WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT WORKING AT THE CYCLING HOUSE
I love hearing people’s stories and have come to find that there are few places better to do that than from the saddle of a bike. Working at The Cycling House is about so much more than riding bikes in beautiful places - it’s about meeting people we might not otherwise know, finding the common ground beneath our wheels, sharing food, and building community through a shared sense of place and passion.
Chief Joseph Pass and Highway 43 through the Big Hole Valley in Montana.
ONE OF THE BEST DAY'S YOU'VE EVER HAD ON THE BIKE
September 24th, 2016. We were on day two of bikepacking the Kokopelli Trail, a 160-mile route that follows single track, a bit of road and a lot of the rockiest ‘jeep tracks’ you’ve ever seen from Fruita, Colorado to Moab, Utah. Two of my best friends, and my first mountain biking mentors, had convinced me that this would be a great first bikepacking trip. They had a habit of talking me into rides that pushed my limits, but trust and laughter goes a long way, so once again I had agreed to go. We had 56 miles to make that day with over 10,000 feet of cumulative elevation gain. After waking up early on the banks of the Colorado River, we followed the route south, pushing through oppressive heat in Onion Creek Canyon before beginning our climb into the La Sal Mountains. As the sun dropped over the desert and our climb grew steeper, conversation faded and the sound of our tires was broken only by occasional outbursts of delirious laughter. By the time we reached camp that night it was snowing and I was beginning to believe that it might be possible to fall asleep at the handlebars. Ponderosa pines had replaced the red rock and sagebrush of the desert now far below us. The clouds cleared as we built a fire, cooked mac n’ cheese in beer that we’d stashed with our water, and sat in tired, content silence after one of the hardest and most beautiful day’s I’ve spent in the saddle.
Hometown: Seeley Lake, MT
I grew up in Montana’s Swan Valley, tucked between the Mission Mountains and Bob Marshall Wilderness areas. My parents love for wild places and community have shaped me throughout the years, from spending a winter in the heart of the Bob Marshall Wilderness with them as a toddler, to countless nights around campfires with friends, sharing and soaking in stories.
Growing up in the mountains meant that learning to ride a bike was done on rocky, dirt roads and involved more than a few scraped knees. Nevertheless, I loved the freedom that two wheels brought me as a kid with seemingly endless miles of dirt road to explore. I later moved to the big city of Missoula, MT where I was introduced to mountain biking and then bikepacking. From the flowy, larch needle-laced single track of the Rattlesnake, to rocky desert jeep tracks and smooth pavement over high Alaskan mountain passes, I’ve fallen in love with biking as a means of exploring and building community.
Over the past few years, my passions for place-based education, bikes, and food have taken me from the jungles of Costa Rica to the mountains of Western Europe and Alaska. In May of 2019, I graduated from the University of Montana with a B.S. in Resource Conservation, a double major in Environmental Studies, and a minor in Wilderness Studies. If I’m not exploring by pedal, you might find me baking bread, backcountry skiing, or in pursuit of finding the best local ice cream. I look forward to adventuring with The Cycling House community and learning from the people and places I get to know along the way!