Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2019 Rewind

If there is one word that describes 2019, it is transition. I'm proud of a leap in creativity, overcoming and fully embracing riding on snow, thoughts on replacing one bike for another, an amazing hiking adventure that stretched my physical limits and unfortunately lowers the bar for future long distance hikes, and finally an upcoming relocation that's filled our thoughts since October.

I find writing this year end blog post very therapeutic - a chance to reflect - so I can move forward. Equally important to recounting is writing (and referring back to periodically through the year) a future goals/ideas type of blog post - not so detailed to feel overwhelming - but to set an intention, which gives me something to look forward to. When winter rolls around, I anticipate future trips, thoughts, new places to see, etc. for the coming year. It keeps me going!

I fully embraced the Dahon in 2019, focusing on lowering the gearing, fixing a broken fender, making a water bottle holder, pouch thingy, (from scratch!) and creating small panniers. While riding the brilliant, easy to mount folder, quite a lot this year, I realize I would be perfectly content if I had to make a choice of having one bike - the Dahon is it. This simple realization is liberating.

My heart wasn't in planning my own overnight excursions in 2019, but I found a solution: hook up with a cool trip to Law Island and a WTF Explorers weekend. Both adventures stretched my comfort zone - never forget your sleeping bag! In addition, Adele and I made our annual pilgrimage to Quebec happen with last minute planning. I'm so fortunate to have an adaptable companion.

In September I went on a two week hiking adventure with my husband, a 100 mile circuit of Mont Blanc, often referred to as the TMB (Tour du Mont Blanc). With daily steep ascents and descents, it was very difficult terrain, but easily the most beautiful scenery. With complications in places to stay, and the busiest trail I've ever seen (in the off season no less!), and very sore knees (yours truly), it was a wonder we were able to finish every mile. Going forward, I've given myself permission to avoid difficult hikes from now on.

The Coffeeneuring season has turned me into a confident winter rider. For the second year in a row, November's arctic blast and early snowfall meant toting a thermos when I otherwise might've stayed indoors. With a chosen theme to explore a neighboring town - where we'll eventually move in 2020 -meant a least a 15+ mile round-trip ride, often in temperatures of 20F. Because of the coffeeneuring challenges, I believe a year from now, when my commute distance doubles (9.5 miles each way) on mostly flat bike path, I'll be able to ride to work on many wintry days.

Emotionally I'm ready to let go of one ill fitting bicycle. I am also considering acquiring a hard tail mountain bike as I have a desire to ride trails. I've also accepted that blog posts will remain infrequent (though follow me on Instagram at @annie.bikes for photos). I'm content with this social arrangement.

I'm ready for 2020 - are you?


  1. Wishing you a very Happy New Year, Annie (and family)!! I've enjoyed reading about your adventures this year (as always) and look forward to that continuing in the coming year. Wishing you all the best in 2020.

    1. All the best to you and Sam and your doggies! I enjoy your writing. Seems like when we both blog it's always when it feels right.

    2. Thanks, Annie!

      I always hope to write more, but sometimes it just doesn't happen. I've accepted that when the time is right, it will happen. :)

  2. A Happy New Year Annie with lots of wonderful biking adventures. Although I'm content with my 3 bikes the Dahon is the one that I ride almost every day.

  3. Happy 2020 Annie, which bike is getting the chop? One of my mantras is "uncomfortable bikes don't get ridden" it helps with the decision on keep or release.

    1. Happy 2020 to you as well, Ryan. My red Trek Antelope has not been fitting well for a couple years. 19" is just too small for me, I've decided. At some point it will go, but not before I remove those Shimano thumbshifters that my husband insisted I "borrowed" nearly 25 years ago. Ha! I may also keep the wheels for spares or mount studded tires on. I'm rethinking this upcoming longer commute and could see using the white Peugeot also as a winter bike or also as a primary ride in conjunction with the faster Peugeot UO14. Of course, these are all just my thoughts so far because I'm still riding the red Trek...

      Still waiting with baited breath (where did that phrase ever originate?) to hear more about your sweet purple mountain bike...

  4. Happy new year! Looking forward to more posts even if infrequent.


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