Cody Cirillo pushes his limits as he bikes toward desert lines in ‘Southwest Scramble’

Comfort can be a beautiful thing. Relaxing the mind allows you to focus in on what you deem important, and not wallow in the anxiety of the unknown. But sometimes that comfort can be overwhelming. “Too much of a good thing”, as they say. Staying in the same place for too long, or repeating a motion just because you know it, both of these things might bring comfort at first, but can become hinderances in the long run. It’s often the case that breaking these cycles is necessary to bring us back to the root of what we’re doing, and remind us why we love what we love, and do what we do. In ‘Southwest Scramble’, Cody Cirillo sought to do just that.

After a lackluster season filled with tests and obstacles, the mustachioed freerider decided to break the chain, (metaphorically of course), and find new territory. It seems as though he truly wanted to see where that comfort zone ended, and went after it in less than typical fashion. He loaded his bicycle with the necessary supplies, and a pair of skis of course, and left behind his home in Telluride, Colorado, with his eyes set on the desert peaks ahead.

It’s not clear if Cody knew exactly where he was going. While it would be a safe bet that he had the journey mapped out before hand, who knows if the crew knew what they were really looking for. As the voyage across the diverse biomes of the American Southwest unfolds, it becomes evident that this trek was more than what was bargained for. I’ve never biked through the desert for hundreds of miles on a bike loaded with heavy gear, but I can imagine that, like other draining endeavors, it’s something you have to adapt with as you go. There’s no way to honestly know how you’ll feel, or how you’ll motivate to power through those rough patches until you’re in the moment. It might be straining, or down right unbearable at times, but one thing is certain; you’ll never get the joy of passing that test, of learning something new, or going somewhere you’ve never gone before if you stick to only what you know.

The desires to roam free and discover captivating new experiences are urges that we all feel. Some are more inclined to pursue those calls than others, but all are compelled to answer. ‘Southwest Scramble’ chronicles the highs and lows of following that call, and it serves as a reminder that the push is always worth it. Feeling stuck or worn out is a very human emotion. While it’s a daunting and seemingly paradoxical task, leaving that comfort zone is one of the few things that can help us reset and find grounding, as Cody can attest to. Head into the unknown, and be prepared for the unknown to happen. You’ll be happier that you did. But please, make sure you get a good stretch in before you go. “Your knees will thank you”. No doubt Cody, no doubt.

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