I’d just returned from a 30 mile ramble through the Portland suburbs when my 20 year-old son asked without a hint of irony, “Is biking fun?”

I had to stop and consider this for a moment.

When I was a kid, I would never have given it a moment of thought. After all, children will work hard to avoid anything that isn’t fun. And now, well past my childhood, I get on a bike almost daily for transportation, hauling stuff, exercise, and yes, sometimes for recreation.

But is it fun?

Biking is automatic. Because I don’t think much about operating a bicycle when I pedal, I just feel the motion and take in what lies ahead. That frees my brain from the things that usually trouble me, so biking is also therapeutic.

Going down a steep hill or around a tight bend is exhilarating. Keeping momentum without pedaling on a pump track is challenging. Dropping into a ramp and catching even a small air is exciting.

Fun is when snakes are more interesting than a view of the Columbia River Gorge.

And goofing around with my friends as we pedal to some distant locale, teasing each other, stopping randomly, and not having to be anywhere at a specific time? Definitely fun.