January was a tough one as we said goodbye to one of our own who was gone way too soon. Kelly was a huge presence in the Nebraska cycling scene and always had a smile on his face and a kind word for everyone. I didn't know him real well personally but it was amazing to see how many people he had touched in his life during his funeral service. Ride and smile, every darn day!
February started out being really cold and I found myself racing the Fat Bike Frozen 40 up in Minneapolis in -14° weather but ended the month in shorts and t-shirts. Crazy weather for sure.
March saw the second, slightly modified, iteration of the Omaha to Lincoln ride that we do on Good Friday. In 2016 we decided to do a Lincoln to Omaha ride but I think for '17 it'll go back to Omaha to Lincoln and back... and maybe even on road bikes this year.
April was the official opening of the N Street Cycle Track in Lincoln, one of the things I miss most about living not in Lincoln anymore is their amazing trail network and the Cycle Track only adds to that system. Between the trails systems and residential roads that were built as a grid, it's possible to get almost anywhere in Lincoln without needing to use a major road.
By May rides were in full swing, the ThNNDRR, Tour de Brew LNK, the Tour of Dirt Roads and even zombies on the SMNDFBR. Plenty of reasons to rack up the miles with great folks.
The annual pilgrimage to tiny Gothenburg for Odin's Revenge was in June, always a fun race. It wasn't until recently that we learned that 2016 was the final year for Odin, still lots of good memories. Another huge thing in June was the purchase of a house, so far it's been a great purchase but it certainly added to the day to day work load.
Hot and humid was the theme for July along with helping out with the Lincoln DEVO program, I think I found myself in Lincoln more this summer than I was in Omaha.
My second attempt at Gravel Worlds was in August and the second time was the charm for finishing. It was probably the best I've ever felt on the bike during a race but I had also put in some work to get the weight down, maybe there is something to this eating right thing they are always talking about.
September was a great month on bike, first trip with great friends down to Switchgrass in Kansas. Such a different trail than anything we have here in Nebraska, definitely have to figure out a time to go back next year.
October brought the Omaha Jackrabbit race, 2nd year for me and 2nd finish. Bigger group than last year but we all decided to ride it together and stuck that way for the whole ride, this was a blessing for me as I was not feeling real well before the race. No doubt in my mind I would have pulled out had it not been for the great group of friends on this one.
Things started winding down by November but there were still some great group rides in store including the annual Turkey Day Ride that is always a blast.
What year would be complete without the Global Fat Bike Day Ride, even though it's only the second year we've had this ride it's still one I look forward to every year.
2016 was a great year on the bike, probably my biggest year so far even though I still haven't made it to an oil change worth of miles yet. Honestly I think if I could get some commuting miles locked in better I could really up that total as almost all of my miles tend to be recreational at this point. I guess maybe that will be a goal for 2017, more miles and more commuting by bike.