“You know New York, you need New York, you know you need unique New York!” I have been in New York 1 week and it has been so wonderful to us! Currently we are 3. Ty, 29 from Tacoma, WA and then there is Ian, bike activist and adventurer from Saratoga, NY and me! So far our time has been filled with a family reunion, 250+ miles of biking, lots of side-of-the-road-singing, dancing, farming, working, playing, swimming, eating a lot of food. Here is Tyler and Ian above and this was the scene that we arrived to when we got to the family reunion in Rome, NY. Ian set up a little paper bag that welcomed us to the house. We rode 20 miles to get to the party which was at his Aunt and Uncle, Patty and Dave’s house. They had a huge backyard for camping, a swimming pool for cooling down, and many wonderful family relatives to meet.
The events of the Reunion lasted about 2 days and consisted of scavenger hunts, an egg toss for children and adults, a egg hunt with tons of prizes, a cherry spitting contest, family photo albums from the last 60 family reunions, old newsletters sent out after every year, and eating a lot of food! Tyler won the cherry spitting contest I believe spitting at a range of 28 feet or something like that. I wont the infamous egg throwing contest with my partner, Ian and we definitely broke a record of over 63 feet underhand throwing and got our names on the egg trophy. I was pretty excited about the whole ordeal.
Biking is such an incredible way to travel. It opens doors, allows one to think outside of the box, and really allows you to think and slow down. Camping outside and getting to know local people, its what life is all about.
This tour we have gone so far from Utica, NY to Rome, NY and then through to Saratoga Springs where Ian’s parents live. After that we cycled to a little lake where we met a friendly and loud Beaver in Schroon River just South of Lake George. Below are some of the stops that we would take, the lakes we saw, and the houses that are around the area. Such beautiful places that I never dreamed of seeing!
After the river we headed into the Adirondack mountains where we were greeted with hills to climb and sunshine to soak. The mountains are in fact not a range but rather a series of hills 100+ to be more specific. The heights range from 1,200 feet – 5,433 feet which is the peak of Mt. Marcy. The range is has over 62 million acres, making it the largest National Park in the U.S.A. and boy was it green singing with wildflowers and granite cliffs. We decided after a 50-60 mile bike ride into the mountains that we would end our day with hiking. We found Giant Mountain and climbed upward about 1 miles to a clearing where we made camp. What a view it was, and a clear night for amazing star gazing.
Through the Adirondacks we found a town called “Keene”, not quite my last name in spelling but it was a quaint and gentle town that offered us bread, gluten free pasta and chips for our meals!
Next on the list was to head to Ian’s younger brothers farm called “Echo Farm” in Essex, NY. We rode maybe 50-60 miles again with many mountain climbs to the farm which was originally a dairy farm!
A little history about the farm, it has not been used for the past 50-60 years as a older woman lived there with her brother who had a disability. The farm died a little bit and now Dillon and his partner, Kelly decided to take on the 160 acres of forest and farm land complete with pigs, goats, chickens and vegetables. We got to help by stripping the paint off the barn! What a magical place!
This was my first time getting to pet goats and really getting to know the animal! Wow I love their milk, cheese and just the way the animals are! They are so friendly and loving and enjoy being pet! At least these goats do and that’s probably because they are on a routine schedule for milking twice a day. Once at 6am and another at 6pm. Tyler and I couldn’t get enough of them! I think he even hugged 5 at once!
I am feeling continuously grateful, loved, fortunate and thankful to be on this journey. I just am wondering which day I will explode with rainbows and sunshine from all of the things that I am learning and the wonderful times that I am experiencing!
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