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Sunday, December 30, 2012

2013 Bike Ride Plans (and a quick look back at 2012)

Me in my element, pontificating during the 2012 Dead Freeways Ride. Photo guttmjo
Oh, don't you forget that the raison d'etre of the Urban Adventure League is to do fun urban exploration rides about Portland!

I don't really have a super-ambitious schedule of bike fun rides in 2013. Part of it is because my life is busy with so much other crap these days, and part of it is shifting priorities and not as much ambition. When I started doing Urban Adventure League stuff in (yeeps!) 2004, I was all full of vim and vigor, creating new events every couple months, constantly tweaking old rides, etc. Now almost ten years later I am not that person anymore. And to be honest, the fact that I've seen dwindling returns on my rides in 2012 doesn't inspire me to be that person I was in 2004. It doesn't feel good inside when you put a lot of work and effort into crafting a ride--and have no one (or nearly no one) show up.

But part of me says "Never Say Die", so I keep on doing these events. And before someone says, "If it isn't fun anymore, why bother?" Well, it still is fun. I still have fun thinking about them, planning them, etc. Even crafting the list you see below gives me joy and excitement. I just need to look at things in a sober light and not have unrealistic expectations. And most importantly, I need to scale back overall. The less ambitious I am with the overall calendar, the less I get disappointed.

Now with all that out of the way, what do I want to do this year?

  • The annual Palm Tree Ride. This one is already scheduled for Saturday January 19th.
  • A Dead Freeways Ride. Probably in spring. I normally do one during Pedalpalooza, but I feel that this type of ride may be better during a less chaotic time.
  • A few Three Speed Rides. I hope to get the first one of the season out in March, and then do one or two more through the year, including one during Pedalpalooza. This year I really want to try to do the much-threatened "camping" ride.
  • A Train Day Ride in May. I was initially supposed to lead this in 2011 but due to the busy-ness of my life getting ready for the Cross-Con Tour, I let Dan Haneckow lead it. There was no train day in 2012 but hopefully there will be one in 2013? And hopefully Dan will co-lead.
  • As for Pedal Potluck Picnics, I'd like to do a few in 2013 but I don't think I want to commit to a regular schedule, since the turn-out in 2012 was lackluster. Maybe a couple special ones?
  • Though it's not technically a "ride", I'd like to have at least one Bike Touring Workshop. The jury is out on whether or not I should do a Bike Fun Workshop.
And of course Pedalpalooza will be in June. I hope to do a bit for that, but maybe not as much as in the past:
  • I've taken the keys back for the Pizza Ride this year.
  • A Midweek camping ride would be good, too. (I'd also like to do a few throughout the year.)
  • Of course another Midweek Columbia Gorge Ride would also be nice.
  • A history ride of some sort with Dan Haneckow.
  • And some other secret stuff I'm whipping up.
Yes, it does look ambitious. But compared to my schedule in the past, this is a light year.

Hope to see some of you out there on these rides!

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