Ahearne Cycles

Notes from Australia & New Zealand

Joseph Ahearne6 Comments
It's hard to take a bad photo in New Zealand

It's hard to take a bad photo in New Zealand

This is like a long post card to all of you. I've written a few real post cards but I can’t seem to keep it short and do any justice to everything that’s happened on this trip so far. I feel like they’re kind of a let down. I mean, post cards are great, just like any snail-mail is these days. Your name is on it, there are a few words, maybe a pretty picture or an artful drawing, and you can hold it in your hand — it’s an actual, tangible artifact, a piece of the place, even if it's small. But what can you really say in a postcard? There's no space. I read an article a bit ago about a famous author (David Mitchell, Cloud Atlas) who prints a short story in short bursts on Twitter. The whole story is told over several days (I believe it’s happening now). Anyway, postcards trying to tell about long eventful trips would be kind of like reading a story in twittering bursts, only slower and way more expensive on my end. And anyway, twitter is twitter.

Full Moon, Blue Moon, Super Moon

Full Moon, Blue Moon, Super Moon

So right now it’s a little after 4 in the morning. I’ve been awake for a couple of hours, couldn’t sleep at all. Maybe because there’s good strong coffee down here that I’m not metabolizing and it’s wrecking my sleep. Maybe it’s the business of this Full Moon/Super Moon/Blue Moon/Equinox/Etc., rocking the tides, pulling at life. Whatever the case.

I’m at a small desk by a window in an old house in Auckland, New Zealand. The part of town I’m staying in is called Westmere, which is a quiet neighborhood a mile or so west of the city center. The woman who owns the house is an aging hippy with an aristocratic sounding accent, at least that’s how it sounds to me. Her name’s Judy and her face gets long when she talks and she stares at you so hard you’d think her eyes might be bad. But they’re clear, her eyes are, and she’s not looking around to find you, but right into you, which is intense. She’s got a great big warm laugh, though, which makes you feel at home. She lives off part-time work and AirBnB guests like me. The house has lots of windows and natural wood and there’s a black cat named Lucky who eats lamb meat and sleeps on the floor in rectangles of sunlight. 

NZ Tug

NZ Tug

Today is Friday, 2 October. In Portland it’s still Thursday, which really messes with how I think about you all at home. I’m twenty hours ahead of you Cascadians, which means you’re four hours later than me, but yesterday. Got it?

The first week of this trip was a rush of busy-ness. I was in Sydney, Australia for three days helping with an event and bike give-away. Then we came to Auckland to put on a similar event. The people who organized the event, The Team, consisted mainly of people from Portland who have an interest in attracting tourism to our town. I was included because I nominally represent the “maker scene” happening in Portland — an honest-to-goodness bicycle builder. Todd from Pedal Bike Tours was here, and Samantha from the Jupiter Hotel. Amanda represented the Department of Agriculture and Heather is from Travel Portland. Several others helped put the event together and added to it their particular knowledge base and specialty. All of them great people.

The Sydney "Activation"

The Sydney "Activation"

Beyond the events, or “activations,” as they were called, I had little to do but make sure the bikes were assembled. So I wandered around, went to a few yoga classes and generally enjoyed the life of a patron at a 5-star hotel. The Radisson in Sydney was rad. Rad Radisson. The breakfast buffet was out of control. Or maybe it was just me around that much good food. As an individual eater there was no way to put a dent into it. The food was so good and there were so many directions you could go, like the muesli, fruit and yogurt route, or the cold salad and cheese route, or smoothies, or custom made omelets, seven or eight types of meat, four types of fresh baked bread, two types of salmon (smoked and gravlax), scrambled eggs so fluffy they could have been whipped with air, pickled things, aged and salted things, fresh things. It was hard to get out of there without eating myself sick. But whatever, when the gourmet trough is open, you eat. 

Hotel Breakfast, Round II

Hotel Breakfast, Round II

One other notable thing about staying in a hotel like the Radisson are the robes. Here’s a note I took on Radisson water-mark paper with a Radisson pen while wearing a robe:

The robes are blindingly, perfectly white, made from a dense, soft cotton that has been dryer fluffed and is somehow almost crisp on the hanger. But as soon as it’s taken down and draped over naked skin — skin which has been fragranced, it might be noted, by an herbal, all-natural, shower gel — the robe feels like a massage of clouds. 

Robed Elegance

Robed Elegance

The robe’s collar is like that of a double breasted suit, except it is so thick it reminds one of the comfort and support of a neck pillow. Fresh out of the shower and squeaky-clean, there is a representation of oneself in the floor to ceiling bathroom mirror; Despite one’s pallor, one looks uncommonly fashionable, like one just stepped from the pages of a magazine that advertises ungodly expensive watches, gaudy museum-grade jewelry, perfect and ageless skin. Looking at one’s reflection, one turns from left to right looking for the best and most precisely photogenic perspective -- either tipping the chin low or lifting it high, one is caught in the radiant whiteness of the robe, which acts like a good photoshop job, erasing all niggling blemishes in a pampering of cotton.

There is really so much to be found in a robe.

Anyway, and again, there are just times you have to give in and enjoy what life brings. 

Weird Reflection

Weird Reflection

By all accounts the events (activations) were successful. I talked with many people about Oregon and about the bikes. The people who won the bikes bounced around with excitement, inspiring envy in other onlookers. The word about Oregon is out. After the Auckland event came to a close, most everyone on The Team went their separate ways. I gave myself an extra week in New Zealand before going on to Western Australia. Also staying for some extra days was Samantha from the Jupiter Hotel, and Amanda from the Department of Agriculture. We decided to rent a car and go check out a beach on the west coast called Piha. On this trip, Samantha had an accident. Here’s the story, translated from my notes:

Piha from the High Road

Piha from the High Road

On The Beach at Piha

On The Beach at Piha

The car we rent is tiny and green, shaped like a tear drop. We call it the Tin Can. The Tin Can has a manual transmission and everything but the gas/brake/clutch pedals are reversed from what I’m used to. Steering wheel on the right, rear-view mirror and stick-shift on the left. Turn signal, right; windshield wipers, left. Whether you think about it or not, driving is a symphony of activities coordinated in a more or less fluid manner. After years of doing it it feels like second nature. Which way do you look when you come to an intersection? How near or far do you as a driver place yourself in relation to the centerline on the road? The biggest challenge in this mirrored mode is city driving, and in particular, down-shifting, signaling and turning in rapid succession. I keep flipping on the wipers instead of signaling and then coasting with the clutch pressed in trying to get my right brain to instruct my left hand to find a freaking gear while I’m visually mapping my surroundings to assess my speed and intended trajectory and if my grasp of these physics is about to put me in extreme and immediate danger. When everything is “normal” there’s so much we don’t have to think about. But this is just stressful. 

Tame Mallards at Piha

Tame Mallards at Piha

It’s a questionable beginning, but fortunately we make it out of town and drive to Piha without serious incident. At Piha we walk, climb rocks, watch the surfers, the waves, the sky. Samantha, Amanda and I get to know each other. We talk about work, the housing market in Portland, New Zealand agriculture, hotels, food. We wear hats and sunglasses and the sun feels very intense. People say there’s a big hole in the ozone layer down here and I believe them. The air temperature isn’t all that warm, but the sun sizzles our bare skin. 

After a few hours at Piha we drive back up and out of the bay into lush green forest. We stop at a parking area beside a trailhead and walk into the forest. Trails here are called tracks, and hiking is called trekking. But we are only walking. Walking in the woods. We wind around the track looking at the weird and unfamiliar foliage. After less than a mile the track comes to a T. There’s an outhouse and a couple of directional signs. The uphill direction is restricted. The downhill track says it leads to a reservoir. None of it seems very interesting. Samantha, Amanda and I talk about what to do. We’re from Oregon, we reason, we’ve seen a million reservoirs. Samantha goes into the outhouse. Amanda and I look down the track. 

Samantha squawks. Oh my god, you guys, I just dropped my phone in the toilet!

Amanda and I look at each other. 

Oh no, you guys, I can’t believe this. Samantha steps out. It’s so deep, she says. 

Amanda steps off the trail and tugs at a long branch. 

There’s no way, Samantha says. It’s way too far down. 

Are you sure? Let me look, I say. I enter the outhouse. Yes, it’s deep. A big stinking black hole. I hold my breath and use my phone as a flashlight, clutching it like it might be greased. Ten feet down perched on a pile of waste and wadded TP is an iPhone 5s, white case, screen dark, facing up at me. There is no way. 

I snap a photo (not shown here, for obvious reasons. If you really must see the photo, email me).

Outside the shitter we stand in a little triangle. I’m not smiling. I'm really not smiling.

Well, shit! I say. 

Exactly! says Amanda. 

There’s nothing to be done.

I don’t want to see a reservoir, says Samantha. We walk back down the track to the Tin Can. 


The next day Amanda left for Vietnam to help organize an event where a famous Vietnamese chef is cooking 100 pounds of potatoes with Governor Kate Brown. I forget why. Something to do with food; money; publicity; good relations. On our trip to Piha I learned from Amanda that New Zealand’s largest export is dairy products mostly headed to China. Who knew? 

Blue Shirt at the Blue Chipper

Blue Shirt at the Blue Chipper

I picked Samantha up early the following day and we drove the Tin Can to Coromandel, a large peninsula east of Auckland. We stayed mostly along the coastline and then cut through the interior of the Coromandel Forest. We ate “world renowned” fish & chips, wandered through a butterfly sanctuary, walked the sand at Hot Water Beach and hiked down to Cathedral Cove. It was a big day of driving with many stops at many sites. We arrived back to Auckland at nearly 10 pm. The next day we met Corey and his wife Karen, both of whom were key organizers with The Team. They live here in Auckland, in Browns Bay. Corey took us down to the bay to play around on his paddle board and surf-ski. The water is still pretty cold, but the sun is hot and we had a good time trying to find our balance on these tippy vessels. 

Some Dude Showing Off

Some Dude Showing Off

Bay Riding

Bay Riding

I brought a bicycle with me on this trip. So far it's just been luggage, a big box to carry around. Of course I forgot to bring a helmet, and there is a helmet law here for cyclists. Luckily I was able to borrow one from Corey. Yesterday I went on my first real bike ride of this trip. I rode down to the ferry, and went across to Devonport, then rode up and down, up and down, along the coast and through the six bays to arrive again at Browns Bay to meet Corey. We ate sushi and then rode out of town and up to a ridge into mostly rural land. It felt a lot like riding along Skyline Drive above Portland, with rolling hills, winding roads, some big houses, climbs & descents, trees and clearings that gave periodic views of the distant countryside. Between the strong winds off the sea and all the climbing, I could see how a person would get in shape if they rode here much. Corey and I did a sort of a loop and parted ways. I was pretty tired by the time I arrived back at the ferry. 

Big Sky Off Hot Water Beach. Check out the rainbow on the rock, right in the middle.

Big Sky Off Hot Water Beach. Check out the rainbow on the rock, right in the middle.

Arch at Cathedral Cove

Arch at Cathedral Cove

Everyone says I’ve been pretty lucky with the weather, but today is very windy and rainy, so I’m taking the day off to read and write this post. Rather than scrawl out a bunch of post cards that’ll only tell bits of the story, I thought I’d go at it head on. I’ve got a couple more days here in Auckland, and then I’m off to Fremantle in Western Australia. That’ll be the beginning of the next big adventure on this trip, and will put me back to work as a bicycle frame builder. I’m looking forward to meeting Jesse Searls and sharing what knowledge I have to teach him the craft. 

Cathedral Cove, Camera Distortion

Cathedral Cove, Camera Distortion

If you’ve made it this far in reading this post, I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself. I’ll be taking notes and writing more in the coming weeks. As they say here New Zealand, in the Maori language, kia kaha, which means “stay strong,” or “stand strong.” You've got to say it from deep in your gut. It’s meant as an affirmation, to inspire. So, farewell, and

Kia kaha!

Big Tree

Big Tree

Late Afternoon at Cathedral Cove

Late Afternoon at Cathedral Cove

Rainbow Rock (this is not fake -- it really looked like this)

Rainbow Rock (this is not fake -- it really looked like this)

Working in Australia, New Zealand

News, Thoughts, TravelJoseph Ahearne2 Comments

In just over a week I leave for Australia and New Zealand. This trip is going to have a few different elements to it. I’m traveling for the sake of travel, on the one hand, but I’ve also got some work lined up that is going to occupy some of the time I’m there. The work, though, sounds almost as fun as the exploration of these new places. 

All said, I’ll be out of town for about six weeks, from 17 September through 3 November. That’s a good, long trip, and if you’re interested, I’ll give you an overview of what’s happening, a quick run-down.

— September 19 - 21 I’ll be in Sydney with Travel Portland helping them to give away a couple of bikes; one of my bikes and a Breadwinner. If you’re interested in knowing more about it (and I’d say if you’re anywhere Sydney or Auckland during this time, you ought to check it out), here’s all the information you'll need

— September 22 - October 3 I’ll be in Auckland, New Zealand. The first 4 nights of this I’ll be helping give away another 2 bikes, (1 Ahearne, 1 Breadwinner). Then I have a week to explore in and around Auckland, see the sights, meet some people, hopefully ride my bicycle (yes, I’m bringing a bicycle that I will be leaving in Perth, but that’s a story I’ll get into in a moment). 

— 4 October - 2 November I’ll be in and around Fremantle and Perth on the west coast of Australia. During this time I’ll be the first “Artist in Residence” at the Surreal Foundry & Cycleworks. Jesse Searls is an aspiring bicycle frame builder and the founder of the Foundry. He is in the process of finishing the construction of his workshop as I write this. We’ve spent the past several months discussing bike making equipment, tools and jigs, etc. It sounds like he has bought a lot of the equipment needed, and so, for much of the month of October we’re planning to work together to get his workshop up and running, and to build a bicycle frame or two together. I believe we’ll be going at a fairly relaxed pace, so there should be plenty of extra time for me to explore, cycle, read & write, swim & surf, and generally get out and about and see that part of the world. Maggie will be coming for the second half of October, so she and I will be exploring as well. 

I can’t say enough about how excited I’m becoming for this trip.  Jesse first contacted me in March 2014, asking about a bike I had advertised for sale on my website.  Yes, I told him, it’s still for sale.  He was considering buying it for his son, who plans to ride from coast to coast across Australia following the most southerly roads along the Great Australian Bight.  Jesse and I exchanged several emails, and he told me his story, which I found to be very interesting.  Jesse is a recently retired physicist who had, quite a number of years ago, helped invent technology which enabled new capacity in digital networks and improved the sensitivities of radar systems.  It was a significant enough improvement that he started a company to produce the technology, and his company was eventually bought by an international contractor.  For the next bundle of years Jesse worked for his company as they did international sales, and as he explained it, the burden and stress of this work was incredible.  

Now that he’s stepped away from the company, he realized that some of his most personally satisfying moments were when he was able to take concepts and designs that were theoretical and to actually fabricate them — to make them into something physical. Jesse’s love of bicycles started in 1973 when he bought a Frejus racing bike to use as his primary mode of transport.  Since then he has had a yearning to learn how to build them. Transforming an idea into a “thing” by using the hands to fabricate it, then getting to test it and use it, or watch someone else do so and hopefully see a smile peel open their face — there is a great deal of joy to be found here. And this is where I come in. Having built a lot of bikes and having taught a lot of people how to build their own bikes, Jesse thought I might be a good person to hang out with for a while. Lucky for me. 

In all of this, I do feel very lucky. Jesse wants the bike I had for sale, and I’m going to bring it over with me. We’re going to work together to set up his workshop, and then I’m going to help him use the equipment to learn to construct his own bicycle frames. Based on our interactions through email I think both Jesse and I are pretty mellow individuals, and I think we’re going to get along just fine. I’m really very excited to meet him in person and to see the workshop he’s constructed. What a dream come true in itself — to be able to consider every last detail of a workshop and build it from the ground up. And then to have the dream, part II, where you get to fill the workshop with great tools, and then part III, actually using them to make things. As I said, I feel really fortunate to play some part in this. 

I am also looking forward to the opportunity to see some of the beaches and treks in southwestern Australia.  Apparently, it has some of the best surf beaches in the world, big trees, and a broad range of vineyards and gourmet food producers. There's also the Munda Biddi Trail (which means "path through the forest" in the Noongar Aboriginal language), which is a 1000 kilometer off road cycling path. If I'm lucky I'll get to spend some time exploring this as well. 

While I’m away I’ll have my computer, and plan to post photos and words about what’s happening. Please check back if you’re interested in hearing about the place, the trip, the progress, the work, the experience. 

7 Bikes for 7 Wonders

Joseph Ahearne1 Comment

The Oregon Coast bike was found this past Saturday, the 1st of August. In case you haven't been paying attention, this was an event called 7 Bikes for 7 Wonders. Fat Bike riding on the coast or in the dunes is something special indeed. The guy who found the bike, Mark Hendrix, seemed super stoked on it. He even called me to tell me so, and to say that he’s about the biggest bike fan on the coast. He might even have said he’s a bike freak. If anyone deserves the bike, it was him. It sounds like he’s the kind of person who will ride this bike like it’s meant to be ridden, and that makes me happy. 

The whole process of building the bike, watching the high level promotion of the bikes and their builders, and highlighting some of the most special places in Oregon has been interesting to witness and participate in. I got to see the whole process of advertising from, well, not exactly the inside, since I didn’t conceive of any of the ideas or do any of the video or media production. But I was a part of the video, and I did get to see some of the overall concepts evolve, mature and come to fruition. And, better still, I got to build a bike for it. 

Bike Filming

Bike Filming

It was interesting for me to build a bike that was not for a specific customer — a human — but to build it instead with a region in mind (in my case, the coast). When my intended audience is one person, I make some build decisions based on our interactions. I may make certain aesthetic choices, or design choices, and though I might be making a type of bike I’ve made many times in the past, I will do it a certain specific way with this particular person in mind. There’s the interactions we’ve had, and then there’s my intuition about the person I’m building for. It's aesthetic, design, function, all coming together with the idea of the rider in mind.

Free Fat Bike. 

Free Fat Bike. 

But, when it came to building a bike for a region, or for nothing more specific than a type of terrain, there was a moment of something like vertigo because it was so open-ended. The way I look at any bike I’m planning to build is that it will need a rider. The coast isn’t going to be riding the bike. There will be a person on the bike, and without knowing who that person is, and what they might want, I had to invent someone. I thought why not invent and work with the human I know best, which is myself. Which is what I did. I built the bike to fit what I wanted, what I thought the bike ought to be to be a good bike to ride the sand, along the waves, through the dunes. I like unique things, personalized and one-of-a-kind, so I gave the bike some flair that I’ve never seen anywhere else (except maybe on other bikes that I’ve built) — the shape of it, the coins and flasks on the fork, the rack, seat stay configuration, the general style and visual aesthetic of it. 

I agreed to give the bike away, but part of me was sad to see it go. I didn’t realize until the bike was actually leaving my shop for the last time how much I liked it, and that I was going to miss it. I don’t typically get sentimental about bikes. For me, for the most part, I think of bikes as tools, meant to be used and sometimes used hard, and if possible, used until broken. It makes me happy when I break one of my bikes. If I ride responsibly, but push it and push it until the bike fails, then I have discovered the limits of what my bikes can take, and I learn from it, incorporating this knowledge into the next bike I build. I’m hard on my stuff, and I always mean for bikes that I build to be used; ie. ridden. Hopefully a lot. And, even though I may have been somewhat sad to see the Oregon Coast bike leave my shop, it made me really happy to get a phone call from Mark telling me he loves the bike and is going to ride the crap out of it. Then I knew that it was OK for me to let it go. The bike’s gone to a good home. 

Pequod is a boat on wheels

Pequod is a boat on wheels

Oregon Outback 2015

Joseph Ahearne2 Comments

What is this willingness to suffer on a bicycle? 

A Shadow of Myself 

A Shadow of Myself 

The hill we’re riding up is gradual and bumpy as hell and seemingly endless. My bike is loaded with gear, food and enough water for a couple of dry days. It’s heavy, my bike, probably about eighty pounds, maybe ninety. I’m carrying about eight liters of water. A few tools, some clothes, cooking pot and camp stove. Tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, inflatable pillow. Energy bars, sunblock and mosquito repellant. Some TP, soap, ibuprofen, a small set of scissors. Essentially I’ve got a miniaturized home on my bike, with enough amenities to keep me alive and in relative comfort for a week or so. 

My legs are going. Round and round in a small gear. They feel strong and fatigued, searching for some sort of rhythm with my breathing. The trail is erratic, though, little rocks big rocks, ruts and washboard, patches of sludgy red pumice; there’s no rhythm in dodging obstacles at this turtle speed. The worst part is my ass screaming at me, tired of being planted on this wedge while my legs churn. Sweat pours down my face and into my eyes. My hat, shirt and shorts are already soaked. My lower back is sore from leaning into the climb, and my shoulders ache from hunching over the bars. 

Big Sky

Big Sky

Smitherman is beside me. His face is grim, concentrating on the struggle up. He looks as  focused, mean and uncomfortable as I feel. Sweat runs rivulets of dirt down his stubbly cheeks. He looks at me, nearly doleful, and then it happens; his face peels into a big smile. And what a winning smile it is. He growls through his white teeth. 

We’re both hurting, suffering really, trying to get up this damned hill. It’s been too long that we’ve been at this, way too long, our bikes jostling through ruts and over rocks for miles. My hands are sore from gripping, pulling, pushing the bars. My right elbow has a sharp shooting pain.  But then this smile sprouts and it shines out through the pain. I laugh and ask him, Why the fuck are we doing this to ourselves? 

 

Rattlesnake in the Road

Rattlesnake in the Road

Indeed, this is the question. If I could see the faces of any of my other friends on this climb, their expressions would not have hidden the struggle they too were experiencing. Misery, brutality, pain and suffering — these were words thrown around by my friends and I while riding the Outback this year. There were other words, too, positive words, but they didn’t come during these most grueling moments. This question — Why do we do this to ourselves — was something I had a lot of time to meditate on. I don’t think there is one answer to it, and I think it’s different for everyone. I’m curious what others might say about why they put themselves through things like this. Is it for the beauty of the surroundings, the nature? The remoteness, or the escape? The sense of adventure, of exploration? For the ultimate sense of accomplishment? For the camaraderie of a shared struggle that empties you throughout the day and and fills you again while eating and talking around a campfire? Is it just so you can say you did it? 

Smitherman's Outback Bike

Smitherman's Outback Bike

My friends and I struggled, yes, and there were fun parts, too: Screaming gravel descents, riding alongside running cattle, stream crossings (Jrdn and I both dumped into the water to great laughter), a deer that flew across our paths and leapt like a gazelle over a fence. And of course the shared time at camp. We saw regions of Oregon that are too vast and beautiful for words. And we all made it through safely. Riding back to Portland after the Deschutes campground, our trip ended up being around 450 miles total. Jrdn and Smitherman left Portland the week before a and rode down to Klamath falls to meet us, at least doubling their mileage. Because we left a week after the "official" ride, we only saw a couple of other people riding the route.

Hitchhiker 

Hitchhiker 

I can imagine that there are many reasons we put ourselves through ordeals like this, and I think they change, morph and evolve from moment to moment. Especially while in the thick of a difficult climb, exposed in the sun, hot, everything hurting and the whole thing seeming very far from being fun. In moments like this I watch my mind going through story after story, which is me trying to convince myself to keep pushing the left pedal down and then the right, and then the left again. Each of the reasons listed above floats through, and any number of others. Philosophies come and go; Buddhist aphorisms about life and suffering; I could practically get down on my mental knees and beg myself Please Keep Going, or, sometimes, Please Stop Now. 

At some point when things get really hard the stories become laughable, obviously bullshit. Monkey mind in a frenzy, and yet I’m right there, still pushing on the pedals, one after the other. At this point, when the stories don’t help anymore, my mind is all stripped down and raw; this is when things get really interesting. 

And then I keep pushing on. 

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Here below, in no particular chronological order, are some photos from the trip.

GPS Assessment at a Crossroads

GPS Assessment at a Crossroads

Sweaty Happy Ramen for Mitch

Sweaty Happy Ramen for Mitch

Jrdn & Smitherman Finding the Route

Jrdn & Smitherman Finding the Route

Around the Campfire

Around the Campfire

Break on a Bridge

Break on a Bridge

Jrdn, Cup & Moon

Jrdn, Cup & Moon

Camp Beverage

Camp Beverage

Jrdn Preaching the Faith

Jrdn Preaching the Faith

Derek & Ian Before

Derek & Ian Before

Derek & Ian After

Derek & Ian After

Columbia River Gorge

Columbia River Gorge

Jrdn & Myself, Sweaty at the Vista House

Jrdn & Myself, Sweaty at the Vista House

Ride On!

Ride On!

Headed Out

Touring, TravelJoseph AhearneComment
off road touring

I'll be out of the shop from Friday 29 May through 7 June on a bike tour. We're headed down to Klamath Falls to ride back up through central Oregon on the Outback route. It'll be interesting seeing how it's different this year from last. I'll post images during and after the ride. 

We're headed out a week after the official ride, so hopefully all the people who have already gone left us some water to drink, and didn't clean out the little stores of food.