Here's the story of why I'm riding across america

Hello, I’m Dave Nowlan. I cycled from Encinitas, Calif., to Cape Cod, Mass. from April 22 through May 28, 2012 in an effort to raise awareness of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and to help fund research for a cure. My wife, Claire, and daughter, Julia, both have MS. I broke my back in a sledding accident almost three years ago; I’m the luckiest guy in the world to have recovered without being paralyzed and was able to ride this long cross continent adventure. Click on this link to “my story” for more information and why I continue riding. Here is a link to Information about MS

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Day 22 Illinois

Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers reading this. Being on this journey has left Claire without seeing any children or grandchildren or her mother today, which was disappointing.  She was understanding  and we decided to shouldered on to get us one day closer to the finish.  This ride should be over in a couple of weeks so we'll be back to our family and friends again soon. 

On this theme, in the second video below my granddaughter, Ada, explained my cross country trip on a large map of the USA to her friend. It's a little hard to understand but I think she actually gets it.

We made it to Illinois today, getting to a new state is always a big deal.  I rode in to St Louis as close as I could before the traffic and roads became too congested and dangerous.  There were six lanes of traffic on these roads with no shoulder or bike lane.  So I decided to put the bike on the SAG vehicle and to get through the city.  Then we entered IL and rode on.

I traveled a nice bike path which was the scene of another spoken broke, this time on the front wheel.  So we back tracked to The Cyclery bike shop, which I stopped at earlier in the day to get some directions.  Andy took great care and replaced the spoke, and I purchased a few extras in case of more spoke problems in the future. By the time we finished with the spoke replacement it was 5:00 PM and we then returned to the breakdown spot to resume. This made for a late day and I rode until sunset when we arrived at Greenville, IL for the night.  I ended up riding about 80 miles today.

Andy from The Cyclery Fixing a Broken Spoke


  1. You are absolutley Amazing. I will be praying for fewer trips to the bike shop! Love you and we are so proud of you. xoxoxo

  2. Keep up the good work Dave! Happy Mother's Day Claire! Mary Ellen & Jim

  3. We are all watching your progress here in Hyannis Dave & Claire...unbelievable...Claire what a beautiful Mother' day wish, stay safe and have fun.

  4. Great getting into Illinois! Hope you have a fun time riding through Illinois and the rest of your trip! We'll look for you when we are flying to New York on Wednesday!

  5. Awesome! Just awesome you are! Safe travels! xoxo Renee, Frankie, Tea and Niki

  6. Dave - you are such an inspiration. After your day yesterday how could I not make a donation? Fingers crossed - no head winds today Kerry B