Day 29: O Sole Mio!

By: Izzy Janzen

Today we had a big batch of fond farewells and one set of huge milestones in the Apogee world. Our Vermonsters, Capers, College Essay Writers, Downeasters, Caribbeaners, and California mountaineers all parted ways this morning. We can’t believe those thirteen days have gone by so fast. While the goodbyes are always sad, the memories are always sweet. And on the milestone front, our European cyclists put their final miles behind them, crossed the Venetian lagoon and are dreaming in the ancient city of Venice as we go to press! Our biggest congrats from across the globe to ECC! And let’s not forget all the other trips shifting into the higher gears of their adventures together. The ebbs and flows over the course of an Apogee summer are truly amazing. Let’s see what the festivities, whether for farewells or just for fun, looked like today…

Maine Coast College Essay (MCCE2):

After a wonderful week together, this crew has explored and enjoyed Maine, sea kayaked, hiked, made some great friendships and completed two college essays. Wowza. Puts our week here in the office to shame! Below is most of the group, after their goodbyes to airport-bound friends, exploring Freeport and the gigantic and incredible Bean Boot before their departures.


Cape Cod & the Islands (CI2):

After a glorious day exploring Boston yesterday, the group enjoyed one last breakfast together this morning before saying goodbye. Below you will see a slew of photos- some of the gents enjoying Boston, their delectable final dinner, and some stimulating and serious chess matches as well as the awesome CI ladies at their trip end, some in their new Apogee gear! It was a wonderful trip; the group explored the marvels of Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Cape Cod, learning to surf, ride, and operate as a strong team as they went.


And you thought they were just humble bike riders!

ci2 CI2

New England Mountains and Coast (NEMC2):

NEMC had a day chock-a-block full of fun, games and transit. They hit the road towards their white-water rafting spot for tomorrow, stopping along the way to do some swimming, swinging, and much more. Tonight the gang is enjoying a traditional Thanksgiving-themed dinner. Look at all these happy faces!


nemc 2


Vermont to Montreal A (VM2A):

Below is Jessi and Jonathan’s happy crew enjoying a celebratory dinner in Montreal at Frite Alors last night! We can’t believe how the trip has flown by; they’ve enjoyed some magical moments traveling all the way through Vermont and into Montreal together. This morning the group bid adieu to Montreal as they crossed back over the border. They had happy reunions with their families and hit the road, fond memories in tow.


vm2aAu revoir! 

Vermont to Montreal B (VM2B):

This adorable, matching group of Vermonsters posed for their final blog picture this morning, proudly sporting their own new Apogee t-shirts. After crossing back over the border early this morning while celebrating all they have accomplished together – they have said their goodbyes, reunited with loved ones, and headed their separate ways. It was a fantastic trip full of big rides, green valleys, and great friends.

The gang enjoying their final, celebratory dinner!

Maine’s Downeast Explorer (DEX2):

Below are our DEXsters enjoying their final dinner out in Portland last night. They had a phenomenal evening with full bellies, lots of sweet treats, and dance jamsin the van, listening to all of their favorite tunes together. This morning they set off to Freeport for their farewells. John and Erinn reported that the crew was phenomenal and they were sad to see them go after an awesome 13 days of exploring the wonders of Maine.


Caribbean Service Adventure (CSA2):

13 days has gone by already? We can’t believe it! CSA has spent their time together getting down and dirty, contributing hard work and making positive impacts in Puerto Rico through a variety of awesome organizations. They had a blast while doing it and also saw some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. We couldn’t catch one last shot of the crew – but we know the goodbyes were bittersweet, as they had a blast and will soon be reunited with their loved ones at home.

California Mountains and Coast (CMC2):

After 13 magical days of adventuring through California coastline, back country, and alpine trails it was a nostalgic but happy wrap for this bunch this morning. We couldn’t get any goodbye pictures from the group today but we know that the trip was tons of fun and that the group will be missing each other lots in the days to come.

Montana Service Adventure (MSA2):

Once again this lovely group absolutely dominated their mileage for the day, getting into camp with lightning speed. It looks like they are having oodles of fun together, enjoying some rainbows and beautiful views. It wasn’t an easy ride today, but they did it and are feeling good. They’ll get to give their legs a rest tomorrow, as they’ll spend the day doing community service in Helena.

This group is the *gold* at the end of the rainbow!
Learning how to use Annika’s selfie stick- nice work!

Northwest Explorer (NWX2):

Here are some photos from the gang’s beautiful hike yesterday and one aerial shot of the group getting ready to head into the backcountry this morning. Will and Becca’s dream team will spend the next few nights hiking along some of the beautiful ridges of Olympic National Park. Oftentimes our groups are lucky enough to see mountain goats and marmots during this section, not to mention the majestic snowy peaks and flourishing wildflowers. With their entry into the backcountry, we’re not likely to get pictures from these guys until Monday.



nwx2 nwx2

Pacific Coast A (PC2A):

Abby and West’s gang had an amazing and speedy ride. Below is the group soaking up the vista from Face Rock View Point after an early start out of camp. The group is getting closer and closer as the days go on, getting really comfortable on their bikes as well as with each other.

pcA pca
Some adorable group banners to keep everyone motivated

Pacific Coast B (PC2B):

Today PCB took on the Seven Devils road, it’s a hilly ride but they cruuuushed it! They got an early start and ate a big breakfast (below) to get them motivated and ready for the days adventures. The group has a lovely beach to enjoy at their campsite this evening. From what we hear spirits are high and bonding is plentiful.


Alps Explorer A (AX2A):

After some storms rolled through Zermatt last night, the AXA team was thrilled to enjoy 70 gorgeous degree and flawless, sunny weather in Fiesch this afternoon. After their train ride from Zermatt, they chowed down on a hearty dinner, and followed up with a rousing game of Nuke’em on the volleyball court!

axaVolleyball and the Alps – together at last!


Alps Explorer B (AX2B):

Below are some images from yesterday’s magnificent day hike as well some adorable pictures of the AXB Tea Party. Look at that fresh fruit and chocolate! Today AXB took a morning train from Zermatt and enjoyed a prep day in Martigny. Tomorrow they set off on their biggest adventure yet: The Tour Du Mont Blanc. We know they’re ready for the excitement to come.



Photobombed by the Matterhorn – that’s pretty sweet….



Europe Coast to Coast A (ECCA):

THEY DID IT! Today ECCA departed the mountains and cruised toward the Mediterranean. The crew flew about 76 miles and made it smoothly to Venice. Ah, Venice! The marshy Venetian lagoon is known for it’s architecture, canals, artwork and much more. The group  has made it to their final destination after weeks of excitement and hard riding. Tonight and tomorrow they will just enjoy, relax, and explore the beauty of Venice together, now that they are bonded as an Apogee family. We can’t believe what they’ve endured and experienced. It’s been an outstanding and unbelievable ride that took them through seven countries, four languages and two seas to get them to the amazing place and to become the amazing group that they are now.


Europe Coast to Coast B (ECCB):

Today ECCB had a doozy of a day on their bikes- they crushed a whopping 156 km (read 97 miles…..!) to take them gloriously into Venice. The breeze of the Mediterranean ushered them along today, out of the mountains and into the beautiful canal-paved city. Welcome to Venice, ECCB! Similar to ECCA, this little Apogee family will be able to just explore and enjoy the delicacies Venice has to offer all day tomorrow before getting ready to say their farewells and head home on Monday. As we’ve said, but can’t help but say again, it’s been a truly magical adventure of seven countries, four languages and two seas that have gotten this squad to where they are now. We can’t even believe how much they’ve accomplished together. It was a long day – so they weren’t able to send us a picture by press-time – we’ll have plenty tomorrow!

America Coast to Coast (ACC):

Today our coast to coast cruisers flew 85 miles to Pie Town, NM. That’s right- Pie Town! We have some wonderful supporters of ACC in Pie Town and our lucky cyclists were greeted with a welcome party and a big potluck to celebrate their great success of making it this far. We, at Apogee, feel so lucky to have people out there taking such great care of our ACCers, We also hear, believe it or not, that Pie Town has some seriously unbelievable pie to offer. We feel confident that ACC is enjoying their evening.