Leslie received her scholarship awhile back to aid her in her bike ride across the country after she graduated in May of 2014. She graduated from UVM and is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This was the ultimate form of practicing sustainable transportation. These are the words she had to say about the trip.
In the summer of 2014 and with the help of the Flyin Ryan Adventure grant, my best friend Virginia and I rode 3,127 miles across the country starting in Camden Maine and ending in Anacortes Washington. Upon my return back to the east coast, friends and family told me how this was the trip
of a lifetime and something that I would share with my kids
eventually. Well it turns out they were right, I regularly find myself reflecting on and telling stories about lessons learned from our journey. When people ask me what my favorite place was, I’m quick to say Glacier National Park. We stayed with a generous Warm Shower’s host who excitedly agreed to take us to the top of Going-to-the-Sun road before sunrise so we could maximize our time hiking before we had to make our way down the mountain. We saw beautiful wildflowers, curious weasels, waterfalls, bright blue lakes, and incredibly vast landscapes like nothing I had seen before on the east coast. When I’m asked what my favorite part about our trip, I confidently say meeting so many generous and kind people- each with their own adventure stories. Some who offered us impromptu places to stay, dinner at their homes, a warm shower and so much more. Some who took us to their favorite places in their home town, some who took us on hikes, to tree houses with zip lines or to dinner parties with their friends.
This trip has greatly influenced who I am today and would not have been possible without the support of Flyin’ Ryan.
I am now a graduate student at Penn State University working towards my Masters in Landscape Architecture. I am still an avid cyclist and ride my bike across town to class every day! My friend Virginia is also in graduate school at Towson University for Child Life Administration and Family Collaboration.