Despite my affection for this place, it’s not terribly well known. For many, Idaho is a flyover to another, shinier, more well-marketed destination. Ask someone about Idaho and they inevitably talk about potatoes, not towering, snow-capped peaks, endless miles of singletrack, distant dirt roads into ancient glacial basins, and high country that defines the western landscape.
That distinction is the whole reason I wanted to start Rebecca’s Private Idaho. I want the world to know what I see every day from my own front porch, so, in 2013, I put together a long-haul gravel grinder that took a few hundred people from the streets of downtown Ketchum into the high mountain basins of the Pioneer Mountains. Despite a massive forest fire that only a week before threatened the event and the town of Ketchum, it was a great, grueling success and I’m setting the sights even higher for 2014. I want even more people to know about our stunning scenery, our downhome hospitality, and the raw, absolute challenge our area provides to cyclists.
As much as Rebecca’s Private Idaho is about the ride itself, it’s also about using the bike to do more than just raise heart rates and take in sights. This ride benefits three great organizations that are very close to my heart and, I hope, will become close to yours: The Wood River Bike Coalition, our local voice for trail-building and bike policy; PeopleForBikes.org, the nation’s top-shelf all-around bike advocacy group; and World Bicycle Relief, an organization bringing practical bikes to villages in Africa in order to provide independence and improve quality of life. Last year, we raised over $7,500 for these charities and, with your help, I’m eager to improve on that number.
It’s a cyclist’s paradise here. A lot of people say that about their hometown, but give me a day with you in the saddle and I think I’ll have you convinced. Join me on August 31, 2014 for a challenging, spectacular day on the bike and get in on the unlikely grandeur of Rebecca’s Private Idaho. We do this right, and it’ll be the worst-kept secret around.