as darkness settled in. A trail branch I could use to back into and turn around with was slightly downhill and surprised me with deep sand and pea gravel. It took 4WD and considerable wheelspin to ease the 7,000-pound tub forward again. I considered myself fortunate to find a workable space at all.

This is just one direction in a rather large campsite that is not quite accessible to the Defiant, but would be to anything else.

This is just one direction in a rather large campsite that is not quite accessible to the Defiant, but would be to anything else.

Now, wandering the same trail in broad daylight, it didn’t seem like the same place at all, apart from the cozy familiarity of its brutal washboard surface. There are actually many, many campsites, several of which are fully adaptable to the Defiant’s needs. Accessibility or slope carve off Read more…

Picky Pioneering

You don't see too many of these. These were on the leg from Pine Bluff to Cheyenne, Wyoming.

You don’t see too many of these. These were on the leg from Pine Bluff to Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Today was a short jaunt that turned otherwise, but in the end, I’m all set up in camp at Vedauwoo in the Medicine Bow National Forest, solar panels out and everything humming along. The cell data signal at my location is on-again-off-again at two out of five stars – and that’s with the amplifier –  but it works most of the time.

The day began with a drive to a Walmart in Cheyenne, made more interesting by having an incorrect address on their website. But, I made it there after some steering wheel gyrations and stocked up on fresh produce, eggs, bacon and so on. From there I keyed in the GPS coordinates generously volunteered by Flybiker. The impressive 3,000′ climb during the entire trip, plus a headwind, knocked the fuel display down to 8.0 MPG. Now I know what the title for the film High Plains Drifter refers to. There was a warning sign that the “Happy Jack Bridge” was out of commission until the 18th, but where was that? That was the exit I wanted, but where was this bridge?

Once I made it there, I found out that the bridge was the connector over I-80, and its sudden absence eliminated any chance of heading back east toward Vedauwoo. Oh well. What a great, wide trail! I was impressed that the Read more…

The War on E-Bikes

Cool! A new way to kill yourself!

Cool! A new way to kill yourself!

Reader Michael recently sent me a link to a rather spectacular e-bike, a high performance, low production European model capable of 40+ MPH. This e-bike by Trifecta boasts 4,000 watts, an 85-pound weight despite plenty of aluminum and carbon fiber (it’s mainly the battery), a 14-speed automatic transmission, and a price tag starting at $25,000 smackers. Yep, you read that right. Many one-off e-bikes have been built with even more power and even higher top speeds, but the Trifecta differs in that it’s no one-trick pony. Seeing this Lamborgini on two wheels prompted some thought, which in my case is always an invitation to mental chaos.

Federal law here defines e-bikes as common bicycles, as long as they have electric motors no bigger than 750 watts and top speeds of no more than 20 MPH on flat ground. And Federal law trumps all state and local laws. But you wouldn’t know that by looking at laws and ordinances that have been passed in some jurisdictions.

My Evelo Aurora helps me get up those long grades. My only potential lethality with it is pedaling hard enough to give myself a heart attack.

My Evelo Aurora helps me get up those long grades. My only potential lethality with it is pedaling hard enough to give myself a heart attack.

Look at New York, for example. New York State has banned all e-bikes, period. In that state, their motors disqualify them as bicycles, and because there is no provision to register them as motor vehicles, they are legally Read more…

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