About

Hello! I'm Jill, a freelance writer and editor living in the forested foothills above Boulder, Colorado. I'm an avid cyclist, hiker, and trail runner who tries to squeeze at least a small adventure into every day. Being outside and on the move is my passion. I also enjoy indie rock (Modest Mouse has been the light of my life since 1997), newspapers (my career and allegiance, dying industry or not), reading (my favorite genre is adventure nonfiction), long road trips (I love the open road, plus any type of movement is preferable to sitting still), and peanut butter cups (I anxiously await the day science vindicates sugar, like it did for saturated fat.)

Since 2006, I've been hopelessly devoted to endurance racing, which gives purpose to many of my passions — from staying on the move to peanut butter cups. I got my start in Alaska with endurance snow biking, and still consider this obscure endeavor to be my favorite sport. Mountain biking and bikepacking fill my summers. In 2010, I took up trail running, and have finished nearly fifty ultramarathons. Races rank high in my top ten life accomplishments, which are:

Photo by Dan Bailey
1. Taking up the challenge when a Swiss runner urged me to sign up for an ultramarathon after we met at a hundred-mile trail race in Montana, where I was a volunteer. This simple concession to a sport I was convinced I'd hate — running — sparked a wonderful relationship with my partner, Beat.

2. Finishing the 2009 Tour Divide — a 2,745-mile mountain bike race along the Continental Divide from Banff, Alberta, to Antelope Wells, New Mexico — in 24 days, 7 hours, and 24 minutes.


3. Writing a book about this Tour Divide experience, which has reached a lot of people. I've sold well over 20,000 copies of "Be Brave, Be Strong," which I consider not bad for a book about an obscure endurance sport. Several have told me this story inspired them to start cycling or bikepacking, which is the best payment of all.

4. Riding my bike across Alaska in the 2016 Iditarod Trail Invitational, and setting a new women's fastest human-powered time to Nome in 17 days, 3 hours, and 46 minutes.

5. Finishing the 350-mile ride along the Iditarod Trail to McGrath in 2008. I was so far in over my head that the fact I even survived this race warrants a spot in the top five.

6. Taking a chance on self-publishing by releasing my first memoir — about the ride to McGrath — "Ghost Trails" in 2008. I am a strong advocate of independent publishing, and believe it to be the key to the future of storytelling.

My desk when I returned to work after the Tour Divide
7. Five years at the Juneau Empire, where I was the deputy managing editor. Although I eventually left because the demands of this job were negatively impacting my quality of life, my time there was rewarding, and I'm proud of the direction we took the newspaper during those challenging years.

8. Finishing the 2014 Freedom Challenge, a 1,400-mile mountain bike race across South Africa that traverses remote and extremely difficult terrain, and requires map-and-compass navigation. My friend Liehann and I rode together and finished in 21.5 days.

9. Finishing the 2014 Iditarod Trail Invitational 350-mile race to McGrath on foot. I walked the entire route with Beat, which was both an intense physical challenge and an exceptional bonding experience.

10. Starting this blog — this actually should probably go higher on the list, as a lot of my top accomplishments may have never happened if it weren't for the events set in motion when I decided to open a Blogspot to keep friends and family up to date about my new life in Alaska, where I moved during the fall of 2005. Encouragement from readers for my new hobby — snow biking — somehow led to signing up for my first endurance race, the Susitna 100. The rest, as they say, is history — and all documented in this very obese, ten-plus-year-old blog.

Thanks for reading! If you need to contact me, you can reach me at jillhomer@gmail.com.




4 comments:

  1. Anonymous10:52 AM

    I'd like to love you Jill! You are so beautiful and smart woman! Love to follow you, love your way living and love the happiness on your nice face! Warm greetings from Italy! :))) <3

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  2. Jill, hello I love your blog. Your race reports are so informative. I would like to pick your brain a bit about the Susitna 100. Would that be okay? I am mostly thinking about sled vs. pack. Have you had experience with long distance winter racing with a pack instead of a sled? Thanks. Emily

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  3. Anonymous6:04 PM

    I loved your book "Be Brave, Be Strong" -- well written, personal and also a hell of a biking story! I grew up in AK, and have been to a lot of the state, including southeast AK, and I loved your description of Juneau area, and also the trail in Susitna country. As a young geologist I saw lots of country, but you biked a lot of it! As a somewhat older guy I must say you help to break female stereotypes. I think it's cool what you're doing...keep up the good work!

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  4. I love the updated version! I have a small suggestion - along with your list of accomplishments, maybe provide a link to where we can re-read your stories from your greatest hits ;) They are definitely worth a revisit.

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