I learned so many amazing things this summer guiding mountain bike trips for Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventures. It is incredible the things one can learn while guiding and riding a bike. The best thing has been sharing our incredible local trails and the emotions that were experienced with our clients while riding. I felt like I really tapped into something that was very inspiring on so many levels. There were so many moments talking with clients and them saying things like, “that was the best trail I have ever ridden in my life”, or “I have never ridden that far before”. or “I did not know I could do that.” Basically, what I experienced was sharing the love of biking, and in that moment I saw people grow in ways I never realized. When a client struggles yet perseveres to the end of a ride, and looks at you with a complete sense of accomplishment and beams with happiness, it makes me smile too. I get to experience breakthrough moments with clients every time I go out and it reaffirms why I do this job. When you see someone light up and smile with a grin so big after they thought they could not go another mile, I capture that moment as well, and am inspired and lifted up. Sharing trails helps me to find my purpose and to find my own joy.
I love showing people the incredible riding here, and when I am in the moment with a client when they have such joy, it helps me realize how good I have it in my own life. Sometimes we locals take the trails for granted and we loose sight of the beauty all around our area and how special it really is. Sharing trails creates clarity in my own meaning making moments. It helps me to be grateful to be alive and to experience these beautiful places both when I am guiding and adventuring on my own.
This summer I also got to experience families and friends coming together in a common goal of having fun and creating moments together. When I see a family struggling and laughing together, and ultimately overcoming obstacles together, it helps to seal my own bonds of family and the bonds we share together. It also helps inspire me to go home and hug my wife and to tell her I love her, and to pet my cats and revel in the bonds we all share together. Sharing trails strengthens my own family connections.
This summer was the summer of the kid at Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventures. We took out so many young kids and helped to inspire the next generation of shredders. Kids on bikes is the ultimate expression of freedom and joy. When I see them smile and shout WooHoo, the only thing one can do is smile. Kids are the best Zen Masters and when they ride they pass a bit of that mastery on to you as well. I was inspired so many times by kids sharing their stoke to the world this summer. It is impossible to not smile when you see a kid ripping down a trail, fearlessly charging into the unknown. We all could learn a thing or two from that level of inspiration. Sharing trails with kids helps strengthen my own sense of freedom and spontaneity.
Last night I saw a movie about a guy named Frank Sanders, owner of Above All Climbing Guides, who guides rock climbing at Devils Tower, Wyoming. He was so happy and loved to share the experiences of climbing the tower just as he had so many times before. He has been there for many years and it seems that he will do it as long as he physically can. It brought him to a higher level of understanding and helped him to be at peace with the world. I am realizing that guiding for me is very similar. It helps me to be at peace with the world and my purpose, and it helps me to find my place. Sharing trails creates peace of mind and a sense of purpose, and it shows me my way in the world.
I hope I can do this guiding thing for a long time, and everyday I am reminded of how grateful I am to have the opportunity to be a co-owner of Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventures and to share the love of biking with others. I have grown so much this summer and found moments of clarity that surprised me each day. Sharing trails has made me grateful to be alive and helped me to find my way home.