TRIRI x 3 | 2004, 2006, 2009

TRIRI, (Touring Ride in Rural Indiana) as we knew it, was a week long bicycle/camping tour. Each year, it rotated around the state among four different regions, always capitalizing on the best state parks and recreational areas Indiana had to offer and getting there by riding the back roads in scenic, rural Indiana.

Riders were well taken care of with all you can eat meals for breakfast and dinner under huge DNR tents, well planned routes, cue sheets and duffel bag transport to the day’s destination. And if you absolutely couldn’t make it to the next stop, there was a SAG vehicle to tow you in.  We liked it so much, we did it three times!

Tom and I were just getting to know each other and that’s been a while ago, y’all. Putting things into perspective, the first two TRIRIs we rode, the iPhone hadn’t been released yet and Facebook had just started. How in the world did we take pics and share with friends?

The memories made on these early TRIRI rides are some I cherish most. Not necessarily because it was the beginning of our bicycle touring, but because it was the beginning of building our lives together.

TRIRI 2004

 

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The 2004 Route – 415 miles

 

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bike bag
After the first day Tom tries to lighten my bike load

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First day of TRIRI complete!

 

tentsite
Two things we almost always took on bike tours: the brown tarp (used to cover bikes, lay out and organize gear, extra ground cloth) and the blue two gallon water carrier.
ice bucket
Along with the tarp they may not be the most needed but they were always the most versatile bicycle camping items.
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Day 2 and heading to one of our fave places… Story. Indiana
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Cycling in our running shoes. Hey it worked!
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Layover Day at Spring Mill State Park. Everyone deserves a nap and a place to do laundry.

 

ice and wood
In the “old” days, we always had a campfire and a cold bevvie at the end of a long day of cycling. Tom always found the easiest way to get that done.
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Our campsite the last night of TRIRI 2004 at Versailles State Park. We really didn’t want to leave.

 

TRIRI 2006

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The 2006 Route – 460 miles

 

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TRIRI was in beautiful Amish country – which meant plenty of home baked pies for Tom

 

 

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There’s the brown tarp and blue two gallon water carrier again #necessities

 

 

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Each day a DNR semi truck would haul our duffel bags to the day’s destination and set up big party tents for us to eat our catered meals under. You can’t tell from this photo but there is a huge storm blowing in.
stage
The ride directors, Joe and Barb, would coordinate a program each night, maybe a musician, a comedian or a naturalist.  Of course it was optional – mostly they were really cool presentations you wouldn’t want to miss. And oh yea, they always had a Math problem of the day at breakfast.

 

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The routes were planned around regional attractions.  Sometimes we hit up attractions that weren’t on the map.
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Back in the days when we took camp chairs.
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A line for laundry, the brown tarp and the blue water carrier. Again. Oh and camp chairs! The list of necessities is growing.

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2006 Finish Pic

 

TRIRI 2009

By the time TRIRI 2009 rolled around we’d been married almost two years, increased our family to seven kids (with our youngest four being in high school), and we were still riding bikes in running shoes, lugging around our brown tarp, blue two gallon water carrier and camp chairs. It was wicked hot this year, so hot some riders went home mid week. Not us.

The route included Patoka Lake, New Harmony, Lincoln State Park and included a couple of layover days with optional rides.

West Baden Springs, French Lick, Saint Meinrad Archabbey, Abe Lincoln’s boyhood home, and the Utopian city of New Harmony were some of the stops on TRIRI 2009.

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First day – back on the road again

 

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Pretty much my view on every TRIRI – always behind Tom.
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Hummm, brown tarp, camp chairs. Something’s missing. I hope the blue two gallon water carrier is in the duffel.
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Tom always ensures tire pressure is spot on.
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Deb still bike touring in running shoes
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What you do after a day of riding
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St. Meinrad
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Beer pairing: Bud and a Cannondale
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Wicked hot but still happy
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Worth a stop to take a pic
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Just small town Indiana
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Interesting intersection of roads
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There’s the DNR tents again and the Schnitzelbank catering truck. That meant the chow’s ready!

 

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Should we shoot for riding in a new state?

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Not sure what the total mileage for the week was but I know we experienced miles of smiles. And that was the last of our TRIRI rides.