June 16, 2009

Duzer bikes (a cruiser) across America.

Update: Where is Duzer now? In the middle of f**king nowhere! Look at the map!

Ryan Van Duzer is The Daily Camera’s “Out There Guy,” a rising star on The Travel Channel, is biking (a three-speed cruiser) across America—from sea to shining sea. He’ll film his adventures—biking from San Diego to our nation’s capitol—with his usual combination of daring, fun and giving a care about our world—and elephantjournal.com, a media sponsor, will show his videos every step of the way. It’ll likely take him two months!

I interviewed him a few days after he got a big wood chip in his mouth from The Kitchen’s wood-fired oven pizza.

Waylon Lewis, for elephantjournal.com: First question, buddy: good god, why?

Ryan Van Duzer: I love riding my bike and I figure that it will be an amazing way to
experience my country, at roughly 15mph.  I’ve actually never driven a
car or had a driver’s license, I’m a biker boy 100% and I’ve always
wanted to go coast to coast.  This is a dream come true, many years in
the making.

Why San Diego? Why Washington DC? What are you doing there?

I picked San Diego because it’ll set me off on a nice southern route
across the west.  I’m going to avoid crossing the Colorado mountains
since I’m on a three speed cruiser, this bike is not really made for
mountain passes. It’s actually not made for anything but cruising, but
I have faith in my bike!  In DC I’ll be meeting with some
transportation folks and the American League of Bicyclists…maybe I
can get Obama out on a bike, or at the very least I can throw his dog
in my trailer and take em for a spin.

Where else along the way? What adventures you got planned?

Everyday will be an adventure, a totally scary, exciting, exhilarating
adventure into the unknown.  I’ll wake up, put on my clothes and start
riding, not knowing where I’ll end up, who I’ll meet or what I’ll find
to eat, fun!

I’ll also be stopping along the way in BFCs, which stands for Bike
Friendly Cities
.  I’ll be doing presentations and hoping to inspire
people to ride a few miles with me.

Why the cruiser, Duzer?

New Belgium gave me a cruiser last year and I jokingly said that I’ll
ride it across America, and they took me seriously.  They are an
amazing company and are all about getting people to leave their cars
behind.  This ride fits in perfectly with their eco-minded mission.
Oh, and they make good beer.

What’s your overall mission?

Overall mission is to raise money for Community Cycles, the coolest
bike co-op this side of the Mississippi.  I’m personally looking to
have the experience of a lifetime, I know I’ll meet awesome people,
see amazing landscapes and return with an amazingly sore ass!

Where will you sleep? What all are you bringing on your bike? Will you
go on big highways, or side roads, or what? How will you bike up the
Rockies? How fun will it be biking down the Rockies?

I’ll sleep wherever I get tired, I’ll pull over, take out my tent or
hammock and rest my legs.  I’m bringing a trailer which will hold all
my goodies like peanut butter, tortillas and water.  Oh yeah, I’ll
have a couple changes of clothes as well.  I’ll be trying to stay on
side roads as much as possible but sometimes I won’t be able to avoid
the highways.  The Rockies?  No way Jose! I’m going south of the
Rockies, but I think I’ll find plenty of hills in Arizona and New

Who are your amazing, generous, eco-minded, good-looking, charming sponsors?

New Belgium is making all this happen, they are the main sponsor and I love em! Golite, Cateye, Horny Toad, Uni Bikes and the Gear Movement are all helping out with gear.  Oh and my mom bought me a helmet so she is a sponsor too..!

And elephantjournal.com, don’t you forget, will be blogging your trip and tweeting it up, Facebooking it. Will you have a keg in your B.O.B?

Yes, I’ll be pulling a pony keg of Mothership Wit, a nice wheaty
organic beer that has been proven to be more effective than any other
energy drink on the market!

You’re raising money for Community Cycles? Good man. What do they do?

Community Cycles is a bunch of super awesome people whose mission is
to educate and advocate for the safe use of bicycles as an affordable,
viable and sustainable means of transportation and personal enjoyment
within our community.

I’ve volunteered with them in the past, teaching bike clinics at the
Family Learning Center, it’s so fun to see kids get excited about

How will you be returning to Boulder, your hometown? In a kayak? A China-owned Hummer?

Well I’m not riding back that’s for sure!  I’ll probably jump on a gas guzzlin jet…and buy some carbon offsets.

Where can we learn more, and keep up to date with your adventures? I hear elephantjournal.com is going to track your progress? Also some site called ryanvanduzer.com?

I’ll be filming, tweeting, writing and photographing the entire way, so it should be pretty darn interactive.  It’s like you’ll be able to be ride right alongside me, but you get to avoid the sore ass and
stinky clothes.  I’ll be writing weekly articles for the Daily Camera
and you can find me on newbelgium.com/duzer.

Where will your adventures be televised?

Yes, I’ll have a satellite truck following me the entire way, broadcasting the fun on all the major channels….oh wait, that was in my dream.  For now you’ll have to watch the fun on the internet.

For All things Duzer: http://duzertv.com

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