Trans Am-Day 01: Meeting a great group & dipping tires

On Saturday night, I met the group I’ll be cycling with. There are 10 of us, and it’s kinda fun that I’m the youngest. I don’t know the exact ages, but my guess is that most folks are in their mid 60s. For any of you who are younger than your mid 60s, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy long bike rides. I’m absolutely not kidding.

With a group of 10, we’ll get to know each other well over the next 3 months, and 4,100 miles. I’ve already enjoyed getting to know each person. I’ve always enjoyed talking with distance cyclists. Most are curious, in a few wonderful definitions of the word. We want to see more, to learn more. Using another definition of curious, we’ll cycle in the wind, rain, and up hills. Personally, I find that similar to the folks that founded our country. They just travelled with horses and mules instead of bikes. I may actually prefer travelling by mule, when we cycle up mountains. Overall, this group of 10 is curious crowd I always enjoy.

Yesterday and today are one of the few times we’re staying in motel, probably to give us a cozy start. After this, we’ll usually camp. When we camp, we’ll take turns cooking, but since we’re in a motel, we enjoying having the breakfast that came with our rooms. I’m having breakfast while I write. Most people are talking, but my computer and coffee were nearby, so I had to write. Someone just asked me if I’m blogging already. I said I love writing. He replied that it must be my calling. Without thinking, I said that it was more like it calls me, pulls me to a keyboard with little choice.

Moving on to today, we’ll finally start our ride on the Tran America Trail, or Trans Am for short. Thousands have finished it since it opened, in the 1970s. The Grand Opening was in 1976 as part of America’s Bicentennial. Back then, the ride was called the Bike-Centennial.

These days, the trail has changed slightly, to keep the route safe and scenic, but most of the trail is the same. There’s a wonderful custom on the Trans Am. You start by dipping your back tire in the Atlantic Ocean at the start. Then when you finish, you dip your front tire in the Pacific, in Oregon.

That may seem a strange way to get both tires wet, but it’s still a fun custom.