Crazy bike adventures are nothing new to local author and nationally known speaker Joe Kurmaskie. The man who is known by his fans as the “Metal Cowboy” has biked all over the globe, but his current adventure might be his most daring yet.
This time he’s taking the entire family along.
Yesterday afternoon, Joe, his wife Beth and their sons Quinn, 9, Enzo, 7 and Mateo (will be one next week), embarked on a two month, 3,000 mile journey across Canada. Bicycling magazine is already on board (they plan to publish regular updates and track the journey via GPS) and a book will likely follow.
I caught up with them just before they left.
The first thing I noticed was their “stretch limo” set-up . They’re rolling a triple tandem, connected to a tag-along bike, connected to a trailer. Most of the gear has been strategically packed into the trailer (leaving just enough room for little Mateo of course), but I was surprised at how little they seemed to have.
Joe says he limited the kids to one toy and one stuffed animal each saying, “there are no extras on this trip,” as he secured two panniers to the rear of the trailer.
They had considered putting Beth on a single bike, but she wanted to be “part of the team” and this way, she’ll be closer to the action.
Beth is going into this with a positive outlook, and looks forward to how the trip will bring the family closer together, “Riding in this arrangement takes a lot of communication,” she says. She’ll have a chance to share how it all goes in the upcoming book. The plan is to let Beth write a rebuttal after each chapter to act as counterpoint to Joe’s re-telling of events.
As for the route, Joe says they’ve planned for anywhere between 2-3,000 miles but that he doesn’t have every mile planned out,
“We’re starting on Vancouver Island and ended up in Nova Scotia…I don’t believe in over-planning because it takes the adventure out of it… but don’t get me wrong, I plan to stay safe… I won’t do things with the family that I’d do on my own.”
While Beth is busy keeping the family in good spirits and Joe is making sure they’re headed the right direction, Enzo and Quinn will just be having fun. They’re used to bike adventures. Last year they joined their Dad on a trip across America that resulted in Joe’s latest book, Momentum Is Your Friend: The Metal Cowboy and His Pint-Size Posse Take on America.
While I was there yesterday, Enzo and Quinn were busy having a squirt gun fight and there was talk of how to put some holsters on the frame for easy access while riding.
And of course we can’t forget about little Mateo. He’s not quite one year-old, and he’s got the best seat on the trip. He either loves the trailer, or he’s just resigned to the fact that it will be his home for the next two months.