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Here is a pic of my LHT and SKS fenders exactly as they were installed by my LBS.
I have ridden in some pretty heavy rain this year with absolutely no issues whatsoever. No toe overlap, (I am 6'2" and the bike is a 60cm). No excess spray.
I called Harris Cyclery to see if possibly my fenders had been installed incorrectly and I explained why I was asking by quoting some of the posts in this thread. They laughed and said they have seen FAR MORE problems with fenders mounted too close than too far.
I mostly plan to stay on roads, but I imagine I may encounter some dirt paths or gravel roads, so I surmise I'll want to keep a little extra fender clearance.
I agree that the only issue with fender placement would be "toe strike" during turns and if you are not having that problem then ride on my friend.
I thought Washington and Rainy Passes were more spectacular than Sherman, at least from the east.
The only thing I don't like about the dry sak is that it doesn't have any dividers.That can easily be remedied by buying 3-4 stuff sacks to organize your gear.
I settled on the southerly route from SF only because it's a classic one, but I'm certainly interested in alternatives. Only hitch is I have to start and end in San Francisco,One option would be to ride north and into Oregon. The redwoods are north of San Francisco, and the Avenue of the Giants was probably the most incredible thing I saw all summer on my tour. You also follow the Eel river for quite a ways, which is really beautiful. So, riding north you would experience the scenic riding in the redwoods, and then the beauty of the Oregon coast. Or you could start out by taking a train north, and then ride back to San Francisco--that way you would be going in the same direction as most of the other cyclists. For me, the riding from San Francisco to Los Angeles was the low light of my trip.
or does everything come with you all the time?