The wind and snow whipped around us outside a Starbucks in Snoqualmie, Washington, and our group of 11 looked around at each other and giggled nervously. Some people had hardtail mountain bikes, others had gravel-specific bikes, but I felt confident that my Super Jake was the right choice. We all half-jokingly discussed our options for bailing out on the 50-mile gravel ride ahead of us, but when my friend Mal said “let’s go!” we all got on our bikes and rolled out in a group of high-vis spandex and blinky lights. Shredsgiving 2019 had begun, despite the foulest weather we had ever encountered. Almost every year for the past few years, my friends have organized this soul-crushing winter gravel ride in the name of “fun”, which goes up and around the tallest mountains just east of Seattle. It’s one of those experiences where the group suffering brings everyone closer together…and isn’t that what the holidays are all about?