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Messages - John Nettles

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1
Routes / Re: Great Parks South Sec. #1
« on: April 24, 2016, 09:10:30 pm »
If I remember correct, the prohibition was recently lifted after a court battle.  Perhaps others can help answer if bikers are prohibited any long.

2
Routes / Re: Texas to DC
« on: April 24, 2016, 09:07:38 pm »
Since this is your first time touring, you might want to ride north to Kansas (I can help you with a route) then connect with the TransAm route in Girard, KS, and head east on it until the Blue Ridge Parkway.  From there, go north on the Skyline Road to Front Royal, over to Purcellville, VA, and take the bike path into DC.

The TransAm is the original route and probably a couple of thousand ride across it.  Since you are not overly experienced, you should avoid doing Route 66 to save a few miles as parts of it are a bit heavy traffic and/or no-shoulders.

Are you mostly camping, staying in motels, eating out, cooking your own food, traveling solo or with other buddies, etc.?  These answers can help with route suggestions.  Believe it or not, 74 is not uncommon when it comes to bike touring.  I regularly do tours with people in their mid to late 70s.  As long as you are in fair shape (but great shape helps!) and more importantly know your limits, you will do fine.

Best, John

3
Routes / Re: where can I buy aca maps.
« on: April 21, 2016, 08:16:37 am »
I have seen them online at other places, CycloCamping I think, eBay, etc.  And once in Jackson, WY (used copy) way back in early 90s.

As Indyfabz says they can be shipped to any post office box care of General Delivery so they are waiting for you.

However, if you do this route, I would plan on at least week to receive them due to the USPS.  A few years ago, I ordered an ACA map for my son who altered his route.  I ordered on a Monday, mailed from Missoula (of course) to Salt Lake City, UT, and was supposed to get there on a Thursday for a Friday pickup.  It had to be rerouted THREE times before it caught him in El Centro, CA (where he left the ACA route to go into Mexico toward Cabo San Lucas, arrgh).  It kept missing even though ACA mailed the same day I ordered it (ACA Store staff are great!) and every time had at least 1 "buffer" day for the USPS to deliver based on their schedule..  Lesson:  Order so it has at least three buffer days to arrive.

4
Routes / Re: Great Parks South Sec. #1
« on: April 19, 2016, 11:58:11 am »
While I have not ridden through Black Hawk/Central City, I have ridden through Dillon & Frisco (and lots of other places).  Even though the directions sound hard at times, it typically is easy to do once you are onsite.  Additionally, I have found it helps immensely by looking at a Google street view map in advance so I can visualize what they are saying.

You will do fine.

5
I crossed a few years ago here but I accessed Crump Park via Metal Museum Drive as I was coming from the south and then heading west.  Can't say is still feasible now.  I would avoid doing at night or within an hour of dusk or dawn.  Seemed a bit sketchy to me but it worked.

6
Routes / Re: Rte 66, East to West, beginning June 1...
« on: April 04, 2016, 08:36:09 pm »
It is doable BUT:  Expect 95+ degree days everyday after OKC (85-90 before then).  Easily can top 100.  Start at dawn (not 7:00am), quit by 1:00pm and you will be fine.  Plan on lots of hotels unless you like to sleep in upper 70s to low 80s temps.  When a cool day does occur, it is almost always because a cold front is bringing rain.

It goes get cooler further west but at higher elevation.  Obviously, drink a TON of water, i.e. your pee should not be yellow but clear.  Eat potato chips or other salty items to keep your electrolytes up.  You will have some headwinds until you get to OKC as the wind is frequently out of the SSW to SW.

Worst case?  Move to Canada and rent your brain out to the hockey leagues.  If you come through Tulsa (and I am not touring myself up north), I can give you a night inside as we are about 1 mile or so off Route 66.

Best, John

7
Routes / Re: TransAm question
« on: April 01, 2016, 09:19:32 am »
You have looked at the route network, correct? https://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/adventure-cycling-route-network/interactive-network-map/

Some start from Florence, OR.  You can also do a slight short cut from say John Day to Jackson (but you miss a lot of incredible scenery).  Another option is to start from Astoria and do the L&C route to Kooskia, ID and switch to the TA.

8
Routes / Re: Atlanta to St. Louis route ideas?
« on: March 21, 2016, 12:31:35 pm »
While I can't help you entirely, if you can get to Tennessee or Mississippi, I can get you some routes from there.  Since this is your first long trip, I would suggest you consider getting over to Mississippi and using the various ACA routes to get you to STL.  My routes are for slightly more experienced tourists, i.e. have to ask occasionally for camping, etc. but they are shorter overall.

Best, John

9
Routes / Re: Fort Knox,KY restricted?
« on: March 20, 2016, 01:00:27 pm »
As you know every military base is a bit different.  I usually just call to find out.  They have always readily told me the answer and if yes, what I need, i.e. any ID, a passport, etc.  I then typically call a couple of days in advance to confirm the info is still valid.

10
Routes / Re: My route for cross country 2016, ideas?
« on: March 19, 2016, 12:42:33 pm »
Looks to be both are now open based on the info on the same page.

11
Routes / Re: Southern Tier route options on map 2
« on: March 07, 2016, 06:13:14 pm »
Numerous people have, especially recent Great Divide.  Again, just do a search on CrazyGuy on Cliff Dwelling and you should be able to find several journals.  You should note that the road between Gila Cliff Dwellings and Silver City is very hilly, both directions.  Northbound is longer but less steep, southbound is shorter climbs but steeper. You would be northbound coming from Silver City.

12
Routes / Re: Southern Tier route options on map 2
« on: March 03, 2016, 12:49:46 pm »
There is one journal over on CrazyGuyonaBike that has a day or two on the third option.  Jeff Kruys did it I think.  Take a look over there.  I too would do the third option.  Might be info on there regarding the updated routing also.

Hope this helps.  John

13
Routes / Re: Summer riding in Idaho: from Ketchum to Coeur d'Alene
« on: February 29, 2016, 08:26:08 am »
Indyfabz,

Isn't is amazing what you can see by going "off route" and/or doing a little gravel.  Nice pics.

14
Routes / Re: Summer riding in Idaho: from Ketchum to Coeur d'Alene
« on: February 26, 2016, 09:08:40 am »
We are doing a loop in this area this summer (Spokane>Missoula>Lewiston>Spokane).  Yes, you can take the frontage road most of the way.  If you want to avoid gravel, it appears you must take the interstate in a couple of places.
According to a local source, the scenic route between Frenchtown & Missoula than the fast route.  The scenic goes from Frenchtown along Mullan Road>Kona Ranch>Big Flat>city streets/bike path into Missoula.  Obviously reverse if going west bound.


One thing we are doing is going from Avery (bottom of Hiawatha Route east along the St. Joe River, then up over the Divide on NF-388 (paved) then down on NF-282 (gravel) into St. Regis.  Very scenic, low traffic but no services other than vault toilets and camping for about 60 miles between Avery & St. Regis.  It does have one noteworthy climb and descent.

It is a shame about the interstate construction as I preferred to do that over the NorPac but oh well.

15
Routes / Re: TransAm Summer 2017
« on: February 24, 2016, 02:21:50 pm »
Not trying to sound rude but are you asking a question, looking for companions, or ????

If this will be your first real tour, I STRONGLY encourage you to do this as a one-way trip.  A 125 much less a 146 mile per day average, while possible, would be nothing but rising early, riding until late, and sleeping.  As a teacher, I would guess you would want to stop and look at some of the history, sights, etc.  That would be difficult at 125 a day.

I would suggest you do the TA, then when you hit the Pacific Coast, head south along the PCR until time runs out.  This way, you are not beholden to HAVING to do 125 miles a day.

I once met a guy on tour who did exactly what you are proposing but it was the Northern Tier (which is easier than the TA).  He said he hated touring (I met him in Grand Forks, ND on his return portion of Seattle/Boston/Seattle tour) cause all he did was ride.  He was averaging 115 or 125/day (can't remember) and was in his late 20s so was pretty strong.

I encouraged him to slow down and smell the roses but he just wanted to get it over with.

Do your first trip the way it is meant to be, an exploration of the country, not a speed ride across it.

I'll get off my soapbox now.  Whatever you do, I hope you enjoy the ride!  John

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