Biking the American Tobacco Trail to Durham

Shelley and I spend a lot of time on our bikes. In fact, our earliest days together were spent riding for hours along the pairie path near our hometown of Winfield, Illinois. And we’ve owned just about every kind of bike over the years including road bikes, folding bikes, mountain bikes, and even a take apart tandem which we brought to Bermuda to use as our send-off vehicle for our wedding. As a self-proclaimed bike snob, I’m very surprised to admit that of all my bikes, my favorite bike is also the cheapest I ever bought. At first I was a little apprehensive about a  1987 Schwinn Tempo steel-frame road bike. The bike is almost as old as me! But I’m glad Shelley convinced me to give it a test ride. It isn’t the prettiest bike, but it sure is smooth. Nothing beats steel! And it cost a mere $250 not including the rack, basket, panniers, and Brooks saddle (a must-have for long rides). But of course Shelley had to one-up me with a super fancy bright red Trek 560 Pro Series bike, also made in 1987. She paid just $200! The man who sold us the bikes actually repairs and restores vintage bikes out of his home. If you’re interested, his name is John and he is located out of Raleigh, NC. Check out his bicycle website by clicking here. And the moral of the story? You don’t need to spend your entire paycheck to have a dependable bike and a good time. I wish I would have learned that sooner. Since purchasing the bikes, we’ve taken them out on several rides along the Cary and Raleigh greenways. You’d be surprised how extensive these trails are. These pictures were taken on a recent 50 mile jaunt along the American Tobacco Trail to Durham and back. Shelley and I hope to complete a multi-day bike tour in North Carolina sometime this fall. Happy riding y’all! Maybe we’ll see you on the greenways. – Josh, Raleigh Wedding Photographer (and self-proclaimed bike snob)

To check out more of our travel photos, check out our travel blog at


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