It was only a 30-yard-long, 90-minute trail build, but judging by the glowing look of satisfaction on my daughter Sabine’s 7-year-old face, you’d think we had just completed the Alaska Highway.

I ride a lot, guilty as charged. But never has the bike felt more like a ticket to freedom and salvation as it does today. Usually my spring would be filled with story assignments, including several biking and skiing adventures. It’s a glorious time of year, when the shoulder seasons rub together; the snow is deep up high, and the trails are tacky and moist down low. Then, suddenly, someone hit the giant pause button. The coronavirus, which not that long ago seemed like something abstract and exotic afflicting distant lands, arrived on our shores with a vengeance. As politicians scrambled, some more effectively than others, to mount an appropriate response to a dangerous pandemic that was spreading quickly through Italy, Spain, France and other countries, we in Canada watched as the freedoms and opportunities we take for granted evaporated one after another—going out to a restaurant, hitting the brew pub for happy hour, shopping for a friend’s birthday, dropping the kids off at grandma and grandpa’s while mom and dad go for a ride, and meeting your buddies at the trailhead for an after-work lap on your local network.


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