Before I get into the abovementioned topic, let me throw in a little technical IPhone Nugget. There's a new IPhone Accessible GPS APP out there called Ariadne GPS. If you're up on your Greek Mythology, (Which I'm not), you'll quickly realize that Ariadne was the one who helped Theseus come out of the minotaur's labyrinths by giving him a ball of string which he could follow to retrace his steps. He repaid her by abandoning her on an island. Ah, wasn't he sweet?
Anyway, you can satiate your Greek lore at the following link:
Oh yeah, the app. For $2.99, it's worth trying out. Why not visit the Fred's Head blog to find out more about Aridne GPS. Don't forget to come back.
There's also a podcast which goes through all of the features of the app and even gives you a live demonstration. You can download the podcast here:
Back to our main entry:
If you found yourself in a small town in Manitoba called Ste. Anne Des Chênes in the 1980s-90s, chances are you would have seen me riding on my own mountain bike. I'd either be following my chatty friends and/or family/relatives. Alternatively, I'd be tearing up the trails created by dirt bikes all on my own. Sure, I got lost a few times, but it was tons of fun. Since I now live in the big city, riding a bike independently is no longer an option. So I opted for the next best thing; tandem cycling.
I actually experienced tandem cycling at around age 14, when My dad took it upon himself to build a tandem from 2 old bikes he had. My uncles were professional welders, so the project took a day to complete. It was a simple contraption with a single gear, which has become popular again, oddly enough, for city commuters. It was fairly affective in Manitoba since it's so flat. Anyway, I had lots of adventure on that bike and rode it with various people until it literally fell apart.
When I moved to Toronto I kept hearing of this club called the Toronto Trailblazers. it took me a few years before I finally decided to approach them, as the urge to ride again was quite strong. I've been with the group now for over 4 years and have also spent 3 of those years on the board serving on various positions. All right enough of this reminiscing. All I'm saying is that tandem cycling is fun and definitely something you should try. Let me list a few resources that might help you start your Endeavour.
If you live in the GTA, you can join the Toronto TrailBlazers tandem cycling club. Find out more here:
If you live in Colorado, you can join Eye Cycle. Their web page is found at:
I'd like to thank Theresa Montano for giving me the opportunity of cycling with the group last month. It was lots of fun.
And, oh look, she was in the news.
As you can see from the video, tandem cycling is quite enjoyable and rewarding.
This following link is a directory of tandem cycling clubs from around the world. Not sure how up to date it is, but it'll give you a good idea of what's out there:
What if you don't have a club in your area? No worries, find yourself an eager captain/pilot and you're half way there. Next, you need to buy yourself a ride. I would suggest trolling Kijiji, Craigslist or even Ebay. The trick is to try to buy a used bike in order to diminish the cost. You need to dip your toes in before you start financing your addiction, ehr, I mean pastime. Alternatively, some bike shop rentals will have tandem bikes in their fleet. Rent one for a day and see if you like it, before you go for the big purchase.
Once you start this process, you'll notice there is a lot of information out there. If you have any questions, I would direct you to this wonderful resource.
There's an email list out there called Blind Cycling, run by my bike enthusiast friend Lori Miller. It's a low traffic list and all bike topics are welcome. You can subscribe to the list by sending a blank message to:
For information on tandem cycling history and common terms used within the sport, visit this link:
For a concise explanation of the whole blind tandem experience and an interview of a blind stoker, visit this link:
Well, that's it for this fun filled blog entry. Hopefully, this has given you a starting point for your tandem biking adventure.
For more accessibility blog content, all in one handy interface, visit: