Bike Mike Bike Tour Stories
   (updated September 24, 2012)

"20th Time and Threat of Rain"

               (Updated September 24, 2012) . . . Mike has done it again. Breaking personal record for the third time. Can not believe what going on since September 2010. Getting bigger and bigger each time Mike does a bike tour for MS.
       This is the first "Great New Jersey Country Bike Ride" bike tour since Mike's mother past away July 2011. Feels weird and still not the same. If it was not for his mother. Mike would not be at any MS bike tour. His mother the one that drove Mike to every tour. His mother is his hero 100% percent. They help each other out.
       This is also the 25th Anniversary of the MS 100 bike tour. Ya-hoooo!!! It is also Bike Mike's 20th time cycling in this tour. Mike been helping and riding in this tour since 1990. Skipping 1993, 1994 and 2011 though.
       A threat of rain was in the forecast. Showers and possible storms around 4pm.

       Ready to hear about how Mike did in his 20th time (19th year) in the MS 100 bike tour. Here we go!!

     On Sept. 15th, 2012, 2012 . . . . Mike received the BIGGEST single donation he ever received for the second time in the "Great New Jersey Country Bike Ride". Which is $3,000. "Awesome, Mike said!"
     Sept. 21st . . . Mike woke up after 5:15am saturday morning. Then he got himself ready got his buddy Scott. Mike ate breakfast and double check things. To make sure he got everything for the bike tour. Scott picked up Mike after 6:15am.
     After a few words and putting our hands over our heart for this great country. The tour began at 8:00am. The teams went off the start line first. Mike left almost 8:10am. Because Mike was waiting in line to have his tires pumped to 120 PSI.
       For the first time ever. Mike is video taping the bike tour. He got a Go Pro camera mounted to his vented helmet.
  • Caught up to the back main group after cycling at a good pace for a bit. Made it to Rest Stop 1. Which is Chatham Twp. Municipal Area at 8:57am. Sun and clouds and slowly starting to get warm. TM (Ride Time): 00:403:36, DST (Distance): 11.18, MX (Max Speed): 26.3, AVG (average speed): 15.4mph. A lot of bikers around.
  • Before reaching rest stop #2. Almost rode on a red ADA bike tour route. Plus there was a Firemen Fair in the area.
  • Reached Rest Stop #2 at Couch Braunsdorf Insurance Company in Libery Corner, NJ at 9:59am. Getting warm out. Having fun video taping on and off along the course. DST: 23.17, MX: 32.3, AV: 15.5 and TM: 1:29:39.
  • Reached Rest Stop #3 at Liberty Park. LUNCH TIME!! Came in at 11:03am. Was chattign away with a few friends before lunch. Then out at 11:45am.TM: 2:05:37, AV: 15.1 and DST: 31.62.
  • Rest Stop #4 Mendham Twp. Municipal Area at 12:37pm with sun and warm. This is the last rest stop of the day. This is after the hardest climb of the climb by a white church. Whew!!! TM: 2:32:00, DST: 40.91 and AV: 14.2.
  • Warm and more clouds out now at the finish. Which is at the Hanover Marriott in Whippany, NJ. 2:10pm. Wow!! TM: 3:40:14, DST: 51.54, MX: 32.3 and AV: 14.0.

     The first thing Mike did was to check in. He got a room of his own once again. Mike took a few photos. Got cleaned up. Signed up for the September 2013 "Great New Jersey Country Bike Ride". Mike's mother boyfriend came by for BBQ. Like he did in the past with Mike's mother. Then Mike's sister and her mother came by for the comedy show at night. Then it rained for a few hours. Mike never seen his sister laugh so hard before. The comedian is Rodney Laney and he was good saturday night. Mike, his sister Gina and her mother got a signed DVD Rodney was selling. Rain finally fell after 7:30pm. Mike then went to relax in the lobby and also look around the new place. Mike ordered chicken fingers with honey mustard and watched tv up in his room. Got tired qukcly and fell asleep.

     Sept. 23rd . . . Mike woke up just before 6:00am. No wake up calls like they do at the Hilton. Mike felt like not getting up. Soon as he did. He was in motion and did not stop moving. Mike packed up. Got his stuff already to roll out the door. Got done to the main floor. Soon he parked his bicycle and bag. Ate breakfast and chat with a few friends. Heard a few short speeches for the bike tour. Dropped off his big bag and got air in the tires. Took off at 7:55am. Clear blue skies and chilly start. I took photos and started video taping at the start of the tour.
  • Reached Rest Stop #1 Mendham Municipal Twp. Area at 9:01am. Chat with a few people. Took photos also. TM: 00:50:22, MX: 29.0, DST: 11.93, AV: 12.2.
  • Reached Rest Stop Stp #2 Far Hills Railroad Station at 10:23am with sunny skies. I was asked questions about the Go Pro camera. TM: 1:57:57, DST: 23.85, AV: 12.7, MX: 29.0.
  • At the small airport. The road has been paved. Awesome! No airplanes of any type near the road anymore. To far to get any photos these days.
  • Reached Rest Stop #3 Pluckemin Park Pavilion at 11:45am. LUNCH TIME!! Took photos, video as Mike came in and ate lunch. Did some texting. TM: 2:49:16, MX: 29.0, AV: 13.3, DST: 37.83. Clear blue skies and cool breeze. Left lunch at 12:28pm.
  • Before reaching the final rest stop of the day. Mike made 2 wrong turns. The first wrong turn. The sign was not seen and was leaning over to it right to the ground almost. Mike rode on Route 512 all the way to Route 78. He has not seen anything for a long while. Had to return back to he se a MS marker again. That where he saw the sign almost on the ground... 2nd time was going to fast and missed the left turn. A MS van stopped Mike. Followed the van back and finally made it to Rest Stop #4 late.
  • Rest Stop #4 at Millington Train Station at 1:45pm with cloudy skies. Said HI to all volunteers as they started to pack things up at the rest stop. A few clouds in the sky now. TM: 3:50:35, DST: 50:35 and AV: 13.0.
  • Made it to the finish line at 445 Southgate St at 2:35pm. Not bad with little training under Mike's belt!! Few clouds in the sky and cool. Took photos at the finish line. Even got a interview with MaryBeth. NO SWEDISH MEATBALLS to bring home! Was happy to make it for another year. TM: 4:39:37, MX: 29.0, AV: 13.2, DST: 61.58.

     After Mike reached the finish line. He signed in and got his medal for finishing the tour. The medal is made from recycled bike chains. It looks pretty cool!! You can hear music and see a food tent right after the finish area. Then he got his bag, walked to the food tent to get food and relexed. Mike got MaryBeth to talk about Multiple Sclerosis and say whatever she wanted on the Go Pro camera. Chat with a few friends and took photos along the way. Then everyone left. Mike's buddy Scott came by about 4:00pm to pick up Mike and home they both went. Mike even fell asleep in the car.

      Mike Final word . . . It was a good ride this year. Had a close call with a white car driven by a female driver that drove fast over the double yellow line. Had enough room to squeeze between me and the car coming from the other direction. To bad it was not caught on video.
     Raised a NEW personal high of $3,310.00 for the MS New Jersey Metro Chapter September tour. Never thought I reach the $3,000 mark for this part of the year. Thanks to those that did donate this year. Mike says . . it was a good year. Even though everyone wallet was tight. Hope it better next year. Hope this last another 20 more years or when Mike legs falls off. LOL !!

       Would like to thank my mom in spirit, Some friends that are members of, Algeri's Pizza, Nicolette's Auto Body, Irwin W. Folk foundation for their huge support, Belleville Chandelier, and some friends of Belleville & Nutley. Support from Scout Troop #364, close friends and family members, again . . . my mother for driving me to and me home from the MS-100 tour for 20 years. My sister drove me in May 2012 MS 170 bike tour. Thank You! Buddy Scott driving me for the 2012 MS 100 tour. Thank You!!

       If you like to learn more about this MS chapter. Please go to New Jersey Metro Chapter (Office located in Paramus, NJ and Oakhurst, NJ) for more information.

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