Wenmei’s Journey from Solo Cyclist to Ride Leader in One Season

  • Wenmei Hill went from STP rookie to Ride Leader thanks to the Cascade Training Series.
  • “CTS changed my life. I recommend it to everyone.” 
Riding my electric cargo bike is my favorite thing

Paul Tolmé

Wenmei is all smiles while riding

For many years, Wenmei Hill was a fair-weather rider who avoided hills, rode solo, and pedaled short distances.

Now, Hill is a bicycling social butterfly and Seattle to Portland finisher who flies uphill, pedals through the winter, and leads group rides so that others may learn from her experience. In July, she plans to complete her second consecutive STP as an STP Ambassador.

Wenmei crosses the finish line at STP 2023

Hill credits her cycling evolution to the Cascade Training Series, a 12-weekend training series of progressively longer rides that prepare you for endurance events such as the Kaiser Permanente Seattle to Portland presented by Alaska Airlines. 

“I’m so glad I did CTS. It changed my life,” Hill says. “I went from not riding much at all to riding every weekend.”

The camaraderie Hill found on Cascade rides led her to become a 2024 CTS Ride Leader, a Free Group Rides Leader, and STP Ambassador. “Everyone in Cascade is so welcoming and supportive. I don’t even think of bicycling as exercise anymore. It’s just my social outlet.” 

Register for CTS

CTS 2024 runs from April 13 to July 7. The training series offers four pace groups, which means you can train at a leisurely, steady, moderate, or brisk pace.

In addition to making you stronger in the saddle, CTS teaches group-riding skills and offers tips on nutrition, hydration, and basic bike mechanics. It also expands your friend group.

“I recommend CTS to everyone I meet who wants to do STP,” Hill says.

Cascade is seeking experienced riders to lead CTS events

Are you an STP finisher with a desire to teach others? Cascade is seeking more experienced riders like Hill to become CTS Ride Leaders and Free Group Rides Leaders. Click here for information on becoming a Ride Leader.

Clarinets, Mental Health, and Friends

Like many adults, Hill gave up bicycling for many years due to parental and work responsibilities. 

Hill’s earliest memories of bicycling date to her childhood on a U.S. military base in Germany, where she pedaled to band practice with her clarinet strapped to the handlebars. 

Hill was an avid bike commuter while attending graduate school at the University of Washington, but she then stopped bicycling regularly until becoming involved with Cascade in 2020–first as a participant in the Ride for Major Taylor, Seattle Bike-n-Brews, and Woodinville Wine Ride, and then through CTS and Free Group Rides in 2023.  

Bicycling is now “a huge part of my mental health and happiness,” says Hill, who lives in Seattle and works in tech. 

Wenmei flying during the 2023 Seattle to Portland

GR2R = Getting Ready to Ride

Prior to the start of CTS in April, Cascade hosts the Getting Ready to Ride (GR2R) series of Free Group Rides that enable individuals to train through the winter and spring. GR2R is offered in four locations: Seattle, South, Eastside, and North/Snohomish County. 

Click here for GR2R rides info.

If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll get to ride with and learn from Wenmei.  

“When I’m riding, I actively think about how happy I am,” Hill says. “I feel stronger now at age 51 than at any time in my life.”

Wenmei enjoying the 2023 STP


Share this post