Peninsula. He has worked at several other retail stores that carry bicycles and other outdoor gear, and has led backpacking, canoe, and kayak trips.
Chris purchased his 2014 Salsa Vaya 2 bicycle not long after he started working for Century Cycles at the beginning of the 2014 season.
Q. Why did you choose the Salsa Vaya 2?
A. I wanted a touring bike, and I like the idea of a steel bicycle frame for its durability and comfort. I wanted disc brakes because I'm a big guy, so I figured the extra stopping power won't hurt. I like the integrated brake/shift levers that the Shimano 105 drive train provides. A bonus was that I was able to get matching Salsa cargo racks.
Q. What other additions have you made to the bike?
A. I upgraded the handlebar tape to Lizard Skins as soon as I got it, swapped on a Terry saddle, and added three water bottle cages, and Planet Bike Cascadia full-coverage fenders. I use Ortlieb touring panniers, plus a waterproof Ortlieb handlebar bag and seat bag.
Q. Do you have any other upgrades planned?
A. I need a new headlight, and I'm thinking about a Brooks saddle.
Q. What bike-touring trips have you taken on it so far?
A. I did six bike tours in 2014. Four of them were Sub 24-Hour Overnights, one was a three-day trip from Peninsula to New Philadelphia and back, and another was one of my bucket list trips, the Great Allegheny Passage/C&O Canal Trail from Pittsburgh, PA to Washington, DC.
Q. What is the longest single-day ride you've done on the bike?
A. 89 miles, which was part of the New Philly trip. I hope to do a century some time this year.
Q. What touring plans do you have coming up?
A. Nothing set in stone yet, but I hope to do part or all of the Ohio to Erie Trail, and commute to work by bike more often.
Q. Any final thoughts on the bike?
A. I have not been disappointed with my choice. The Salsa Vaya is a comfortable, durable bike that handles heavy, heavy loads very, very well.