Spring has come to Central Texas! It was 78°F (25.5°C) and sunny today, a great day for a bike ride. I saw two members of my club head out on theirs just as I was leaving for yet another trip to the doctor. Oh, well.
The other day when I was cleaning my bike, I took two half-filled water bottles out of their cages and put them aside for the dishwasher. I’m not really good about hydrating on cool weather rides, but when it warms up, I tend to sweat easily, which reminds me to keep drinking. I try to take a swig every 10 to 15 minutes.
Even so, it seems to me that we don’t need a lot of water bottles. Two will do nicely, if I remember to wash them after every ride. Okay, four, if I decide to skip a day of washing.
But these days, water bottles are easy to come by. Lots of organized rides include a souvenir bottle in their goodie bags. When you rent a bike, the bike shop will throw in a bottle or two that you can keep. Ride sponsors have given me bottles for volunteering to work rides. We’ve got a cabinet reserved just for our bike ride water bottles, and I thought I’d empty it to see just what we have.
There are nine in the picture. We have two more I can’t account for at the moment. They take up a lot of space in that cabinet.
Some aren’t really very good as bike ride water bottles. That aluminum thing in the back right is awful. It has a screw top, so unless you’re stopped for a rest, you can’t take a drink while pedaling. The Monster.com bottle has a leaky top. I guess I’ll dump it. My wife, Pat, has a nice-looking Camelbak bottle with a sort of built-in straw. It looks high-tech, but doesn’t work very well. It’s missing from the picture, because she took it with her to a seminar today.
I didn’t even count the Camelbak hydration pack she owns, but never uses anymore.
Pat tends to favor large bottles, even though she rides shorter distances than I do. The Hill Country Ride for AIDS bottle is hers, as is the TCU Horned Frogs bottle — a souvenir for attending a conference at Texas Christian University.
Other bottles actually have some sentimental value. No kidding. The Outlaw Trail bottle in front is from my first century ride. The MS 150 bottle is from my ride there last year, and the clear bottle on the left is from a terrific vacation we took in Michigan two summers ago.
And yet, with all these bottles cluttering our cabinet, I’ll bet we’re pikers when it comes to collecting them. How many water bottles do you have? How many do you need?