Wednesday, January 20, 2010

TOUR OF DISCOVERY 2010 ANNOUNCED

Rafael Giraldo, the south Florida teacher who cycled across America last summer, has announced the 2010 Tour of Discovery: Ride for the Republic. This year’s route will take in the original 13 Colonies and will once again focus on learning about America. Rafael will be joined this year by Jim Artis of Cycling Experiences as they leave Bar Harbor, Maine on their trip to Key West Florida. Jim introduced many of us to last year’s Tour through his extensive coverage of Giraldo’s efforts.


To see the ongoing development of this year’s Tour, visit Jim’s site Cycling Experiences.

Jim has been hard at work developing, enhancing, implementing, and refining the technological tools that will be used on this trip. Additionally, he is having Utah Trikes build him a special Quad Bike already named Fargo. The bike will have a decidedly stagecoach influence. Jim has been kind enough to let us go along on the journey of this build on his site and in the BROL forums.

CONGRATS JIM AND RAFAEL! We’ll look forward to another exciting and educational effort this year!

A BREATH OF SPRING WAS IN THE AIR…

Yesterday was one of those great “gifts” that we get from time to time in the middle of the winter. We enjoyed temperatures hovering at 60 degrees and great blue skies. I was able to reduce a full layer of clothing when making the ride home yesterday. My 18 mile run to the house was quite enjoyable as I bathed in the late afternoon sun hitting my back on the segment from Waynesville to Canton, once again via Lee Road. We’re not far from seeing some of the earliest spring flowers begin to make their appearances.

While on the busiest section of the ride home between Clyde and Canton, I was riding “as far to the right as practical”, which is still a little further into the lane than usual because of leftover debris and some ice chunks that are resisting the warming temps. I was buffeted by a passing vehicle and then somewhat surprised to see that it was a Drivers Education vehicle from the local school. Your first thought might be that a student just learning to drive needed some instruction on sharing the road. After all, this road is a split 4 lane highway and there were no other vehicles in the inside lane that would have prevented the student from moving into that lane of travel to pass me. Imagine my surprise when I realized the car wasn’t being piloted by a student at all but rather by the instructor. I pondered for a moment the irony of being knocked from my bike at speed by a Driver’s Education Instructor. Ah well, the pass wasn’t close enough to cause me to flinch but was certainly not observant of the requested 3’ clearance. It did seem to merit a head shake in wonderment.

The rest of the trip home was simply enjoyable. I noted more people out walking around the local recreation park although I was the only cyclist that I encountered after leaving Waynesville. I did see one motorcyclist but that was the sum of the 2 wheeled transportation variety I encountered. I was treated to a very pretty sunset as I rode up river to Bethel. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a camera with me yesterday to document it so the image will just have to live on in my mind.

As I watch the rain move in today, I’m particularly thankful for having the chance to ride yesterday. If the forecasts are correct, we’re in for a return to some slightly cooler weather with rain for the next couple of days.

Before signing off, let me encourage you again to check out Cycling Experiences and follow the preparations for this year’s Tour of Discovery!

Until later,

- Zeke

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