Families. I knew we had a lot of families coming for GITy Up! from the registration list. But I didn’t really put together what that would look like.
Like the 3 year old who rode her tiny tag-along nearly the entire 25 miles to St. Charles. It was 96 degrees out.
Like the half-dozen cargo bikes and another half-dozen of trailers full of tots, pedaled by parents.
Like the 20+ GITy Uppers! splashing around in Batavia’s quarry.
Like the six pounds of Hershey’s chocolate and 8 bags of marshmallows that just disappeared Saturday night.
Like the Fox Valley Astronomical Society guys staying out at the campsite until past 11 PM just to satisfy all the little eyes that wanted a peek at Saturn.
Like the Hooks, who posted here a couple days ago: “It was our first ride more than a couple miles together as a family.”
Like Bobbie Mitchell, introducing 13 year old grandson Josh to overnight bicycle touring.
Diane Banta of the National Park Service - Rivers, Trails & Conservation Assistance program fired her cannon of a Canon in all the right directions to get amazing shots.
The response from GITy Uppers! has been overwhelmingly gracious and positive. It was too hot a day for me to have slacked on route signing—too many folks got turned around, and the way finding on the Illinois Prairie Path and the Fox River Trail is too poor to be a reliable backup. To feel lost in that heat with an impatient kid…aye! The big improvement to look forward to next year—AWESOME route marking.
As for next year: the original plan for GITy Up! was to move it around the state year to year, to explore all of the state’s available opportunities for overnight, trail-based bike touring. I think we’re going to capitalize on our lurch up the learning curve, though, and return to the western suburban triangle in 2013. I’m so thankful for the riders who eagerly asked me to add them to the GITy Up! 2013 planning team.
Thank you everyone for an amazing experience!
GITy Up! 2012, a set on Flickr.