2018: A New Beginning

2017 was a good year.  I surpassed 4000 km outdoor kilometres for the year, and although this wasn’t my best year (I’ve had about 5000 km before), I still deem 2017 to be a success given the slow start I had because of my concussion recovery.

The year ended on December 31 with a traditional family (and friends) New Year’s Eve ride in Oakville.  My brothers and I started the tradition in the early 2000s with rides in either Ancaster or Oakville, regardless of conditions.  Here’s one of the first rides (2003) in Ancaster.  Back then, we didn’t know much about dressing for winter rides (I have vivid recollections of frozen toes) and many rides were without snow.

Hung, Jeff, Greg and me, New Year’s Eve, 2003.

The ride in 2015 was a mudfest:

Greg, me, Jeff and Hal. New Year’s Eve 2015.

But the ride on December 31 as 2017 turned into 2018 was in perfect snow conditions!

Snowpacked singletrack at night (photo: Jeff Shikaze)

One of my 2017 highlights that I didn’t mention in my annual summary was a couple of rides I had with old friends with whom I reconnected because of our shared passion for cycling.  In September, Mike B. was in town (from Calgary) and we went on a road ride.  Mike and I went to grad school together in the early 1990s.  Another friend, Rich K., contacted me via social media.  Rich and I lived in the same residence in first-year undergrad waaaaaaay back in 1985. He was visiting K-W from the GTA and we rode some of the gravel roads around here in November.  I’d never cycled with either of them, so the bike brought us back together.

As we turn the calendar into 2018, I won’t make any resolutions (it’s not my thing).  However, one goal will be to ride at least as much as I did in 2017.  My growing interest in bikepacking will continue to grow, and I would like to try a short solo trip at some point.  And above all, I will cycle for fun and fitness.  I’ll enter some events, but not to race.  Instead I’ll enter to see friends and hang out with like-minded cycling souls.  Maybe I’ll see you out on a ride or at an event!

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