Reflections on the Year – 2015

My Top Ten* Cycling Moments of the Year

In chronological order

1. Ride the Rockies

My third straight year going to Colorado to ride these big mountains. I don’t know why but my favorite climb was the 14 mile dirt road up and over 12,000′ Cottonwood Pass. The legs felt great that day. Best day of the year, in fact. I rode 105 but could have easily ridden 50 more.


2. Texas 4000

After Ride the Rockies I went up to Estes Park thinking I would run into the Texas 4000, then giving up, then meeting and riding with them.

3. Chey and Chelsea in Altoona

It wasn’t the full Jacob’s Hero Ride that I had hoped but was very glad to have Chey Hillsgrove and Chelsea Johnson join me for two days of riding in Bedford and Blair counties.


4. Early mornings in Delaware

A fun week at a beach house in South Bethany, Delaware, began each morning with a 30-40 mile ride. Delicious!

Canal - South Bethany
Canal – South Bethany

5. Ohio

On my way to Indiana I stopped to ride through Piqua and Lockington, Ohio, two places I lived when I was 9-12 years old.


6. Spokes of Hope – Indy

Surprised friends Ken and Cindi Hart by showing up to their Spokes of Hope ride near Indianapolis.

Barry trailed by Julie
Barry trailed by Julie

7. Trexlertown

The community of cancer survivors combined with riding on the velodrome in Trexlertown. Bonus ride to Tipton on Saturday.

8. New French Friends

On the W&OD Trail I saw a man and daughter on a recumbent pulled over so I stopped and asked “Where did you start and where are you going?” I was surprised to learn they started in Vancouver and were cycling to Key West. Thomas and Sylvaine Houdy, from Lyon, France, and their children, Theo and Elsa, took 11 months off for a trip of a lifetime.

Cold and rainy near Williamsburg
Cold and rainy near Williamsburg


9. Meeting my Amish cousins

Imagine the surprise on young Amish couple, Keith and Julie Zimmerman, riding their bicycles to church when I slowed down and told her that I was related to her. When she told me her last name was Wenger I knew were were related and tried to explain it to her. I don’t think she believed me.


10. Livestrong

Brought in Alex Shepherd’s father, Dan, and he and I had a couple days riding before the event then 100 miles fighting cancer.



11. Ride with Dad

A beautiful Fall day I was able to meet my dad and my sister. At 86 the thought is always there it may be his last ride on a bike.

Pinkerton High Trestle
Pinkerton High Trestle

12. The Governor

A quasi-private ride with the governor of Delaware, Jack Markell. Of course I wore a Texas jersey to a Delaware ride.


2015 was my top mileage year by 1500 miles. I rode 8,078 miles (or 13,000 km because that looks cooler). Using the format for Potomac Pedalers’ Iron Crotch Award (for 5,000 miles):

Total Miles: 8,078  (I prefer 13,000 kilometers)


Longest Ride – Crested Butte to Salida, CO over Cottonwood Pass, CO. – 106 miles.

Date on which 5,000 was achieved – Aug. 22 at the Spokes of Hope Ride in Indianapolis

Most miles in a Month — 1,232 (July)

Most miles in a week — 521 During Ride the Rockies

Number of Zero mile weeks – None

Number of 100 mile days – Three

And I will add for 242 rides the average was 33.38 miles per ride.

Most interesting story – My Amish cousins.

And that’s it. Another year. No falls or crashes (always a plus)! It was a good year but I still had 123 days without a ride. Lazy, lazy, lazy. I don’t know what 2016 holds for me. I want to do an epic ride for children’s cancer awareness and research but things have to fall in order. I love France, Italy, and Switzerland but don’t know if I will get back this year. I hope wherever it is I ride safe, make new friends, and most of all, continue to find peace on the bike.

*I can’t count