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Messages - tonythomson

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511
Hi,
If time is a problem then think again about the Southern Tier, from the other side of Kent take the 190 straight across Texas, and beyond , great road cuts off a fair few miles and hills.  The deserts are not a problem on the ST as a little bit of planning and extra water will see you safely through, the distance between places is never that big.  I planned to wave down an RV if ever I ran out of water but never needed to and only occasionally did I have to haul a full gallon with me and then didn't really need that much but gave me confidence having it along.

PS if you ride the 190 in Texas look out for Red Chilli burger bar in the middle of no where best burgers en route.  Gets a bit hairy around Austin but by making up the route I by passed this on some unmade back roads.

512
Routes / L&C versus Trans Am - your opinion much appreciated
« on: July 27, 2009, 05:05:09 am »
Hi Guys,
heading Orlando to Vancouver, does anyone have an opinion, experience as to which might be the preferred route
Underground - Lewis & Clark - Northern Tier
or
Underground - Trans America - Northern Tier.

And why please.
Thanks

513
Routes / Re: Route Help and Camping Tips for a Beginner
« on: July 26, 2009, 10:50:30 am »
Hiya, I never get the clothes right!! Make sure you have warm clothes, some good lightweight hiking fleeces around. Waterproof/wind proof rain wear, and leggings.  Would be my extra clothes. I try not to carry too much so last time bought $10 jumpers from cheap supermarkets and threw them away when it warmed up. And a good warm sleeping bag with silk inner sheet. Try water proof socks the seal skin type, really warm except when it rains they tend to fill up with water, v weird sensation.

Yes always tried to wash my one pair of shorts every night but only if I was sure they would dry overnight. And your cycling shirt will dry out generally quite easily. Avoid cotton. 

I would recommend cycling shorts with a chamois inside rather than the thicker padded things. For the first time I tried them and getting hot and sweaty could not get them dry while riding and ended up like I was wearing a wet diaper - first time I have ever had saddle sores.  Plus these are harder to dry overnight. But I guess like lots of these things it is all personal choice and what has worked for you in the past.

Good luck and wish you well. My next plan is Orlando to Vancouver in Spring next year - can't wait
Tony UK



514
Routes / Re: Route Help and Camping Tips for a Beginner
« on: July 26, 2009, 02:25:48 am »
Hiya,
what you plan is very exciting and the best tip is to go with your gut instincts about camping.  Camp sites would be my first choice, just to get a shower and cleaned up.  Next ask someone if ok to camp on their land - never been turned away.  (I even ask once in Israel and guy said it was ok - turned out not to be his garden but the owner was fine when I explained) If you stealth camp then get as far off the road as possible, make sure no food, toiletries smelly things (except socks) are in your tent. Don't want to attract unwanted critters.  Know the weather conditions, thinking flash floods here so no camping on dry river beds.

I have been touring like this for years and never had problems and to be fair when setting out I always am so excited and some doubts in there also - like will I be safe - I think it's normal.  In the end just cycle off and enjoy.
Good luck

515
General Discussion / Motel/hotel discount
« on: July 20, 2009, 09:03:41 am »
On recent tour I used hotels & motels, had I been a member of AAA I could have got a discount - just wondered if anyone has ideas on how to get discounts as coming from UK and not member of AAA I had to resort to fantasy reasons ie senior (actually thats not not a fantasy) being a member of SOLMOB (Silly old man on a bike) even when I explained what it meant and that I was the only member having made it up I did get some discounts.  One time a receptioonist said it didn't matter as long as I was a member!  and being a veteran but not from a USA conflict - we have plenty of our own. 

Seriously does anyone know if we get discounts beinga member of ACA?  If not maybe they could take it up.

516
Gear Talk / Re: Pedal Suggestions for Soft Soled Shoes?
« on: July 19, 2009, 03:46:40 am »
Hi - hey what a great debate. I have just finished southern Tier, last of several long distant tours.  I never use cycling shoes as only want to carry one pair of shoes to save weight. Last time I used a cross trainer and always flat peddals , even fitting my own platform in the past made from alluminium.  Never had sore feet.  Now the butt is a differnet question!!

Good luck and great to hear different views as I have learned so much in the past from these forums

517
Gear Talk / Re: Head Lamps at Campsite ~~ Annoying?
« on: July 19, 2009, 03:39:00 am »
Wow this is heartening as I thought these people were exclusive to UK.  I actually avoid camp sites with "facilities" as the people who make most noise tend not to like to be unable to buy beer or plug in their music without too much effort.


518
I''ll go along with what Fred says.  They are very good. TT

519
Hi BP what I do is go onto Google Earth and go to street scene - you'll every pot hole along with photoes of the hard shoulders.  Plus at times you can pick up volumes of traffic.

If you ride it this year be very interested to know as planning to use L&C next year.

Good luck

520
Routes / Re: Vancouver to Florida or the other way?
« on: July 14, 2009, 10:38:41 am »
Thanks guys, decision made, now for the route will check out KATY trail as love doing the trails to rails.

521
Routes / Advice please on best route
« on: July 14, 2009, 10:34:38 am »
This is an outline plan - would appreciate any comments or better route as still at the start of my planning.
Orlando to Mobile - no probs done this mostly already

Mobile follow "Underground" to "Lewis & Clarke "
Follow this north west to Fort Peck Montana and pick up the "Northern Tier" until I can head north to Vancouver.

Easy eh?  Seriously am open to anything but has to be road, not too keen on off roading.

Thanks Tony

522
Routes / Vancouver to Florida or the other way?
« on: July 12, 2009, 10:11:35 am »
Setting off in April 2010 to cross diagonally - for the most help with wind which would be the best direction NW to SE or SE to NW.

Any hints on best routes as plan to loosely follow some of the ACA route maps.

Just finished Southern Tier - awesome.

Thanks Tony

523
Classifieds / Fleece seat cover where can I get one?
« on: July 11, 2009, 09:23:44 am »
Hi guys, anyone out there know where I can buy a fleece bike seat cover?  I had one some years ago and was just great for the really hot weather. 

Thanks Tony

524
General Discussion / Re: Safety issues for solo biking
« on: July 07, 2009, 09:13:27 am »
"Git yourself a gun!" was the advice of the Deputy Sheriff in a little town mid Texas.  Now coming from UK I wouldn't hardly know one end from the other, "you need a gun son" (I'm 61!)  Why?  "Cos the motel you plan on staying in has the biggest 'roaches ever and if you don't git them, they sure as hell gonna git you"

I've cycled many different countries and never felt the need to be armed, follow your instincts and be open to people.

Just finished the \southern Tier, the people I met made it special.  Thanks yanks!

Oh and definately support the use of a mirror.

525
General Discussion / Re: Cycling and camping in bear country ? !
« on: June 26, 2009, 10:42:46 am »
Hey they sure can be scarry and of course you need to be sensible re what food you carry and never any in your tent.  I've cycled several places in bear country.  Nearest I came was one stepping out in front of me, just having cycled all day and finished off with a long uphill to the hostal in Jasper, 1/2 of me wanted to shoot off down back the hill, 1/2 though no way will I get back up and 1/2 wanted to take aphoto. Amazing how many halves you can get with a bear a few feet away.  Well Mr Bear totally ignored me and just carried on in his own sweet way.  I tell you was just so exciting.   Don't really want to do exciting again.  Not sure if this is much help, but just like talking about it! Tony

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