Pack List

MelCycleWith the departure date three weeks away I am making final preparations. I will be picking up a bicycle box from Performance Bike to ship my bicycle ahead. There are a number of small items I need to pick up. Tomorrow I am doing a presentation to the elementary student about the trip. I’ll be riding my bike to school as fully loaded as possible.


  • Stove
  • Lighter
  • 2 pans
  • Lock ‘n Lock Container
  • Utensils – Personal/Cooking
    • Spork
    • Kinfe
    • Can opener
    • Spatula
  • Salt/Oil
  • Dish Soap
  • Knife
  • Mug
  • Cup
  • Trowel
  • Tent
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Sleeping Bag Liner
  • Pillow*
  • ThermaRest XLite
  • ThermaRest Pump
  • Camp Towel
  • Washcloth
  • Toilet Paper
  • Food Bag
  • Paracord
  • Clothes Pins
  • Water Purifier
  • Water Containers
  • Flashlight
  • Headlamp
  • Water Purifier
  • Zip Lock Bags – 1 gal
  • Heavy Duty Trash Bags – 2
  • Shopping bags – 5
  • Sink stopper – Flat

Beginning Again


It’s been almost 10 years since I first started dreaming of bicycle touring after reading the book, “Hey Mom, Can I Ride My Bike Across America?” a story of 5 kids that rode across the United States. Along with my son, Keith, we began preparing for a trip beginning in St. Louis following the Lewis and Clark Trail, traveling as far as we could in three weeks. We ended up riding for over 1000 miles, ending in Chamberlain, South Dakota.

A lot has water has gone under the bridge since that trip. The twelve year-old that rode with me is now turning 22 and a Junior in college. My Uncle Wes, another key player in this trip, picking up our vehicle at our starting place and meeting us with it at the end has since passed away but will always be remembered for his love of cycling and adventure.

Over the last several weeks, I’ve pulled out the old Adventure Cycling maps and dusted off my trusty touring bicycle and started dreaming of the open road again. The first time, I did it for my son. This time I’m doing it for myself. When I arrive in Chamberlain again and cycle out out through the prairies of South Dakota this June, it will be a new experience – a solo adventure.

The preparation has begun. I’ve stared cycle commuting to work each day. I’ve started a pack list. I’m tuning up the bicycle and I’ve purchased updated maps. What will this adventure have in store?

Wes Peterson – Life Sketch

Wes PetersonWes Peterson was born December 28, 1932 in the midst of a typhoid epidemic in Chamberlain, SD.  Records show that during that epidemic his was the only case where both mother and baby survived.

He spent most of his growing-up years in Sioux Falls, SD.  Wes was the oldest child of Norman Peterson and Ethel Schuttler Peterson.  Soon a younger brother, Perry, was added to the family followed by two sisters, Karen and Normalie.  Perry was only 13 months younger and they shared many coming-of-age experiences.  Their first bicycle was shared as was their first car.

That car was no ordinary car.  It was a 1936 Oldsmobile which the two boys painted green and then plastered the body with slogans in red and yellow lettering.  On one side of the hood was painted, “opportunity, hear it knock,” the other side read “heap big smoke, no fire.” Once it actually had an electrical fire under the hood, adding authentic paint blisters to the words.  A few other phrases were: “don’t laugh, lady, your daughter may be inside”; “any contributions gratefully accepted” with an arrow pointing to the gas tank; “we may be slow but we’re still ahead of you.”   The car’s name was Irene, and the back of the car was painted with “Good Night, Irene” after a song popular at the time.  

Building the Playground – Time Lapse

Time Lapse SetupThis is my first time lapse video.  It was taken from the roof of a building next to the project using a Canon 60D every 15 seconds.  Be sure to watch in 1080p at full screen for the best effect.


Ted and Karen Wade Wedding

I came across an old reel-to-reel recording of my parents wedding. July 8, 1956.

Ted and Karen Wade Wedding