The Road Not Taken

Confessions of a Velogaine course setter, Bruce Greenhalgh

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

The final stanza of Robert Frost’s ‘The Road Not Taken’

I imagine that many rogainers can relate to the sentiment expressed in Robert Frost’s famous poem because route choice can make ‘all the difference’. However, the poem is usually interpreted as a celebration of individualism, a call to venture off the beaten track, to go your own way and do your own thing. That’s a perfectly valid reading of the poem. The origin of the poem, though, is less elevated. Frost actually wrote it as a joke, making fun of a poet friend of his, Edward Thomas, who was an inveterate procrastinator and who, when they went walking in the woods together, would agonize over the choice of paths and often later rue the path they’d taken.

Edward Thomas, I suggest, would probably have made a less than perfect rogainer. I’ve learnt that when faced with two (or more) route choices that appear to take roughly the same time the best thing to do is to decide on one quickly and not give ‘the road not taken’ any head space once the decision has been made.

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Preparing for a Velogaine

To ensure you have a lot of fun at the Velogaine, we have compiled some handy resources to help you enjoy your time out on course.

Velogaines are a great way to explore our state, they are fun and challenging all at the same time! An incredible relationship-building experience and perfect for every age group and you can ride your bike! No walking or running on tired legs.

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