Wende’s willingness to communicate about mountain biking attests to the central position the sport has in her life. As Wende talks about riding her stories relate humor and stories with great history.
Her first experience on a 54 lb. Klunker was hard and she was the “token woman” on many of the Marin rides of the 1970’s. She was the first woman to ride Pearl Pass out of Crested Butte, Colorado and probably the first woman to ride many of the California trails.
Wende’s stories of epic rides are entertaining and universal. Her treasury of slides and photos, many of which she shares with the Hall of Fame Museum, tell stories of their own about both rides and riders. Her Pearl Pass collection has been instrumental in showing who was there, what they rode, and what they liked like at the summit.
Wende owns a couple of Breezers and an Otis Guy road bike. Her 1984 Breezer is her favorite mountain bike of all the bikes she has owned and she rides it everywhere.
But mountain biking ;has changed, and Wende has experienced the shift from spontaneous rides, learning something ;new every ride, to the high tech. Industry it now is for many of her friends and old riding partners. The carefree buddies of two decades ago now run corporations, write books, have babies and pay mortgages. “I decided long ago that I’d rather be hungry with plenty of time to ride than full and watching my bike sit on the living room floor. My priorities have not changed. Fat Tire Bike Week has certainly changed a lot since when I did it last in 1981!”
Wende has participated in the sport extensively, racing, promoting, photographing, and she still rides every day! Discovering everything from Mother Nature to human nature from the saddle, Wende now jokes that biking is cheaper than a shrink or drugs.