‘Hog Heaven’: A Gravel Cyclist, a Rancher, and Common Ground

‘The Path Less Paved’ is a brief study of neighborliness between a modern city slicker and a salt-of-the-earth ranchin’ man.

In 2018, cyclist Alex Morgan and his wife left city life behind and headed for the rural town of Ocate, N.M.

To a gravel rider, the area is akin to Valhalla — stretches of unpaved roads, steep climbs, rolling hills, pristine air. The open, remote landscape is also why the area’s ranching community reaches back generations.

When Morgan accidentally trespassed onto rancher Bob Bright’s land, it forced a conversation between them. At first, Bright didn’t know what to make of him. But both men soon discovered their seemingly different lifestyles weren’t so disparate after all.

“Alex on his bike is like me on my horse,” Bright remarks. “We’re in hog heaven. We really are.”

Take a look.

Runtime: 8 minutes

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Jilli Cluff
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Jilli grew up in the rural southern Colorado mountains, later moving to Texas for college. After seven years in corporate consulting, she was introduced to sport climbing — and life would never be the same. She now works as a contributor, gear tester, and editor for GearJunkie and other outlets within the AllGear family. She is based out of Atlanta, Georgia where she takes up residence with her climbing gear and one-eared blue heeler, George Michael.

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