I want to do it. Mark my words, if you're still reading my blog in 8 years, you're going to be reading about my preparations for the 2021Tour Divide. After I decided on an 8 year goal, I did the math and realized I'll be 48 that year. That threw me a little, but when I thought about it, many of the people regularly kicking my butt on bikes and riding circles around me are 8-10 years older than I am (also, many are much younger than I am. Whatever.) Age doesn't have to be an obstacle to adventure; in my case, that's 8 more years of bike experience and growing confidence. Besides, Jill Homer's post on women of the 2012 Tour Divide listed several 40+ women.
Why 8 years? Well, I think by that time my life will be more conducive to a tackling a 4ish week, 2,700 mile adventure (because once you've got a family and responsibilities, there's probably no good time to take off for a month on your bike).
- We should be in a significantly better financial position so that my adventures don't prohibit family adventures or keep my husband from being able to chase his dreams.
- My youngest will be in his late teens and plenty old enough to deal with me being away for a month.
- My husband will have nearly a month a vacation time, freeing him to be part of the departure and/or end of the race.
- It may take me 8 years to learn some basic bike wrenching skills so I'm not left with double-digit hike-a-bikes in the absence of mechanically inclined good Samaritans.
- The next several years will give me the opportunity to start doing some smaller bike-packing trips, acquiring gear, and figuring out what works for me.
- At first I thought a 5-year plan would be good; then I decided it would be cool to do the Tour Divide in 2020...and forgot that it was 2013 now. Once I'd (mis)calculated the time til 2020, the number 8 just seemed right.