Roanoke junior to make cross country bike trek this summer

by rcnewsblog on May 14, 2013

Post image for Roanoke junior to make cross country bike trek this summer
Will Groth ’14 (right) before leaving Yorktown for his cross country journey.

Imagine riding a bicycle for 3,000 miles across the United States.

Now imagine making the trek with a group of people who you have never met.

Will Groth ’14 left last week from Yorktown, Va., with three strangers to pedal his way to Florence, Ore.

The native of Roanoke is a member of the Roanoke College tennis team, and he has always been active, but this is a new test of endurance.

“We will probably be traveling about 50 to 60 miles a day,” Groth said. “After a while I’m sure we will get used to that and probably do a few 100-mile days in the less hilly areas.”

Groth began biking about four years ago with the sole purpose of staying in shape. Groth tried out mountain biking, but quickly discovered that he didn’t love it. Instead, he opted for road biking.

At the end of last year, Groth bought a road bike and joined the Adventure Cycling Association. The association is a non-profit organization that inspires and empowers people to travel by bicycle.

Groth decided he might be interested in a long distance trip after browsing the ACA’s website and seeing people of all ages taking cross-country bicycling adventures.

He found four other ACA members with similar goals through the “looking for a companion” section of the association’s website.

“I don’t know much about them,” Groth said last week. “We have mostly been talking about getting things ready for the trip.”

Groth began his trip with three other young men, all under the age of 30. They plan to meet up with a fifth member of their group in Kentucky.

One of the bikers, Jeremy Geadrities of Pennsylvania, is keeping a blog during the journey. Read his blog here.

Groth and his cohorts will camp their way from Virginia to Oregon and back, with hopes of returning to the East Coast in the beginning of August.

He will be traveling light with about 30 pounds of supplies strapped to his bike.

Groth said he is not worried about the ride, the company or the outdoors.

But he has one concern. “I just hope I don’t slow the group down,” he said.

-By Kayla Fuller ’14


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