Bicycle Commuter Profile: Spencer Morse

Bicycle Commuter Profile

Name: Spencer Morse
Location: Madison, WI
Started bike commuting: 2005
Commute distance (one way): 7 miles

Describe your commute: My commute is a mix of bike/pedestrian paths along Lake Mendota, on-street bike lanes, and bike “routes” (share the road signs). Occasionally, I’ll extend the commute to catch some extra hills or scenery. Winters in Madison can get quite cold, but with the right mix of clothing and equipment, riding is quite enjoyable and invigorating.

Describe your bike and accessories: I ride a Salsa Casseroll 2011 frameset with some 2009 Casseroll parts and the rest has been mixed and matched to my taste. I run a Schmidt Sondelux hub running Supernova lights. The Salsa has a front rack (which I changed to a Nitto), and I use a Tubus Carry Ti rear rack for panniers. VO hammered fenders and Brooks leather saddle and accessories round out the mix. I like the Schwalbe Marathon Winter tires for the snowy months.

What bit of advice would you like to share with new bike commuters?: Start small. Ride just once a week during mild weather. If possible, find someone or a group who commutes in your area to show you some routes. Slowly work your way up to a couple days per week, with small additions to your wardrobe and bike accessories to accommodate inclement weather. You’ll find that you feel so good after commuting by bike that you can forge through something as silly as “bad” weather and enjoy yourself.

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4 Responses to “Bicycle Commuter Profile: Spencer Morse”

  • Michael says:

    Year ’round cycling in Madison is really improving each year, as the trail system develops more and more. Nice, useful mud flap for that Lakeshore Path! There is even news of a “Badger Den” restaurant in the works accessible only by walking or bicycling one of the paths.

  • Spencer says:

    I’ve heard of the bike-path-accessible restaurant. SUCH a great idea. On the SW commuter path, I believe, by the golf course. Hopefully the improvements continue, given the recent deletion of $2M worth of funding from the biennial budget.

  • Jay in Tel Aviv says:

    I’m thinking about building a Casseroll, so I hope you won’t mind answering a few questions answer a few questions.
    What size is yours? How tall are you? PBH?
    Why did you switch the rack?


  • Spencer says:

    I’m 5’8″ (172cm). I’ve never measured my PBH. This is the 54cm (54.5cm TT length). I changed the front rack because 1) a good friend offered it to me and I like the aesthetics, and 2) it has a cleaner light mount on the road side of the bike (as opposed to the curb side). The Nitto rack and the Salsa rack are essentially identical in design, other than the light/accessory mounts. The Nitto is also slightly lighter. Hope that helps!

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