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Messages - BikingBrian

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31
Routes / Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« on: June 28, 2013, 02:07:53 pm »
Thanks for the tips. Weighing the pros and cons. I'll just leave everything boxed up for the trip to Astoria. I used the option to pay the $5 bike fee when buying the bus ticket online.

32
Routes / Re: Bus from Portland to Astoria
« on: June 28, 2013, 08:16:25 am »
I'm flying to PDX, but I'm shipping my bike to Union Station via Amtrak Express, and most of my gear is in a box waiting for me at a FedEx downtown. So red and yellow light rail will be able to get me between all those locations. The bike is in one of those big Amtrak boxes where you remove the pedals and handlebars and roll it in the box. I'll have about half a day before catching the bus, so I'll have to think about whether to leave everything packed in their boxes, or unpack everything and explore around town.

33
Routes / Bus from Portland to Astoria
« on: June 28, 2013, 06:00:59 am »
I am flying to Portland, and I have a reservation for me and the bicycle on the bus from the Portland Amtrak station to Astoria. (Handy tip: to find on Amtrak, look for station codes PDX and ART.)

So has anyone used this bus before, and how did the logistics work out? I saw the FAQ at the link below but have a couple of questions. Do you actually have to arrive early enough to "check" your luggage, or just hand it to the bus driver before boarding. Does the bike need to be boxed, or is unboxed OK?

http://www.northwest-point.com/schedule.aspx

34
Last summer, I can personally vouch for having done a shorter version of the second route:

SB: Continue on Viejo Rd, right on Valenzuela, right on Aguajito, Highway 1 southbound
NB: Right on Aguajito, left on Valenzuela, left on Viejo Rd

35
Gear Talk / Re: Touring crankset
« on: June 23, 2013, 07:11:01 am »
While I choose alu chainrings, don't go overboard with concern with "heavy"; you're talking about a couple ounces. Some mountain bike/touring cranksets have just two out of the three rings steel. Some prefer steel over alu for inner ring.

Agreed - just mentioning because I know of some people who have ordered the crankset and then were surprised it didn't come with alu chainrings.

36
GPS Discussion / Garmin on Tour - Single or Multiple FIT Files?
« on: June 22, 2013, 10:36:39 pm »
Maybe a silly question, or at least one of personal preference, but I'll ask anyway. When using a Garmin Edge 500 (or similar) to track your cycling on a multiday tour, do you press "stop" at the end of the day, then reset, so that each day is a single FIT file? Or do you simply press stop at the end of the day, and then press start the next morning, so it saves to a single FIT file?

37
Bicycle Route 66 / Re: Welcome to Bicycle Route 66!
« on: June 22, 2013, 09:57:21 pm »
I don't know what ACA has planned for the route between Ash Fork - AZ and Williams - AZ. As far as I know the original Route 66 is completely replaced by Interstate 40. To bypass this 19 mile long section involving 1600 ft of climbing, I took today County Rd 142, also signed as Double A Ranch Rd, out of Ash Fork. After 4.8 mi the road changes to FR-124 but keeps its name Double A Ranch Rd. It soon becomes a dirt road with a solid red-brick surface, until it gets paved again a couple of miles before Williams. It is a rolling, very scenic road. Of course it also involves at least 1600 ft of climbing and totals 29 miles, but in a quiet setting without diesel fumes. Dirt roads are also less risky for punctures than the shoulders of Interstates. Part of FR-124 runs along the Santa Fe railway. I saw 8 freight trains passing in the 2 hours I was on this road, more than the number of cars and motorcycles. There is no way of getting lost if you keep the two numbers County Rd 142 and FR-124 in mind, because the main road is much broader and much better maintained than the side roads ending on it. While a dirt road may not be liked by all cyclists, I would recommend it at least for eastbound Route 66 travel. Westbounders might try to outpace the heavy trucks on the Interstate.

I've cycled Route 66 from Flagstaff, AZ to Barstow, CA on this tour: http://www.bikingbrian.com/tag/route66tour2010/

I've done the Williams to Ash Fork section twice. The first time was late in the day, and we had such a strong headwind that we couldn't go faster than 15 mph - even on a fully loaded tandem. I wish we were going uphill eastbound to have a tailwind.  ;D The second time was late morning, and I had no such problems with the wind. In general, I've found the I-40 shoulders in Arizona to be quite excellent. 

But I-40 shoulders in New Mexico, well that's another story. I was on a business trip to Gallup, NM and saw the abysmal condition of the shoulder when driving back to Albuquerque. But then I saw this route <http://www.bicyclemaps.org/rt66/Route_66/Welcome.html> which looked encouraging. Following an older Route 66 alignment is "legitimate" to me because it is still in the spirit of seeing the history.

I put Route 66 east of Flagstaff on hold because I just wasn't excited about riding large sections of I-40, even with the possibility of combining with a business trip to NM. But I'm encouraged that there may be some creative alternates, so I am waiting for the maps with excitement!

38
Gear Talk / Re: Solar Panel - Yea or Nay?
« on: June 22, 2013, 09:01:35 pm »
I ended up getting this, because it was pretty cheap and had a built-in battery. I will probably have AC much of the time, but this is small enough to have "just in case". If it works out well, I'll post back here.

http://www.instapark.com/solar-power-panels/mercury-4s-ultra-slim-portable-solar-usb-cell-phone-charger.html

39
Gear Talk / Re: Touring crankset
« on: June 22, 2013, 08:59:15 pm »
The TA chainrings are nice, but you won't need anything that fancy, as the bar end shifter will shift anything. I have the Sugino cranks and they are perfect for touring. If you go that route, just watch which model crank you get, the lower end one has heavy steel chainrings.

40
Gear Talk / Solar Panel - Yea or Nay?
« on: June 21, 2013, 09:10:34 am »
I'll be riding the Oregon coast in a couple of weeks would like to keep my iPhone and Garmin Edge 500 charged up. I've been thinking about getting a solar panel, but I'm wondering if it's more trouble than it's worth, any thoughts? I have a USB charger that can use 4 AA batteries, and I have an external battery pack which can be charged by AC power. So that may be enough of a backup if I'm away from AC power.

41
New England / Re: Loop tour in Northern NH or Maine
« on: June 07, 2013, 12:54:41 pm »

42
GPS Discussion / Re: Garmin Edge 500 Battery Life
« on: May 28, 2013, 07:56:55 pm »
Thanks for the info. I plan to use it just to record my ride, I'll use the Adventure Cycling paper maps for navigation. I bought a USB backup battery so I can charge it at night. At least the battery life is good enough that I don't have to be concerned about charging it during the day while I'm riding.

43
GPS Discussion / Garmin Edge 500 Battery Life
« on: May 28, 2013, 04:43:20 pm »
I have a Garmin Edge 500, and I'd like to use it for my Oregon coast tour this summer, so long as charging it doesn't become more trouble than it's worth. How often does it need to be charged while touring. Daily, weekly, monthly?

44
Routes / Hotels in Astoria, OR
« on: May 22, 2013, 10:52:18 pm »
I'll be starting my next stage of the Pacific Coast route in Astoria, OR. Any bike-friendly hotel recommendations?

45
Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: West End of NBRS Route 66
« on: August 03, 2012, 11:07:46 pm »
I live in Orange County, California and I've bicycle toured between Huntington Beach and Victorville. Santa Ana River trail from HB to Corona, streets to Devore, old 66 and part of I-15 to Victorville. I'm very familiar with the Cajon Pass area of I-15 and the alternates.

I've also done a route from Huntington Beach to Palm Springs. Santa Ana River Trail to Corona, streets to Riverside, Moreno Valley, Beaumont, Banning, Palm Springs.

I'm definitely interested in seeing long distance touring routes through the area, and I'd be happy to answer any specific questions.

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