In Missoula, Montana. We returned to the Adventure Cycling Association for a photo session with Greg Siple, co-founder of the organization in 1973 after he and three others cycled from Alaska to Argentina on a trip that was featured in National Geographic Magazine. Sho, Saya and I spent the afternoon at a waterpark and soccer field, then went to the home of Arlen Hall and Shawn Decareaux, who treated us to a delicious meal and gave us a bed for the night. Arlen told us stories from his many cycling trips, mostly as a guide to groups of teenagers. And Shawn gave us tips on places to go in Missoula and some delicious huckleberry ice cream. It felt like luxury to be hosted by such friendly folks.
Over the past month, many people have asked whether we have any physical ailments. Here’s the list:
- All three of us had sore butts in the first few days of the ride, but that went away fairly quickly.
- Saya got a heat rash behind her right knee, a few small cuts from playing in the forest, and once got pricked by a prickly pear. Otherwise, she said, “I feel great.”
- Sho said his hands went numb gripping the brakes on the mountain descents, and he got a splinter during a pine cone war with Saya. Otherwise, he said, “Dude, I’m totally fine.”
- My quadriceps have felt fatigued throughout the trip, and my hands ache sometimes. The biggest annoyance came in the first week, when my lips got sunburned. It has taken nearly a month for them to heal.
These are all minor, obviously, and we feel great from the regular exercise. Sho looks more muscular than I’ve ever seen him, and Saya can pedal for hours without complaint. She likes to sing songs while we ride and create dance routines whenever we stop for a short break. I’ve learned that our bodies are meant to exercise outdoors much of the day. I suspect that many of the medical problems prevalent in our society would disappear if we replaced half the time we spent driving a car, sitting in front of a computer and lounging in front of the TV, with running errands on foot or bicycle and going on regular nature hikes.
Here are some pics:
Back at the Adventure Cycling Association, this time with loaded bikes
Greg Siple at ACA weighing Sho's bike: 65 pounds (gear = 30 pounds)
Greg capturing Saya's smile
Sho blasting a shot
Saya blasting a shot
Arlen Hall beside a map showing the routes of his many cycling trips