Ode to My Vintage Cannondale Hybrid Bike

I’m not too keen on the title Vintage Cannondale Hybrid Bike. It’s hard to believe that something I own should be called vintage. I guess being part of the Becoming Elli community means that I may well own something that is considered to be vintage.

Recently, I rode my old, original bike and fell in love with it again. I rode on a lovely bicycle trail, the Kokosing Gap Trail, that was paved and flat and very scenic. It was  a great ride. I noticed how comfortable my bike was.

It has straight handle bars, the brakes are easy to use and reach, and the gear shifter was also easy to use and reach. I never felt like I had to move my hands or position to brake or change gears.

Also, I have a gel seat on that bike and it’s very comfortable.

My Life with the Vintage Cannondale Hybrid Bike

My husband bought me this bike in 1993. I suspect it must have been a Christmas present because I didn’t ride it much before I found out that I was pregnant. My son was born in 1994, which is how I’m pretty sure what year it was.

It was an expensive bike for someone who really wasn’t a bike rider. At that time, Cannondales were made in Pennsylvania by hand. That was their big claim for quality. My husband was big believer in buying the best that you could afford though he also loved finding deals.

I rode that bike a lot while my son was growing up because we’d go on bike rides together. I remember one year for Mother’s Day we rode our bikes across town to go to the library. My son was young enough then that it was a big adventure to ride that far. When we got to the library, we discovered they were closed for the holiday. Wow. We were disappointed, for sure. We rode back into town and found an ice cream shop and had ice cream. A good bike memory for sure.

My husband passed away in 2011 when my son was 16. He was driving by then and wasn’t really interested in riding bikes with his mother. The bike sat in the garage for a long time. Finally, I took the bike to a shop and had it cleaned up and new tires put on and made sure it was safe to ride but I still didn’t ride it much. However, I couldn’t get rid of it because I had a lot of emotional history with it.

Getting More Bikes

In 2018, I began to think about maybe doing a triathlon. Everyone said my bike was too heavy for a race so when my brother said he was going to get rid of his Raleigh road bike, I asked for it. I had that bike cleaned and serviced and have ridden it much more often. I know this is silly but I struggle to remember how to shift the gears and the brakes feel harder to use.

Raleigh bicycle

Now I also have a tri-bike. I have it set up in my home gym and have never ridden it outside.

Reconnecting with My Bike

When I got on my Cannondale bike recently and rode on the bike trail, I felt so happy. It was such a pleasure to ride and I had all of that history in my mind as I rode. So, while my vintage Cannondale bike might be too heavy for road riding and might be really old technology bike-wise, I’m keeping it. I think it will be the bike I use on my local bike and hike trail because I like it. That’s all that matters, right?

Vintage Cannondale Hybrid Bike

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