I wanted to take this time to give you a little more info on the bike itself.
This bike is a 2007 Jamis "Coda Sport". That's the brand name/model. It doesn't actually denote anything about the bike itself. This bike has a special place in my heart because its the very first bike I ever bought on my own, and its the bike that I used when I first started riding in DC.
This bike is considered a "hybrid", meaning its a mix of different styles-in this case a road bike & a mountain bike. It's light and nimble like a road bike, but has a "flat" handlebars (you'll see a picture soon) and can navigate obstacles like a mountain bike. In other words, this is an ideal bike for city riding. Pot holes & road debris are no problem.
The frame of this bike measures 17.5 inches. I'm 5'5" tall, so this frame is ideal for me. If you are around my height, you shouldn't have to do much adjustment (the saddle can always be moved higher or lower). However if you are very tall or very short, this might not be the bike for you.
Here's some better photos:
The bike itself: As I mentioned before, it comes with a rear rack (so you can transport stuff on it--you can use bungee cords to secure stuff on it, or you can purchase special bags that comes with either hooks or straps that you can attach to that rack). Also, fenders. The fenders are great because you won't get sprayed in the face/back with water & mud on those rainy days.
There are also "toe clips" attached to the pedals--these are straps that you can use to hold your foot onto the pedal. This helps you with getting more power when you pedal the bike. They can be removed if you don't want to use them. If you DO want to use them, I'm more than happy to show you how. You can just ignore them too, without having to remove them completely.
The bike also has a bottle "cage" (or holder, I don't know why they name these things the way they do). I can even throw in the bottle (I've got plenty).
The "flat" handlebar set-up. Comes with a bell, front light & front reflector. This style is different than "drop bars" which you would see on a standard road bike, like this:
These are drop-bars. Why the difference? With drop bars, you can get into different positions: you can use the top of the handlebar for easy riding, or hold onto the bottom bars for more aerodynamic fast riding. Unless you plan on doing any racing, the flat-style is perfectly fine & easy to use. In fact, I find it easier because you can use the brakes without having to move your hands first. The brakes are always immediately accessible with flat-bars.
Rear rack. Useful for carrying stuff. (Not seen, but included: rear red light).
I've used this bike for lots of stuff. I rode my first "Bike DC" event with it. My fiancé also learned how to bike in DC on it. I've ridden countless trails & city streets with it. I have no doubt you'll come to like it too.
Anyway, if you have specific questions about the bike, please feel free to email me. I'm happy to let you know whatever you like.
In other news, I went on another BicycleSPACE City Explorer's ride, and it was also awesome & showed me new routes & places that I've never been to before. This ride was called the "Wilson Bridge" ride. I've never even driven over that bridge, let alone rode over it. We ended up taking a route that went right by the Police Academy, which was super-useful to me since I always have trainings over there, and could never figure out how to get there by bike or how long it would take me. Now I know! We also ended up taking the Oxen Hill trail & riding up the hill, which brought some not-quite pleasant P.T. memories...
We ended up riding by National Harbor (another place I've wondered if its possible to bike to) and then over the Wilson bridge itself. Wow. That was really neat. I especially liked exploring underneath it, because they turned that space into a big park/recreation area. Very nifty. In the end, we ended up riding through DC, MD and VA, for a total of 26 miles. Not bad.
I didn't take very many photos because 1) it was a gloomy, dreary, wet day and pulling my phone out of my pocket was a pain and 2) I was extra tired because I had also ran the Jingle All the Way 8K earlier so I was lazy. I just wanted to ride.
The bridge, as seen from the scenic overlook:
Part of the park underneath: there's a basketball court, restrooms, and lots of open space.
National Harbor, way in the distance:
Historical facts about the area:
The route (you'll have to zoom-out to see the whole thing. I got tired of trying to get it to display correctly, argh):
View Larger Map
I can't wait for next week's ride!
(click on pictures to get a better look. I don't know why this stupid app makes them so blurry)