Showing posts with label Gettysburg. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gettysburg. Show all posts

Friday, August 30, 2019


One of my college professors once said that the three best perks about being a teacher are June, July, and August.  I'm not sure if that is true...there are so many aspects of my job that are incredibly rewarding...but I have to admit that I do love my summers.  My boss likes tells us to use our summers for rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation.  The amount of actual "rest and relaxation" I gave myself the past few months is up for debate...but I can definitely check off the rejuvenate box.  And so, with August rapidly coming to a close, Labor Day just around the corner, and the 2019/2020 school year already in full swing...I'm beginning to take stock of just how many ways I've had to rejuvenate mind and body over the past three months.
Enjoying an amazing hike to Black Rock Summit near Skyline Drive in Virginia. -- July 20, 2019

It's a poorly kept secret that I ride my bike as much as I can during the summer months...but there are so many other things that I love to do with my June, July, and August.  I'm not one that is very good at sitting still.  For me...being at rest is not necessarily being at ease.  Conversely...being at ease doesn't always equate to being at rest. So...when I'm not on my bike...what does rest and relaxation look like?  It means a lot traveling with my wife (one of my absolute favorite things to do) and spending time with family and friends.  It includes camping trips, white water rafting, and hiking.  It might take the form of nerdy "8th grade field trips" to historical sites...a trip to Pittsburgh to watch the Pirates play ball at PNC Park...musicals at the Hippodrome in Baltimore...and taking in the beauty of Longwood Gardens.  Basically, all of the things I love to do that DON'T require my bicycle.

David and Robin Raymond at the top of Currituck Beach Lighthouse in Corolla, North Carolina. -- June 14, 2019

A wonderful Father's Day gathering in Bedford, Pennsylvania.  Left to Right:  Jennifer Gull, Jacob Raymond, Jackie Raymond, Dave Raymond (father), Jane Black, Mary Jane Raymond, Galen Black, Sophie Raymond, Alex Raymond, David Raymond, Isaac Raymond, Blythe Arnold-Scott, and Robin Raymond. -- July 16, 2019

Alex, David, and Jackie Raymond exploring (and apparently guarding the gate at) Fort Ligonier. -- June 17, 2019

David and Alex Raymond relaxing around the campfire at Ohiopyle State Park. -- June 19, 2019

Braving the rapids of the Youghiogheny River in Ohiopyle State Park.  Left to Right:  David Raymond, Jackie Raymond, Mia Arnold-Scott, Devin Seiger, and Alex Raymond. -- June 18, 2019

Yes!  My new Chevy Silverado.  And...I purchased it from a former student of mine at Thornton Chevrolet...William Greenfield.  Thanks, bud! -- June 29, 2019

An amazing evening with my gorgeous wife at the Hippodrome in Baltimore, Maryland to see HAMILTON. -- June 29, 2019

Nothing like spending the Fourth of July with family!  Left to Right/Top to Bottom:  Robin Raymond, Alex Raymond, Mary Jane Raymond, Galen Black, and my dad, Dave Raymond. -- July 4, 2019

Hiking excursion with Robin through and around Cucumber Falls in Ohiopyle State Park. -- July 5, 2019

Hiking behind Cucumber falls with Emma Sadowski, Alex, and Robin. -- July 5, 2019

Hiking to Jonathan Run Falls in Ohiopyle State Park with Robin, Alex, and Emma Sadowski. -- July 6, 2019

Touring Frank Lloyd Wright's masterpiece, Fallingwater with Robin, Emma Sadowski, and Alex. -- July 7, 2019

Out to dinner in Carlisle, PA with some of my compadres from NMS.  Left to Right:  Charlie Lenhart, Kirby Brubaker, Jeff Plummer, Russ Blake, Eric Gimbi, and David Raymond. -- July 10, 2019

My nerdy self toured the homes of four U.S. Presidents with my wonderful wife, Robin.  Left to Right/Top to Bottom:  Woodrow Wilson's Birthplace (July 22, 2019), Thomas Jefferson's Monticello (July 21, 2019), James Madison's Montpelier (July 20, 2019), and James Monroe's Highland (July 21, 2019)

Hiking to Black Rock Summit in the Shenandoah National Park with Robin. -- July 20, 2019

Touring Luray Caverns with Robin. -- July 22, 2019

A day at Delgrosso's Park in Tipton, PA.  Left to Right:  Julien Linne, Blythe Arnold-Scott, Jackie Raymond, Shalice Gull, Mia Arnold-Scott, Robin Raymond, Isaac Raymond, David Raymond, Sophie Raymond, Mary Jane Raymond, Dave Raymond, and Jacob Raymond. -- July 25, 2019

Hanging out with Jackie and Shalice at Delgrosso's! -- July 25, 2019

Hiking through Round Top and Devil's Den at the Gettysburg National Military Park with Shalice, Isaac, Sophie, and Jackie. -- July 26, 2019

Exploring the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. with Jackie, Shalice, Alex, Sophie, Isaac, and Robin. -- July 27, 2019

Hiking at Rocky Ridge County Park with Robin, Isaac, Sophie, Shalice, and Jackie. -- July 28, 2019

Jackie, Shalice and I visiting my Aunt Deb Morosky to work on the family tree. 

Touring Independence Hall in Philadelphia, PA with Jackie, Shalice and Mia. -- August 8, 2019

Eric Gimbi and Dave Raymond...two nerdy history teachers checking out the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, PA.  -- August 8, 2019

Enjoying the beauty of Longwood Gardens, near Kennet Square, PA, with Kevin, Mia, and Robin. -- August 10, 2019

Longwood Gardens with Robin. -- August 10, 2019

Hiking the Appalachian Trail with Mike Graham and Alex. -- August 14, 2019

Tailgating outside of PNC Park before the Pirates/Cubs game.  Alex, Sophie, Robin, and David Raymond. -- August 17, 2019

Enjoying the Pirates/Cubs game at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. Alex, Sophie, Robin, and David Raymond -- August 17, 2019

I'm not sure how much traditional "rest" I got this summer...but I sure was energized and rejuvenated by spending as much time as I could with the people I love the most, stimulating my mind with as much nerdiness as possible,  and exposing myself to a ton of  Vitamin N.  It was a great summer...possibly one of the best ever...thanks, in no small part, to all of the amazing people I was able to hang out with and the awesome places I was able to experience when I wasn't on my bike.

In between all of my summer activities and bike rides I worked at Gung Ho Bikes with some of the best and most friendly people that I know!  Left to Right:  Ben Kelly, Joe Hydrick, and Dave Raymond. -- August 15, 2019

Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- August 30, 2019

Enjoying an evening dessert at Vacarro's with my beautiful wife, Robin. -- August 2, 2019

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Here are the GARMIN maps and data from some of the adventures featured in this post.  #OptOutside

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 


Thursday, May 30, 2019


Spring is, believe it or not, is the most difficult time of the year for me to get out and mountain bike and hike.  A lot of factors...the inevitable rainy weather, muddy trail conditions (which end up closing the trails at the local county parks), and the end of the school year activities and field trips that all happen in April and May...are in play here and, especially last year, put a damper on the amount of time I'm able to enjoy the outdoors the way that I would like to.  I'm almost embarrassed to say that (for all the reasons previously listed) I didn't ride my mountain bike even once in May of 2018.  This Spring, thankfully, has proven to be much more "trail" friendly than last.

Yes...I took a pic of my bike surrounded by wildflowers (Dame's Rockets) at Lake Kain County Park. -- May 18, 2019

 My wife, Robin, and I have continued our commitment to at least one hike a week.  Rocky Ridge County Park is our default location to hike if we are pressed for time...but this Spring we've spent time hiking on the Gettysburg National Military Park, near the Bedford Springs Hotel, and at Nixon County Park.  Family is always welcome on our hikes...Alex has come on a number of them (most recently at Nixon Park)...but now we are able to include our nieces and nephew who, just recently, moved back to Pennsylvania from  Arizona.  Their energy is high and their imaginations are boundless...making our time together in the woods something extra special.  

Hiking at the Bedford Springs with my niece, Sophie. -- April 27, 2019

Hiking (and pretending to be Thor) at the Bedford Springs with my nephew, Isaac. -- April 27, 2019

Hiking at the Bedford Springs with Robin, Jackie, Sophie, and Isaac. -- April 27, 2019

Hiking the top of Big Round Top at the Gettysburg National Military Park with Robin. -- May 4, 2019

Exploring Union fortifications built by Joshua Chamberlain and the 20th Maine at the top of Big Round Top at the Gettysburg National Military Park. -- May 4, 2019

Hiking and exploring the rock outcroppings at Nixon County Park with Alex and Robin. -- May 19, 2019

My mountain bike has made more than a few appearances over the past few months and so have some of my riding partners.  Just like for my hikes, Rocky Ridge makes a perfect place for me to ride after school if I'm limited on time (Tim and Chris have met me there for a few rides)...but I've also managed to ride some of my other "not so far away" destinations.  Back in April, Jay Zech and I made a trip to Harrisburg so I could introduce him to the super cool single track that makes up the Parkway Trail System.  Last week, Chris Keller and I explored the back side of William Kain County Park which includes the two drainage tunnels underneath Interstate 83.  I know I'm stating the obvious when I say that I love riding my mountain bike...and it was so refreshing to be able to get out the few times that I could and not have a repeat of last May.

One of the best perks of working at the bike shop is that I've acquired a whole  set of friends to ride with.  Jay and I have known each other for many's really cool  having him as a riding partner.  Dave Raymond and Jay Zech enjoying a Spring ride on the Parkway Trails in Harrisburg, PA -- April 19, 2019

Riding Trail #8 at Rocky Ridge County Park. -- May 3, 2019

Exploring a "not so often explored" section of trail at Rocky Ridge County Park with Tim & Adam. -- May 3, 2019

Saturday afternoon ride at Rocky Ridge County Park with Chris, Jay, and our young friend, Josh. -- May 11, 2019

About to enter the northern tunnel under Interstate 83 at William Kain County of the more unique rides in our neck of the woods. -- May 18, 2019

Chris Keller and I riding William Kain County Park. -- May 18, 2019
With the exception of the mass quantities of pollen that drive everybody around here crazy it has been a great Spring!  Everything is green, the wildflowers are in full bloom, and the temperatures are getting warmer and warmer.  The conditions alone aren't what has made this Spring so sensational,'s the family and friends that I've been able to enjoy it with.  Summer time is just around the corner and, if this Spring is any indication of what to expect, with it there are going to be plenty of trails to hike and bike along with plenty of family and friends to explore it with.  Here's to wishing for a safe, fun, and adventure filled summer everyone.  See you on the trails.

Hiking at Rocky Ridge and enjoying a wonderful dose of Vitamin N with my beautiful wife, Robin. -- April 20, 2019

Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- May 30, 2019 

One of the numerous school activities that I'm obligated to during the month of May is our annual field trip to the Gettysburg National Military Park.  This year was extra special because it was the last I'll organize and plan with my mentor and friend Charlie Lenhart.  Charlie and I have been teaching together for the past 24 years.  At the end of this school year, Charlie will be retiring after 45 years of  teaching.  A retirement that is well deserved!  I will miss you everyday at school, my friend.  You can check out my tribute below.  --  David Raymond and Charlie Lenhart -- May 17, 2019

NMS 8th Grade Recognition Night -- May 23, 2019

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Here are the GARMIN maps and data from rides and hikes featured in this post.  #OptOutside

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 


Friday, April 27, 2018


Recently, an article I was reading in a cycling magazine grabbed my attention.  It was all about the "why?"  Why do you ride your bike?  I read on as people from all over the country chimed in and shared their own personal "why."  It really got me thinking about all the reasons why I ride.  Narrowing it down to one overriding reason as to WHY I love to ride my bike...has proven difficult.  Some reasons why, like overall health, have been a constant and others, like training for races, have ceased to be important to me.

Enjoying the view at the top of Baughman Trail from Baughman Rock Overlook in Ohiopyle State Park. -- June 13, 2017
I have this internal desire to ride my bike all of the time.  My brain is always trying to find a time slot in the day for me to turn the pedals.  Just this morning, prior to coming to school, I was in the rain putting my bike in the back of my truck, with the optimistic feeling that the weather would clear and the trails at Rocky Ridge would be open at 3PM.  But that "internal desire" doesn't answer the "why" question.  So, I sat down and made a list of all the reasons I ride...hoping to come up with a theme.  The list looks like this...

-Riding my bike makes me happy.
-Riding my bike keeps me focused.
-Riding my bike helps me to explore and enjoy nature.
-Riding my bike keeps me from getting too fat.
-Riding my bike allows me to enjoy time alone.
-Riding my bike allows me to enjoy time with friends.

I know I missed a few...but just creating that small list brings into focus the bigger "WHY."  It's clear that I ride my bike because it positively affects me both mentally and physically.  Cool...but what about my biking friends?  I wondered what their "WHY" was and I asked them to complete this sentence:

"I ride my bike to..."  

Here are their responses in the order in which I received them.  Thanks to all of my friends and family who helped me out with this one.  Enjoy!


Mike Alessandroni riding at the Gettysburg National Military Park. -- August 3, 2016

"...experience freedom." 


Jay Zech at the conclusion of the Cradle of Liberty Adventure Race. -- June 28, 2009.

" more happy."


Matt Linnane in riding in Michaux State Forest. -- August 15, 2017

" push my body and to work out OUTSIDE.  Oh...and I ride to pick up chicks, they love the spandex!"


Hanging out and riding the trails around Camp Tuckahoe with my fellow homo sapien, Mark Lentz. --  February 3, 2018

" have fun, hang out with other homo sapiens, and to be by myself."


Tim Sindlinger doing his best to avoid "cabin fever" by riding at Rocky Ridge County Park. -- October 14, 2016

" escape the indoors!  I catch cabin fever easily and I don't handle it well."


On  a ride with my beautiful wife, Robin, in West Palm Beach, Florida. -- December 1, 2017

"...for the pure joy I experienced in my youth--the freedom, the wind on my face, and the thrill of a downhill ride."


David Raymond and Chris Keller riding in Swatara State Park. -- April 7, 2018

"...exercise, relieve stress, and hang out with cool people."


Mike Alicea in Michaux State Forest. -- June 14, 2014

"...relieve stress.  When riding my mind is clear and the trails are wide.  In that moment, I leave behind the bustle of daily life."


Alex Raymond riding his bike through Point State Park in Pittsburgh, PA. -- October 2017

" get from point A to point's a fun way to do so.  It's a lot more challenging than driving and far more exciting because you have more time to think to yourself and get an awesome workout.  It also gives me the opportunity to sing to myself because I know that no one on the road will hear me."

Why do Mark and I ride?  So we can get back into shape! Mark Lentz and David Raymond at the Lakes. -- April 13, 2018

Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- April 27, 2018
What is your "WHY?"  Feel free to post it in the comments below.  

One of the biggest reasons I ride is so that I don't feel so guilty going out for a deep-fried PBJ at Todd Conners in Fells Point, Maryland!  Left to right:  David M. Raymond, David A. Raymond, Robin Raymond, & Mary Jane Raymond -- April 21, 2018

Here are the GARMIN maps and data from a few of the rides featured in this post.   Happy riding!

Interested in biking or hiking some of the trails featured in this post?  Check out the TRAIL MAPS and TRAIL HEADS tabs on the ALL TRAILS LEAD TO ICE CREAM website.   

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 YOURTRUENATURE.COM and PA PARKS and FORESTS FOUNDATION.