Compelled equally by position and neurosis I ruminate on how to ensure that everyone on our team gets their share of Inspiring Adventure. This year’s theme at the outset seems grandiose, as if we have to serve BASE-jumping, Moab’s Portal Trail, and a cross-country RAAM event on a silver platter. If Pippa Middleton did the last, we surely could. Our theme’s a goal we can achieve, so I’m going to reel myself in from overthinking the concept, and do what we do best: offer lots of opportunities for you to get out and ride. The rest will take care of itself.
Adventure is subjective. Riding a gnarly trail will be new to some while old hat to others. Therefore some riders in a group experience an adventure while others simply experience a ride. An after-work ride could start out as mellow yet end with an epic weather event, a crazy wildlife chase, or an unforeseen change of route through a muddy farmer’s field – what was routine became an adventure. Sure, an adventure can be planned, but the outcome seals the definition. The key is facing the uncertain with potential for improvisation. Adventure is experiencing something new. We can do that.
Take our Highway 36 Bikeway ride in February. When I put the Bikeway ride on the calendar, I thought it was maybe too boring of a ride, being a wide concrete path out-and-back. As luck would have it, the bike path wasn’t fully completed until 3 days after our date. Therefore we had a few fits and starts on gravel paths and got a little muddy. We had to figure out where the heck to enter onto it and later backtracked on a section that was unfamiliar. A wicked headwind howled on the way home, creating the need to teach a quick lesson on pacelines. But with a new destination, an impromptu paceline drill, plus winging it in some sections, I’m going to call that an adventure. It wasn’t death defying, life altering or even that worthy of Instagram posts. But it was something unique and uncertain. Adventure.
The harder part of the 2-word theme to deliver is Inspiring. Can we make events enticing enough to get you away from the computer screen and onto a saddle? Can we share stories so that you think you, too, can climb an intimidating ascent or nail a technical trail? How can we inspire you? I need a little help from you on this part. I promise we’ll offer opportunities – Fruita, Aspen, clinics, easy Bikeways – but you’ll have to participate. When you ride side-by-side with someone, you learn her story. How she also has a measly amount of miles in after surgery or just switched to the bike from ski season. How she’s motivated to get her cycling legs back or cat-up in race season. There’s lots of inspiration from within our ranks, but you have to show up once in a while to grab on. Let’s all inspire each other.
Inspiring Adventure. I think we’ve got this. But juuuust to be sure, let me know how we can inspire your next adventure.