Monday, April 6, 2009

Cross Country Insight

Readers of this blog who are cyclists probably already know about "", the bicycle tourist's online journal resource. I like to skip over there occasionally and live my cross country bike tour dreams through the real life adventures of others. The photographs and journal-writing skills of some of these folks can be as motivating as they are entertaining.

I've been reading a journal from a guy who rode his bike from San Francisco to Boston. He stayed in hotels every night. No camping. In these journals of long distance or cross country cyclists, it is common for them to have some kind of final entry describing lessons learned, touring tips, or celebratory remarks. It is also very common from them to have a final entry describing some profound life lesson or spiritual insight that they gained. Live every day to the fullest. People are basically good. America is still great. I now know that I can do anything. That kind of thing. This guy's remarks are especially profound...and amusing...

While sitting in the nice comfortable passenger seats for three and one-half days on the 3 Amtrak trains I took to get home to California from Boston, I'd pull out the laptop every now and then in an effort to write a few profound final thoughts. It has been more than a week since my bike ride across the United States has ended. You'd think by now my thoughts would have crystallized allowing me to sum it all up into a succinct, yet profound statement about bicycle touring, life, and the cosmos.

I drew a blank every time. The creative juices have dried up. I was like Stephen King with writers block. I'd write a few words, and then hit the delete key. Maybe it's not really that complex at all.

I like to ride my bike. I'd ride my bike every day, all day, if I could.

I could, and I did.

That is basically it on the profound thoughts and insights.

For those who are interested, here is his journal.

I have my first multi-day bicycle tour planned for this fall and am terribly excited. If this tour goes only slightly better than horrible, I'll be restlessly scheming how to step off the corporate merry-go-round for a few weeks until I can have my own cross country cycling adventure.


  1. Just last month I decided to set a date for my own cross-country trip. A dream of mine since the late 70's. That's why I bought a touring bike last year. It got me one step closer. If everything works out I'll be doing the ACA's Trans-Am route starting in June of 2011. If I can swing it financially it will happen in 2010. My wife thinks I can do it next year, but I don't think I can save enough money by then. I don't make much.

  2. When you do your multi-day tour are you going to leave from your front door or fly somewhere. I'm looking forward to hearing how you plan your trip.

  3. Doug, it's great that you've already made the decision. Commitment is key. I'm looking forward to hearing more about your preparations.

    Myles, the plan is to ride the Katy Trail in Missouri in about 4-5 days in October. Me and a buddy are planning to drive up, ride it, and drive back. Before then I'm hoping to try a 2-3 day door-to-door north Texas try-out tour.