I've always loved poring over a map, plotting rides and adventures.
I love leaving the house with a new road to ride circling in my head.
But I've been taken to a new level of curiosity.
Now that I have my cyclocross bike, my stud-able Surly, and mountain bike shoes; I am no longer bound to the pavement. I am free to surf the gravel roads, skidding and crunching up impossible grades and burning my brakes down the other side. Now I peruse the Umatilla National Forest website, clicking through fire lookout cabins available to rent. I contentedly click around Google Maps with the 'Terrain' view turned on. I eat king size Snickers bars for lunch. I like hunger and I like knowing each curve and crease of the land, not just each asphalt line.
And I have a LIST:
- Government Mtn.
- Saddle Mtn.
- Pikes Peak
- Klicker Mtn.
- Lincton Mtn.
- Blalock Mtn.
- Basket Mtn.
- Jasper Mtn.
UPDATE Feb.1: I have scratched Jasper Mtn. from the list so that I can focus on a smaller area.
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I must summit these mountains by the end of May. Now, climbing these "mountains" are not huge feats, per se. They top out around 3500'. But they will take me up and down this valley. And they will show me the crease of the land. Bring me to vistas. And for each one I summit, I will eat a giant, king size almond Snickers bar.
Now, MY list may involve sweat, gears and carbon fiber. But YOUR list doesn't have to. Explore the place that you live. Your list could involve the coffee shop you've always meant to try, the park you wanted to relax in, or any number of urban or rural things. Because truth is, identifying goals and making them concrete is the first step to a real plan of action. Otherwise our wishes only remain wishes. And that's not nearly as fun.