Featured 2013 Cyclist
Michael Pepper Schuette : 2012 Northern Tier ROUTE LEADER
Michael Pepper Schuette
Hometown: Damascus, VA
Bike: Surly Pacer (a new build/winter project I just started!)
I had the good fortune to run into and join Bike the US for MS 2 summers ago, on the first day of my own solo cross country trip, but in my mind my trip there started long before that.
You've heard each journey starts with a single step, but mine started with a giant, blind, and frightening but invigorating leap. Years earlier I had settled into a life as a medical computer technician, with long boring hours and not much room for much else. Despite what many would describe as a great career I decided it wasn't the life for me, so I walked away, and with no idea where it would lead me I set out to hike the Appalachian Trail. It was the decision of my lifetime and I've never looked back. That hike led me to Damascus, VA, the "friendliest town on the trail", located at the intersection of the A.T. and the TransAmerica Trail. I've since been working (if you want to call it that) at Sundog Outfitter and Adventure Damascus, getting to help people get out enjoying their own adventures biking and hiking, with lot's of time to set off on my own.
That's how I found myself heading out solo 2 years ago on a cross country cycling trip when I very accidentally ran into this big group of excited people at the Atlantic Ocean wearing Bike the US for MS jerseys and there was no going back. There is just something about this group that pulls you in. I've seen it happen time and time again, whether it's someone we are helping, someone helping us, or just someone we ran into on the sidewalk. It's a family, and people are quickly welcomed in.
Before that first meeting I had no personal connection with MS. Now I have many that I count and treasure all across the country. I look forward to making many more this summer!
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