My riding, what I want to do with it and what excites me has changed a bit over the last year. I’ve always been interested in ultra-endurance, with Logan to Jackson being the first event to pop up on my radar. A year later I was exposed to Randonneuring by my friend Theo. I was deep into racing at the time, but not so much that I couldn’t respect what he was doing. Tales of riding through the night, sleeping on park benches for an hour or so before starting off again and riding into work twenty minutes late. I love the idea, but remember telling another co-worker that “I could do that stuff when I’m old and slow.”
Now I’m only a year or so older and all I can focus on is long rides linking unknown roads and traversing states. The idea that a ride would never end, or at the very least stretch out for longer than it once had isn’t a new one to me. I remember writing in my early journals and telling my first therapist that the appeal of riding was that I could keep running from the things that haunted me. The change in that relationship – from running to engaging – has been ridden to death on these pages, so I’ll let you troll the archives if you’re interested in reading more.
The change happened over the course of my exploring the Olympic Peninsula and the grounds just shy of Steven’s Pass, all roads that have been ridden by riders better than my self, but they were new to me, which is what mattered.
Now I find myself digging deeper into using the bike as a mode of exploration and what I find gets me more excited. I find videos, I arrange paying magazine gigs talking to people who are doing that type of riding, and I lustfully look at bikes that I once scoffed at, and I sit in bed starting at google maps trying to determine if a road is gravel or paved, trying to link unknown with known for a maybe renegade event out to Port Townsend.
Whatever happens next will continue to push me. I’m going to keep an open mind.