Home: Recent Knoxville, TN transplant to Durham, NH
Occupation: PhD Student at UNH studying rhizosphere dynamics in agroecosystems
What bike (s) are you riding: Juliana Origin (mountain), Surly Disc Trucker (touring), Liv Brava (cyclocross), All City Nature Boy (fun single speed)
Favorite bike route: Off road, I love exploring the trails at Pawtuckaway State Park and Bear Brook State Park, however on any given weekday you can find me cruising around Stratham Hill Park.
Most prized bike accessory: Do I have to pick one? I’ll pick three! 1) A good pair of light-weight, long fingered gloves because holding onto the bike is really important whether you’re climbing a technical section of trail or tearing it up on a fast downhill. 2) My hydration pack so I can carry plenty of water, SNACKS, and repair tools. I eat a lot of snacks when I’m hanging out in the woods. And, 3) a helmet, of course. I’ve suffered a fair number of concussions, so protecting my brain is top priority.
Helpful hint for other women bicyclists: Don’t be afraid to ride by yourself. When you are mountain biking or road riding/touring alone, you discover a lot about who you are as a person. You learn about the things that challenge you and how to overcome them, whether or not you face those challenges on or off the bike. A few years ago, I toured across the United States by myself and realized that people are genuine, kind, and always willing to lend a hand – so there is really no reason to embark on an adventure thinking the world is against you.
Why you bicycle: Mostly so I can eat snacks ALL THE TIME. (I’m only half joking) But, seriously, I’ve been cycling for more than half my life and I can’t imagine NOT riding bikes. It’s empowering and gives me the confidence to navigate the difficulties of everyday life. Moreover, the cycling community transcends arbitrary borders, and as a result of that I’ve met so many wonderful people across the country. It also makes moving to a new place much easier knowing that I can show up to a group ride and be amongst new friends.