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Everyone on BAK has a different reason for riding their bike across the Sunflower state. For me I think it is an opportunity for an ordinary person to do something truly extraordinary.

Most people react the same way when I tell them how I am spending a week of my summer vacation: You have got to be kidding?!  Are you nuts?!  Can't you think of anything better to do?!

But as the riders soon find out, you have never seen Kansas (my home state) until you have experienced it from sitting atop a bicycle seat. You really do gain a new appreciation and perspective... one that you cannot get speeding along I-70 at 75 miles per hour.

It is not too difficult a trip but there are challenges to overcome along the way. The weather always plays a major role as you can imagine. Mechanical problems can crop up at anytime. And there is the mental and emotional aspect to consider. Put them all together and you have an event that is attempted by only 1,000 people, most of whom finish in grand style and cannot wait until next year to do it all over again.

BAK will remind you just how much you like ice cream. It will teach you to listen to the sound that a wheat field makes when the wind blows across it.  BAK will prove to you once and for all that you can survive without e-mail and cell phones and cable TV.  You will be reminded that people are indeed kind and helpful.

People from all walks of life come together for a week of biking, laughing, eating, struggling, and encouraging. Young and old, professional and blue collar, kids and parents, all spend the week sharing one common goal and interest.  After the last mile has been ridden and the car has been packed for the trip home, you come to understand what an extraordinary week you have had.  You look at the Kansas map and trace with your finger the 500 miles you rode, remembering the towns you went through,  recalling the people you met,  the food you ate.  The struggles of the week are soon forgotten and the joy that comes with a job well done takes over.  The heat, dust, wind, and rain, turn out to have been just minor annoyances.