When we last left two-time Race Across America champion Danny Chew and his nephew Steven Perezluha, the pair were rejoicing after traveling 5,115 miles by bike to Alaska.
When they turned around and started home in August, they also headed into trouble.
Eighteen-year-old Perezluha told his hometown newspaper, the Orlando Sentinel:
“The trip back home seemed like it took longer than the trip up. Some parts of it were harder. It may have been harder a little more mentally because all these things kept trying to stop us, and I had to keep telling myself to keep going.”
Good and bad
The Sentinel dutifully reported the lowlights and highlights of the trip home. A lot can go wrong on a bike trip.
The low points — Chew is knocked out after crashing near Whitehorse, BC.; Perezluha receives a concussion some 40 miles from Kamloops, BC; stomach virus keeps them off the bikes in Idaho; Perezhula discovers a crack in his bike frame and buys a new bike in Steamboat Springs, and freezing winter weather greets them in Utah and follows them all the way through Kansas.
The high points — The pair cross Berthoud Pass in Colorado at 11,307 feet; Perezluha arrives home after 13,769 miles; the ride is about 1,200 miles shorter for Chew because he started in Pittsburgh.
The winner of solo RAAM in 1996 and 1999 told the newspaper: “It was a relief to be done.”
Sometimes bike tours are like that, especially those that start in the warmth of June but end in the cold days of November.