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Ode to the Parking Lot Beer

Two mountain bikers hike up a slope with bikes on their shoulders Sometimes "riding" is more of a state of mind

I’m only two miles into an 8 mile pedal up the mountain and already I’m dragging. I’ve done this climb dozens of times before, but today my legs are just dragging. Mile marker 3. It feels as if my legs are pushing through wet concrete. Mile marker 4. Halfway there. I try desperately to get my mind to focus on other things. Work projects. A fried chicken sandwich. Beer. And then it clicks -- I’ve got a cooler of beer waiting in my truck at the bottom. Suddenly, mile marker 6, then 7, flies by and I make the final push for the summit.



As I top out and take a seat in order to strap on my knee pads for the descent, my face slowly transforms from #rbf (resting bro face) to a smile, subtle at first, then beaming. You see, all that lies between me and a frosty cold beverage is 2,000 vertical feet of flowy mountain bike trail winding all the way back to my truck. If I remember correctly from Strava, my best time t2b is about 15 minutes. No problem. And off I go, en route to what will likely be my fastest time down the mountain of the summer.


three friends cheers while standing in snow PLB's know no season.


There comes a point in every bike ride (or hike, or splitboarding trek, or general adventure) when it registers in your brain that the distance between you and a parking lot beer (PLB) is no longer a distant concept and is now within reach; and for good reason -- that parking lot is the happiest of places. A place to reflect on what you just accomplished. A place of high fives and washing dusty scrapes with the last of your water bottle. A time to bask in the residual glow that accompanies your recent accomplishment. And like the icing on a cake, that PLB helps you prolong that glow.


If you want to level up your PLB game, consider adding a few of the following options to your vehicle for comfort and convenience:

  • Chips!
  • Camping Chairs
  • A few cups
  • Extra PLB’s (someone always forgets to bring one)
  • A thermos of water -- hydration with only PLB’s is not recommended for obvious reasons
  • A spare shirt and shorts (because nobody likes to stand around in a wet chamois)


Pro Tip: PLB and PLW can be used interchangeably.


Once you pack up the gear and load up the vehicle, it’s back to the real world. Whether that means work, grocery story, yard work or whatever, you never know how long it’s going to be until you get to experience that blissful feeling again. So before you rush off to the real world, take a seat on that tailgate and crack a cold one.





a girl sits on the tailgate of her car drinking a beer No ride is complete without proper parking lot hydration.


a man enjoys a beer at the back of his truck Go ahead, bask in that post-adventure glow... you never know how long it will be until your next chance to experience that feeling.
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