Lots of options out there...
Enjoy the ride,
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Um, I think you must have been absent that day...
You may be suffering under this common misconception about carbs due to confusing carbs and glucose. You do need glucose to survive. your body can manufacture glucose from protein, so you don't need to eat carbs to get what you need. That's not to say the best diet has no carbs, it's just that our amazing bodies can get what we need to survive without them.
This is great news for people (like me) who no longer tolerate many carbs, I can eat ignore much of the common wisdom on fueling bike rides (and other sports) and do quite well without harming my body with the sugars and starches.
I couldn't agree with hyegeek more. Carbohydrates are unnecessary, unlike fats and protein. My experience is similar as well... 50 years old, lost 100lbs by eliminating sugar, grains (most starches) and seed and vegetable oils and lots of biking of course. My protocol is to eat real food... sounds strange but I always eat at home. Meaning I never eat at restaurants or fast food joints. A long distance tour would present some special challenges for me.
The Adventure Cycling Association's mission is to inspire and empower people to travel by bicycle. As a 14-year ACA member, who has been touring since 1996, and a 25-year park ranger, I am really surprised by posts, mostly from riders outside of North America, about fears of two things; bears and rural American residents. The real truth us, there is not a bear behind every tree bush and rock, and the rural countryside is NOT inhabited by people like those in "Deliverance". Moreover, the replies that reinforce those fears are very disappointing, and certainly not very "inspiring" to those whose only exposure to the United States has been from Hollywood or the network news.
This message will likely be removed before many folks can see it, but hopefully, those that do will take my suggestion to try an "inspire" bicycle travelers, rather than scare the begeebees (Whatever begeebees are?) out of them.
Speaking as a park ranger and an EMT (and also a National Mountain Bike Patroller), all trails, paved or unpaved, should allow exceptions for emergency situations. Our community recently built a corridor trail linking the two largest cities in the county, and although it is specifically designed to keep ATVs and snowmobiles (as well as cars and trucks) off the trail, the barriers are removable in an emergency. The local fire departments and sheriff's rescue squad have ATVs set up for patient transport. The biggest issue with modern ambulances is their width. (No pun intended.) Most paved and gravel trails are 8 to 10 feet wide. So are most modular (box-style) ambulances.
A few years back, we had a rider thrown from a horse deep inside our park, with had a possible broken back. Our trails are all 8-foot wide gravel/natural surface. The duty ranger and the local fire department used ATVs to access her and transport her out to the waiting ambulance. I think most, if not all communities have plans for this kind of occurance when trails are built. There would probably be major liability issues if they did not do so.
Fenders installed - easy once you've screwed it up once Here is what my bike looks now, fully loaded. Thanks everyone for their advice. Now I will start bike touring Florida for the next 15 months and then do my Souther Tier route end of March, 2014.