Cyclist takes new heart out for spin on Michigander

Detroit Free Press | Ron Campbell
Rochester Hills residents Mary DePouw and Doug Carnegie take a break in Mackinaw City during the 24th annual Michigander Bike Tour on July 12, 2015.(Photo: Courtesy of Kathy James)

TRAVERSE CITY -- Completing the Michigander Bike Tour takes a lot of heart. Doug Carnegie just needed a new one.

I met up with Carnegie, a 66-year-old retired machinery salesman from Rochester Hills, at the Topinabee rest stop on the North Central State Trail on Saturday, the first day of the popular rail trail-based ride's 2-Day option.

Along with 386 other spirited riders, Carnegie finished the 70-mile weekend trek in Cheboygan on Sunday. My fellow 6-Day and 8-Day riders and I pedaled 48 sun-kissed miles along back roads and the Traverse Area Recreational Trail into Traverse City on Wednesday.

En route, our 300-member contingent from across the U.S. enjoyed 72-degree temps and open-air views of Torch Lake, Elk Lake and the east arm of Grand Traverse Bay under brilliant blue Michigan skies.

It was a welcome relief from Tuesday's soggy, hilly, thigh-burning, 62-mile, "Am I really PAYING to do this?" challenge from Harbor Springs to our tent city in Bellaire, where many riders sought solace at Ruthie's Dairy Twist and Short's Brewing Company. Continue reading

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