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Charley Barnes Successfully Rides 10,000 Miles in 10 Days as Promised for Honor Flight Northern Colorado [VIDEO]

Charley returns home from his 10,000 mile ride in just 10 days – Photo courtesy of Todd Harding/TSM

On June 4, I set out to fulfill a promise to Honor Flight Northern Colorado to ride 10,000 miles in 10 days to raise money for the veterans they serve.

There were more than a few who didn’t think I had a snowball’s chance in Hell at completing this monumental task; they were wrong and I hope they pay up on their bets.

I not only rode the 10,000 miles in 10 days, but I did it by first doing the Border-to-Border run (Canada to Mexico) in 22 hours followed by the Coast-to-Coast run (San Diego to Jacksonville) with two hours to spare.  The official mileage was 10,076.6!

I saw three countries, stopped for gas 81 times, went through every single U.S. time zone, visited 30+ states – including the District of Columbia, got searched at the U.S./Mexico border, rode through more rain than you can possibly imagine, and spent more time in road construction traffic than most will see in a lifetime of summer traveling, and still somehow pulled it off.

While riding, I was in a zone and it never really dawned on me how difficult this was until I returned home and actually had some time to think about what I had just done. To spend 1,000 miles a day in a car with AC and a nice cooler in the trunk is very hard to do. Now imagine doing 10 days of that on a motorcycle dealing with all the elements. It was next to impossible, which is why many thought I could never do it.

When it was all said and done, I did what I set out to do. Although I missed my goal of riding the 10,000 in 240 hours by only 136 miles, I still did the ride in 10 days, while many thought I would give up by the time I hit Jacksonville, Florida. I hit many mental roadblocks along the way, and each time I thought of our World War II, Korea and Vietnam veterans who didn’t have the chance to quit when they got hungry, tired, cold and wet. When they just couldn’t push on any more, they found a way, and so did I.

I will recap each day’s adventure, one story at a time, but this adventure was all about will and determination. I am not Superman! I am not a beast, amazing or anything of the kind. Just a guy who loves his country and the freedom I have due to the veterans who have paved the way. I believe we all have the will and determination I had on this trip; the trick is finding it and finding a way to pull it out.

There are so many people I need to thank, but to start a laundry list will only set me up to fail by forgetting key people, so I will thank those involved in the daily recaps as I believe it’s the only way to not forget who to properly thank.

This was one Hell of a ride to say the least, and an adventure of a lifetime. When all is said and done, it looks like this little ride of mine will send 35 veterans on the next Honor Flight to Washington D.C.

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