You have to keep in mind these are people who high-five and celebrate when the gravel road you are on gets so steep and fucked that you have to get off and push your bike the rest of the way. When you think the road has come to an end......you might hear one of them exclaim "This is what we've been looking for!" These are good people. These are good times.
We were lucky enough to join old friend Joe Cruz and new friend Logan Watts of Bikepacking.com this October for a few days up in the Green Mountains of Vermont while they cut an adventure path linking world class breweries together by way of mostly dirt roads. Link at bottom for full route, review and photos. Put aside the great beer, the beautiful scenery, the peak foliage, and everything else wonderful about Vermont in the fall, there is this thing called a gravel grinder to contend with. Over the years we have shown a tendency to show up for just about anything pitched to us by good people. Prepared or not we usually show up and give it a go. Joe Cruz sprung this one on us over lunch in NYC with only a few days notice and just enough details to get us seriously interested. We stuck to the usual plan, which is to pack light, be prepared for anything, and be optimistic. That's what we did this time and a few days later we were deep into it riding (or pushing) on abandoned and forgotten roads, riding with headlamps at night, and scouring the sides of the roads for places to camp wild. All things fantastic by our account.
Joe and Logan are legit and don't be fooled by their quiet and calm demeanor. You would be mistaken to judge them by just that. These guys are wicked smart, gnarly and I'm not sure there is much in this world that would impede their forward progress of exploration by bike. We shared beers, stories, miles, laughs, and happily busted our taints a little bit on some rocky sections of road that stretched on fantastically for miles through the often quiet and still woods of Vermont.
It was a great few days of riding and we are grateful to have been welcomed along. Check these guys out, and any one of the many routes they have cut across the globe, and you will be better for it. Get out there and get after it.
-Search and State