By any chance do you know anybody you know who has peddled the entire 3,000 miles of the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route? I didn’t until this past Saturday.
With a regimen of cycling 150 miles/day, stopping for 15+ concerts ( throw in some impromptu stops) performing along the way between Canada and Mexico, a 40 year old cyclist laden with a backpack, guitar and banjo accompanied by a 21 year old cameraman with camera and drone in tow, filmed the 30 day trek.
Our thanks go to WPR ( Wisconsin Public Radio) for awarding us 2 free tickets where we screened the documentary MUSIC for FREE and listened to music by one such cyclist, Ben Weaver. In exchange for lodging, food and conversation, guitar/ banjo playing Weaver spins his tales and entertains pockets of people with his poetry and music along the way. His journeys are all about connecting. Connections are his mission . His bicycle is his mode of transportation and Nature, his muse. Both enable this musician/poet to connect to the folks along his path.
One such connection was after a surprise snowfall on that aforementioned Great Divide Mountain Bike Trail which starts in Banff and where a sudden snowfall befell a family of four’s vehicle and they ended up stuck in the snow. Unfortunately, Ben Weaver’s bike couldn’t pull them out but he still turned his bike around, went up to the stranded motorists asking if they’d like a little music while they waited for help. They were game, 2 kids, a mom and dad lowered the truck’s tail gate and jumped onto the truck bed to have a private concert…
Ben Weaver is just that kind of guy taking the time; to get wherever, to listen, to discuss, to be one with his surroundings. His lyrics are poetry in motion at a much slower speed as he compares it to water which must move so it does not stagnate, yet, needs to run slow to be clear. This illustrates Ben Weaver’s metaphor of life, to slow down. He states his cycling allows him to connect with the environment and its living creatures.
In fact on Laneboro’s screening day Ben Weaver cycled with a group of cyclists down the bike trail to Whalan 6 miles south. When they stopped, they talked. Of course… before heading back to Lanesboro.
Definition of WILD: WILD is an adjective; living in a state of nature, not tamed or domesticated.”
Friend Lynne had made the journey with us to hear Ben Weaver and when she shared the screening event with her environmentally conscious niece Heidi, her niece responded, “He is an amazing artist! He did a spoken word piece at our second climate event. He is a profound thinker and feeler! ”
Yes, indeed, a profound thinker and feeler sum up Ben Weaver quite well.
If Ben Weaver’s heading to your neck of the woods treat yourself and go hear him in person. You’ll find some unexpected peace from another world citizen who gets it.
*Eugene, Oregon born, Ben Weaver now makes his home in the Twin Cities. Check out his website:https://benweaver.net/