Tag Archives: bike touring

Dan Malloy: Slow is Fast When You’re Surfing by Bike

Bike ride with Dan and friends.
Kellen Keene, Dan Malloy, and Kanoa Zimmerman on the Slow is Fast surf tour. Photo by Kanoa Zimmerman.

Dan Malloy’s surf career began in typical fashion. He started competing in and winning contests as a teenager and eventually attracted the attention of big name sponsors such as Billabong and Hurley. That sponsorship lead to a cycle of world travel for contests, photo shoots, and video filming. For Malloy it was an exciting and privileged experience, but one that also led to serious burn out. He quit competing in the early 2000s, concerned that contests were killing his love for surfing. He continued traveling extensively filming videos, doing photo shoots, and working as a brand ambassador and product developer for Patagonia. In the process he evolved into something of a professional surf nomad with near-constant trips to standard surf destinations such as Indonesia, Hawaii, and Mexico and breaks as far flung as Liberia and Antarctica.

Now 36, Malloy has settled down a bit, at least by his standards. He and his wife have a small working farm with goats and produce in Ojai, California. But he still finds time for surf adventures. In September 2012, Malloy and two friends, Kellen Keene and Kanoa Zimmerman spent two months bike touring down the coast of California surfing and staying with farmers and artisans along the way. From that trip they created Slow is Fast, a book and film that document the surfing, riding, and people they met. I spoke to Malloy about the ups and downs of a surf trip on two wheels, the unique perspectives bike touring provides, lessons learned from his time with farmers and artisans who live intentionally, the possibility of future bike and surf trips, and much more.

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Makes You Want to Have an Adventure

Follow Your Way – Chile from Iść Swoją Drogą on Vimeo.

This short film captures the people, places, and feeling of four months of bike touring through Chile. It’ll get your spirit of adventure going just in time for the weekend!

Nicholas Carman: Pedaling the World as a Gypsy by Trade

nicholas carmen lael wilcox arizona trail
Lael Wilcox and Nicholas Carman on the Arizona Trail in 2013. Photo by Nicholas Carman.

The chorus to the JJ Cale song “Homeless Man” goes, “I’m not a homeless man/I’m a gypsy by trade/And I’m traveling this land/I’m not a homeless man.” It is the source from which Nicholas Carman’s blog Gypsy by Trade draws its name–an appropriate umbrella for the journals and photographs of a man who spends about half of each year exploring the world by bike.

Nicholas and his partner Lael Wilcox have toured on and off road through Europe, Canada, across the United States, on routes like the Great Divide and Kokopelli, and plenty more. They’ve structured their lives around travel, spending winters working and summers on the road. Nicholas answered my questions by email from Anchorage, Alaska where he’s currently working seven days a week at a bike shop, saving up for the next adventure. In this interview, he discusses his foray into extended bike touring, his favorite trips around the world, how he and Lael make their travel work, his evolution of thought about bike touring gear, and much more.

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Repost: Ellee Thalheimer, Oregon’s Bike Touring Authority


Ellee on tour. Photo via author’s website.

This interview with guidebook author Ellee Thalheimer was originally published in July 2012. I am reposting it to celebrate the release of her new Washington state bike touring guidebook Cycling Sojourner: A Guide to the Best Multi-day Tours in Washington! Click here to purchase your own copy of this awesome book.

Portland, OR’s Ellee Thalheimer is an author, freelance travel writer, and avid bike tourist. Her newest book, Cycling Sojourner, is a guide to multi-day, self-supported touring in Oregon, the only one of its kind for the state. I reviewed the book last month then finally got a chance to talk to Ellee as she wrapped up her book tour and some exploratory bike touring for another potential touring guide. We spoke about her past experiences touring nationally and abroad, her background in writing, her process for Cycling Sojourner, and more.

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Buy the Book: Cycling Sojourner Washington

CyclingSojournerWA_BookCover_July2013I’m excited to announce the release of Cycling Sojourner: A Guide to the Best Multi-day Tours in Washington! This brand new guidebook covers nine distinct tours all around Washington state, from the coast to Walla Walla’s wine region to the San Juan Islands and lots in between. In author/publisher Ellee Thalheimer’s words:

The nine tours in the book provide meticulously laid out nuts and bolts information, including cue sheets, maps, and information about weather, difficulty level, camping and lodging options and how to get to the ride’s start. Yet, the soul of the book lies in the voices of the five authors, four of whom are Washingtonians, who use storytelling, local history, and humor to elevate the book beyond just an everyday guidebook to an inspirational muse that draws out your inner adventurer.

I wrote two chapters for Cycling Sojourner.  The first: an easy overnight tour from Seattle to Tolt MacDonald Park in Carnation targeted at beginner bike tourists looking to get their feet wet and experienced tourists looking for an easy escape from the city. The second: a challenging, rewarding, beautiful tour of the Olympic Peninsula. Riding the Peninsula was one of the most spectacular bike adventures I’ve ever had. I wrote a little bit about the experience for the Cycling Sojourner blog.

Interested in getting your hands on this awesome book? You can buy a copy from The Bicycle Story! Get inspired for many summer’s worth of adventures AND support The Bicycle Story’s work. It’s a win, win!