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  •   ADVENTURE TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY


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"CAN ONE PERSON CHANGE THE WORLD?TOM RITCHEY DID: HE INVENTED THE MOUNTAIN BIKE. BUT HIS ONE OTHER INVENTION CAUGHT MY EYE..." 
"THEY ARE EVERYWHERE AND WITH OUR GLOBAL PANDEMIC TRASHING INCOME AND TRANSPORT, MORE POPULAR THAN EVER..."
  GREAT PHOTOS DISAPPEAR IN A HEARTBEAT... DON'T GET CAUGHT NAPPING!
 
 TOM RITCHEY WITH MEMBERS OF HIS RWANDA / AFRICA MOUNTAIN BIKE RACING TEAM... THEY COMPETE IN THE OLYMPICS! 

MOUNTAIN BIKES ARE A HUGE BUSINESS. SOME SAY $20,000,000,000 A YEAR WHEN YOU TOSS IN THE BIKE SALES, CLOTHING PURCHASES, INTERNATIONAL AIR TRAVEL (HOPEFULLY AGAIN!), BIKE RACES, POLICE MOUNTAIN BIKE SQUADS - THEY ARE EVERYWHERE, THE MORE SO SINCE GLOBAL INCOMES GOT TRASHED IN THE PANDEMIC. PEDALING A BIKE IS CHEAP!

I'VE MET TOM ON SEVERAL OCAASIONS WHEN HE'S BEEN COMPETING IN THE LEGENDARY SOUTH AFRICAN CAPE EPIC MOUNTAIN BIKE RACE. IT'S SEVEN DAYS OF RACING UP AND DOWN BRUTAL MOUNTAIN RANGES, FORDING RIVERS - AND TRYING NOT TO HIT CAPE BUFFALO! FUN!

BUT IT WAS TOM'S DESIRE TO HELP AFTER THE RWANDAN GENOCIDE THAT GOT MY ATTENTION. HE SET UP A MTB RACING TEAM THAT COMPETES AROUND THE WORLD - INCLUDING THE OLYMPICS.

WHILE TRAINING IN RWANDA'S RUGGED MOUNTAINS, HE NOTICED COFFEE GROWERS STOOPED UNDER HUGE LOADS OF COFFEE BEANS - SLOWLY WALKING FOR HOURS - OR DAYS -TO COFFEE BEAN PROCESSING FACTORIES. TOM THOUGHT, GEE, WHY CAN'T WE WELD UP A SUPER-STRONG MOUNTAIN BIKE - WITH A STRETCHED-OUT BACK SHELF FOR BAGS OF COFFEE AND MAKE THIS WHOLE BUSINESS A LOT FASTER AND EASIER?

1,000 GIFTED MOUNTAIN BIKES LATER, GROWERS WHISK THEY VALUABLE PRODUCE DOWN HILL AND GET TOP PRICES BECAUSE IT'S FRESH! THEN THEY LOAD THEIR GROCERIES, ETC. AND EFFORTLESSLY PEDDLE UP STEEP TRAILS TO THEIR REMOTE VILLAGE HOMES... THANK YOU, TOM RITCHEY, YOU CHANGED THE WORLD - FOR THE BETTER!




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