Blessed in 2015

Last MTB ride of 2015.

After last MTB of 2015.

Finished my last ride in of 2015 today – rode 2,500 miles on my mountain bike in this year. Not a record in the biking world. But a significant personal milestone for me. I carried extra weight on my bike and backpack for most of those 2,500 miles – good for the cardio health.

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Given that one of my daughters ran 3,000 miles in 2015, my 2,500 miles on a mountain bike is not a big deal.

Nevertheless, I thought about the significance of this personal milestone.

God has blessed me with good health. I do not take this for granted – life is precarious and many are not able to exercise as I have been able to do. I am thankful for that health. Thank you Jesus!

God has allowed me to experience the beauty of his world. I took a week-long solo bikepacking trek in the Oregon Cascades where I saw magnificent mountains, deep blue lakes, cascading waterfalls, and lush forests.

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Crater Lake Rim – Oregon Cascade Mountains – July 2015

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Ozark Mountains at Table Rock Lake, Missouri – August 2015

My family encouraged me as I rode all those miles. They gave me bikepacking gear as gifts, encouraged me, and prayed for me as I rode. Susan, my wife, allowed me to spend the hours riding and was always interested in my activities (preparing for trips, training, riding).

I met some good people along the way. And friends have encouraged me along the way.

I rode in a wide range of temperatures – from 100 degree F temps to 30 degree F temps, through rainy, dark days and sunny bright days, and through all kinds of wind and weather.

The journey was good – though challenging – I enjoyed the journey.

2016 is a new year – I plan to return to a different part the Oregon Cascades for another mountain biking trek near Bend, Oregon. And I look forward to the new year with anticipation, joy and a grateful heart.

Goals for 2016…