With my Pashley Princess Sovereign arriving (hopefully) this week, I've been very excited! But I'm also fearing that she will not be the best choice for longer, hillier rides, such as my commute to work. The ride to work is nearly 20 km, which is not bad in itself, but the ride home would be mostly uphill. Doable, I'm sure (Katie Doncaster comes to mind), but I'm nonetheless looking for something lighter, zippier, and with a larger gear range for hills.
Enter Betty Foy...
Not only is she gorgeous, she's perfect for filling in the gap the Pashley would leave. For now, I'll spare the technical and aesthetic details (if and when I end up getting her I'll post a detailed review), but suffice it to say that she's an incredibly well built machine.
I could very well forget about the Pashley and just get Betty, but I love Pashley for her all-weather durability (hub gears, hub brakes, fully enclosed chaincase, etc.). I like that I won't have to worry about my pants getting caught in the chain or getting my leg scraped. I don't want to worry about derailleurs while riding in the snow. She'll be perfect for shopping excursions and just riding about the city (minus the big hills). Plus, the Pashley is also an incredibly beautiful bike. As you can probably tell, I'm a sucker for feminine details.
I'd like to see how things go with the Pashley first, then make a decision on whether to get Betty (although I think my mind is already made up... I can't imagine her not in my life!). Keven at Rivendell Bicycle Works has been extremely helpful in giving me ideas on how to customize Betty and I think I have the specs almost narrowed down. Basically, she'll be much like the above pictured bike (Brooks B17S saddle, cork grips, bar end shifters, Albatross bars) but with fenders and a rear rack. Stay tuned!