There are so many amazing efforts in the cycling community each year, and it is no different in the small world of bikepacking. While we obviously did not cover every accomplishment or individual over the course of the year, we feel that we featured many people who pushed limits, borders and boundaries. Below are all of the people that stood out in 2015. As we push into the new year we think 2016 will be truly amazing to watch, read, and talk about. Everyone should give the people below a pat on the back.

Alice Drobna – Triple Crown

Triple crown of bikepacking Alice Drobna was not only the first female to complete the triple crown challenge of bikepacking, but she did it with one gear. She completed the Arizona Trail Race, Tour Divide (ss record) and Colorado Trail during the summer of 2015.

Jeff Mullen

Olympic Torch finish I’ve recorded this adventure on the Fastest Known Time website and hope that others might want to take on this self-supported ADK 46er challenge. I know that it could be done faster and if/when somebody does it in a faster time I might take another go at it myself. In the meantime I’ll be looking for other self-supported challenges.

Adam Gianforte

Adam UniAdam Gianforte graduated College from Cornell University and set his eyes on a big adventure, something as big as graduating from a top tear University like Cornell. He looked into riding the Appalachian Trail, but he soon realized that two wheels were not allowed on the trail, not even one. So he decided to bring his idea back west. He grew up in Montana backpacking and being in the outdoors, and once he heard about the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, the rest was history.

Jamey Mossengren

Jamey Mossengren

Originally from Minnesota, Mossengren was about to become the first person to unicycle the entire length of the Colorado Trail. After twenty days in the backcountry, it took little to convince Jamey to join our group for dinner and drinks. A street performer who now calls Boulder, Colorado home, Mossengren spent the evening entertaining our group with stories of CT challenge and misadventure.

Rebecca Rusch

Rebecca Rusch
Photo / Rob Huguez
Rebecca Rusch is simply one of the most decorated endurance athletes ever. While her mountain bike history runs deep, she has recently dipped her toes in the ever growing bikepacking scene. This year she lined up for the Smoke n’ Fire 400 – she took 2nd place in a close match and endured her first true bikepacking event.

Markus Stitz

Single Speed The World

Markus is a German born adventurer that was living in New Zealand for some time. Once he left NZ in 2009 he had the idea of cycling around the world. After riding a lot in Scotland, Markus decided that he would finally make that thought a reality – single speeding the world starting in September. Markus has always enjoyed riding bicycles long distances, whether it is on pavement or dirt. He endured his first bike trip in 2006 where he carried everything on his back which he said was “quite possibly the toughest journey I have ever done.” 

Lina Rice

Billy and Lina Rice Jun 17 Lina Rice, 16 years old, was the youngest female to compete in this year’s Tour Divide. She completed the race in 30 days on a tandem with her father, who is no stranger to the route. After spending a month in the saddle behind her dad, we were able to catch up with Lina and get her thoughts on their experience.

Ben Weaver

Ben Weaver
Photo: Ryan Donnell
On July 8th Ben Weaver departed on a cycling adventure where he circumnavigated Lake Superior in 16 days. The 1,300 mile self-supported journey raised awareness in the towns and cities that he passed through, he presented his poetry, music and advocacy in partnership with many local environmental non-profits such as Save the Wild UP, Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve, and the Sierra Club.

Jesse Jakomait – New Colorado Trail Race Record Holder

Jesse Jakomait
Photo: Chris Miller
Jesse Jakomait has taken his goal of having a perfect ride on the Colorado Trail Race to the next level. Just after midnight on Thursday, July 30th Jesse finished the race. He blasted the previous record and surpassed the elusive sub 4-day finish with a final time of 3:20:12.

Beth and Seb Dunne

beth and seb dunne Australian’s Beth and Seb Dunne took off at the 2015 Tour Divide grand depart for the race of a lifetime. After Seb experienced a major mechanical, the couple completed the race together, both with impeccable finishing times. Read more about their experience below.

Lael Wilcox – Queen of the Tour Divide

lael wilcox
Photo: Monica Garcia
Not only did Lael Wilcox participate in the Tour Divide, she was the first female to the finish and set a new women’s record after riding over 2,000 miles from Anchorage, Alaska to the Grand Depart in Banff. Then she went back a few months later to beat her own record. Lael had an enormous year to say the least.

Kim Murrell

Kim Murrell Hanging out with Kim was an adventure in itself. It’s rare to experience such an abstract story telling style. If you hang in there, she will tell you 7 stories, at the same time, and finish them all in a very fluid and concise manner (like watching a story telling version of pulp fiction). But the best part about the time I got to spend talking to Kim was that I got a chance to see how her mind functions and get an insight into her success in the Florida bikepacking scene.

Martin Schroder

World Bicyclist: Martin Schröder Martin believes that the people you meet on the way are what make bikepacking special. Locals that invite you without incentive, people that go out of their way to make you, a traveler, a guest, feel at home in their country. Bloggers, who take the time to write about their trips so that others can do research online. Redditors, Couchsurfers, Warmshower hosts, Facebook travel groups… there is an enormous network of traveling people out there and all you need to do is to reach out.

Fredrico Cabrera

Their Only Portrait Fredrico Cabrera is the creator of Their Only Portrait, a small personal project that aims to give something back to the local communities that he visits. When he started spending more time with locals while camping & couch surfing (instead of staying at hostels) he became aware that most of those local people don´t have a printed memory of the most important moments of their lives or their families, and those who did, really treasured them…

Mike Hall

Mike Hall
Mike making the most of his time. Mike came up on a road construction delay so he went into the tavern and chugged a glass of ice water. (Photo: John Foster)
Many of you know Mike Hall for winning and holding the fastest Tour Divide time in 2013, or maybe winning the inaugural Trans Am Bike Race last year. To top it off, he also cycled the world. What you may not know is that he spends most of his time and effort putting together the Transcontinental Race in Europe.

Tracey Petervary

Tracey Petervary Tracey Petervary is an extremely accomplished bikepacker. She is currently participating in the Iditarod Trail Invitational and riding her bike 350 miles to McGrath, Alaska. Read more about Tracey’s past, present, and her future plans in our interview with Tracey below.

Nick Tracey

Nick Tracey           Nick Tracey rode from New Zealand to the United Kingdom. He chose the route based on where he was living at the time, and where he planned to end up in 6 months (Scotland). He knew he wnated to cycle it so he only had two options – either riding east out of Australia (via the US) or west through Asia). Having cycled parts of Asia in 2013, he decided to take the eastern route. It was more simple, less visa hassle, English speaking, and with a better climate.

Scott Pauker

Scott Pauker In early 2014, Scott Pauker, a 38 year old body work practitioner from Seattle, WA closed up shop, bid farewell to friends and family and hit the trail. Working his way south from Alaska, he planned on pedaling to the tip of South America and then set off for the next leg of his around the world ride.

Jorden Wakely

Jorden Jorden Wakeley recently took first place in the 2015 Arrowhead Ultra after winning the sprint finish with a time of 15 hours flat. Jorden has has a lot of success in winter races in the midwest as well as summer success. This young gun is certainly one we will hear about in years to come.  

5 Comments

  1. I can’t believe I made it to a list with so many people I admire and follow their Adventures & “dots” in my screen!!! It’s really an honor for me and my Little Personal Project to be here 🙂

    Thanks,
    Federico Cabrera
    http://www.theironlyportrait.com

  2. Pingback: Their Only Portrait | Bikepackers of 2015

  3. Pingback: Their Only Portrait | Bikepackers del 2015

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  5. Cecil Walker

    I’m a bit befuddled,…… there are these things called RACKS that can be mounted to your bikes to ease the tasks of carrying packs and luggage and keep the center of gravity as low as possible.

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