Is this my Celebrated Summer?

Attention Kmart shoppers, er, dear readers: I don’t know if you have noticed, but we are already a few days into August. And if you are in the northern hemisphere, that means we’ve already passed the “hump” of summer. Now, I definitely know that it’s still summer here in Portland, as it’ s been sunny and the highs have been between 85F and 95F for, oh, most of July. (Except for those few days of rain, of course.) But as August starts its march toward September, I realize that there’s not that much summer left, and I haven’t seized summer in the way that I want. And the way that I want to do that is by bike touring.

The big problem is because of my current work-life-typed-thing, big epic tours are not in the cards for 2014. (Maybe 2015, we’ll see.) At best, I can hope for two weeks of week-plus vacation from work, and maybe a couple 3-4 day “mini-vacations”. I already used one of my vacations to go out to Minnesota for the Three Speed Tour in May. And that was a worthy adventure. But spending a week doing that means I only get another week-plus vacation to do a bike tour. And I have maybe the two 3-4 day “mini-vacations” to do mini-tours.

That leaves me with bike overnights, the overnight camping adventures that can “fill” out the rest of the calendar. And I haven’t done as many of those as I want. Looking back, I haven’t really done many at all. Oh sure, I got an early start and did an overnight in February, then I’ve managed to do at least one every month since then (two in June and July). To most people, that’s “a lot”. To someone like me, who loves bike camping and is jonesing for a real tour, not enough. And many of those were more about expediency and proximity, so rather than explore new destinations (which I prefer), I repeated a couple, like Battle Ground Lake and Oxbow. And now that I think of it, I haven’t done anything resembling a bike tour since last September…

Thankfully, I do have a couple mini-tours slated in the next couple months. And I get to take my next (and final) vacation of 2014 in mid-September. For the full vacation, I’m planning on doing something involving portions of the Oregon Outback route with stuff around the Cascades. More details to come.

For now, I’ll just have to be an armchair bike tourist, read Gypsy By Trade, and get jealous.


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