Ride more. Think less

It was 2015 the last time I went bike camping (minus that tandem trip. Hoping ferries and islands!). A time when I couldn’t go 2 days without riding. Life was handle bars and tires. Saddles and gears. I was addicted pedaling…

Fast forward to 2017. I felt unrooted. Rushing down the river of life. Sadly focused on small unfortunate events. Not knowing what would happen next. I felt lost. I felt heavy. I’d go weeks without riding. Trying and trying to get back “into” bikes. But it seemed no use. The waters around me were moving too fast and I couldn’t grab hold. People like to give names to things these days. Being overwhelmed, stressed, anxiety, depression. All of the above I’ve felt. And sadly more then I’ve felt the joy of riding.  

But this past weekend a major change has happened. I felt it! The wind in the face. The weightlessness. The ease of travel. The community! Mind you I was in Marin county, bike capital of California. But nonetheless. Strangers ignoring what you look like, and acknowledging a fellow cyclist. Even people who weren’t on a bike smiled ( I’m thinking I should always ride with bags and a tent strapped to the back!). It’s like how it was, again. Life behind bars is good.  And for some, it’s like medicine. 

Ride more. Think less. 

Change

 
The weekends Plans of solo 2 wheel travel, dirt and bivy camping. Changed to, 2 wheel travel with a small group, pavement, hot tubing, breweries, and tent camping. Which ended being non of the above. A day trip on 4 wheels to The Redwoods in lots of rain was what was had. 
I forget so quickly how much I love curvy roads. It’s not a speed thing. Just a smooth constant line is such a great feeling. And rain and wind and fog…only make it more of a rewarding feeling! 
Upon reaching the state park, I realized I had forgotten my rain pants. But with some encouragement, I accepted that I won’t stay wet forever. And it was beautiful out! Sometimes a little help from friends is all we need to get by when the unexpected shows up. 
Change is a given. The easier we can deal with this, the easier life is.

   

  
 

A Bike Camping gem

Traveling with kids is like playing the lottery, you know you’re not going to get exactly what you want, but you still try. And sometimes you win a little!

Saturday was scheduled to be a non rushed morning. Get up, eat breakfast, pack some food and shelter, and head to the bus stop. All was mostly accomplished. We just left in the afternoon…
   

A quick ride across the bay and we were at the San Rafael bus station. It felt quite hectic. Buses are coming and going, random people everywhere. Cars near by are racing to get on the freeway on ramp witch is across the street. Thankfully, with in 4 blocks it was calm. The bay water was right there. Kayak and boating places populated the next mile. Also, the first request for food was made. Yes, only 5 blocks in, but it had been over an hour since we ate. With some quick snacks, we stretch out “…just up here a little more” for a mile or so. A school with a field and a play structure is a perfect break spot when traveling with kids.  
   
  
After eating and a quick game of Wall Ball. We were off again. We made it another block and half, before we stopped. But it’s the last grocery store before we got to camp. I picked up a few breakfast items I had forgotten at home, and back on the saddle.

The parking lot of grocery store was like an impromptu classic car show! 

 
We finally got a rhythm going and pedaled for about 10 or 12 minutes before someone’s bladder was full.  

We found some eucalyptus trees off of the road…and then, back to biking. 

  
Riding into China Camp was beautiful. The afternoon sun illuminated the East Bay Hills and the waters that lay in front of them. There was little traffic to worry about, so we really could enjoy the views.  

   
  

Hudson was doing great. As Not an everyday rider, he was starting to feel some fatigue. But luckily our camp spot “…is just around this corner “. Or so I thought. Hey! It’s been like 3 years since I was there. 

We finally made it. Really the perfect distance. A holiday with kids wouldn’t be complete without a few “are we there yet?”

  
At our site, we quickly assembled the tent and got to making dinner. Hot food is so enjoyable when your outside!  

 
After dinner I was very much looking forward to making a fire. I had bought some wood from the camp host.  

 But after about 45 minutes of blowing embers, stove fuel, random fire place “blocks” the was graciously given to us by our neighbors, we had no fire. It seems not all people know that wood is not waterproof. And you can’t keep it out in the weather. Only slightly frustrated, I gave up and went to bed. After we read Soup, I felt mech better and soon drifted off to sleep. 
I glanced at my gps over a hot breakfast 🙂 and decided we should take dirt trails out of the park. Some single track for brunch? So what I’m on a folding bike full of gear.   

  
It was great! Hudson did excellent navigating the switchbacks and the on coming cyclists through out the trail. Which was the only thing one could complain about, which never even happened! It was just fun and scenic. A true win!

    
   
 
We finally got back to the Tarmac, with an appetite. Pizza was on our itinerary! A short walk up a hill, a nice down hill, cruised the flat, up one more hill and we were there. Pizza and rest.

  
  We stopped off at the school yard again to have one more slice of pizza and some monkey bars. 

The ride back to downtown was dominated by talk of Strawberry ice cream and a suger cone. 

   
I hope all parents get to enjoy adventures such as this. I feel it’s a true treasure to be around your kids doing something that makes you happy. And the same goes for them. Being able to be around your child when they are truly happy…and when you are both doing the same thing, well hot damn, who need to play the lottery?!