Back in February when we were in the Upper Midwest at Frostbike, Jeff Frane fromAll City Cycles reached out over a can of Grain Belt and let us know that the gang from AC be swinging through the Pacific North West on a Demo tour. He wondered if we’d like to hook up with them for an event. We said ‘of course!’
Fast forward a few months, and Jeff and Nate did indeed swing through Seattle, Tacoma, Portland and Bend on their “Excellent Adventure” tour. After a picnic with our pals at Swift in Seattle and a demo day with Western Bike works here in Portland, the boys posted up at Revolver in NoPo on a cool but dry Thursday night.
At around 7 as the shop closed down, a strong posse rendezvous’d at the shop where Jeff and Nate shared some beers and ciders they’d bootlegged from MN. With about 35 riders in tow, we hit the road north to meet up with the Columbia River Slough Path to take a Slow Ride to Kelly Point Park.
Sometimes with that many folks along, things can get weird, but once everyone was safely on the Slough Path, the pace mellowed out and from what I can tell folks had a very nice ride. Earlier in the day, I’d taken a load of firewood out to the island and stashed it on the way to the city dump. As we arrived at the meet up spot, everyone grabbed an armful of dry wood, and retreated to the beach along the mighty Columbia River.
At the river we made two piles: One of shared firewood, the other of shared beer, cider and sausages. We watched the sun go down, were visited by a solitary sea lion a long ways from the sea, marveled at some huge ships, shared some cold ones and made some new pals. All in all, exactly the kind of thing you can hope for on a Thursday night.
Inevitably as happens with all bonfires, we burned all the wood and drank all the beers. Leaving only tire tracks in the sand, those of us remaining pointed our wheels back towards town, and rolled back towards warm beds.
I was reminded of what a good time I’ve had with other folks because of bicycle. They’ve introduced me to cool folks all over the world. It is a great pleasure to share our city with them when they come to visit. I was also reminded the long winter of epic rains in Portland has come to an end. Here is to a long summer of night ride to fun spots!
To Jeff and Nate, thanks for stopping through Portland. We hope you had as good as a time with us as we had with you!