Category Archives: Coffeeneuring

Photo courtesy MrTinDC

Coffeeneuring: More Than A Bike Ride in Search of a Hashtag

Lots of us ride to coffee (or tea), but only during this seven-week sliver between October and November do we officially coffeeneur.* Coffeeneuring is when bike rides to coffee (and other beverages) are shared and enjoyed by people far and wide.

Start this weekend and you can still officially complete the challenge of 7 rides to 7 distinct places. And even if you don’t, you can still have fun trying. The challenge ends November 16.

Why should you think about joining the Coffeeneuring Challenge? Here’s what some of the participants from last year’s edition had to say:

“Since this was my first coffeeneuring experience, I find it easy to relate it to riding a flêche where everyone is out completing their own rides, but we are all sharing in similar experiences. The idea of knowing others around the country were participating in the same activity motivated me to get out and ride!”
Steve in Burtonsville, Maryland

“7 rides, 7 coffee shops, 125.3 miles, 5596 feet climbing. I’d call that success!”
keithmo bikes, Richland, Washington

“It was great fun checking out new coffee places that I otherwise would probably not have visited, if not for coffeeneuring requirements.”
Cruisin’ Downhill, Edmonton, Alberta Canada

“We really had a lot of fun.”
Dan’s Rando Adventures, Black River Falls, Wisconsin

Courtesy MrTinDC
Courtesy MrTinDC

“Thanks for organizing this important community-building activity! It’s gratifying to a part of such a force for good, peace and harmony in the world.”
Andy’s Bike Blog Seattle, Washington

“We really enjoyed doing it.  The only thing better than riding a bicycle is sharing the joy of riding a bicycle with others.”
Paul (and Sally!) in St. Petersburg, Florida

“I look forward to it every year – gives us an excuse to just ride somewhere and visit over a cup of coffee.”
Lynne’s Mostly-Cycling Blog, Portland, Oregon

“Thanks so much for the motivation to keep the riding going even as it gets cold here in Western Maine.”
Christine in Bethel, Maine

Mr. T in DC Coffeeneuring
Courtesy of MrTinDC

“Family coffeeneuring is a great deal of fun. Sure, the mileage is a bit less (okay, an order of magnitude less), but it’s a great excuse to get the kids out even when the weather is less-than-perfect.”

Dan B. in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

“We had such a good time connecting with other riders! Thanks for putting this together.”
Jennifer T. in Leavenworth, Kansas

“I had a great time biking to new places, taking photos and drinking coffee. It was like all of my hobbies rolled into one :)”
Joe Flood, Washington, D.C.

“Drinking coffee (or at least hot beverages) is a great unifier for cyclists from all walks of life!”
Will in McLean, Virginia

Photo courtesy MrTinDC
Courtesy of MrTinDC

Four years ago, the number of people who finished the Coffeeneuring Challenge totaled 12. In the three years since that time it has grown to more than 100. We’ll just see where we end up in 2014. In the meantime, let’s go #coffeeneuring!

*MrTinDC, thank you for the pics!

coffeeneuring 2

Coffeeneuring Rewind in Pittsburgh with @rfglenn

Ingredients 

  • Fall
  • Bike rides
  • Coffee

Directions

Blend together, bake for an hour for at least two miles or to your taste at dipping seasonal temperatures. Repeat seven times. Coffeeneuring.

Week 4 is practically here, but before any official submissions make their way to Coffeeneuring HQ, I’m taking us back to one year ago for a vicarious trip through the challenge with @rfglenn of Pittsburgh, a city with many avid coffeeneurs who have supported this challenge since it’s inception. Thank you, Pittsburgh and thank you @rfglenn for the guest post!

1) Oh Yeah! / october 5 / 2 miles / espresso affogato

coffeeneuring1

A mile from my house is a coffee shop/ice cream store/bank/live music venue? called Oh Yeah!. I used to live barely three blocks from it, and I’d be embarrassed to admit how often I went.

They have mix­ins for your ice cream like “love” and “electricity” and also they have Chicago Soy Dairy vegan ice cream, so I go frequently when the weather’s hot and the days are long.

2) Ohiopyle State Park / october 6 / 150 / cold brew

coffeeneuring 2

I made some cold­brew coffee while riding my bike on a quick overnight to Ohiopyle with a friend. It was actually pretty good, although that’s more a testament to cold brew’s simplicity than to anything I did.

I turned around the next day and headed back to Pittsburgh in pouring rain, and ended only a little worse for the wear; he continued to DC during the furlough, despite the C&O being closed.

3) Coffee Tree Roasters / october 13 / 2 miles / iced coffee

coffeeneuring 3

A short 2 mile ride, to recover from the century I’d done the day prior.

I stopped at coffee tree on my way back from brunch, and experimented with carrying coffee in my bike’s burrito holders. It worked well enough, but I don’t recommend using plastic cups for it.

4) big Tazza D’Oro / november 9 / 4.5 miles / cider & pour­over

coffeeneuring 4

@rpearl and I went to the big (original) tazza d’oro, not to be confused with small (campus) tazza, which is actually larger.

It was really a little bit too cold to be sitting outside; we kept stripping layers, putting them back on, taking them off again.

5) Mad Mex / november 10 / 2 miles / plain ol’ hot coffee

coffeeneuring 5

A group of friends and I go out every sunday for brunch at Mad Mex, and only on my fourth or so trip did I notice they serve coffee. I’d previously been distracted by the margaritas.

Mad Mex also has a big bike corral out front. The coffee pictured is actually @rpearl’s, but I drank a lot of it.

6) Delanie’s Coffee / november 16 / 10 miles / almond milk latte

coffeeneuring 6

10 miles includes my detour to Thick. This is my picture of @theairgonaut and @fractal_dust taking a picture of me taking a picture of them.

@TheAirgonaut's photo
@TheAirgonaut’s photo

I’d never been here before, which is a shame, because it was nice. It’s a lot bigger and more comfortable than the Beehive.

7) Bagel Factory / november 17 / 2 miles / cider & bagels

coffeeneuring - Google Docs-7

I went out to get some comics (I had seen this page, from the Hulk issue pictured), and also grabbed a drink from the Bagel Factory before heading home in the rain.

The paper cup fared much better in the burrito carrier than did the plastic cup from a few weeks prior, though I think a bit of cider sloshed out onto my pants leg. I didn’t notice, on account of the weather.

Thank you, @rfglenn, for your excellent guest post, which includes a little bit of everything, even meta-coffeeneuring!

Aw, but he's so cute!

Coffeeneuring Week 3: Kitteh-neuring with Janice and Jayne

 

This weekend I received an unexpected note from the coffeeneuring team of Janice and Jayne. What started out for them as a regular coffee ride turned into something much much more.

The idea was to ride 2 1/2 miles to the store/deli in Boyer Junction, have lunch and coffee and retrace our steps up the hill and home.

When we were eating our lunch at the deli, Jayne asked me if I’d seen the kitten on the side of the road on our way down the hill.

“No,” I said. “What kitten? There was no kitten!”

We finished our lunch and started back. I heard him before I could see him and I started saying, “No, oh no!”

Coffeeneuring plus kitty

He ran out from the grass and across the road right up to us. Jayne was off her bike and holding him before I could even roll my eyes.

Of course, we weren’t going to leave him there, though he was a wet muddy mess, his eyes were goopy and there was a big open gash on one of his legs.

We figured out that we could just fit him into the rear pocket of my wind breaker and we made it up the hill and home. Jayne hadn’t been on a bike for some time but she rode up that hill at a pretty good clip. Amazing what you can do if you want to!

Jayne had an appointment set up for the kitty a couple of hours after we got home.

Aw, but he's so cute!
Aw, but he’s so cute!

He’s now had various treatments including meds for his eyes, his upper respiratory infection (he’s in isolation because that is contagious), and his worms. And his leg has been stitched. A VERY EXPENSIVE coffeeneuring experience.

Thank you for providing us with the opportunity for adventure….more than we looked for.

Janice and Jayne, this story of your coffeeneuring kitty warms my heart. Wishing you well with your remaining coffeeneuring adventures (although it’s okay if you don’t rescue a kitten during every one).

MrTinDC and me, getting the shot. Jean, Ryan, and Aaron are also here somewhere. Photo by Felkerino

Coffeeneuring Challenge News: Weekend Plans?

The Coffeeneuring Challenge reaches the end of Week 2 and, like that, Week 3 begins tomorrow. What are your plans?

The Facebook Coffeeneurs group is going gangbusters, and Twitter and Instagram light up on the weekends.

Coffeeneurs on flickr

The “Coffeeneuring” group on flickr welcomes your photos, too. Images in this group range from:

Some people have said coffeeneuring is now a movement, but it’s really always been there. I just gave it paperwork, a name, and a prize. Thanks to everybody who’s helped make the Coffeeneuring Challenge the robust event it has become.

MrTinDC and me, getting the shot. Jean, Ryan, and Aaron are also here somewhere. Photo by Felkerino
MrTinDC and me get the coffeeneuring shot. Jean, Ryan, and Aaron are also here somewhere. Photo by Felkerino

I created a Coffeeneuring 2014 Blogroll page that I hope to roll it into something that includes blog write-ups from the coffeeneurs of yesteryear. Check it out, and if you are blogging, please make sure I’ve included you on this list.

Thanks to those who are including information about the bike-friendliness of locations visited. This is excellent field research for the coffeeneuring community.

As I wrote yesterday, functional fitness embodies the type of activity I favor, and coffeeneuring is one piece of that. I favor the pastries, too, though they probably do not fit under this fitness (or any fitness) label. Oh well.

Have a great weekend everybody, and please feel free to share any Coffeeneuring Challenge news you have via a comment here or through your preferred social media outlet (or even an email or letter, if you like)!

¡Que viva coffeeneuring!

Coffeeneuring-Sipping Chocolate

Coffeeneuring Quiz

Welcome to another week of coffeeneuring as we know it. Time to test your Coffeeneuring Challenge knowledge.

No cheating. You’re only cheating yourself, as one of my old workout instructors used to say.

Coffeeneuring Quiz!

1. What is a word that has two Fs, three Es, one N, and one R?

Coffeeneuring

2. When I go coffeeneuring, should I drive my car?

No

3. When I go coffeeneuring, should I drive a school bus?

No

4. When I coffeeneur, should I ride my bicycle?

YES

5. When I go coffeeneuring, can I go to seven shops in one day and submit my entry saying that I completed the Coffeeneuring Challenge?

No.

And I hope you were mixing it up with decaf, if you attempted this. Only two trips max per week.

6. If I coffeeneur with the same person for all trips, can we send in one Coffeeneuring Challenge entry for both of us?

Yes

7. Should I take a picture of my coffeeneuring?

Yes.

If you forgot, get creative about providing something that evidences your outing.

8. What is the hashtag for the Coffeeneuring Challenge on Twitter and Instagram?

#coffeeneuring

9. If I drink a pop while I’m out, can I call it coffeeneuring?

No

10. Isn’t coffeeneuring just riding your bike to get coffee with a whole bunch of rules?

Yes

Coffeeneuring-Sipping Chocolate

One point per answer. Add up your score. How did you do?

Scores
9-10 points. Good job. Keep doing what you’re doing. Unless you you think you are coffeeneuring when driving. Don’t do that.
6-8 points. Better brush up on your coffeeneuring skills.
5-0 points. Close to hopeless. Coffeeneur at your own risk.

Any questions I missed? Maybe they’ll make a future quiz

coffeeneuring Chinatown Coffee

Coffeeneuring Week 1: It’s On!

We’re almost one week into the Coffeeneuring Challenge, and already I’m amazed by all the people riding their bikes to tasty beverages all over the land.

Some ride to four-walled establishments, and others enjoy beverages in the open air.

Much of the coffeeneuring activity is taking place on Twitter (search the #coffeeneuring hashtag), the Coffeeneurs Facebook group, and it’s also going strong on Instagram (also on the #coffeeneuring hashtag). If you’re on flickr, the Coffeeneuring group is here. Please join in as you like.

In this week’s update, I would like to draw your attention to the Coffeeneur Challenge bloggers. Here’s what I know:

  • The Daily Randonneur rode from D.C. into West Virginia, over the weekend and stopped at one of our favorite coffee places in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, Lost Dog Cafe.
  • A meander through Seattle ends at a Starbucks for Andy’s Bike Blog.
  • Vélovoice enjoys a cappuccino and a visit to St. Andrew’s Church for her first coffeeneuring trip. Also, roosters!
  • Rootchopper goes “Coffeeneuring in Car Hell,” but discovers Grounded Coffee in the process.
  • Captain Overpacker adds a coffeeneuring trip onto a day of riding for a cause and throws in a reference to one of my favorite movies when I was a teen, Pretty in Pink (I wanted to make my own prom dress, too).
  • Red Riding goes team coffeeneuring with some of the Pittsburgh crew.
  • Joe Flood checks out the Old Caribou that is now a Peets on his first coffeeneuring ride in Washington, D.C. Maybe I’ll check it out myself.
  • It’s an almond milk Cafe au Lait for West Coast coffeeneur Rosie on the Move. Atlas Coffee sounds delicious!
  • The Bagel Cafe is stop one for All Kinds of Bikes. Welcome back to coffeeneuring!
  • Cruisin’ Downhill heads to the Farmer’s Market for a latte. Looks like a pretty ride. Also, I like the name tag on the back of the helmet.
  • Coffeeneuring doesn’t mean you have to drink coffee. Nancy’s going the tea route, and blogging about it on Adventures With Nancy.
  • Original coffeeneur Type 2 Clydesdale Cyclist of the fine coffeeneuring town of Pittsburgh is back for his fourth consecutive year.
  • One Speed: Go! is family coffeeneuring in Arizona.
  • Coffeeneuring in South Dakota? It’s true! Read all about it on The MinusCar Project.
  • Urban Adventure League went preseason coffeeneuring in Oregon to make sure the coffee shop without walls was in order.
  • Two trips down in the first weekend, and one of them is another coffee shop sans walls– Life in the Cycle Lane.
  • A little bit of everything in marathonsam‘s post: running, yoga, trail shoes, and most important, coffeeneuring!

Did I miss you? It’s quite possible! Please let me know in the comments, and I’ll add you to the roundup.

2013bsCoffee6

Mr. and Mrs. Bike Snick Go Coffeeneuring

We can’t go into the weekend (THE FIRST WEEKEND OF OFFICIAL COFFEENEURING SEASON) without another example of how coffeeneuring happens.

And, of course, it’s always nice to give the locals of #BikeDC and #BikeArlington a shout-out, especially ones who’ve taken such care with capturing their coffeeneuring images. With that, I present you with the coffeeneuring rides of Mr. and Mrs. Bike Snick from this past year.

2013bsCoffee1

#1, 10/5/2013
Where: Greenberry’s McLean, VA ()
What: tall iced coffee with 2 pumps of sweetener
Which bike: Fixed gear bicycle.

I finally got warmed up on the way home. Although the outside temperature is in the mid 70s (F), our house is cold, 68 degrees.

Mrs. Bike Snick is making 3 cakes (!) for a wedding today and the Italian buttercream frosting needs to be cool.

How far: 3 miles

2013bsCoffee2

#2, 10/6/2013
Where: Starbucks, McLean, VA
What: venti carmel soy frappucino with 5 shots (rewards drink)
Which bike: Fixed gear bicycle.

Mrs. Bike Snick joined me on her road bike. We sat outside enjoying the newspaper and beautiful day.

How far: 3 miles

2013bsCoffee3

#3, 10/13/2013
Where: Star*Nut Gourmet, McLean, VA ()
What: tall dark coffee and half a slice of apple pie
Which bike: Fixed gear bicycle.

Mrs. Bike Snick joined me on her road bike. It was nice when the rain stopped.

We enjoyed reading, splitting a piece of apple pie and sitting outside.

How far: 3.6 miles

2013bsCoffee4

#4, 10/14/2013
Where: Peregrine Espresso, Eastern Market ()
What: soy latte
Which bike: CaBi.

Rode with Mrs. Bike Snick. This was our first time using CaBi. We had two free 24 hour passes from Bike To Work Day. The passes worked great and the bikes were easy to use.

It was fun planning multiple hops that were less than 30 minutes. We saw Georgetown, L Street cycle track, the White House, Pennsylvania Ave cycle track, the Capitol, 11St Local Bridge overlook, Anacostia Riverwalk Trail, Nationals Park, and more.

How far: 13.3 miles

2013bsCoffee5

#5, 10/19/2013
Where: Chesapeake Bagel Bakery
What: small bold coffee, half of a cinnamon roll
Which bike: Fixed gear bicycle.

Rode with Mrs. Bike Snick on her road bike. She has completed 4 coffeeneuring rides now and is enjoying it.

It was cloudy and we felt a few sprinkles. On the way to coffee we stopped at CVS to get a picture printed. This was the topsy-turvy cake my wife made for a friend’s wedding. After coffee we picked up the prints.

How far: 3.2 miles

2013bsCoffee6

#6, 10/20/2013
Where: Caribou Coffee, Falls Church 
What: small bold coffee, half of a cranberry scone
Which bike: road bicycle.

My wife joined me on her road bike. It was sunny and a great day for riding. We enjoyed sitting outside and reading some of the newspaper.

How far: 5.3 miles

2013bsCoffee7

#7, 11/10/2013
Where: Starbucks, Idylwood Plaza Falls Church 
What: tall bold coffee, half of a chocolate brownie
Which bike: fixed gear bicycle.

Mrs. Bike Snick joined me on her road bike.

It was mostly sunny, but very windy. The temperature was fine, but it was too windy to sit outside.

How far: 5.3 miles

2013bsCoffee8

#8 (Mrs. Bike Snick’s #7), 11/11/2013
Where: Greenberry’s McLean, VA )
What: tall dark coffee, half of a chocolate chip scone
Which bike: fixed gear bicycle.

Mrs. Bike Snick joined me on her road bike; this ride completes her 7th coffeeneuring ride.

It was cloudy and windy, but we sat outside reading under Greenberry’s heat lamps – nice!

The manager came outside to tell us two new bicycle racks have been installed across the street. These are among several recently added in downtown McLean. The racks will be dedicated later this week by Fairfax County Supervisor John Foust.

How far: 3.7 miles

Congratulations on completing the challenge, Team Bike Snick! I hope you are up for another round of coffeeneuring. It all starts again October 4!

Martin Coffeeneuring

Coffeeneurs International: Martin in Ye Olde England

It’s not every day that someone says coffeeneuring has the potential to change his or her life. Coffee and bike riding can be powerful stuff, however, so who’s to say it isn’t these little pleasures that have great impact on us over time?

I will let you ponder that, as I share this post from Martin, who resides across the ocean from my house, and traveled many places in the completion of last year’s challenge.

This Coffeeneuring Challenge is ideal for me. And in a small way might even change my life.

I entered the challenge in absolutely the correct spirit because it came after a year in which I felt I was living on the bike. This is because all through the bitter cold of the winter months I was riding 200 kilometres each month to achieve my small red badge that is the mark of the Randonneur Round The Year.

At the same time I was also training to ride from London to Edinburgh and back in a 1,400 kilometre event. So you see the opportunity to ride just a mile and have a nice day beverage each week was an opportunity not to be missed.

In fact I started to enjoy riding my bike. So I might just make a point of coffeeneuring all year round. It is certainly much more enjoyable than setting an alarm for 3 o’clock in the morning and riding a bike in sub-zero temperatures for 14 hours. And to make matters worse this was a really cold winter in England.

As you can see from the list of coffee shops I visited, I also rode my bike across northern Spain from from Madrid back to France.

This was all good fun and provided some fine opportunities to drink coffee but crossing the Pyrenees in a torrential rainstorm was rather more character building for me than I would have liked…

So here is the list of what I did and where I drank coffee, and many thanks for arranging the challenge. I tweeted about my coffee and sent a photograph with the tweet. (Editor’s note: The text of each Tweet is included below each photo.)

Ride 1
October 9

Saw this: had to stop for #coffeeneuring at the Six Bells pub in the  English village of Chiddingly @coffeeneur

Saw this: had to stop for #coffeeneuring at the Six Bells pub in the English village of Chiddingly @coffeeneur.

A delightful 150 year old small pub called the Six Bells in the small Kent village of Chiddingly.

Distance ridden about 30 miles.

Ride 2
October 14

My "weekend" so time to tell @coffeeneur I am #coffeeneuring - while buying a stove windshield for my next expedition

My “weekend” so time to tell @coffeeneur I am #coffeeneuring – while buying a stove windshield for my next expedition.

The Pret a Manger coffee shop in the centre of my local town.

Distance exactly 2.2 miles.

Ride 3
October 21

Popped on the bike to pick up money before next expedition to Spain on the bike, @coffeeneur is, I hope, jealous

Popped on the bike to pick up money before next expedition to Spain on the bike, @coffeeneur is, I hope, jealous.

A small coffee shop near my bank where I picked up money for my ride across northern Spain.

Distance 2.2 miles.

Ride 4
October 28

My weekly #coffeeneuring ride, this time in Spain. @coffeeneur will be pleased to hear this was part of a 110k day.

My weekly #coffeeneuring ride, this time in Spain. @coffeeneur will be pleased to hear this was part of a 110k day.

A small Spanish town where we were the only customers in a tiny coffee shop.

Distance about 70 miles.

Ride 5
October 30

Hope @coffeeneur is envious I crossed the Pyrenees in a freezing rainstorm yesterday: today #coffeeneuring is this

Hope @coffeeneur is envious I crossed the Pyrenees in a freezing rainstorm yesterday: today #coffeeneuring is this.

A small coffee shop on the border between France and Spain. The sun was shining and it was a real delight – and much nicer than crossing the Pyrenees in a storm the day before.

Distance about 45 miles.

Ride 6
November 4

#coffeeneuring with time for reading. Hoping @coffeeneur would be proud of me. An independent coffee shop, as well.

#coffeeneuring with time for reading. Hoping @coffeeneur would be proud of me. An independent coffee shop, as well.

A newly opened coffee shop in town.

Distance exactly 2.2 miles.

Ride 7
November 11

Enjoying #coffeeneuring cycling challenge so much I might do it every week of the year. @coffeeneur  wouldn't mind...

Enjoying #coffeeneuring cycling challenge so much I might do it every week of the year. @coffeeneur wouldn’t mind…

The closest coffee shop to the bicycle rack in the centre of town. I could see my bike from where I drink coffee.

Distance exactly 2.2 miles.

So that’s it.

Thank you again, Martin, for your delightful summary. This year’s Coffeeneuring Challenge starts October 4!