Arizona Travels

The road traveled to O’Hare Airport, I-88, is not the way to ease the mind and prepare for a four-hour flight westward when flying typically makes one uneasy. I-88 is the definition of Chicago-driving with utter havoc and ever shuffling chaos. Perhaps, letting the anxiety escalate prior to arrival to the airport would calm some down in preparing for flying. And I think it did calm me. Being a cyclist, I can go months without ever being in a vehicle. An IPA, did also, help calm my nerves before flying.

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Arizona is an extremely diverse state and, within a week, I experienced most its awesomeness. I’ve earned my MTBing badge by biking, by myself, in Sedona red rocks for the very first time. Riding over wet boulders and rocks on the cliff side did not excite me much, yet, extruded survival skills. I am not ashamed that at certain points, I was terrified, and walked my rental bike.

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The Grand Canyon truly is grand. It is literally too awesome to stare at for too long. And due to a partial government shutdown bullshit, the walkways were layered with pure ice. Luckily, there was a safety railing saving hundreds from their plummeting death that day.

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Phoenix has millions (like five) of different cactuses that are wonderfully approachable and huggable. One hug and done. Phoenix/Arizona also likes to make my stay longer than planned. Due to horrific wintery conditions in Illinois, my flight cancellation extended my vacation 48 more hours. And years ago, due to an Arizonan monsoon, my flight was canceled. I am a sunshine addict and maybe the sunshine is addicted to me… Or it could be matching energies.

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I had a wonderful trip out West. I learned that I enjoy diversity in people and weather throughout one day. I learned that MTBing is extremely difficult. I learned how friendly Arizonans are. I relearned that assumptions do not usually bring closure. I was reminded heights and ice are my worst enemies. And when combined, it is my kryptonite. Arizona restaurants are mostly Vegetarian/Vegan friendly. Arizona beers are OK, but Chicago/midwest beers reign supreme. Currently, in Northern Illinois, it is negative 25 degrees and feels like negative 56.

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Stay warm out their, friends!

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CHEERS

 

2018

Ups, downs, twists and turns were my 2018 on Earth. Strongly addicted to the sun, 2019’s goal is to exploit this addiction. Winter in the midwest is ever dreary – depleting my mojo, yo. If you experience the harsh winter, hang in there. Be positive:)

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Please, take more quality photos, ride more bikes, enjoy good local brews and cook your own food:) Don’t forget to get plenty of sunlight. It’s the only reason that we’re alive.

Ⓥegan Reuben Pi

Vegenaise, Horseradish, Smoked Poblano Powder, Lemon Juice, diced Dill Pickle, Ⓥ Parm, diced Carrot, Pepper and Garlic Powder were combined and mixed together, Veganly.

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A small lightly oiled pan was stuffed with dough before being layed with wonderful ingredients. Ⓥ Smart ‘bacon’, Garbanzo Beans, the Dressing previously stated above, Daiya, diced Onion, Sauerkraut, Ⓥ Parm and light Basil topped this Pi so high. When you look up in the sky and the Moon hits your eye like a big Pizza Pi, that’s Ⓥ Reuben Pi.

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LBⓋ 24 TACO

Whatever Mexican-style cooking that I have, is unbeatable. However I feel, the ingredients change – adapting cravings, influencing realism. The sense of a certain level of hunger can immensely inspire a spontaneous spark of flavor, economically smartness, picture-perfect food.

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There is no time for the numbers and prices. Aldi Black Bean patties, Corn and Hash brown patties were baked to immediately become panfried to create amazing texture and color. Seasonings (Cilantro, Sea Salt, Pepper, Lime Juice, Garlic Powder, Turmeric, Cayenne), Scallions and Kidney Beans were tossed together.

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Corn tortillas were flame torched and stuffed with the mixture and fresh Avocado, Tomato, Iceberg Lettuce, Olive and Cilantro.

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Cheers.

Three Floyds Brewing Company

Here in the psychotic midwest, mother (F*#ker) nature gave us 2 ½ days of spring. Bikes and Beers must be had before Old Man Winter slaps anyone in the face with a 23° F wind chill on a bicycle (like today).

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Illinois weather does really suck sometimes, but if you’re up by the suburbs of Chicago, safe trail Cycling is vastly open to where your mind and body can take you.

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On Wednesday, April 11, 2018, the trunk bag was minimally packed on the Trek Darth Vader to trek to Three Floyds and back. And by back, I mean to my parents where they’ll bring my bicycle and I the remaining distance.

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Trails taken (that made up of 97% of the entire trip):

  • Kishwaukee – Kiwanis Trail
  • DeKalb Nature Trail
  • DeKalb – Sycamore Trail
  • Great Western Trail
  • Randall Road Bike Trail
  • Silver Glen Trail
  • River Bend Trail
  • Fox River Trail
  • Stearns Road Trail
  • Illinois Prairie Path Elgin Branch
  • Illinois Prairie Path Aurora Branch
  • DuPage County Regional Trail
  • Dupage River Walk
  • West Branch DuPage River Trail
  • Southern DuPage Regional Trail
  • Greene Trail
  • Veterans Trail
  • Centennial Trail
  • Old Plank Road Trail
  • Thorn Creek Red Paved Trail
  • Pennsy Greenway
  • Munster, IN – Pennsy, Thorn Creek, Old Plank Road were taken back
  • I & M Canal Trail (61 miles)

The 365.53 km (227.13 miles) in three days were Beautiful and exhausting. Here are my Relive links:

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

I have not experienced a bad 3Fs brew. And I don’t think that I ever will. The stay at a new hotel almost next door to 3Fs was modern and wonderful. Please, check out Munster, Indiana and Three Floyds Brewing Company.

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Adventure is my exercise.

CHEERS

Winter Cycling

Cold weather and air is adaptable. Getting sick cannot be fun. Constant boosting of my immune system is key to my survival through the Winter commutes. Often, the choice of bike depicts exactly how fast you will get to point B or point C. Weather forecasters and I all suck at predicting the weather. Here in Illinois, the weather forecasts change hourly.

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As long as the Winter cyclist is dressed appropriately, the cold shouldn’t truly effect a cyclists well-being. Of course, it is not good for anyone to be out in negative degree Fahrenheit temperatures for longer than 60 minutes.

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Layers are more important than bicycle choice. Correct footwear, headwear and handwear are most crucial to comfort.

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My commutes range from 6-8 miles to and from 6-8 fro. The time ranges from 20-45 minutes each way. In-between my rides, the work hours range from 7-13 hours. Lights are essentially a must. At the moment, two front (both 700 lumens) and one rear attempt to keep me seen. I have just upgraded to a brighter rear light as I’ve been riding more road lately on my cross bike. The All-Weather hard-case tires are amazing in sloppy conditions. My FatBike, the Arrogant Bastard, is so heavy and slow and hard to commute with unless an utter snow massacre has just happened.

#RideOn

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#BeSafe