My first trip by bike took place when I was just 17 years old. It was 2001, I had just graduated from high school and I wanted to do something big before I went off to college and began my professional career. The idea for a bike tour came mainly from my Uncle Tom, who had recently completed a bike tour in Ireland and suggested I do something similar by riding my bike from Oregon to Mexico along the California Coastline.
Being just 17 years old, I had to convince my parents that this was something I was capable of doing. With my Uncle’s help, my parents conceded and said I could take the trip, but they insisted that I find people to travel with.
In order to make this happen, I recruited three of my best friends to join me on various legs of the journey. My friend Jason Weber rode the first left (from Eureka, CA to San Francisco). Jason June rode the second leg (from San Francisco to Camarillo, CA). And Ryan Nakashima rode with me on the final leg of the trip (from Camarillo, CA to the Mexican border).
Ryan and his sister recently came to visit me at my home in Park City, Utah, and while they were here I sat down with Ryan and asked him to talk about the things he remembered from that first trip by bike in the summer of 2001.
During our talk Ryan and I discuss:
- How I was able to convince Ryan to come with me on the trip.
- How we were able to convince Ryan parents to let him join me on my ride.
- How much training Ryan did to prepare for the journey.
- Where we spent our nights in Southern California and how this compared to the rest of the trip.
- An embarrassing moment that I will likely never forget (WARNING: It involves poop!)
- What it felt like to reach the Mexican border on that last day.
- A horrible accident that happened just as the trip came to an end.
- And a whole lot more!
The listen to my interview with Ryan Nakashima, just click play on the video below. I had to split the interview into two parts because we went slightly over the 10-minute YouTube time restriction. Enjoy!