Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Cleanest Line: Patagonia Blog Post

I shared our Bicycle Geography adventure with the folks at Patagonia. They kindly posted the blog today. You can read the post here.


Thursday, December 25, 2008

Peace on Earth

Happy Holidays from the Kehmeiers. Be Well.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Final Podcasts...For Now Anyway

Here they are - the "end of trip" thoughts. For the podcasts, visit our website:

What does it mean to you to have traveled around the world by bicycle?

LK: It means that Chris and I made a commitment to each other and a common goal, and then set out to accomplish it. We took a journey together, doing something we love. It means that anyone has the ability to have dreams and follow them.

CK: For me it means that I did something unique. Others have done it, others have gone bigger, and faster, but no one else did the way that Leslie and I did it. I think that our way and our style spoke volumes about how we like to interact, travel and live.

What is it like, a month on, to be back in the United States?

LK: From a personal perspective - it’s been really good and, sometimes, really hard. Life changed a lot for us while it didn’t change much at home. I’m kind of easing back into things. Right now, I’m working on some of my creative business ideas.
From a national perspective – the economy is dominating both the news and our personal conversations. I’m still trying to it figure out.

CK: Being back for a month now, I am finally starting to feel settled. I find that I am restless for several hours during the day, but as soon as I find a job that will take care of that.

What’s next?

LK: Still sorting it out. I thought I had a pretty good plan in my mind while we were still in Europe but I find myself not wanted to rush into anything. Luckily, we have a very supportive family…

Short term – Starting a GIS consulting business. Making maps is what I did before life on a bicycle and I think it’s a profession to continue. I’m also getting myself out there in the photography world. To that end, we’re both jonesin’ to get outside this winter to enjoy a season we missed last year. I’m anxious to get my crampons and ice tools out. Finally, I think Chris and I both are interested in talking to people about our journey so we’ll probably put together a good presentation and slide show.
Long Term – Haven’t given up on the idea of still traveling. Bicycle travel is a wonderful to see the world – probably just closer the home.
I would also like to write a book about our journey. I envision it as something that’s part journal, part geography text book. I really like the “live, learn, ride” motto that we came up with as we were pedaling. It definitely has potential.

CK: I see us doing some domestic traveling throughout the west by bicycle. I would really like to ride the Colorado Trail from Denver to Durango or the continental divide trail Colorado north.

Do you think you’ve changed? If so, how?

LK: Most certainly. I think my perspective on how I’d like to live my life has changed. I just read an article in Outside Magazine about Kelly Slater, the surfer. His comments - “I’ve heard that motivation is temporary and inspiration is permanent…I’m trying to have an inspired career, to live an inspired life.” I think it sums up how I feel now. I feel very inspired, my creativity is flowing and I understand limits as boundaries not obstacles.

CK: I do think I've changed. I find that I take notice of details now. Slowing our lives to a crawl taught us to take it all in, and the details of things really started to stand out.

Favorite Country, Best Food?

LK: Tie between Laos and Croatia.
Laos – noodle soup, morning glory, laap

CK: Laos
Tapas in Spain, or street stall noodle soup in Laos.

Best and worst day on the bike?

LK: Worst – Chris’ wreck in Switzerland. I don’t think about death very often. I did that day.
Best – Almost everyday on the bicycle was great. If I have to pick one it would have been day 125 on the Great Ocean Road. I just remember that the pedaling was easy and the views were spectacular. It was one of those days that I knew exactly why I had decided to bicycle around the world.

CK: It will sound weird, but they were the same day. It was when I wrecked in Switzerland. The trauma of the accident was a huge drain on my body and on my psyche. What happened after the accident was a culmination of all things that I was finding out about the world. The kindness of strangers, the beauty of the landscape, the magic in day to day life. It was just such a contrast of things that I think both tend to stand out.

So, is this the end? No way - Bicycle Geography will keep pedaling - we just don't know where yet...

Stay Tuned!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

A New Bicycle

I think new is a relative term when it comes to my new bicycle. Chris is been working his fingers to the bone – literally. He’s found a winter project; he’ll be refinishing my 1973 Montgomery Ward Open Road. I bought it a garage sale last summer at a house down the street from my parents. I think the orange, yellow, and brown colors are actually back in style. I contemplated keeping it in original condition but I really want an American Flyer. I want a bicycle that would be worthy of riding in the Crested Butte 4th of July parade. I want stars, stripes, and sparkly grips.
Chris informed me that he’s really looking forward “creating” – the removal of paint currently is, and I quote, “the sucky part”. The actual design has been a secret and I’m looking forward to the result. I think there might even be a custom seat involved.

I’ll keep you posted,

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

More Cork

We're not in Portugal anymore but that doesn't mean we can't talk about cork. As you know, we were fascinated by the cork forests as we rode through the southwestern part of the Iberian Peninsula. After a few blog posts about our observations, we recieved a comment from a company called Wicanders Flooring. They are in the business of cork and were interested in acquiring any photos we had from our travels through the Montado forests. Wicanders has their own blog with a very good purpose:

"The Wicanders blog is about using cork oak to help benefit the world’s health, wellbeing, and socioeconomic development. As the industry leader in cork oak flooring, we are proud to actively participate in the exchange of ideas about health and sustainability, promote green building practices, and preserve the Montado cork oak forests."

We sent some shots their way and were excited to see that they've been posted on the Wicanders blog. You can view the post here. Scroll down below the "Wineopoly" graphic to see our photos.



It’s harder than I thought it would be. I was talking with a friend today and she had a great perspective. She said that it’s hard to notice how busy and stressful life is when you’re home living it. It’s an entirely different story when you return to it after a long break. I totally agree. I think I’m trying to figure out how to balance what I’ve learned on the road with what I didn’t need from the past. I’d like to keep the best parts of who I was and mix them with the person I am now.

So far reentry has been a blessing and a curse. In three weeks I’ve done the following analysis:
Family and Friends
Up - we have been able to catch up with most everyone. It feels really good to interact, share, and sleep in familiar places.
Down - Traveling in the car. For now, it’s a necessary evil.
Up - I feel like a have an entirely new wardrobe.
Down – Too many choices; there is laundry everywhere.
Up – A chance to do something creative.
Down – Do I want a “grown-up” job again?

Despite the roller coaster of emotions, I realize that I am living life. Furthermore, I’m living it as I imagined. It’s real, it’s intense, and ultimately, it’s inspired. We can’t experience the highs without the lows, the exceptional without the ordinary. I think I’m facing in the right direction; I just need to move forward.


Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Bicycle Commuting Diaries: Studded Tires and Snow Plows

Winter is approaching and in Colorado that usually means one thing; snow. In our previous life, we usually parked the bikes in the garage and set up the stationary trainer as the last fall leaves were hitting the ground. This year we decided to “buck up” and keep riding through the ice, snow, and freezing temperatures.
Enter the snow tire for bicycles. We ordered the Ice Spiker Pro from our good friends at Schwalbe and Chris got them installed this morning. Neither one of us has rolled a bicycle with studs before so we decided to go for a test run. The tires require a break in period on pavement so, per the instructions, we started the “running in” process by riding to the post office.
Even though the route was the usual urban adventure of paved path and busy intersections, we found ourselves very excited for the adventure. With a new blanket of snow and a clear blue sky we navigated our way south with smiles on our faces. Intersections were a little crazy as we had to crash our way through the snow piled up from the cleared roads. We must have garnered some attention because most cars gave us the right away.
The only scary part came when we were faced with a wave of snow being thrown from an on-coming plow. I was about the head into a snow bank when the driver looked our way, slowed down, and lifted his plow. I guess that will be rule #1 on the Winter Riding Guide – “watch for snow removal equipment”.

Here’s to snow crunching under your tires,

Saturday, December 06, 2008

1 World, Two Wheels

Check this out - see what happens when you "go by bike".

Monday, December 01, 2008

Wide Eyed World Photography

I’ve decided to put myself out there. If you have a moment, take a peek.

Save the Trails: Moab

If you’re interested in taking action for the environment, tourism and recreation…

The BLM will be having a lease sale on December 19th. The leases will be available for oil and gas extraction and will affect some very popular and pristine areas in Moab, Utah. Tusher Canyon, Barlett Wash, and Amassa Back are just some of the places that could be impacted.

If you’ve ever been to Moab, you know that it is a very special place. The elements and time have sculpted some spectacular landscapes. Chris and I usually make at least one trip a year and always see something new and amazing every time we go.

To take action, visit one of the following websites. The deadline is soon - December 4 (sorry for the late notice).

IMBA (International Mountain Bicycling Association)

Access Fund

Firing Up My Fax Machine,