By Sharon Courmousis
March 28, 2010 (Boulevard) –An interesting group of people pulled into Sacred Rocks Reserve on February 27th. They were driving a motor home followed by a car stuffed full and topped off with a bunch of bicycles. Their goal: to bike from San Diego, California to Sarasota, Florida in 60 days.
Dawn and Mike Harris, along with their friends, Russ and Denise Nichols have a dream. It has been their goal to ride cross country for several years, but their plans got waylaid when Russ had a accident or two, a hip replacement and a knee replacement. Now they are finally on the road.
When asked “What prompted such a major undertaking?” Mike answered, “It is a personal challenge for me and the others felt the same way wanted to participate…We have ridden on the Pacific Coast to Monterey, and also biked across Ireland together.”
Their plan is for three to ride on one day, and then either Dawn or Denise will drive the motor home to the next stopover. This is Denise’s first time driving the motor home.
Both couples most want to connect with local people all across the country and believe that the friendships they forge will be the highlights of the trip. Russ also anticipates connecting with other week-long rides and getting to know riders at their night stops.
The ride has some risks. Bicyclists can be difficult for motorists to see. Some automobile drivers express anger at bike riders. Plus the outside edge of roads often have deep ruts that can catch a bike tire and toss off the rider.
While at Sacred Rocks in East County, all four bikers crowded around in the cozy living room of their portable home and advised that there are three vital attributes for such a long trek: be flexible, keep a sense of humor, and have a lighthearted outlook.
Sharon Courmousis is the owner of Sacred Rocks Reserve, an RV park and campground in San Diego’s East County.