Cycle touring, whether it be just for the weekend or long haul can sound so glamorous, especially when you are chatting to your friends and your conversation starts with “This one time in Albania…” And then there are the photos, don’t they look amazing. Forget about the fact that when it’s rough the last thing you want to do is take your camera out.
Enter Suzie and Skee who obviously didn’t watch my disclaimer video.
I’ve always prided myself in the ability to (for the lack of a better word) sucker my friends into following me on ridiculous adventures, whether it be convincing my brother to run the 60km Kepler Track in a day with no training (video), brain ninja’ing my girlfriend into switching from marathon running to cycle touring (and thinking it was her idea), or using what has become known as “Jared time and distance” for explaining that its not that far to go.
May 21st 2011 – Wet but happy and no clue what the afternoon is about to bring.
So when Skee (Andrew Godlewski) rang me in early may May of this year asking about bikes for him and his girlfriend Suzie (Suzie Heibel) I immediately offered to take them away on a weekend ride.
“It won’t be that hard. You guys will be fine.”
May 21st 2011 – What I call a slight detour
I’m not going to go into their first trip with me in detail other than to say that they got broken in “Jared style” to the point where I actually felt just a wee bit bad.
Whatever doesn’t kill ya makes you stronger, or stupider. One of the two.
May 21st 2011 – Road, if you could call it that got a little rough
Since Suz and Skee’s sink or swim initiation to the sport of cycle touring the two have jumped right back in the pool, going on numerous ridiculous rides with me and doing their own, including a 4-day adventure.
Oct 8th 2011 – Suzie killing the 920 meter Seoraksan climb early in the morning
Just this past weekend they were away on a cycle adventure and got a good dose of what happens when the whether doesn’t play ball. Yet, the next day when I bring up the idea of a hard weekend in the mountains in two weeks time there was no hesitation to sign up.
I can’t wait to see where there cycling legs will take them, and who will have what it takes to follow them on adventures into the mountains of Korea and beyond.
May 22nd 2011 – Skee after a climb to 850 meters on his very first weekend cycle trip
Links to Skee’s Maps of Their 4-day Ride
Katie Eichten’s Blog Comments About the Weekend
Then there was the weekend Jared and I invited two of our friends along so they could have firsthand experience as to what it is Jared and I do every weekend. They were very new to the sport of cycle touring (much like myself) but they had the motivation and spirit to throw all hands to the wind and just go with what we threw at them. The first day consisted of constant rain, up huge mountains, and a “Jared detour” thrown in for fun. Through it all, both of them were extremely good sports and ready for anything else we could throw at them. We ended up cutting our day a bit shorter than expected but it was not due to our two newbies. More to the fact that it was raining, we were wet, getting hungry, and just ready to call it a day. We spent that night how we spend most nights after a day of cycling, at a restaurant eating so much wonderful food and enjoying some much deserved soju. Unfortunately that day’s ride had taken its toll on Suzie and was unable to ride all the way back to the car the next day. She caught a bus back and the rest of us powered our way over some mountains back to the car.
It was a fun weekend, even though it hadn’t gone as planned. And the two “newbies” were no longer newbies. They earned their big kid wheels that weekend. They have since been cycling with Jared and I a couple times and have plans to do join the crazy world that is cycle touring.
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