Obviously you must be interested in my thoughts about this trip or you’d not have come to this page. Stick around a while and, through me, vicariously re-live what I experienced day by day on my journey.
Feedback from readers indicated a desire to know more about how our Virginia to Oregon group met. So here it is:
For me it all started when I posted an article in a newsgroup asking for interested riders. Got a couple of lukewarm responses to include one from a gentleman who openly stated he carried a firearm and had, while riding, already pulled it on some folks! I was not too thrilled about this and our correspondence terminated by mutual inactivity. Then I read the “want-ads” in Adventure Cycling and found Dennis’ ad. I sent him an email and he told me several other folks had responded. We shared addresses (snail and email) and phone numbers.
Over the several months prior to the trip we also exchanged photos of one another along with lists of what we were bringing along. Since the group was so diverse with ages between 25 and 67; residences between Virginia and Oregon; and occupations ranging from retirees to “still employed but on sabbatical” we felt these features along with our mutual desire to do the trip more than adequate ingredients for a successful group adventure.
Closer to the beginning of the trip there was the possibility of more riders wishing to come along. Dennis and I discussed it with my point being that although we could start with a larger group, it would work against us as time went on and that we’d be better off splitting the group up after a week or two anyway to accommodate personalities and riding styles. So we ended up with the group of six that began the ride. Merle was a last minute addition that would have taken us to seven altogether but one gentleman dropped out having suffered a small stroke/heart attack.
The only thing missing in our group was—women! Seriously, though, I think it would have been very interesting and would have provided a totally different perspective to have had a lady come along (regardless of age/color/marital status/religion/etc./etc./etc.!) Maybe it worked out for the best because we were pretty raunchy at times!
As a group we had never ridden together. Individually, some of us were much more experienced riders while some of us were fair weather riders. Some had better equipment than others (Dick had exceptionally good equipment; Dennis had a “hotel/tent” and the rest of us a pot-pourri of STUFF.) We mutually agreed that we would all try to start together in the mornings but were not obligated to finish at the same time–just so long as we all met in the same place every evening.
Overall, I’d say our group dynamics were good from the outset and that our dinner the evening prior to the first day of the trip gave us a chance to get to know one another better.
So there you have it. How we met.
The tables below provides links to journal entries that will give you a re-cap of each day. When supplemented by information found in the other pages on this website, a reader interested in making this journey will get a damned fine idea of what to expect on such an adventure.