Good evening, Blog Nation. Sam here. As one trip goes out and two more come home today, things are on the move here today in the office. The hot, hot heat here in Maine today has got us wishing we could be in the cool waters of the Pacific or Puerto Rico today, but luckily we can live vicariously through our groups that actually are!
In the FLOP (Foto-Less Oblivious People) category today, there is but one lonely group:
PCA: Micah and McKayla’s group are making their way down a gorgeous but cell-phone challenged stretch of coast, with just 3 more days of riding seperating them and San Francisco.
CI: To steal words from the ever-inspiring Willie Nelson, “On the road again / Just can’t wait to be on the road again.” More excited than ever and coming off a great first trip, Shannon and Drew are back in Falmouth today where they met their second round trip and started it off right with a game of WAH. After a short ride to the campground tonight, the group will get their feet wet (hopefully not literally) on a ride and ferry to Martha’s Vineyard tomorrow.
VM: After an excellent two weeks and several hundred miles together, this group parted ways today. Decked out in Apogee gear, here is the group saying goodbye to Canada and Bonjour to USA, on their drive back to Manchester where they are all heading home to continue their excellent summers, despite the sadness of leaving each other behind. (No, they did not return to Manchester on top of the trailer…)
CQA: Nothing could slow them down today, even though two flat tires tried to. Cruising along, Susie and Nick led the group into Quebec City before noonl. With lunch in their bellies, the group is exploring the shops and parks of Old Quebec, before they have an incredible evening together at one of the great outdoor festivals in Vieux Quebec.
CQB: Right behind Susie and Nick’s crew into Quebec was Mia and Alex’s, who, despite some bike issues this morning, made it to Quebec City this afternoon and are now situated in the hostel. They are so excited to get a day to explore the city tomorrow and have a celebratory final dinner together. The picture is just of cook crew, as the rest of the group has hit the showers to clean up!
NEMC: Talk about decked out in Apogee gear (and doesn’t it look like some evil elf played with Photoshop in this shot?)! Stopping briefly at Santa’s sleigh (I really have no idea what they are playing on…) last night, the group had an excellent last evening together. By this point, they are all home, cleaner than they have been for 10 days, and reminiscing about the great times they had together!
DEX: Nearly two weeks in, this group has turned into a vanful of lean, mean, hiking machines, enabling them to tackle the tallest mountain in Maine this morning. Here they are atop Katahdin, luckily enjoying beautiful weather in the background. Hitting the summit is bittersweet, however, as this is the group’s last hike together – tomorrow they will be back in southern Maine to explore and spend one final day together.
CMC: Today was CMC’s last big travel day, and also their day of service. With incredible efficiency, the group was a true help to the Second Harvest Food Bank as they sorted and boxed 2600 lbs of food items and 3200 lbs of carrots in a little under two hours! They spent the afternoon driving to their campground, where the group is excited to wake up tomorrow and explore San Fran on their last day together.
CSA: Living in a beautiful Villa overlooking the blue-green of the Caribbean has been kind to the group in Puerto Rico. Moving in last night, the group is excited to spend their next 5 days here, and do service. Today they spent their first morning at the Wildlife Refuge rock-picking and potting plants (and hanging out in wheelbarrows, apparently), and their first afternoon modeling by the lighthouse in Cabo Rojo.
MSA: The group in Montana woke up this morning, turned right, and biked uphill for 12 miles. An incredible ride, the Going-To-The-Sun Road is then followed by stunning views at Logan Pass and many miles of downhill, making today a truly memorable day of riding. Seen below, celebrating one of the greatest signs a biker can see, as well as a toast (of water) to a great ride!
PCB: With Shem keeping an (extraordinarily creepy day-glo) eye on the group, they have had an awesome off day. Between a lunch on the beach and tie-dyeing t-shirts, the group is in very high spirits as they prepare for their longest day of biking (69 miles!) tomorrow with a stop at a scrumptious farmer’s market today. Because the group’s service project fell-through when rangers were called away to help with a small fire, the group was forced to sip lattes overlooking the ocean in Mendocino. Tough ride, eh?
TSA: Laura and Pat pulled away from Spannocchia today and into Pienza; it was a tough day of riding, but full of surprises. Stopping along the way to find a secret flower garden and eating “the most scenic pizza of their lives” for dinner were highlights that will not soon be forgotten.
ACC1: Pulling out of the ever-wonderful Walls’ household this morning was a mixed bag of emotion, as the group left behind never-ending hospitality and food, but they are super excited to be back on the road and nearing another state border. This excitement carried them through their 1000th mile, and demolishing the old world record for this day by 4 hours. They also were able to, despite our best recommendations, pick up another trip member, who has been a pleasure to bike with and talk to. Seen below is the entire group, new member and all.
ACC2: As Anna and Dave’s group biked away, Mike and Danika’s fell in behind. ACC2 had cool weather through Arkansas as they pulled in to El Dorado, with the knowledge that they get a day off tomorrow pulling them through a flat and into the Wall’s at 10:30. With kickball, mail, and home-cooked food, all signs point to a great evening.