The only retiring Swicked Cycles owner James Durand expects he'll do is retiring customers' bikes. Photo submitted

Riding and life … Not that different

By James Durand

I had two friends this past weekend who decided to do huge epic rides for the summer solstice.

They both set out plans and aimed to achieve massive goals with these rides. They were so big that I was nervous, and I wasn’t joining either of these rides.

In the end, they both rode a ton of mileage, climbed huge amounts, and achieved big epic rides, although neither of these rides finished as planned. Maybe they had had enough fun, or maybe it fell under the bigger eyes than stomach rule. In the end does it really matter? They had fun, they rode hard, and made the best of their day.

It often amazes me how much life mimics bike riding.

Three years ago I set out to move Swicked to Willow Point.

We planned, we organized, we planned some more. We attempted many different approaches to achieve our goal and in the end had to buy an old house, tear it down, rezone the lot, and start from scratch.

Like any good ride, we adapted as we went, adjusted our path, and aimed at achieving our final goal no matter what it took. The basics of the final goal never changed, have a better bike shop in a better location. But along the way that final goal took on many different looks.

After a couple of years our development started to look like the longest climbing trail in history. It was steep, technical, and for some reason, some of those who were paid to help along the way, kept throwing tacks in our path and causing endless punctures.

As we moved further into it, our new shop project was looking like a huge steep climb with no downhill at the end, and what is the point of doing anything if there is no reward?

So, after three hard years and way too much stress and frustration, we’ve decided it has been enough fun and it’s time to end this ride. No regrets, because just like my two buddies, it has been a great learning experience that makes us stronger for the next ride.

For now we’re happy right where we are, but If you know us at all, you know there is something in the works. Stay tuned …

There were a few people that were amazing, lent an ear when needed, guided us in the right direction, and were a pleasure to work with. You know who you are. THANK YOU.

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…

Campbell RiverCycling