My authorized biography is not yet finished, but here is a snippet from the less than riveting chapter entitled, "Background and Schooling".
I grew up in Wallingford, CT, which is a great place to start a bike ride, mountain or road. What Wallingford really has to offer though, are some incredible breakfast spots, like six or seven good to great options. I can’t say that about another town I have visited. My vote? “Dad’s” on route five, it lacks in atmosphere, but the western with cheese sandwich simply delivers.
Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. was my home for four years. My college experience taught me that a good professor or lecture can get me interested in anything, and that just because it’s division three doesn’t mean I am going to win any tennis matches. I also learned how beautiful Western Carolina is. For those who have never been to Linville Gorge and found the natural water slides, I’d advise it as your next vacation spot. Bring your bikes too.
After college, I worked with Wilderness Ventures to lead two summers worth of adventures for high school students. First up, a mountain bike ride from Butte, MT, to Jackson, WY along the continental divide. That was the first time I had seen that part of the country, I’ll never forget it and crave a trip back. I hope one day to climb the Grand Teton. The second trip was a dreadful backpacking trip to Hawaii. This proved to be a real tough summer forced to deal with bath temperature waters, the frequency of “beach days,” and all the fresh seafood you could eat. I felt for the participants more than myself.
The final step prior to joining Seven was spent in a classroom. I earned my teaching degree while working at James H. Moran Middle School. Learning to work effectively with middle school students is a rewarding but arduous task. I have the utmost respect for teachers.
I pulled this entry out of chapter 68 entitled, “The Seven Cycles Years,” that talks about one of my favorite bike rides.
The ride I look forward to most every year is a group ride up the Kancamagus Highway in New Hampshire. Aside from the scenic vistas atop the Pass, the sounds of the Swift River rushing down the mountain, and getting to say Kancamagus a lot more than usual, I look forward to this ride more than any other for two reasons. First, the people who participate in the ride are second to none. No hammers allowed so it’s low on ego, and high on laughs. Second, and most importantly, is that the route was plotted around three meals.
We rise early and start with a grueling, third of a mile, jaunt up the “Kanc” where we have our first organized stop at Flapjack’s Pancake House. We know the ride ahead will be relentless so we load up on lighter fair such as a tall stack of pancakes dredged in maple syrup, and a side of link style sausage.
After breakfast, and around an hour into the ride, you summit the first of three climbs and are rewarded with an incredible view of the White Mountains. Once the group arrives, it’s an epic race to the bottom, one in which I inevitably lose and waste the required energy to make it up the next climb.
Almost precisely when the descent levels off, you bear (no pun intended, wait for it, it’s coming) left to start the day’s second ascent, Bear Notch Pass. The easiest of the three hills, Bear Notch rewards you with a convenience store at the bottom. This is the perfect time to load up on beverages before the long, flat, head-wind prone ride to the highlight of the trip, Café Noche.
Located on Main St. in Conway, nestled at the lowest point of the ride, Café Noche serves up the proper amount of Mexican cuisine to send us off with a smile. Typically, this is the last smile we share until the conclusion of the ride. An order of tacos provides the extra boost of energy to take you to the three quarters mark of the final climb, and then leaves you on your own to struggle the rest of the way.
For the next hour, the cyclometer drops to five miles per hour. People hike up the mountain, with backpacks, faster than I pedal up it. Their expressions on the way by suggest they are thinking the same thing I am, “Probably should have passed on the tacos.”
Once the peak is reached, there’s no waiting for the group, it’s just a long descent to the parking lot where the smiles return, and talk changes from the day’s highlights, to dinner. All in all, it’s a tremendous experience that I can’t wait to do again.
I believe in Seven Cycles, and Seven Cycles believes in me. We treat customers and retailers how I would want to be treated if our roles were reversed.
When I ordered my Seven, I felt I was already experiencing a comfortable fit on my previous bike. I doubted that my fit would change much as I had no back pain, no neck pain, and my hands never went numb. The ID8 was a much fancier bike, and gorgeous, but I assumed I’d only benefit from a lighter weight frame and new components. I rode my new Seven for a season before bringing my old bike out for a spin. I couldn’t believe the difference. My “fit” was so off on the previous bike that I struggled to maintain control. My neck was craned at a ridiculous angle making breathing a chore. I thought the benefit of a Seven would be in the ride, which is great, but the fit is what made me a believer.
The Meat Spot on Mt. Auburn St., hands down.
When I ordered my Seven in February of 2005, I didn’t realize that the good folks at Seven were going to fabricate the greatest bike ever, just for me. Therefore, I only own one bike, my beloved Odonata turned ID8. Sometimes I feel sad that every other bike is inferior to mine, but most of the time I feel like I deserve it.