Friday, March 16, 2018

The Adventurer Newsletter Vol. 18 No. 22

Across America 10th Anniversary Year! 

It's Teen Treks' 10th year of running Across America Treks! In 2008 we ran our first Across America Trek and Annalisa was one of the trekkers on that first trip!

I honestly do not know where to start on this intrepid journey the seven of us took this summer. Although it may sound like a cliché, I have so many great memories, that will stay with me forever.

Sure, I could talk about the mountain we climbed in the dusk during a storm or maybe the tree house we slept in. I could go on about the monotonous scenery in Montana and how we even ran out of things to think about or maybe playing Frisbee over the Continental Divide. Perhaps the interesting people we met along the way or the exhilaration you get after climbing 30 miles uphill and finally letting gravity do it’s job as you slide downhill. I could tell you about the tomato-avocado cookie, the nurf gun battles, or maybe the restaurant where horseradish wasn’t available, but I guess you would have had to have been there to understand.

We biked through rain, heat, hail, and even snow, up mountains, though valleys, and on the endless plains. Through thick and thin, mentally and physically, we made it all in one piece and I would do anything to be back on the seat of my bicycle instead of pushed into a desk at school.

Reaching the George Washington Bridge, with a crystal clear view of New York City in the distance, was surely one of the most amazing moments of my life. All I can say is boy, do we have a hell of a story to tell to our grandchildren.
- Annalisa Van den Bergh, Across America Trek 2008

"It changed my life. It was a great adventure" - Alex Siregar, Across America Trek 2008

The Mud-Dwelling Invertebrates Bike Across America
Annalisa's 2008 video "The Mud-Dwelling Invertebrates Bike Across America"
Teen Bike Camp - Ready to hit the road

Mid-Atlantic Families! The Great Allegheny Passage Trek Now Starts & Ends in Washington, DC!

The Great Allegheny Passage Trek is a truly remarkable journey alongside the picturesque Youghiogheny River and along the historic canal envisioned by George Washington, a route that is entirely off road from Pittsburgh to Washington DC! Our route follows the Great Allegheny Passage and the tow path of the C&O Canal - both trails are automobile free. I have experienced the Great Allegheny Passage Trek as a trekker and Trip Leader. As a trekker at the age of 13 this trek was an easy first long distance bicycle trip for me because the route was flat, no hills along the trail! We stopped at Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater house, the historic town of Harpers Ferry, the Antietam Battlefield in Maryland, & many small friendly towns along the way. As a Trip Leader I remember being especially enamored of the quiet campsites along the C&O Canal on the banks of the Potomac River. These quiet campsites which we had to ourselves were the perfect places for campfires, short walks to the nearby 19th century ruins of old canal aqueducts and the loud voices of young teens (I didn't have to worry about the trekkers disturbing anyone out there). As a history buff, I was delighted to see the trekkers stop to read the many historic markers along the trail. Hopefully I get to ride these trails this summer and I hope your teen gets to experience this wonderful trek as well!

- Tyler, Teen Treks Program Director

Great Allegheny Passage 
Starts: Washington, D.C. (Drop-off also available in Pittsburgh, PA)
Ends: Washington, D.C.
The Great Allegheny Passage
Watch this video to get a better idea of the beauty you'll encounter along the Great Allegheny Passage Trail
Teen Tours - teens being adventurous
What do Teen Trek leaders do when they are not leading treks?

Hey trekkers and families! Since returning home from the Across America trip with Teen Treks last year, I have been busy finishing up my senior year at UMass Amherst studying psychology and English. I am currently working on a creative thesis and writing about my time working for Teen Treks last year. My winter has been spent in the mountains skiing as much as I can, and when I am not skiing, I am usually reading or teaching Zumba. I love the winter season, but I am looking forward to getting back on my bike soon!

-Liza, Across America Trek Leader 2017

Space Still Available on These Amazing Treks!    Trips are filling up fast!  Sign up NOW to get a spot on your preferred trip!  (all trips click here)

European Grand Tour 
On this incredible 4-country adventure, you’ll bike through major cities and quaint villages in Britain, France, Belgium, and Holland, visiting major museums and monuments, eating at great local restaurants, and getting to know each place’s music, art, history, landscapes, and people. You’ll stay in hostels and hotels, and camp out in the countryside between touring major cities with great bike culture. A truly amazing way to experience Europe!
Travel Adventures - Bike Across America
Travel Adventures - Bike Amsterdam-Paris
Maine Coast Trek
The beautiful harbors, small towns, and winding back roads along the coastline from Boston, MA to Bar Harbor, ME make this biking and camping adventure unforgettable. We'll spend 3 days in Acadia National Park where we'll wake up for the first sunrise in the United States atop Cadillac Mountain! Pack your swimsuit and sneakers, the Maine Coast Trek is jam-packed with outdoor adventure!
Travel Adventures - Bike Amsterdam-Paris
Travel Adventures - Bike Across America
Teen Adventure Travel

Monday, March 12, 2018

The Adventurer Newsletter Vol. 18 No. 21

Teen Bike Camp - Ready to hit the road

Niagara Toronto Trekkers Have A Really Packed Day In Toronto

They started off the morning with scrambled eggs and croissants at the hostel, then biked across town to Riverdale Farm, where they saw farm animals and played some games. Next, they headed west towards Chinatown for a tasty lunch at a Chinese restaurant. After eating, the Trekkers explored the surrounding neighborhood, and saw a super cool alley which was filled with street art. Tired from all the walking, they went back to Chinatown for some bubble tea. After the break, the Trekkers had some free time to explore Kensington Market, which was full of funky shops and interesting souvenirs. (Jonah and Sara made everyone try kombucha!) After filling up on fermented tea, they headed across town again to an art gallery and cultural center in East Toronto. By this point, they were all really tired, so they went back to the neighborhood of the hostel to grocery shop and cook dinner. Once they finished their meal of spaghetti squash and meatballs, the Trekkers headed west to see Sing! which was being shown on an inflatable screen in a public park. They finished off two more tubs of ice cream in the first 15 minutes of the movie! Unfortunately, the movie was shut down before the ending due to an impending thunderstorm, but fortunately, to the rain didn't start until after we had biked back to the hostel! Glad to be home safe and dry before the storm, the Trekkers quickly fell asleep from such a fun but long day!
Teen Tours - teens being adventurous
The Maine Ingredient  by Tony Cafero

In his book “Desert Solitaire”, Edward Abbey—critiquing the National Parks system—notes:

“A man on foot, on horseback or on a bicycle will see more, feel more, enjoy more in one mile than the motorized tourists can in a hundred miles. Better to idle through one park in two weeks than try to race through a dozen in the same amount of time. Those who are familiar with both modes of travel know from experience that this is true; the rest have only to make the experiment to discover the same truth for them-selves.”               

This was our Teen Treks Maine Coast adventure. While the vast majority plowed down highways in superfluous fuel injected machines, we meandered northward along the tranquil beaches and crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean; relying on oatmeal, fruit, and turkey sandwiches as a clean burning fuel alternative. Our tents routinely would squeeze into campsites amongst oversized RV’s; concerned with electrical hookups as we searched for ample firewood. Two and a half weeks of vibrant sunrises, rocky shorelines and charming New England towns—all set against a backdrop of picturesque mountains--was our “experiment to discover the same truth”. While our final odometer reading came in at roughly 400 miles—through a reverse Abbey-style calculation—it seems we had experienced the equivalent of 40,000 miles.
Travel Adventures - Bike Across America
Travel Adventures - Bike Amsterdam-Paris
Space Still Available on These Amazing Treks!    Trips are filling up fast!  Sign up NOW to get a spot on your preferred trip!  (all trips click here)

Across America Trek ***March Special - $300 off Across America Treks!
Ride 3,800 miles across the U.S., through Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and on to Coney Island in New York City. We’ll see misty Oregon beaches and the Rocky Mountains, thick forests and the wide-open plains. We’ll camp, hike, and swim, stop in picturesque town squares and ride past some of the world’s tallest skyscrapers.  You’ll have the accomplishment of a lifetime.
Check out a day in the life of Teen Treks Across America last summer as they explore central Ohio, including a visit to the picturesque Oberlin College campus.
Amsterdam-Paris Trek
If you’ve never been to Europe, this 16-day trip will give you an amazing introduction. If you’re an old hand at international travel, it’s a rich, exciting tour of great sites in three bike-friendly countries - the Netherlands, Belgium, & France. The cities of Amsterdam, Bruges, Ghent, and Paris will whisk you off your bicycle seat with their lively cafes, legendary museums, and spectacular cuisines. This is a trip you won’t want to miss out on!
Teen Adventure Travel