Day 1 – Yorktown, VA to Henrico, VA

Day 1 is in the books!!! Two years after first thinking about riding across the country, six months after first talking to Jesse about Ride For Kore, and one day after dipping my back tire into the Atlantic Ocean, I can officially say that the ride has begun!! I can’t belive it, but it feels incredible.

At 7 am this morning, my parents drove me to the Yorktown Victory Monument, the official start of the Trans America Trail. There we met up with Josh, a reporter from the Yorktown Daily Press

I marched my bike up to the monument and began to roll forward. I quickly stopped. I had forgotten to turn on the GoPro to film this big moment. So I turned it on, marched back to the monument and tried again. This time it was a success! I rolled down the path, onto the sidewalk, and onto the road to Oregon!

The road to Oregon, it turns out, was cold and windy. It was in the mid 40s with a 15 mile an hour cross wind. I shivered but was too proud of my Ride For Kore jersey to even consider covering it up. Thankfully, the logo showed loud and clear to all three people I saw on the road in the first hour.

By 9 or 10, the cold had broken and I was in for a beautiful day. I rode the majority of today’s 60 miles on a bike path in brilliant sun and 65 degree weather. It could not be beat. I rode alongside a couple for a few minutes, chatting about Ride For Kore, before they eventually sped ahead. My loaded tank was no match for their nifty speed bikes. I was in such a good mood all day that I did not mind accidentally donating my bike pump to the trail somewhere between mile 1 and mile 30 – but I did subsequently put “get new pump” on my to do list.

While I had a blast, I was tired by the end and was happy to see the Willis United Methodist Church of Henrico, VA pop up on the horizon. When I arrived, I was welcomed with open arms. They showed me where I could sleep, where to shower (I’m showering tonight!) and where I could cook the food they kept for bikers. I chatted briefly with them, but they had been running out as I arrived. With not much to do in the area, I figured it was time for a well deserved snack (in an effort not to gross you out, I will not detail the quantity nor type of food I ate), a shower and some relaxation before what will inevitably be a very early bedtime. Today has been incredible so far, the perfect start to my trip!

Key stats:
Miles: 57
Elevation gained: 1,400 feet
Bike pumps lost: 1




Showing 8 comments
  • Jesse Tyler

    Way to go James! Many more days ahead, but none will feel quite like this one. Ride strong, friend.

  • Dakota Graff

    It’s not your first day unless you lose something…

  • Bruce Hedgepeth

    Pulling for you!! Great adventure and I look forward to traveling with you by the written word

  • Tina

    To paraphrase what a wise person once told me, the next 500 feet are the most important part of any journey. Here’s to the first 57 miles down! Way to go West young man!

  • Cousins Eldredge

    Giddy Up!

  • Mike Polizzi

    Woooooot wooooot the James train has left the building

  • Pedalshift

    Happy day 1! Yeah, replacing that pump is definitely a good idea! 😉 Pod drops Thursday… tailwinds man!

  • Giancarlo Ospina

    Great write up, man! Those key stats at the end had me stoked. I’m looking forward to keeping track of those throughout the ride. So many great days ahead!

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