Joe Cruz has been pedaling through South America for the past six months; it seems everyone’s doing it, but not like Joe. Short of stature and tall of fortitude, Joe stands beside his curiously laden Pugsley like an underweight jockey, his steed. Riding a fatbike packed with Revelate framebags over ancient, barely-there cobbled Incan roads and the salt-crusted altiplano to the southern reaches of the continent– Joe does it right, perhaps better. He knit a path through the mountains that intersected hordes of Germans and Americans on touring bikes, but mostly left them to their ant-like march south as he pushed and pedaled to over 15,000 ft, with water bottles like tumors growing from his dusty Pugsley.
Joe is participating in the White Mountains 100 north of Fairbanks today, riding a borrowed Pugsley a hundred miles through the snow. Next week we meet to discuss big plans involving fatbikes. Neither Joe nor Cass nor I have limits to our bike-wandering imaginations, and we’re all in.
Update: Joe finished the WM100 25 minutes past midnight in just over 16 hours. Over the final miles he passed several skiers and a cyclist to finish in 16th place, while he had steadily held 18th throughout the day in a competitive field of 65. Other finishers include Eric Parsons, a.k.a. Captain Swallowtail of Revelate Designs, who skied to the finish two hours after Joe; and Jill Homer of Jill Outside who finished on a bike two hours later. Jill participates in ultra-events more frequently than I call my mother.
For an insightful report of his first big bike ride in the snow, check out Joe’s blog Pedaling in Place throughout the week.
Riding to the Knik Glacier today, bathed in sunlight.