By Vernon Felton
Photos by Devon Balet
Between the two of them, Natty and Trey had spent 15 long years in Olympia, Washington when the couple decided it was time for a change. They were tired of the rain, the mold and the, well, general sogginess of the Pacific Northwest.
More to the point, they wanted to jump out, explore the world and ride great trails. So this couple did what many others have dreamed about, talked about, but rarely actually done: they hawked their furniture on Craigslist, cleared out the garage and sold the house. They traded all of it in for a Ford F-350 and camper, and then they hit the road.
"Trey and I are both avid mountain bikers, and we both love to travel," explains Natty. "The first few years of our relationship we talked often about quitting our jobs for life on the road. Trey is a physical therapist, and I work in the operating room doing neuro monitoring. It seemed like talking about traveling was getting old, so we moved forward and got rid of just about everything."
Natty and Trey originally planned to spend a year on the road. It's been 36,000 miles and eighteen months since they hit the road and they're still roving the land in search of the best trails. What's their plan now?
"To just keep going," answers Trey. "We're finally in the groove. We've got all the kinks worked out...we really just want to keep the dream alive--keep traveling."
Natty and Trey will be doing that and then some as they pilot their camper on Bike's 2012 Heavy Pedal Tour. Over the next few months they'll be visiting the best bike parks, writing about their adventures and generally spreading the gospel of getting-out-and-riding.
What's the best part of being on the road?
"For me," says Trey, "it's just the freedom...the ability to go where you want, when you want to and to stay as long as you want. The other great thing is that we've made so many new friendships and almost all of them revolve around mountain biking. Any time we mention what we're doing: that we're on a mission to find and ride the best mountain biking spots, if you're talking to a mountain biker, they're just so excited for you and they want to show you their favorite trail ...it's been amazing."
"Trey and I are always up for a challenge," adds Natty. "so when the opportunity to do the 'Heavy Pedal Tour came up, it was a no brainer. We're looking forward to the adventure."
Natty and Trey will also be posting video, photos and write ups from their upcoming Heavy Pedal Tour.