Saturday, November 04, 2006

Blog appreciation day

Date: Nov. 3
Total mileage: 41.2
November mileage: 84.4
Temperature upon departure: 25

So "Up in Alaska" turns one today.

This is actually post No. 271. I know what you're thinking. Two hundred and seventy one posts? Deee-yam, that girl needs to get a job. I just want to go on the record and say that I have a job. A very productive, blog-free job. Promise. Blogging is what I do when ... well ... when I should be watching TV. Blogging is what I'm doing when Geoff walks up to me holding some dismantled bike part and I hiss "shhh ... you're making me miss today's Fat Cyclist."

It's funny, because when I launched this thing, I had no intention of penning a daily biking blog. I just thought my friends and family were starting to get sick of all of the attachment-clogged mass e-mails I started sending when I moved to Alaska. I didn't actually think anybody besides my mom and my friend Monika in Ann Arbor would ever browse the thing. But the greatest thing about an open blog is the way it pulls you into this virtual community of like-minded people from all over the world. Friends and family, for the most part, reacted to my blog with deafening yawns. But who knew there would be so many strangers in the world who would participate in my rambling "bike-hike-rain-snow-reminisce-about-random-moments-in-the-past-ad-nauseum" conversation?

So I just wanted to use my one-year-anniversary post to say thanks to everyone who stops by, especially to those who say hi once in a while, to those who supported me in my foray into mountain bike racing and who offered encouraging words and suggestions. Who knew I'd still be at it one year - and 271 posts - later? Good thing I'm not one of those people who watches "Lost."

As for today - clear weather continues to hold on in Juneau, to the amazement of nearly everyone. I rode my bike out to the Herbert Glacier trail to meet some friends this morning. Who knew it was 30 miles away? By the time I reached the trailhead, I was already dripping with sweat and the rest of the ride (10 slow miles on a trail covered with 1-2 inches of snow) was mostly just a battle to stay warm. We reached the Herbert Glacier, with a fierce wind blasting off the snowfield and hitting our watery eyes like thousands of tiny needles. I'd put the windchill in that spot at about -10. That'll wake you up, quick. We went with our friend Geoff (not my Geoff, another Geoff I know. It was me and two Geoffs with a "G.") He's one of those people who's great to ride with - doesn't care in the slightest about making good time or covering good distance, but everything is glorious and breathtaking, and he'll remind you of it at every turn. He stops to inspect icicles. I like that in a riding companion.

Here's hoping the weather stays clear and cold, and that this blog survives to see Nov. 3, 2007.


  1. Congratulations! Please keep on doing what you're doing. I'm a regular reader and although it may sound corny, you're one of the reasons I decided I could get on the bike when the temperatures drop below freezing... I passed your link on to a few friends and keep getting comments back such as "'Jill the Alaska commuter' blog. Amazing pics."

    I look forward to the many posts to come.

  2. Happy Blogversary! I'm definitely inspired by your cold weather riding---though I turn to skiing for this time of year. You're a very concise and articulate writer.

  3. Jill,
    You probably know I read and enjoy your blog all the time. Its helps us all keep up with your adventures and experiences. I find myself reading your blog, reminiscing, and smiling frequently. Keep it up.
    Love - Dad

  4. Jill- i'll have to say is I am sorry that you have another... what is it?... 8 months? 10 months? of winter....cold, dark, freezing winter. i don't know how you do it. i am barely survivng the dropping temperatures here in utah, but it will be like a summer vacation to you when you come for thanksgiving. can't wait to see you. love you.

  5. Jill,happy anniversary. I came here via Fatty and Caloi. I keep coming back for the good writing and the fantastic pictures. Have you got all your pictures gathered together on Fickr our someting similar? When the temps here drop bellow 0C, I'll think of you as I get my bike out.



  6. Happy Blogirtday!

    and many more.........

  7. We are the lucky ones, Jill.

    I'll read for another year.

  8. Happy birthday for the blog! Some great writing and photos keep me coming back! 270+ posts in one year? I have done about half that in 20months!

    All we need now is a real winter here in the UK and I'll get out on the snow-bound trails :)


  9. Thanks for sharing your life experiences in this blog. I'll never get to Alaska or at least to the places you photograph and articulate so beautifully on a daily basis. You see the world as a cup half full. Your blog fills the New Jerseyan in me with a smile.

  10. Congrats on one year, Alaska Jill!

  11. Happy anniversary. I enjoy the blog and the pictures. Keep it up! I'll keep reading.

  12. Lighting a candle for your blog! I check it every day not for the cycle exploits but for your wonderful photos of a beautiful corner of the world, and your lovely descriptions. Even if you didn't cycle I'd probably read it - but then I guess you'd not be writing it :-)
    Keep up the blogging
    in UK

  13. I read your blog daily as well and I live in Juneau. You always have great photos which have replaced my addiction to the former You've never mentioned if you got your of the first entries I read he was still in Homer. Keep up the great work!

  14. happy anniversary for you blog! keep it up!

    peace out, yo!

  15. Happy Blog-a-versary! I really have enjoyed reading your blog. See you next year,
    Heather in Ohio

  16. it is an addiction....

    I look forward to BLOGGER ANONYMOUS

    where we cound the days without blogging

    my name is joel
    and I am a blogger

  17. Happy Anniversary! It's been a fun ride and continues to be so!

  18. I belated Happy Blogversary from a former googlewhack. ;-)


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