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Messages - johnsondasw

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46
Routes / Re: What the weather like in March Baker City, OR to Coburg, OR
« on: February 16, 2016, 04:51:54 pm »
I have done a lot of eastern WA biking in all times of year.  We have similar conditions to those you will encounter. Expect everything from very cold and windy with rain/snow to occasional bluebird days with highs in the 60's.  Nights are cold so have a good tent and sleeping bag.  It's a nice time to be out there with little tourist traffic and crisp air.  Enjoy!

47
General Discussion / Re: State Park Camping
« on: February 15, 2016, 07:06:39 pm »
Oregon and California had great hiker biker sites at only $2 to $5 per night and always hot showers for a few quarters back in 2005.  I'm not sure of the status now, because some campgrounds may have closed due to budget problems.

48
I have generally found the AC routes to be so easy to follow that I leave my dedicated GPS home.  I do sometimes use my smart phone for directions to a particular stop, service, or attraction.

I have used an etrex for an on/off road tour and it worked out well.  Personally though I found it a lot more trouble to program in the route, deal with batteries, and so on than it is worth on most routes especially if you will be on the road only.

I have never used GPS.  I like Pete's advise.  Use maps, intuition, ask the locals  (although they rarely know anything about their own area!), get lost on occasion; it's all part of the adventure.  I really think many of us are way too hung up on gadgets and electronics.  I'm such a dinosaur that I still don't use my own earphones at the gym or out on a walk, etc!

49
General Discussion / Re: Careful where you buy stuff
« on: February 01, 2016, 12:00:11 am »
When we got to Oakland CA for a ride down the coast I decided we needed a chain long enough to lock both our bikes up. I went into a bike shop on the waterfront and found a Kryptonite chain for $62. So I bought one and well it served. After I got back I went to my LBS, Burien Bikes,

Burien Bikes, huh?  Is it the one called Bicycles West just east of Ambaum and north of 152nd?  I grew up going to that bike shop in the 1950s and 1960s and have bought bikes and much gear there.

50
Gear Talk / Re: Lookin for rain poncho
« on: January 01, 2016, 12:09:15 pm »
I have ridden many hours in the rain.  I wear a cheap bike jacket shell that deflects most of the rain for the first hour or so. After a while, I'm getting wet form sweat, too, and I've never found a way around it.  The key to me is making sure that I have dry clothes to put on as soon as the riding is over. Clothes must be kept in waterproof containers/bags. 

51
General Discussion / Re: Down Tube Shifters
« on: December 30, 2015, 08:43:07 pm »
I had them back in the 60s and 70s, but would never opt for them now.  I like not having to let go of the bars to shift.  I think its more stable, safe, and less distracting to be able to shift while maintaining control of the bars.   

52
Routes / Re: Route from SF to LA
« on: December 11, 2015, 08:26:18 pm »
Just follow the coast highway. I did it with roadmaps and DOT maps. DOT will send maps for free, or they did in 1993, anyway.

In 2005, we found this to be not so easy, esp from Santa Barbara to just south of Oxnard.  It was extremely confusing in places there. 

53
Routes / Re: Transam: solo or group ride? Has anyone done both?
« on: December 11, 2015, 08:21:55 pm »
I have done solo and group and supported group.  There is no "better: here.  they each have their advantages.  The company in social rides is a real plus, but the freedom and feeling of independence on solo rides are great too. I never regret either one and am just about always happy (well, or at least fully engaged!) when adventuring.

54
Routes / Re: What is better? Zion or Bryce Canyon?
« on: December 11, 2015, 08:18:15 pm »
Zion.  Bigger, more options for hiking and biking  (not sure they let you bike on that main canyon road, though). However, I'd try to not have to choose b/c they are both fantastic.  If you go to Zion, be sure not to miss the cable route up Angel's Landing (you must not be an acrophobe, however, and it helps if you have scrambling experience). Bryce is limited in scope, but otherworldly  and beautiful.

55
I have taken wonderful tours in Eastern WA in the spring.  There are some good 3 day loops in SE WA, around Walla Walla, Pullman, Pomeroy, Tri-Cities, etc.  We always just look on map and go.  It gets very cold at night in the areas in March, but daytime riding is often possible w/o a coat.  I've even jumped in the water in mid-March near Central Ferry.

56
Gear Talk / Re: Water Filtration
« on: December 06, 2015, 12:42:48 am »
I've used iodine tablets many times, but not for day after day.  I wouldn't want to use them long term.

57
Routes / Re: Plummer ID to Ellensburg, WA
« on: December 06, 2015, 12:40:03 am »
Thanks so much for this helpful information, jamawani! 

 (We think we can get a ride across the bridge at Vantage.)
Not sure why you think this. Do you have someone who has agreed to meet you there and take you, bike, and gear, etc across? Or are you hoping to hitch across somehow?  I have ridden across it west to east in 1991.  We had 4 guys and did it in the AM before there was much traffic. It can be done, but you have to have a mirror, be very visible and somewhat lucky.  I wouldn't do it with kids.

58
Gear Talk / Re: Touring without fenders - big mistake?
« on: May 20, 2015, 01:20:25 am »
Never used them and don't plan to.  I know I get wetter without them, but that's ok. 

59
Pacific Northwest / Re: Good routes from Bremerton to Astoria?
« on: May 18, 2015, 01:33:07 pm »
I have ridden all these roads over the past 30+ years.  I would take HWY 3 from Bremerton to Shelton, then be sure to take the little country road up through Matlock.  This is the gem of the route, and it is paved.  There will be little traffic and lots of woods and local character. Then go through Aberdeen and out to Grayland, as others have mentioned.  From there, Raymond, South Bend, Naselle and across the Astoria bridge.  I rode the bridge in the almost dark, in the rain, and did not find it so harrowing. It is the only place I've ever seen a road-kill starfish, though.  I would have a mirror, of course, but I always have one no matter where I'm riding. This is all a great ride, and I've never felt any real danger on any of it.  Have fun, and don't miss Matlock!

60
Routes / Re: Touring From Seattle Beginning Early In May
« on: May 04, 2015, 02:05:19 pm »
Also, the I-90 bridge over the Columbia at Vantage is super dangerous.
No shoulder - zero - and pretty heavy traffic.
There is no old highway bridge option.
The Milwaukee Railroad bridge downstream remains closed, too.

This is unfortunate because the old highway from Ellensburg to Vantage is super.
And the back roads on the east side of the river are also excellent for touring.
This is true about the bridge at Vantage.  I rode over it in June of 1991 fairly early in the morning.  There were 4 of us and we all waved out left arm vigorously as we rode.  I heard of one person who hitchhiked over it by waiting on the freeway entrance for a pickup and when one stopped they threw the bike in the back and took the ride over the bridge and then got back on the bike and rode on!
Jamawani is right, the old road from Ellensburg to Vantage is cool, as are the old roads from Ellensburg to Cle Elum and you can also ride nice old bucolic roads west from Cle Elum for another 10 miles or so.

Again, I would be reluctant, to say the least, to ride this area into the west wind.  I have seen people literally cry in frustration in the summer gales!

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