Ushering in the new year - Winterlude 2021 - CycleBlaze

January 1, 2022

Ushering in the new year

Looking back

For so many, this has been the second terrible year in a row.  Between Covid, natural disasters, political trauma and personal misfortunes, there are endless reasons to be discouraged, depressed and disheartened by the state of the world or our own personal situation.  We can only hope that the coming year gives us all more reason for optimism than the last two have.

In this context, we feel almost guilty about having had such a rewarding year ourselves.  Unlike the previous year, the pandemic had a less severe impact on our lives and plans in 2021.  Once we got back to Portland and were vaccinated last April, we’ve led our lives much as we did before the pandemic.  It helps of course that we’re pretty solitary anyway and that most of our days are spent by ourselves biking or walking.

If you’ve been following along over the past year you already know much more about our lives than we do of yours, but here are a few things that stick out.  

First, our health - thinking back, we don’t believe either of us had so much as a cold in the entire year - or in the previous year either.  The last illness of any kind either of us can remember was Rachael’s mild case of food poisoning when we flew home from Andalucia over two years ago.  I think this is attributable more than anything else to an unreasonable share of good luck, but also to the fact that we don’t mingle much and stay reasonably fit.  I’m certain that I’m healthier now than in years past when I routinely fell out of shape every winter and had to crawl back into it again every spring.

Just fro  a cycling and metrics perspective, 2021 looked quite similar to 2020.  Not counting days with only incidental biking, We biked 263 days last year, covering roughly 11,000 miles with 420,000 feet of elevation gain.  In other words, for the year as a whole we biked nearly three out of every four days with an average daily ride of 42 miles with 1,600’ of climbing.   

Rachael, who keeps a detailed spreadsheet, ended with an average ride of 42.06 miles - remarkable, given that 42 miles is her ideal length ride at this stage in our lives.  This is way better than the measly 41.59 she averaged in 2020.

In addition, there were a number of days with significant walks - Rachael much more than myself, although I’m gradually walking more as my knees seem to be improving from such regular exercise.  Rachael tracks this too, and reports that she hiked almost 700 miles on 76 walking days.  Between walking and cycling, she was outdoors getting significant exercise on 339 days last year.  Wow!

A few other statistics of note:

  • Completed the longest continuous unsupported tour of our lives, biking over 5,000 miles over 5+ months from Minneapolis to Rome.  
  • 7 countries visited: USA, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Slovenia, and Italy.
  • 14 US states visited: Oregon, California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.
  • 8 CycleBlaze meet-ups: the HAC group (the Grumbys, Bruce Lellman, Andrea Brown and ourselves), Greg Garceau, Bob Distelberg, Suzanne Gibson and János Kertész, Susan Carpenter, Pat and Scott Fenwick, and Kelly and Jacinto Iniguez.
  • No injuries (no dog bites!).
  • roughly 5 flat tires.
  • Too few reptiles and amphibians.  We’ll strive to do better next year, Bill!

Looking ahead

We don’t really make New Years resolutions, but we enter 2022 with hopes and wishes.  Above all else, we wish you all good health and good fortune in the coming year.  For ourselves, we’ll consider ourselves beyond blessed if the year ahead is anywhere near as rewarding as the one behind.

The major goal for Team Anderson in 2022 is of course this short nine month jaunt from  Nice to Barcelona that we’ve been talking about for awhile:

Nice to Barcelona, 2022.
Heart 0 Comment 2
Patrick O'HaraUm....you know there's a shorter way? :D
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Patrick O'HaraYeah, but we already did that one back in 1997. We thought we’d try something a little different this time.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago

Thank you all again for following along this year and including us in your lives in this small way.  We’d love to see you in person someday, so please let us know if you see that we’ll be in the vicinity in the months ahead.

To a better 2022!

Heart 3 Comment 0

A calendar for 2022

Continuing with a tradition we began two winters ago (for 2020 and 2021, we’ve assembled a virtual calendar for the coming year, emulating a tradition that dates back at least  twenty years before our retirement from the professional life.  Every year we would assemble thirteen photographs from the previous year for the coming year’s wall calendars: one for each month of the year, and one for the cover.  And, Rachael reminds me that she and I didn’t have exactly the same calendars - she and I often ended up with different favorite photos; so, really we should think of this as my calendar.  If she creates her own for her virtual cubicle wall she’ll probably make different choices. 

On the cover: a mash-up of this year’s CycleBlaze meet-ups. Clockwise from the upper left: Jacinto Iniguez, in Tucson; Pat and Scott Fenwick, in Salzburg; Kelly Iniguez, in Salzburg; Susan Carpenter, near Salzburg; Greg Garceau, near Hastings; Bob Distelberg, in Middleton, NY; Suzanne Gibson and János Kertész, in Starnberg; and the HAC Group, in Portland.
Heart 3 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonThat's so nice!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
January: in the Rincon Mountain District of Saguaro National Park.
Heart 4 Comment 4
Bill ShaneyfeltNice combo of lenticular clouds and Saguaros! Great use of contrast too...
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Suzanne GibsonThe sun hitting the saguaro and then those clouds - perfect!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Graham FinchDid you see any UFOs?
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Graham FinchNope. They all hang in the next state east, in Roswell, NM.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
February: the view from Fonts Point in the Borrego Badlands.
Heart 2 Comment 1
Bill ShaneyfeltBad, not bad! :-)
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
March: on the Scenic Drive, Capitol Reef National Monument.
Heart 3 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonBeautiful! What I wouldn't give to ride those roads.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
April: on the Marine Drive cycle path.
Heart 3 Comment 0
May: Chanticleer Point in the Columbia Gorge.
Heart 1 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonEvery shot with Rachael is a winner!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
June: on the Door County Curvy Highway, Wisconsin.
Heart 4 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonWonderfully captured curvy road, and then serendipitously those little mail boxes on the right.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
July: Taughannock Falls, in the New York Finger Lakes region.
Heart 1 Comment 0
August: along the Mosel, Germany.
Heart 1 Comment 0
September: the Mondsee, Austria.
Heart 4 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonHang it on your wall - when you get one.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
October: descending from the Bockstein Tunnel on the Alpe Adria Trail, Italy.
Heart 2 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonLove this one - for objective and subjective reasons.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
November: Portoferraio on the Isle of Elba, Italy.
Heart 2 Comment 0
December: Hog Valley Road, California
Heart 5 Comment 1
Suzanne GibsonBeautiful soft tones
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rate this entry's writing Heart 7
Comment on this entry Comment 22
Bill ShaneyfeltI think your herp pictures might have exceeded mine this year. All nature is wonderful, I just happen to like herps a bit better. Thanks for the efforts!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Susan CarpenterHappy New Year Team Anderson!

Congratulations on a year well lived! I’m sure I speak for many in thanking you for bringing us along on your 2021 adventures. Your posts provide a near-daily reminder that there can be pockets of normalcy in these uncertain times. Good luck, good health and safe travels in 2022.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Bruce LellmanPretty amazing stats, I must say. You guys are impressive and I've said this before; an inspiration to us all.

Your calendar this year is one of the best ever. Just beautiful.

I wish your 2022 to be as good to you both as the previous two have been. Thank you for your diligence in keeping up such a nice journal. Reading and enjoying it is a part of my every day routine.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Bob DistelbergI’ll echo Susan and Bruce, and say thank you for bringing us along on your travels! I look forward to reading your posts every day, and especially enjoy the superb photos. So yeah, no pressure, but you need to keep doing this. We’re all counting on you! :-)
It was great meeting you IRL last summer. Hope you both have a wonderful 2022!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Patrick O'HaraOnce again. Thanks to you both for bringing us along on your daily adventures. Always a highlight of my day. Airline tickets are purchased, Scott!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rich FrasierHappy New Year to you both! You are my cycle touring and photography heroes!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Patrick O'HaraYour tickets? Tell me more.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Rich FrasierThanks, Rich. Happy New Year to you and Robin also. Is Pacific Beach still happening, btw?
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Bob DistelbergThanks, Bob. It was great getting to meet up with you this summer. Let us know if you have any plans to be in France or the UK next year, and maybe we can do it again!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rich FrasierTo Scott AndersonYes, we’re currently in north San Diego County with our daughter and will be moving to our apartment in PB tomorrow. We traveled just before the airlines started falling apart. No problems at all. Hopefully things will calm down before we (and you) leave in March.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Suzanne GibsonDitto everything everyone else said: Love reading your day-to-day journal; it was a real highlight of the year meeting you two; admirable statistics; fantastic calendar with such exceptional photography, it must have been difficult to choose just one for every month. Janos and I wish you and Rachael another wonderful year of riding and walking, travel and meeting friends, continued good health and contentment. And many thanks for your unflagging humor and the positive vibes you send out.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Kelly IniguezYou are both a continuing inspiration. Here's wishing for continued good health and happy travels in 2022!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Gregory GarceauThe locales, the miles, the meet ups, the memories, the photos--a successful year indeed. And perhaps the most amazing thing is that you continue to write about it so well and in such detail every single day. You've set the bar pretty high for yourselves, but I'm guessing you'll find a way to exceed all of those achievements in 2022.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rachael AndersonTo Kelly IniguezThank you! I admire all the bicycling you’ve been doing. Hope you have a fabulous and healthy New Year! Seize the day!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rachael AndersonTo Gregory GarceauOh no, now Scott is going to thing we need to start doing harder stuff! My goal is to enjoy the great outdoors but not be obsessed with the miles! I hope you an the Feeshko have a great New Year!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Rachael AndersonTo Suzanne GibsonThank you! Getting together with the two of was a highlight of the year and we look forward to seeing both of you again soon! Have a great New Year!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Suzanne GibsonThanks for everything, Suzanne - above all, for meeting with us at your home and in Starnberg. It was one of the real highlights of the year. And just a reminder - Burgandy is supposed to be beautiful in the autumn. Mid-September would be perfect!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanThanks for tagging along for another year Bruce, and for your friendship. Looking forward to catching up when we’re back in town next month! We’ll try to bring some sunshine north with us.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Gregory GarceauA pretty wonderful year for us alright, thanks again for being a part of it. And take it easy on those icy streets, Mr. Tough Guy! We want you to still be there the next time we come back east.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Bruce LellmanTo Scott AndersonYes, I'm looking forward to having coffee with you again. I trust you still have your free bagel coupon.

It will be nice to see the sun you bring. It's raining cats and dogs at the moment in Portland.
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Suzanne GibsonTo Scott AndersonWonderful idea!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanOoh, I forgot about that. Yup, it’s still tucked in the back of my wallet. Free bagel!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago