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Messages - adventurepdx

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General Discussion / Re: Shipping Supplies to Yourself
« on: April 05, 2013, 01:15:34 pm »
If you have a smartphone (iPhone or Android) or iPod Touch/iPad, there is a USPS app that is pretty useful for finding zip codes, post office locations/hours, rates, and the like.

Another option is getting stuff shipped to a place you are staying at, if you know in advance. If you know you're going to be staying at a particular hotel/hostel or even a Warmshowers host, you can contact them and ask if they'd accept a package for you.

Classifieds / SOLD: Domex Traveller 550 90/10 Down Sleeping Bag
« on: April 03, 2013, 09:10:22 pm »
For sale is a Domex Traveller 550 90/10 Down Sleeping Bag. Domex  is a New Zealand sleeping bag company.

The shape of the bag is "semi-rectangular", which is somewhere in between a more traditional rectangular bag and a modern mummy bag. The rough dimensions of the bag are 76 inches long and 28 inches at its widest near the top (head). It tapers down to 20 inches near the feet. Pretty standard size for average sized adults. It zips on the left size (or on your right side when you are in it).

The fill is 550g 90/10 duck down, the outer shell is nylon. I don't know the age but by the looks of it looks 90's vintage. I would consider this now a two-season bag for later spring and summer camping/touring.

Cosmetically the bag is in good shape with one caveat: there was a hole in the outer nylon shell that got patched...with a band aid. This was done by a previous owner. When I brought it by my local outdoor repair place a couple years ago when I obtained this bag, they advised me to leave it be. And it has held since then. It's on the bottom of the bag so you are not going to see it.

The sleeping bag's packed weight (packed into its storage sack) is 2 lbs, 9 ozs. The dimensions of the bag when packed are about 13" x 6" x 6", or 13 inches long with 23 inches of girth. The one great thing about this bag is it compresses really well: I used an 11L compression sack and had room to spare. (Compression sack not included.)

The price of the bag is $40 plus shipping. Local pickup in Portland, OR. It would probably fit into a medium sized Priority Mail flat rate box just fine. I'll ship it outside the US, but you probably are not going to want to pay for that shipping. Payment via paypal.

More photos here:

Gear Talk / Re: Shaving Creme
« on: April 02, 2013, 02:22:42 pm »
Has anybody tried Dr Bronners...

Yep, I have, and love its multi-purposeness. It was also mentioned above in Post #8.

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Missoula to the Pacific
« on: March 31, 2013, 01:42:26 pm »
I think a lot more may have to do with where you want to end. All three routes get you to "the coast". But the L&C and TranAm get you to Astoria, Oregon, which is less than 10 miles from the actual Pacific. The NT ends in Anacortes, Washington, which is on the Puget Sound, not the actual Pacific Ocean. To get to the actual Pacific from there would require a ferry ride and a few more days of riding.

I've ridden the NT to Missoula, but went through Spokane and then used the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes to get to Missoula, so I can't speak on using MT 200.

Gear Talk / Re: Camping Gas/stove
« on: March 27, 2013, 09:13:07 pm »
I fancy my self to be a culinary snob, and I prefer cooking on my venerable Trangia.  The flame front is spot on perfect for cooking and then there is  that marvelous simmer ring if you need it.  I have not done omelettes as there is that whole eggs not packing well thing,  but I am pretty sure I could if I wanted to.  I have not done pancakes either but I will try that on my next trip.

I have cooked both eggs and pancakes on a Trangia, and have done just fine. Even with the mini-Trangia (28) set. Yes, you have to watch them carefully, but you can do it. I don't have any photos of cooking eggs, but I just so happen to have a couple of cooking pancakes. Ironically enough, the caption on my flickr stream for it is: "The perfect pancake. Who says you can't make pancakes with a Trangia?"

Gear Talk / Re: Touring bikes...
« on: March 24, 2013, 02:35:22 am »
Anyways - you have been very helpful - I thought I let you know what bike it is going to be.
Ta da!
The brakes will be upgraded, the gearing might be a triple and the tires won´t be that fat.

Hey Cat! Intrepid tourers Russ and Laura of Path Less Pedaled currently have Salsa Vayas. A very thorough write-up here:

And there are a few Salsa dealers in Portland, too.

Gear Talk / Re: Shaving Creme
« on: March 20, 2013, 10:49:01 pm »
You have to shave?

For myself on tour, I don't have to shave, but I prefer to, as I don't want to grow a beard in the summer. I don't shave as often as I would be at home, but will do it when I get tired of stubble and an opportunity presents itself. So I end up bringing a bottle of Pacific Shave Oil. It's very small, lasts a long time, and gets the job done.

General Discussion / Re: Touring Question
« on: March 20, 2013, 08:01:02 pm »
Choose the life style that works for you!

That is something that folks often seem to not get.  They say that they can't go because of their job or whatever, but don't seem to recognize that their situation is the result of their own choices...I have always considered my "spare time activities" to have a pretty high priority in my career choices.  Yes I have had to compromise at times, but I have always valued leisure time activities and at least keep that in mind when making career and financial choices.

These are two very good points!

As for myself: I've been touring since 2005. I have been lucky to have a job that allowed me to take decent chunks of time off to do things like bike tours. It's in the travel/lodging industry, and it doesn't pay much, but I personally prefer time to money. Two years ago, my girlfriend and I did a long (4+ month) tour across the continent. I had to leave my job for that, as it was too much time off, and during the height of the busy season. Returning to town, I didn't have a steady job until last fall, when I got my old job back. I haven't had the itch to do a real long tour again (yet), so I'm planning on taking a couple one-two week tours that aren't during the height of the busy season. I'm sure that I'll want to do another summer-long tour at some point, and when that happens, I'll be prepared to do what it takes.

If your life doesn't allow you to do a grand, months-long bike tour, you can always do shorter ones. True, it's not the same as a grand tour, but I believe in working with what you got, until the urge to do the big thing overpowers everything else.

Everything has been SOLD.

Classifieds / SOLD: Various camp stoves/cookware
« on: March 14, 2013, 03:26:06 pm »
Update: Everything SOLD.

I’m “thinning the herd" of some of my bike touring stoves and cookware. All of the items below are still in good working condition, but most show signs of use and wear. (Bottoms of pots scratched and blemished, etc.) All items available for shipping in the US, shipping prices NOT included in prices quoted. (If you are out of the country, I could ship it to you, but you won't like the postage.) I'm willing to give discounts if you buy multiple items together, and obviously it will save you on shipping costs. Local pickup available in Portland, Oregon. All items currently available unless otherwise noted.

  • Optimus Terra Kettle. Nice little lightweight camping teakettle. Anodized aluminum, 0.7 litre capacity, 5.4 ounce weight (sans liquid.) $10
  • Clikstand S-2. This is a nice and nifty lightweight aluminum pot holder/"windscreen" designed to be used with a Trangia alcohol burner (though a pop can stove should also work.) Packs down small and light. While it works ok in light wind, you'll want a windscreen (either home made or the one Clikstand sells) if conditions are pretty breezy. Pots/pans should be fairly wide too. For example the teakettle will work but the GSI pot won't. Weight 3.3 oz. $15
  • GSI Soloist nesting pot/bowl combo. The bowl (orange) nests inside the pot, along with a fuel canister (the green can, for example) and canister fuel stove (the Vargo). Pot is anodized aluminum with 1.0 litre capacity. Carrying bag included. $15
  • MSR Flex Skillet. Aluminum pan with non-stick coating inside. 9 inch diameter, 1.5 litre capacity. Removable handle for easy storage. Note: a couple nicks on the non-stick surface but nothing major. $15
  • Trangia alcohol burner. The Swedish original, and still the best (in my opinion). Trangia burners use either metyhl alcohol (HEET here in the States) or denatured alcohol. About 3 oz fuel capacity. To be used with a potholder like the Clikstand S-2. $5
  • Vargo Titanium canister fuel stove. Lightweight and easy to use! To be used with an isobutane/propane type canister like the one pictured at top of post. (The canister is included with the stove for local pickup, but can't be shipped, sorry.) $15

For more detailed photos of all items, please go here:

General Discussion / Re: Question: Highway Troubles?
« on: March 03, 2013, 12:14:31 pm »
In most places bicycles are forbidden to use Interstate and other limited access highways.  The only places that allow bicycles on them are where alternative roads either don't exist or are considered so far away they are impractical.  When you have to be on an Interstate it's because there is no good alternative.

Not always so. In a lot of western states, bicycle riding on Interstates anywhere outside of urban areas is perfectly legal. In Oregon, for example, I can legally ride the length of I-5 from near the junction of I-205 south of Portland all the way south to the California line (with the exception of a section through Medford). And I can ride 84 east of the Portland Metro area east to Idaho.

But I agree with everyone else who says try to ride on the Interstates as little as possible.

Routes / Re: Great Divide South-to-North Start.
« on: January 29, 2013, 11:59:18 pm »
You can also take Amtrak to El Paso. You'll be able to box your bike and take it with you on the train as long as your origin station has checked baggage service.

Routes / Re: Duluth MN to Madison WI
« on: January 29, 2013, 11:56:56 pm »
I've biked between Duluth and Madison, though in separate stages over the span of several years.

Getting out of Duluth, a great way is the Munger Trail, a rail trail that's about 70 miles long. It heads southward to Hinkley:

From there, you can ride on 61 south to North Branch, and pick up another trail, the Sunrise Prairie, which parallels 61 south for about 17 miles to Forest Lake:

At this point, you are in the Minneapolis-St. Paul suburbs. You can bypass the Twin Cities and hook up with the Northern Tier which will bring you south through the Mississippi Valley, or take WI 35 down to Marshland and hook up with the Great River Trail. This is the start of a series of four interconnected trails totaling 100 miles in length, and includes the La Crosse River,  Elroy-Sparta (the Grandaddy of all rail-trails0, and the 400. 

This will bring you to Reesburg, WI, which is about another day of riding to Madison on back roads. I don't exactly remember the routing from there (and probably didn't take the best route) so I'll let someone else follow up.

Routes / Re: First time Los Angeles to Vancouver
« on: December 05, 2012, 09:33:26 pm »
What staehpj1 says. If you dig through enough threads here and on other forums like Bikeforums, you'll find a lot of confirmation of said conventional wisdom.

That being said, May is a pretty transitional time on the Pacific Coast in regards to weather, at least north of San Francisco. You can get some nice days and some rainy days. Stormy weather can also mean the prevailing NW wind can turn and come out of the south, meaning headwind.

Can you fly into Vancouver instead?

I like the Northern Tier route, too, but I wouldn't sell the Trans-Am short, at least the Oregon section from Eugene to Hell's Canyon. Quite a bit of mountain passes as well. No "four passes in four days" like the NT, but there is the "three passes in one day" section from Prairie City to Baker City. McKenzie Pass is great if you time it so you can cross it, and the Painted Hills country near Mitchell? I don't think there's anything quite like it on the NT through Washington.

So to complicate things, I'll throw out yet another routing option: Head south from Vancouver BC and pick up the Sierra Cascades route and take that until you intersect with the Trans-Am route in Central Oregon. I haven't done all of SC through this area, just parts (Sierra Cascades overlaps the Northern Tier from Sedro-Wooley to Twisp).

Options, options. A lot of things to think about.

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