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Messages - yumadons

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Routes / Re: Linking TransAm (W>E) to Katy Trail back to TransAm
« on: August 23, 2012, 02:44:48 pm »
I'd be interested too John.

We're doing the same thing in a few weeks and our tentative plan is:

Leave TransAm @ Rush Center (actually we stay in LaCrosse, KS overnite) > Great Bend > Lyons > McPherson > Hillsboro > Strong City > Lebo > Garnett > La Cygne > Butler, MO > Clinton, MO

We're moteling it the whole way at a slow pace, I've called ahead to make sure there's lodging in all these towns. My husband will be driving the route in the next few days so I'll post back here if he finds any glitches. We're not getting back on the TA - going south on the Mississippi River Trail in St. Louis, heading to South Carolina.

Maybe we'll see ya out there - we're leaving Pueblo Sept 2.

Routes / Re: Arizona 288 --Globe-Young Hwy?
« on: July 12, 2012, 10:38:04 am »
288 is a windy, hilly, dirt road. I've only driven it once years ago and don't think there's much on there. I don't remember anything about the town of Young. 

At 13mph, you'll be able to keep up with a group. As Indy said, the limiting factor will be finding a group who motels it the whole way without doing wildly long days, most do at least some camping.

If you end up organizing your own group, I have 2 resources for you. Stephanie Kirz wrote "Bicycling The TransAm," (available @ Amazon), where she rode E2W with her husband, moteling it with no extreme distances tho they brought camping gear. I emailed her to ask if they ever had to use it and got no reply.

Or for W2E, my husband and I rode the western half of the TransAm to Pueblo, CO, last year - 43 miles per day average, no camping gear, all motels. We're doing the rest this year, but we're not staying on the TransAm. Starting in Pueblo, cutting over to the Katy, then down the Mississippi River Trail, then Chief Ladiga / Silver Comet to end at Hilton Head, SC. If you wanted to motel the eastern half of the TransAm, I don't think you'd have any trouble, towns are closer together in the east than
 the west. We're just wimps who don't want to do the Ozarks or Appalachians  8-)

Routes / Re: Starting the Southern Tier in June
« on: June 15, 2012, 11:08:43 am »
Summertime in AZ, I start riding at 5 am to be done by noon or so. You'll do fine as long as you plan on moteling it cuz you're not gonna want to be in a tent in the heat of the day. Call ahead to make sure places are open - as someone else said, tourist businesses in AZ are seasonal (our population doubles when the snowbirds are here in the winter) and many close from ~ April to November.

We ride Ogilby road a lot (it's white, not asphalt) - it's quiet once the snowbirds are gone, way better than 78 with its truck traffic and no shoulder. No services / water anywhere on Ogilby. There's so little shade in the area that it's worth telling you that at the junction of 78 and Ogilby, if you go down Ogilby ~ 1/4 mile, on the right there's a park sign atop a sittable brick mini-wall that throws some shade and makes a good "picnic area."

General Discussion / Re: trike riding the transam and rumble strips
« on: May 20, 2012, 10:40:03 am »
Shootrrdave, we met what I think might be a tandem quad on the TransAm last summer:

 He said they weren't allowed in Yellowstone and had to go around it. His website is

General Discussion / Re: Rain pants? Yay or Nay
« on: March 17, 2012, 12:37:15 pm »
You need an extra layer over your tights to descend the (cold) mountain passes anyway, so why not make that layer rainpants? Just get some that look normal enough to wear out and about if you need to. Something like REI Ultralight Rain Pants. These aren't shiny and don't sound or feel like garbage bags rubbing together while walking. And they have front pockets ;)


General Discussion / Re: Which sunscreen?
« on: March 14, 2012, 08:48:26 am »
I'm a fair skinned Arizona rider who goes thru a spray can of sunscreen every 3 days and used to just pick the "on sale" brand of the day. Both dermatologists I've seen have recommend Neutrogena and it does have the added perk of not staining your clothes. I spent a half hour in Walmart one day looking at all the sunscreens to see if any were labelled as non-staining of clothes and there aren't any. So when you're touring with only 2 outfits, it's nice not to ruin them  ;)

General Discussion / Re: how safe is it to ride in the US?
« on: February 29, 2012, 01:52:04 pm »
I say stick to the ACA routes where people are used to cyclists coming thru and you needn't be worried  ;)

General Discussion / Re: transam
« on: February 12, 2012, 06:02:23 pm »
I added some stats to my  "W2E leisurely TranAm no camping" blog - first half from North Bend / Coos Bay, OR to Pueblo, CO. It's on the Intro page and the results are:

Mileage from North Bend to Pueblo: 2050m
Riding days: 47
Rest days: 8 (4 of these were veterinary convention)
Avg mileage per riding day: 43.6m
Longest day: 71m (two of these)
Avg motel cost inc. tax: $86 (includes 20 breakfasts & 3 hot spring passes)
Total motel cost for 56 nites: $4832
Total loaded weight of Don's panniers / rack trunk / handlebar bag: 16#
Total loaded weight of Suzanne's panniers / rack trunk / handlebar bag: 27#

Don't forget that if you're carrying essental group cooking equipment, they can't start cooking til you get there. So if you're slow or like to screw around and get into camp late, carry the group tool kit. Heavy but works well because anyone who breaks down knows that you 'll eventually be along  ;)

You could easily do any of  those trips! I'm a slow girl rider your age. My husband and I trained for this summer's TransAm in totally flat Yuma, AZ (laser planed for agricultural irrigation). I ride a mountain bike with the whole anti-flat 2" slimed, linered tire setup and go a whopping 8-12 mph most of the time. 3 mph up mountain passes, 14-15 with a tailwind  :-)

Our training ride was 50 miles, no hills. Don has COPD so we took a weekend trip up to 6,000 feet to see what would happen & he was fine (albeit on a Trek electric-assist bike, FX+).  I've also done AC's Northern Tier and its discontinued North Star (Missoula to Anchorage, AK, half dirt roads) with 50 mile training rides in Mesa, AZ with only one hill. Not ever having ridden with a club, I was totally unfamiliar with the concept of spinning as I hit my first ever mountains, the Cascades, on my first ever tour, the Northern Tier. The group leader took one look, told me to get down in my lowest gear (luckily a mountain bike has really low gears) and spin! I did and went right over the Cascades and Rockies. I don't think I've ever stood up climbing hills and have never (yet) walked one. Just make sure you get a bike with low gears!!

My understanding of high altitude disease is that it's random - fit people can suffer just like the unfit. I was afraid COPD husband would have trouble on Hoosier Pass (11,500') but it turned out to be no problem. Cycling apparently isn't as oxygen demanding as hiking because Don would have to stop and catch his breath once or twice on the ~  500' walk uphill from the Keystone convention center to our hotel room. It helped that we had gradually acclimated by cycling over progressively higher passes coming from the west coast. Since you will not have this luxury, here are 3 ideas. 1) several people in the ski town of Keystone, CO told us it helps to SLEEP at high elevation before exercising there, so maybe you could come a few days early. 2) we bought packets of a powdered Gatorade - type product that is supposed to prevent altitude sickness called Acli-Mate at the Grant Lodge store in Yellowstone  3) avoid caffeine on altitude days.

Routes / Re: Dipping the tire in Florence Oregon.
« on: January 11, 2012, 12:55:26 pm »
As of Aug 2011, if you take a left into the Harbor Vista Park entrance, the park is way high above the ocean, no wheel dip. There are stairs you can walk down but you couldn't bring your bike.  If instead of turning in to the park, you continue to the end of the road, there is a big parking lot for the jetty. From there you *could* take off the panniers and push / carry thru ~ 1/4 mile of sand DUNES to dip your wheels but there's nowhere to leave your stuff safe while you do this. No dip for us  8-)

TransAm 2011

General Discussion / Re: Best cycling town/area on Atlantic coast?
« on: November 27, 2011, 12:14:23 pm »
Hilton Head Island, SC?
1. Savannah International Airport
2. Nice & flat with paved bike trails everywhere. Don't know about off road.
3. Beach, temperate, & HHI never gets hit by hurricanes.
    Hottest month is July (avg high 89-90, avg low 73-74)
4. GOLF & retirement mecca, cyclists OK ;) Del Webb has a Sun City just off the island in Bluffton if you   
    like those.
5 & 6. Plenty of shopping /restaurants but reasonably tasteful & "environmental" (can't cut down trees, can't have bright 
          lights - some of those shops & restaurants can be hard to find!)

 We own an RV lot there for retirement, haven't gotten to use it yet.


General Discussion / Re: TransAmerica 2012
« on: November 22, 2011, 08:28:11 am »
Per room


staehpj1, if you haven't seen it already, you must look up (CGOAB) Stefan Steen's trip from BC, Canada to NYC with only seatbags! They don't list their equipment but it only takes reading their journal to figure out what they brought. I thought we packed pretty lite but these guys are amazing. Part of the difference is that hardy Canadians don't require the warm clothes that wimpy Arizonans do  ;) 


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