My latest adventure down the west coast is now over. Posts are listed by date on the right. In a departure from previous years, I am not asking for donations. Instead, I will be making a sizable donation on behalf of my father-in-law, father, and all the wonderful people who have supported me over the years.

My rides will continue to make a difference in the lives of families fighting lung disease and to increase awareness about the importance of lung health. Follow along … Together; we are improving life, one breath at a time.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Ride The West - Day 23 - Marina del Rey, CA to Newport Beach, CA

Another amazing trip has come to an end.  My friendships grew stronger with every mile I rode and every hill I climbed.  The outstanding ABB crew provided top notch support and helped ensure we all arrived safely.  While today was somewhat anticlimactic, the trip and the people certainly were not.  It provided me life long memories and deepened my love for cycling.  As I expected, the ride was more about the people than the miles.  I will remember the conversations, the laughs, the stories, and the comradery.

Our Half Way Shot ... Never Took One Today ... Thanks Guys!
The sites were not too shabby either.  In 23 days we covered over 1,400 miles and climbed almost 73,000 feet.  We saw it all ... two amazing states, rocky beaches, breathtaking ocean views, quaint and not so quaint beach towns, Victorian homes, steep climbs, busy highways, great bike paths, wineries, crops, huge redwood trees, surfers, tarantulas, bridges, and so much more. I know I will reread this blog and look at the pictures for years to come.

My wife and family make it all possible.  They support me, push me, and follow me.  Thanks for letting me do what I love.  Next year, the big trip will include them ... a trip to Costa Rica is in the works.  My riding mates have become such an important part of my life.   A big thanks to the other stooges (Jeff and Joe) for putting up with me, helping me, teasing me, and making me a stronger person and cyclist.  I could fill a blog with thanks and stories of my fellow riders.  Each one holds a special place in my heart.  It was great to spend time with all the 2010 North riders ... Leo, Howard, Shirley, Gary, Mark (and Susan), Don, Margo, Rick, and John (and Barb) ... you guys rock.  I also made new friendships ...  Chris, John A., Tracey, Russ, John D., CD, Mose, Phyllis, Char, Herb, Jim, Tim, and the Colorado crew (Rick, Denise, Alana, and Cindy).  I was moved and inspired by Tracey and Char. Last, but not least, a huge thank you to Mike and Barbara Munk, Karen Bauer, and Jim Benson.  Their dedication and support of our dream is second to none.  I continued to learn from them and enjoyed the chance to have more 1-1 time with each of them.

An Amazing Group ... Missing Mike & Barb (Courtesy of Mike Munk)
To keep true to my blog ... here is a recap of the day.  The day was 50 flat (with one 600 foot exception just south of Redondo Beach) miles -  I rode with Joe, Jeff, and Michael Louis (he rode with us in 2010 and joined us for the day) all day.  At times, we rode along side most of the other riders and enjoyed an easy going pace.  We spent almost half the day on quieter beach side bike paths and passed several marinas.  The day also included some busier, industrial areas.  I got my first flat in one of those sections about five miles before our SAG.  Redondo and Huntington beaches were particularly nice.

Early Morning Marina
Michael Louis (from 2010) Road With Us All Day
Jeff, Michael, and Me (Joe Took The Picture)
Joe Snapped Another One of Us Along A Beach Path

Karen Helped Me Make A Speedy Flat Change (Courtesy of Mike Munk)

Lots of Goodbyes at the SAG ... It Was Fun Mose (Courtesy of Mike Munk)
We arrived early, grabbed lunch, and then disassembled our bikes for our trip home tomorrow.  A relaxing dinner with the Geldings, Susan, and Gary capped off the day.  The stooges are together again for one more night before flying out tomorrow.  Our next trip beckons ... that one is TBD.  Thanks for following along.

Thanks Again Mike, Barb, Karen, and Jim

Last Dinner Out ... Mark Was Picture Taker

Good Night Joe
Good Night Moon ... Good Night Wife ... Good Night Son ... Good Night Daughter ... Good Night Stooges ... Good Night ABB Friends and Crew ... Good Night Ride The West

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