Who is this Bikeabout guy?
And what is this website all about?
This whole mess began back in 1999, when I got my first digital camera and a laptop computer. Then I packed up and headed to Borneo, the jungle island in Southeast Asia, followed by a bicycle tour of New Zealand. I began to send back stories and photos by email, but soon thought it would easier to design and update my own website, what with this being back in the olden days before blogs and such.
I've been traveling on and off now for years, plus photographing small adventures closer to home. I continue to do a barely acceptable job of keeping the website updated. I changed my home base from Hawaii to Western Colorado in 2005.
The original concept of a Bikeabout was stolen directly from my limited understanding of the Australian Walkabout, referring to a journey that removed one from ordinary life, a journey that would prompt personal and spiritual growth. Much of my concept of personal and spiritual growth has involved repeating the question "What the heck am I doing?"
The bike? I sold my last car in 1997 and haven't owned one since. I've found that the simplicity of life on a bicycle appeals to me. It's cheap, fun and effective, I get to live lightly on the planet and not leave a trail of poison wherever I go. Instead of experiencing life through a window and an air vent, I get the real deal. I have found traveling cross country by bicycle is especially appealing, since the slower speeds, no barriers and ease of stopping allow much more of the experience to reach me.
Purist? Not really. If I need the speed, I'll use public transportation or hitch with friends or strangers. Or even rent a car. But for the most part, it's me and a bike.
What bike? I've found a hardtail mountain bike with a rear rack and panniers serves me well for just about everything. Town, errands, groceries, commuting. Travel touring. Plus dirt roads, tracks, and mountain bike trails. Goes just about anywhere and does it pretty well. But I've also had a rotating string of different bikes that have a narrower focus. Road bikes for speed on pavement. Full suspension mountain bike to smooth the roughest trails. A cruiser with a basket on the handlebar.
Photography has become an important way for me to share what I do. I put thought and care into each photo, trying to capture a bit more than the surface view. But usually I do this on-the-fly, by being Out There, and relying on chance combinations of light, activity and scene. Now photography makes up the greater part of this website. Please enjoy!
I've been using a series of Canon "prosumer" type cameras. They are both portable and capable. As of this writing, I've stepped away from the Canon G-series in favor of the S5, which retains the flip-screen and allows me to protect the screen during the rough treatment it gets.
Random facts about this Bikeabout Guy:
• Can whistle two tones at once, creating tunes in harmony
• Has worked as a piano tuner, bookbinder, fast food worker, machine operator, delivery driver, tile setter, barbarian, office machine installer, knifemaker, groundskeeper, assistant store manager, carpet layer, graphic artist, stuntman, wine bar tender, manual laborer, vocalist, janitor, leather crafter, web designer, bicycle mechanic, photographer. And can still hold a job.
• Once won the Hawaii state time trial championship - mountain bike division.
• Has both a left and right spleen.
• Believes he is saving the world by using a washcloth-sized towel.
Note: One of these is not true.