Summer ’19! Where you goin’? Where you been?

I probably don’t need to tell you – summer is flying by! I hope that you’re out enjoying the trails and squeezing in everything else you like to do this time of year, while getting ready for PICL season four.

We’re loving the pics and reports coming in from early season practices across the state. We can’t wait to get everyone together at Marysville in a wee bit more than four weeks!!

Around these parts, the Kuhn family has been making the most of the summer season. We’re just back from Vermont’s Kingdom Trails, which are amazing and super fun for all sorts of riders. The end of our trip took us through Highland Mountain Bike Park in NH, where yours truly sent it a few times (but not really that far or high, but I’m working on it). That follows hot on the heels of a visit to the amazing PA State Park, Worlds End, and a few days of rolling a Warbird, from our new NICA Adventure Program partner (and partner of unPAved of the Susquehanna River Valley) Salsa Cycles through amazing gravel. That’s also about the spot where Lycoming Co. Composite recently held their wonderful Endless Gravel event as a team super successful team fundraiser!

Preceding these excursions was my journey out to Idaho for the NICA National Summit and the fantastic experience I got to share with your Reg and Merch Director, Jill Morgan (who also runs the Registration Guild for NICA); PICL Director of Coaching, Pat Engleman; and Event Director/Assistant LD (and National Adventure Program Dir) Melissa Davies, around Ketchum. Pat has started sharing some of the fantastic content from Lou Bergholz, an internationally acclaimed expert on character development, on the coaching calls — which are also a great source of information about the season, coaches tune-in! We also made the announcement, with our friends in NJ and MD, that we’re bringing the 2020 NICA National Conference to Philly!! We’re not done with summer yet – we’re drinking up every drop of sunshine we can around here, but I’m taking a quick breath for a few updates and announcements before I head back out in search of even more great places to ride close by and far from home.

Granite Hill upgrades are in the works with huge thanks to the local crews for their efforts. That course continues to develop and the crew at Granite is making a big effort to fortify the course more. Huge thanks to Granite for their commitment to this cause! We’re excited  to have our Director of Venue Development/Ops Dir Louis Mazzante and Chief Course Setter, Neil Deye, out working with Granite and the rest of the PICL venues to get them prepped up better than ever. They’re working with hometown teams at Johnstown, Marysville, Fair Hill, Boyce, Jordan, and Granite. If you’re not sure which of the events is “yours” (and every team has one!), check with your head coach and find out how you can help get your event ready for the season!

Just this past weekend the League Staff came together at the “office” in Marysville to knock out a big work day in preparation for season 4! Joining the aforementioned ID travelers and the League’s course crew were PICL’s Scoring Director, Mike Rowe, and our Operations Assistant and bikepacker extraordinaire, Mike Patten (who is so very excited about what’s next for PICL’s Adventure programming…). Lots was done. Lots to do. You have an incredible crew working year-round for you, please say thanks when you’ve a chance.

Adventure Overnight in Marysville is the first event on the PICL fall schedule with fun on Friday evening and all-day Saturday for all our PICL riders. Camping is available onsite and there will be a full slate of great activities. Sunday offers a non-NICA event that is a fundraiser for the PA League open to everyone!

The International Intergalactic Global Open Cyclocross Relay of the Mulit-Frigging Verse is every bit as fun and whacky as it sounds. IIGOx is four hours of fun riding with a team of up to four racers on a course that is mix of very fast fun single track and wide open farm roads.  And there is a slip-n-slide.

Riders switch off every lap and gain points for their team based on their start points and the laps. One hundred percent of event proceeds are going to the PA league. Whether or not you can join for the Adventure Overnight, we hope you’ll join for the IIGOx fun as a way to have a great day, get in some fast fun riding, and help us raise some funds for the league! IIGOx is open to everyone so coaches, parents, and all your riding friends can be part of this one too! As a bonus, we’re using the whole weekend to train up on Local Dirt events too — more on Local Dirt progress next week.

I hope that you too are having a wonderful summer season. We can’t wait to see you next month! Be sure to share with us your summer adventures too – post up on PICL social media or tag us! Summer is too darn short, make the most of it!