59-year-old Chicago man bikes around all 5 Great Lakes

Published: Aug. 2, 2022 at 4:05 PM EDT
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HARVEY, Mich. (WLUC) - Jim Kreps completed his 1,400-mile biking journey around Lake Superior Tuesday which is the last of five Great Lakes he has biked.

Kreps said he first began the journey 12 years ago.

“I woke up one day with my friend and we biked around Lake Michigan and after Lake Michigan, I did Lake Erie followed by Ontario followed by Huron then here at Superior,” Kreps said.

Kreps said finishing Superior was not an easy feat. The journey took him 24 days, riding 60 miles per day. He biked a total of 50,000 feet in inclines, mostly in Canada.

“By bike, you can see anything at a much slower pace and that’s what I love about going around these lakes,” Kreps said.

And one of the benefits of being at a slower pace is taking in the history of the Great Lakes.

“Both the maritime history and lighthouses, there are lots of lighthouses I love to see around the lakes,” Kreps said.

Kreps said he prepared to do tours by biking to work every day in Chicago.

“That’s 10 miles in the morning and 10 miles in the afternoon in the snow, cold weather, anything,” Kreps said.

And before biking Superior, he trained even more than usual.

“I started riding Saturdays and Sundays 50 or 60 miles back to back. That’s one of the challenges of doing a tour is to wake up every morning and ride again,” Kreps said.

Now that he’s finished with the Great Lakes, he plans to bike the Pacific Coastline, Atlantic Coastline, and across the United States.

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