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Seattle Man Starts Bike Trip Around the World | Arts & Culture

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Seattle Man Starts Bike Trip Around the World
Seattle Man Starts Bike Trip Around the World

With a strong tail wind, 62-year old Darby Roach and his best friend Mike Mann, cruise into Airway Heights on two wheels.  If you've driven Highway 2 in the past three days you may know who I'm talking about.  They're the two guys on loaded down bicycles, with the sneaky smiles and gusto of young men on an adventure of a lifetime.

Roach and Mann are on a mission to first bike across the United States and then the world.  The pair left Wenatchee Sunday morning and arrived in Spokane Wednesday night. In all, they've logged about 140 miles so far. Their goal is to get to Boston by the end of the Summer.  From there, Roach will fly solo to Europe where he plans to spend the next 3 years seeing the world. From the narrow streets of Paris to the snow covered peaks of Chile, Roach plans to pedal every mile of the way. 

What? Is he crazy? Who would do such a thing? All questions that ran through my mind when Roach told me about his ambitious goal. To understand this wild dream, you have to understand the wild man on the bike.  I don't think he'll mind my choice adjective, he raised me after all.

Yes, my dad is biking the world.  When most people hit 62-years old, they're ready to settle down, take it easy.  Not my dad, if anything he's just getting started.  He's always been extreme; a day hike consists of ice picks and crampons.  In his world, a 200 mile bike race is fun. Yes, F-U-N! I'm tired just thinking about it.  So, it was only natural that he embark on an adventure to bike the world. He figures all his daughters are grown with their own families and he no longer has the responsibility that kept him grounded in Seattle. Why not?

Over the past few months, he slowly sold everything he owned. We bought his flat screen TV, my younger sister is now mowing her lawn with his mower, my older sister snagged his dining room table and chairs.  All he has left is what's on his bike. In all, my dad said he's moving about 300 pounds down the road.

On Thursday, my dad and Mann will be making a short stop in Spokane and ready to hit the pavement Friday morning. If you see them on the side of the road slow down and wave! Heck, if you have Snickers bar to pass along that would be even better.  And, maybe as you see them in your rear view mirror you'll be inspired to start living your dream.

To follow my dad's adventure click here.  He'll be blogging about his adventures everyday and plans to write a book when he's done.

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