Skot Cancels his ride to Chico - Arcata Mayor agrees

Discussion in 'rec.bicycles.rides archive' started by Cycle America/N, Jul 27, 2003.

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  1. In a judgement call that communicates much about the need for a safe interconnected two wheel
    America, Skot Paschal is not riding from Arcata to Chico. Why Not? We had him on a suicide mission.
    Last spring when we saw that there were only two highways that connected these two population
    centers, we just assumed that the local cyclists up that way would know another way. Surely there
    were tiny mountain roads with so many switchbacks that cars avoided them.

    Sadly this was not the the case. We had Skot in touch with the Chico Velo Cycling club, he asked
    questions of every cyclist he encountered on the way down from Eugene. He studied maps. Everywhere
    he went in Arcata, a town filled with cyclists, he inquired about the bike road to Chico. And
    wherever he turned, all he heard was **No Way**. Not 213 miles in two days on roads with no
    shoulders filled with motorhomes and cars towing boats and camper trailers and all the other forms
    of weekend traffic that would be out there.

    So after Arcata had rolled the red carpet out for him with interviews, and gift baskets and the
    ceremony we will soon be documenting, the reality of what lay ahead began to sink in for Skot. And
    when later that evening as he soaked away all his pedaling aches with avid Arcata cyclist and Mayor,
    Bob Ornleas, in a hot tub as they nursed a few cold ones from the brewery Bob owns, the fact that he
    would not be able to fulfill his mission turned Skot's world upside down. If he wanted to make Chico
    on time and he wanted to do so alive, he would have to hitch a ride. And I can appreciate the
    depression he must have felt. In 1979 when I did my first bike ride across America, I had to stick
    out my thumb to get a ride in to the Capitol. Back then there was no other way because, like a moat,
    it was surrounded by freeways. While it has been activism that has changed that condition for most
    bike riders living outside of the Beltway that encircles the center of this Nation's government,
    we've still got a long way to go in getting population centers connected to one another throughout
    most of the rest of America. In fact it was that experience that placed me on the NBG warpath down
    which I still march today.

    And as an exercise in further humiliation, truck after truck passed Skot as he baked in the sun for
    several hours with his thumb out. Feeling defeated as you will see below, he got on his bike and
    headed south toward his home here in Santa Cruz. When I caught him at a campground pay phone outside
    of Weott (he had called and left a message without a number that I was able to track down to Silver
    Springs Campground where one of the campers then found him for me) , I asked him to try instead to
    make the 250 miles to Wednesday's Sacramento reception. He told me if the roads are sane, he'll give
    it a shot. Before I give you Skot, here is what the Arcata Mayor had to say:

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    [..] For Skot to get to Chico he would need a support vehicle full of water and Mojo bars and tons
    of real food. Highway 299 has 5,000 feet of climbing in the first 30 miles. And Highway 36 is worse!
    And both continue at nearly the same theme for another hundred miles just to reach Interstate 5
    along CA's central furnace.

    So next time you see Skot, give him a big hug, a huge personal thanks, a big meal, lots of
    beers,....and an apology. Not that you did anything real bad, but because he really anguished over
    trying to reach the goals that were set and they were arguably impossible to achieve (as a mortal).

    With that said, I have to tell you that riding those twenty miles into Arcata with him was an honor
    and a blast. Skot's a great person. He spoke very highly of Martin and the goals of NBG. The bike
    folks around here would have loved to have hosted him for a week. He only got a glimpse of our
    hospitality and showed a lot of class. It was fun to escort him to Eureka.

    We are looking forward to taking a role in future NBG events and would love to have a more advanced
    notice so that we can be better prepared and offer you and your folks a higher degree of success and
    exposure within ours and the greater cycling community.

    Personally, it would be super to join y'all in Santa Cruz next month for the bikefest. Regardless,
    thank you so much for making Arcata part of your wonderful event.

    Sincerely, (Mayor-bicycler - or is it the other way around?) Bob Ornelas
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    And talk about anguish, here is Skot, a man who truly gave it his all:

    I'm at the last chance to Chico and it seems improbable Just tell them I'm a wimp. I spent the night
    in Mayor Bob's house. We left this morning together with Melanie, a serious local cyclist who just
    did the Markleville Death ride. On the way here radio station 94.1 had a great story about me and
    the NBG. This by far the most bike friendly of places. The front page of the Times-Standard has a
    great picture and article. Last night the local T.V. also had a story and excellent footage of Mayor
    Bob, some great kids from town, Bill Burton and local great guy from the Bicycle Library and place
    where locals can check out a bike, and Officer Nick Selders the bike cop in town. Right now, in
    Fortuna there is a car show on Business 101. About my future. It looks like I'll be off the
    grid...this is just not doable in 2 days by 50 something little ol' me. Retreat gracefully, It was
    worth it for all that Arcata brought to NBG. I will write this p.m. to tell what happened.

    After many ideas..here in Weott.

    In a peldaling state of mind, Sk.

    Somewhere south of Weott

    It Pasta Roni and Coors tonight Man do I need help Veering away from Chicoville Everyone said "No
    way, Dude." Instead you'll find me where the Greenway should be The Avenue of the Giants" This is
    the only way to go. $2 to camp amongst the redwoods $.50 for a long hot one (shower of course). This
    is the best for bikes with a quiet road where the cars are almost too considerate the quiet is
    sacred the trees legendary and plenty of trippy stuff: trees to walk through history galore. It's
    best to follow the flow and dance another day.

    In a peldaling state of mind, Sk.

    Local access to PocketMail mobile e-mail now available in Europe, North America & Australia
    http://www.pocketmail.com

    Skot Paschal http://www.skot.web-page.net Skot can be reached on the road at: [email protected]

    MARTIN KRIEG: "Awake Again" Author c/o BikeRoute.com 79 & 86 TransAms, nonprofit Nat. Bicycle
    Greenway CEO Ever wanted anything so bad U were willing to die for it? Really die? By moving thru
    clinical death and reversing paralysis, *I saw God* when I answered that question.
     
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  2. Kevan Smith

    Kevan Smith Guest

    On Sun, 27 Jul 2003 12:43:23 -0700, "Cycle America/Nat. Bicycle Greenway" <[email protected]>
    from wrote:

    >And wherever he turned, all he heard was **No Way**. Not 213 miles in two days on roads with no
    >shoulders filled with motorhomes and cars towing boats and camper trailers and all the other forms
    >of weekend traffic that would be out there.

    Pansy. I would have done it.

    --
    http://home.sport.rr.com/cuthulu/ human rights = peace UH-OH!! I think KEN is OVER-DUE on his R.V.
    PAYMENTS and HE'S having a NERVOUS BREAKDOWN too!! Ha ha.
    2:49:26 PM 27 July 2003
     
  3. Tom Keats

    Tom Keats Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Kevan Smith
    <[email protected]/\/\> writes:
    > On Sun, 27 Jul 2003 12:43:23 -0700, "Cycle America/Nat. Bicycle Greenway" <[email protected]eroute.com>
    > from wrote:
    >
    >>And wherever he turned, all he heard was **No Way**. Not 213 miles in two days on roads with no
    >>shoulders filled with motorhomes and cars towing boats and camper trailers and all the other forms
    >>of weekend traffic that would be out there.
    >
    > Pansy. I would have done it.

    I think going to the upcoming Burning Man might be a little more worth it, than going to Chico.

    cheers, Tom

    --
    -- Powered by FreeBSD Above address is just a spam midden. I'm really at: tkeats [curlicue] vcn
    [point] bc [point] ca
     
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