I will be assimilated by the borg? It's way too late for that. It's already happened.
And while the 26cc friction drive is a good idea, Silverbear, I'm a happy time lover and I don't expect that to change. The compromise that I'll no doubt reach is to build another china girl and just make sure to pedal bike about 3 days out of 4. I've probably got that kind of will power. And I've got an unused engine and kit sitting in the attic plus spare bikes. Sooo.....
Still, there's an advantage to commuting by pedal bike for me. I get to climb through this. I wouldn't care to push a motored bike up this path.
Down low 02.jpg
Near the top.jpg
Here's the layout. I live on a bluff overlooking a river. I've never found out exactly how high above river level I am. But it's a couple hundred feet anyway. I work at river level. So going home, of course, is my uphill climb. There's uphill and downhill in both directions, really. But on average going home is the more uphill.
There are three roads that'll get me up. The oldest one is the steepest. I know it was around before the automobile. Yet I can't imagine a horse pulling a cart or wagon up that. Maybe it was a footpath. There's a second road that's not as steep. But it's difficult, nonetheless. The third road is 'shallower'. It's not very hard to ride. But it's a workout, all the same. And it takes forever.
Or...I can just keep on going downstream at river level for a while and then strike this footpath that shows in these photos. It does five switchbacks up the bluff, through the woods. It gets me to the top perhaps a half mile from my home. It's pretty and it's peaceful. I don't have one car after another zooming by.
Near this path is something quite interesting. There's a set of concrete stairs going up the bluff in a straight line. They're ancient. Still climb-able, though they suffer from a severe lack of maintenance. I even pushed my bike up alongside while I climbed them once. But I don't think I'll do that very much. It was a lot of work. Way back when there was another village at the bottom of the bluff. Right on the river. At that point you could board a passenger boat that would take you either North to the county seat of the county across the river or South to our county seat. I suppose you could go further, though that might mean transferring to another boat. In any case, I'm sure those stairs were built for the use of people in my village. To get to and from the landing. That passenger boat has not operated in about a hundred years. The last I know of was 1911. Maybe it kept going after that. It probably did since it took a while longer for the auto to kill public trans like this. (Though public trans would be a misnomer in this case. That boat was privately owned.) Those stairs are likely to be a hundred years old. They could be older. Though I'd find that hard to believe. I'd expect more cracking and chipping than they've suffered. But maybe they were made out of super quality concrete. I suspect so anyway. While they're obviously very old, they're still in surprisingly good shape.
In any case, I feel pretty lucky to have a commute like this.