Randi Topps: A shout-out to our leader
July 30, 2021

By Randi Topps

FCBA Ride # 48. Dayville OR to Prineville OR. 84.9 miles. 4,659-foot elevation gain. We climbed two summits today. Each was a very long but gentle climb (3-7%).

Tony and I were sweeps, so we really had a chance to slow down and take in the quiet beauty of the mountains and buttes.

We passed through the John Day Fossil and some National Forest Preserve. One section showed the results of a recent forest fire. We have been truly blessed and fortunate to have missed all the fires that are going on all around the West.

Dayville was a quaint town and the church was a designated hostel for cyclists. It was small and no a/c but they were very kind and even made spaghetti for our group.

Tonight we will be sleeping at the Prineville Church of Christ. They do a lot of community service for homeless and local people in need, including a clothing and food bank. We feel fortunate that there is a/c, a kitchen, and a washer/dryer that we are able to use. Shower options today were the county fairgrounds or the river adjacent to the church property. The river was cold and refreshing!

Today’s ride is dedicated to Neil Mullikin, out leader, who organizes all the stops, routes, sleeping and shower facilities, and much much more. It is a full-time job that he does and still finds time to do all the riding with us.

In addition, Neil has a lot of experience in bike maintenance, so we depend heavily on his expertise and guidance. He does what repairs he can and helps us find an appropriate bike shop when he cannot do the repairs.

A lot of responsibility falls on Neil’s shoulders. My hat’s off to the “great and powerful Niel” for keeping his sanity

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