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Friday, December 30, 2016

BACKTRACKING -- A LOOK BACK ON 2016

It's been exactly two months since I've been on either of my bicycles.  That's quite the cycling hiatus for me.  I'll always remember 2016 as the year of my two back surgeries...the first in March and the second in November. I am, however; pretty amazed at all I've been able to do and see and experience in 2016 considering the amount of time I've been relegated to my couch the last nine months.  In between two significant recovery periods I purchased a new mountain bike, made almost a dozen trips to Michaux State Forest, hiked (and biked) some pretty amazing stuff in Arizona, made a couple trips to Patapsco Valley State Park, returned to Rattling Creek for the first time in five years, toured the Gettysburg National Military Park, hiked in the mountains of North Carolina and western Maryland with my wife, made numerous trips to Rocky Ridge County Park, and played on the Allegrippis Trail System at Raystown Lake.


One of my favorite pics of the past year...Tim and and descending into The Gut at Rocky Ridge County Park -- October 14, 2016

2016 started off on the right foot with a hike at Rocky Ridge County Park with my wife, Robin -- January 1, 2016

I borrowed my brother's old Cannondale for this desert ride in Mesa, Arizona -- June 7, 2016

What a difference a week makes!  Top:  Hiking in the Superstition Wilderness in Arizona (June 8, 2016). Bottom: Riding to the top of the Vista in Michaux State Forest with Mark Lentz (June 13, 2016)

Touring the Gettysburg National Military Park with Mike Alessandroni.  In my opinion, the best way to tour the park is on a bicycle -- August 3, 2016

Hiking Tumbling Run with my son, Alex -- June 22, 2016

Probably my favorite road ride of 2016...just pedaling around my hometown of Bedford, Pennsylvania -- July 6, 2016

Hiking High Falls & Triple Falls  in Dupont State Forest, North Carolina with Robin  -- July 21, 2016

In a year that forced me to rest and recover so much I still managed to get out an ride and enjoy the things I love...and I honestly can't remember the last time that I had so many people to enjoy these things with:  Mark Lentz, Tim Sindlinger, Kristian Hains, Glenn Medice, Mikey Nardelli, Billy Graves, Brent Shirk, Matt Linnane, and  Mike Alicea all hit the trails on their mountain bikes...Mike Alessandroni came out to  ride on the road with me...and I went on hikes with my son, Alex and my wife, Robin.  So yeah...let's look back on 2016 as the glass that was half full.  Sure, there was A LOT of recovery...but there was also a lot of fun, laughter, friendship, adventure, and love.  Here are my five favorite moments on the trails during the past year.  Enjoy!


#5:  AWESOME SAUCE! (Riding Patapsco Valley State Park with Kristian Hains) -- October 15, 2016


"FRIENDZ"  this pic says it all.  Dave Raymond & Kristian Hains -- October 15, 2016

Kristain Hains & Dave Raymond pedaling Patapsco Valley State Park -- October 15, 2016

Kristian Hains & Dave Raymond -- October 15, 2016

Dave Raymond riding in Patapsco Valley State Park -- October 15, 2016


#4:  SOMETHING NEW (Riding Swatara State Park with Mark Lentz) -- March 5, 2016


My first ride on my new 2016 Stumpjumper -- March 5, 2016

Dave Raymond & Mark Lentz in Swatara State Park -- March 5, 2016


#3:  TRAIL TALK (Riding Michaux State Forest with Mark Lentz, Tim Sindlinger, Glenn Medice, & Matt Linnane) -- July 26, 2016


Dave Raymond,  Tim Sindlinger, Matt Linnane, Glenn Medice, & Mark Lentz in Michaux State Forest -- July 26, 2016

Love this pic...Matt Linnane's introduction to Glenn Medice -- July 26, 2016


#2:  TURNING INTO SOMETHING AWESOME (Riding Rocky Ridge County Park with Tim Sindlinger, Kristian Hains, and Brent Shirk) -- September 23, 2016


An ordinary ride at Rocky Ridge turned into one of my favorite of 2016...it was the first time that this combination of guys (Tim Sindlinger, Kristian Hains, Dave Raymond, and Brent Shirk) ever rode together.  It brought up the rear of this ride and was totally mesmerized by watching the different riding styles of the three guys ahead of me.  It was super kool.  The ride was topped off with dinner at Rob Burrito's with Kristian -- September 23, 2016.


#1: GET A GRIP (Riding the Allegrippis Trails at Raystown Lake with Kristain Hains & Glenn Medice) -- August 2, 2016


Kristian Hains, Glenn Medice, & Dave Raymond on the Allegrippis Trails overlooking Raystown Lake -- August 2, 2016

Glenn coveting his friend's mountain bike -- August 2, 2016

Dave Raymond riding the Allegrippis Trails -- August 2, 2016

Top:  Kristian Hains in 2008...Bottom:  Kristian Hains in 2016.  The bottom pic was taken on the Allegrippis Trails on August 2, 2016.  Amazing.


Life is a journey...not a destination.



David A. Raymond -- December 30, 2016


Walking Back Springs Road on the ridge behind my father's house in Bedford, Pennsylvania.  This walked got me past the 1,500 total miles goal I had set for myself after my first back surgery in March.  Not bad.  As for 2017...my New Year Resolution is to have no more back surgeries and to continue to LIVE//LAUGH//LEARN//LOVE//BIKE!   Happy New Year! -- December 26, 2016

GARMIN MAPS and other DATA from the rides I featured:

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