Tuesday June 12, 2012 | 01:18 PM

If Thursday arrives and it seems like every vehicle heading west has a full bike rack, well ... that's pretty normal for Father's Day weekend in Maine.

The Trekkers will be back on the roadways between Sunday River in Newry and Steamboat Landing in Belfast this weekend, so be prepared to give them the right of way. They may be slowing traffic a bit, but they're cycling for a great cause.

The 2012 Trek Across Maine heads downhill from Sunday River early Friday morning and this year's group of riders have a goal of raising $2 million for the American Lung Association. A shout out to each and every one of them and fingers crossed that they stay dry for all 180 miles.

I'm sitting out the Trek this year after riding in the event five times (got my five-year hat last June!). And though I feel good about not missing Father's Day this year, I will have just the slightest bit of regret thinking about the awesome scenery I'll be missing from Newry to Farmington, the super supportive volunteers at every rest stop, the delish Gifford's ice cream at the Colby finish and the thrill of pedaling into Steamboat Landing along with my teammates.

Every year the Trek is one of Maine's top bike events for a slew of reasons: The route (yes, even the hills), the riders (always happy, even in the rain), the food (peanut butter! bananas! M&Ms!), the clowns (welcome to Farmington), the mechanics (air always available), the start (one of the most exhilarating downhills you'll find), the finish (tons of fans cheering just for you).

Good luck, enjoy and safe riding to all.


About the Author

Karen Beaudoin lives in Portland and is the web editor for PressHerald.com.

Her Pedal On blog offers info, events and advice for people who love their bikes more than, well ... almost anything.

Get in touch at kbeaudoin@mainetoday.com

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