Atypically clear weather afforded a great bikeride yesterday. A handful of gravel miles and a dozen and a half on pavement. I took a brief detour at the local elk forage field to ride in the muddy ruts, over fallen branches, and on a stretch of "road" that would make a 2wd automobile pilot nervous. The Campeur was delightful in this context. Previously mentioned toeverlap aside, the slow-speed handling was no problem, the gearing was sufficiently low, and the tires were wide and grippy enough. I have them at relatively low pressure per Jan Heine's suggestions). It really felt quite a bit like my old hardtail Haro mountain bike; just a tractor trudging over the obstacles and through the mud. The drop handlebars take a little getting used to in this context, and I wonder if I should put my cyclocross interrupters on... but I was able to get around just fine. Very encouraging!
Chart from Jan Heine's site, click image to visit
I still have not been able to test the bike under load, eagerly awaiting delivery of racks. In the meantime, I might try with the bike trailer + kid, which will at least give me an idea of how effective the low gears are. As it is, riding 20 miles with no luggage is a breeze and the gearing is sufficient that the modest hills on my road (which are not fun on my other bikes) are really almost enjoyable.
I will have to return with a camera to show the bike in action, but this is the elk forage on a dry summer day
Over time I will be talking about other methods of kidhauling and practical cycling, not just this new bike, but right now this bike is taking most of my spare time, so there you have it.