Jill Homer

Article Summary:

Why take a cycling tour? Because biking is the only means to escape civilization in a civilized society.

Why Biking?

Why bike?

Why load every heavy thing you need to survive on a two-wheeled vehicle powered solely by you? Why the effort? And why, in this fast-paced age of information, would anyone waste so much time moving at 15 mph?

In a word, sustainability - the very essence of survival. Short of throwing on a backpack and walking into the wilderness, there is not a more self-contained mode of travel then a bicycle. Everything that you put into it you get out. All those backwards aspects of living that have been lost over generations of progress become essential again.

Calories, rather than an enemy, become a necessity, and you cherish them. You learn about the excess of modern novelties such as iceberg lettuce, which, at 45 calories per pound and nearly no nutrients, won't get you very far.

You rediscover simple mechanics and learn to fix your bike.

By spending vast amounts of time outdoors, you become dependent on nature. You observe the movement of clouds and rotation of the sky, and use them to gage weather and time.

You no longer have computers and TVs and magazines to tell you what to do all the time, and you learn to trust your instincts.

You hold your body in the highest regard - it's your only means of movement - and all of your other possessions become secondary.

You discover the contours of landscape and develop an acute sense of place. And through it all you learn to love the land and yourself in ways that modern living has adamantly denied.

So why bike? Because biking is the only means to escape civilization in a civilized society. Biking is the only way to crawl along the car-choked Interstate and still feel like part of a natural flow. And, short of hiking into the wilderness with a fishing pole and a Swiss army knife, biking is the shortest route to independence in an increasingly dependent world.

Jill Homer is a graphic artist and freelance travel writer currently residing in Tooele, Utah. She specializes in outdoor adventure writing. For more information please visit www.biketoshine.com or contact [email protected].

Read all advice by Jill Homer; Find more Cycling experts

More advice on Cycling
» Why Biking?
» What to Take on a Long Distance Bicycle Tour
» all Cycling articles