Wednesday, March 25, 2020


"Me time" is important but even the most introverted of us are feeling the strain of social distancing right now. While it is necessary, it sure doesn't seem natural.  As an educator, I seriously miss being in my is, after all, my chosen profession.  As a son, I'm frustrated that I don't feel comfortable making the drive two hours west and visit my dad and Mary Jane.  As a father, it sucks that my son can't celebrate his 21st birthday today with his I'm sure he has envisioned for a long time.  (Selfishly, I'm glad he's spending it at home.)  And yes, the provider in me is annoyed, and increasingly concerned, that finding toilet paper for my family is like actually finding treasure on Oak Island.  

Maintaining my social distance and straddling the Cumberland/Adams County line in Michaux State Forest.  - March 24, 2020

Here, in York County, Pennsylvania, even though the facilities in State Parks are closed, I can still (as of now) access and use the trails.  With the world temporarily grinding to a halt...I've been able to find refuge on my bike, in my hiking boots, and at some of the places that I love.  I've seen others taking the opportunity to use the trails, too.  I can only assume they doing the same thing I am...enjoying the outdoors, soaking in Vitamin N, getting exercise, and doing their best to maintain distance.  It's really been a balancing act of doing what I need to feed my desire to be outside and making sure that I, and others, are safe.  The six foot rule applies not just in a grocery store...but on the trail as well.  I've purposely avoided places and areas of local State Parks and Forests that I know are heavily trafficked.  While maintaining social distance I've discovered areas of the forest that I had never been to...ate lunch on a not so frequented vista on top of the mountain...pedaled my road bike down barren back roads...sat alone with my mountain bike on top of Piney Mountain Ridge Road...and relaxed as I watched my grown son skip rocks in Pinchot Lake.

As of now...the facilities are closed...but the trails are open. Be smart and be safe.

Chris Keller and I kept our distance from each other while riding the Parkway Trail System in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. -- March 15, 2020

Chris took this picture of me crossing a dam while riding the Parkway Trail System in Harrisburg. -- March 15, 2020

Hiking Dead Woman's Hollow Trail. -- March 16, 2020

David Raymond and Mike Graham on Blueberry Trail in Michaux State Forest. -- March 16, 2020

Maintaining social distance while hiking Dead Woman's Hollow in Michaux State Forest. -- March 16, 2020

Socially distant on the back roads of York County, Pennsylvania.  -- March 17, 2020

Socially distant on the trails in Codorus State Park.  I didn't see another human being the time I was there...just a "NO SWIMMING" sign on the hillside in the woods. -- March 18, 2020

Socially distant on the rocks that make up Sunset Rocks Trail in Michaux State Forest. -- March 19, 2020

Socially distant on the Appalachian Trail. -- March 19, 2020

The morning after a heavy  rain, Tom's Run in Michaux State Forest was very Ohiopyle-like.  -- March 19, 2020 

Celebrating the first day of Spring 2020 with a solo road ride. -- March 20, 2020

Brent and I maintained social distance while riding Rocky Ridge County Park. -- March 21, 2020

Riding Rocky Ridge County Park. -- March 21, 2020

Father/Son hike in Gifford Pinchot State Park. -- March 22, 2020

Alex skipping rocks and being socially distant at Gifford Pinchot State Park. -- March 22, 2020

Hiking (not biking!) Lakeside Trail in Gifford Pinchot State Park. -- March 22, 2020

I'm so looking forward to being able to enjoy some GROUP THERAPY (like this hike on the Appalachian Trail with family and friends) again. -- March 14, 2020

With normal life on hold I've noticed a few silver linings during this time of social distancing.  Sidewalks and driveways are covered with the chalk artwork of little kids, families are hanging out together, kids are riding bikes, and the young man next door to me is out shooting hoops in the driveway with his dad.  Basically, quality family time.  Until we are told otherwise (at least where I live) it is okay to go outside...take a walk...ride a bike...and get some Vitamin N.  Just take care to follow basic guidelines, use common decency, and practice common sense.  Hopefully soon we will be able to get back together...hug, high-five, shake hands...and enjoy some GROUP THERAPY.  Until then...let's all do our part and remain socially distant.


Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- March 25, 2020

We didn't get to go out to Alex's favorite restaurant in Baltimore, Maryland this evening for his 21st he enjoyed some homemade Korean bulgogi and cheese cake.  Happy birthday, Son.  I love you!

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Here are the GARMIN maps and data from the rides and hikes feature din this post.  #OptOutside2020

All of my posts are available at ALL TRAILS LEAD TO ICE CREAM and, if you get the chance, be sure to visit the good folks at 


Saturday, March 7, 2020


I was supposed to meet Chris and Ben at Rocky Ridge yesterday afternoon for a Friday afternoon happy hour ride...but Mother Nature was really not cooperating.  Being good stewards of the trials, we all agreed...even before the local park service announced on Twitter that the trails were postpone until next week.  I have to admit that I was a little disappointed (although I satisfied my addiction with a road ride).  Honestly, it wasn't the fact that the trails were closed that was the most disappointing to me...more so it was that I was looking forward to getting together with Chris and Ben for some trail time with friends.   Nature is awesome...but it is even more so with friends. Once again, I find myself looking back over the past year at those who have shared in my outdoor adventures and I was reminded how blessed I am to be surrounded by so many amazing people.  What follows is a compilation of photographs showing group therapy at its best.  Smiles are ever present, bonds are strengthened, and spirits are lifted in each snap shot.  Some of the same family members and friends show up in multiple pictures...but each photo has a different combination of people.  That is so cool.  So come and join me for some of the group therapy from the past two years.  

Probably my largest group ride ever.  Last summer I had the honor of leading one of Gung Ho's group rides at Michaux Fest.  I had a blast leading this awesome group of rides on a super fun 14 mile-ish ride through Michaux State Forest. -- June 30, 2019

January 2019 started with a frigid hike to the top of Pole Steeple in Michaux State Forest with Robin, Blythe, Julien, and Brigette. -- January 27, 2019

Matt Linnane, Chris Keller, and I spending a cool March day riding in Swatara State Park.  Chris was in the market for a new mountain bike, so I borrowed new Epic and Stumpjumper from the bike shop for him to demo.  In the end, he chose the Stumpy!  -- March 16, 2019

Lots of fun with the gang from Gung Ho at the Marysville Relay last April...BJ, Ben, Dave, Jay, Ryan, and Ed. -- April 7, 2019

After a shift at the bike shop, I took this ride at Rocky Ridge County Park with Chris Keller, Jay Zech, and Josh Coleman. -- May 10, 2019

Sunday family hike at Camp Michaux in Michaux State Forest with Robin, Mia, and Kevin. -- February 10, 2019

Our final Tuesday Michaux Ride of the summer of 2019...Ben Kelly, Josh Coleman, Brent Shirk, Tim Sindlinger, and Dave Raymond.  -- August 13,  2019

One of our many late summer and autumn Friday happy hour rides at Rocky Ridge County Park.  Dave Raymond, Chris Keller, Tony Vasura, and Brent Shirk. -- October 4, 2019

Taking a hike at Gettysburg National Military Park and sharing the outdoors with my nieces and nephew.  Shalice, Isaac, Uncle Dave, Sophie, and Jackie  -- July 27, 2019

Devin Seiger, Alex, Jackie, and David Raymond near Jonathan Run in Ohiopyle State Park. -- June 20, 2019

Fun hike through the lush greenness of Michaux State Forest. -- August 14, 2019

Hiking behind Cucumber Falls in Ohiopyle with Emma Sadowski, Alex and Robin  -- July 5, 2019

One of my favorite rides last year.  Adam, Tim, Ben and I met at the Hershey Trail System for our Ugly Sweater/Winter Solstice Ride. -- December 21, 2019

Robin and I enjoying a February afternoon at Rocky Ridge County Park with the Dorward Family. -- February 9, 2020

Exploring the new trails at Codorus State Park with Brent and Brandon Shirk.  -- December 26, 2019

Hiking at Gifford Pinchot State Park with Robin and our next door neighbor, Jon Senko. -- November 3, 2019

Possibly my favorite group photo of last summer.  Matt, Tim, and I on Abigail Trail in Michaux State Forest. -- July 9, 2019

It's the time spent with friends and family that make life worth living.  I am so very fortunate to be surrounded by people who love and care about me...and who enjoy the  endless and bountiful beauty that surrounds us.  With Winter rapidly coming to an end and with the weather incrementally improving each day I have no doubt that their will be much more group therapy in the near future.  I encourage much as you surround yourself with the people that you love doing the things that you love.  That is, ultimately, the best kind of therapy you can find.

And how super cool is this!  Robin, Blythe, and I taking one month old Freya on her first hike in Richard Nixon Park. -- March 1, 2020

Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- March 7, 2020

After a group white water rafting trip in Ohiopyle State Park, the Raymond's (Devin Seiger included) and the Keller's enjoyed a group meal! -- June 18, 2019




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Here are the GARMIN map and data from the rides and hikes featured in this post.  #OptOutside2020

All of my posts are available at ALL TRAILS LEAD TO ICE CREAM and, if you get the chance, be sure to visit the good folks at