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Messages - John Nettles

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Routes / Re: Fargo, ND to Manitowoc, WI
« on: May 03, 2014, 01:38:16 pm »
I would recommend you look at the Wisconsin Bike Maps by county and review the various counties along your proposed route.  You could get over to Menomonie, WI, and take the rail trail to Eau Claire then make it over to Wausau and take the rail trails over to Green Bay then Brillion at which point you make it over to Manitowoc.

If you prefer to ride along the Mississippi (following ACA's Great Rivers route), I have a route going from La Crosse to Manitowoc.  Contact me privately for the route.

Wisconsin is a great state to ride in, enjoy the ride!


Routes / Re: Geronimo Trail
« on: April 24, 2014, 08:26:33 am »
I too am considering it for a future ride.  So far, I know it is 79 miles.  From Animas (not much there other than a cafe and CS), (BTW, nothing between Lordsburg and Animas either), the first 20 miles are paved.  At mile 28.7 is a stock pond.  At Mile 48 is a ranch or Border Patrol station (not sure which).  At mile 74 another 5 miles of pavement start.   Water may not be an issue if you can ask for some from the ever-present border patrol trucks going by.  Sorry I can't help more.

It depends on what you mean by road friendly.  Yes, you could ride most of the route.  However, I would suggest you take the paved alternate route from Kremmling to the Steamboat as that section going up from the river is a little rough.  North of Steamboat, the road is paved for the first 30ish miles.  Gravel to Wyoming, some paved, then once you start the gravel again (Aspen Alley) it is gravel until about 3/4 way to Rawlins.  Also, you know you can go from Silverthorne to Kremmling via paved roads.

All that said, you can also consider the great bike trail from Frisco (Silverthorne to Vail).  Continue on the path to to CO-131 (west of Edwards) and then north to Steamboat.  If you wanted part of the GD, once on CO-131, head east on CR-134 (near Topanos) until you connect with the GD at CR-16 which is nice (gravel, but doable).

I replied to your message.  You can also contact me directly at J0hn at nettles family com (no space between nettles and family).

If you decide to go to Tishomingo, MS, on the Natchez Trace, I can get you to Asheville on lower-traffic roads.

I can also get you to Tuscaloosa from Kosciusko (also on Natchez Trace).

If you can get from Tuscaloosa to Weaver, AL, you can take the Chief Ladiga Trail (a paved rail trail) to Smyrna, GA (NW of Atlanta) where you can connect to other trails to get you to Coventry, GA.  If you can get from Coventry to anywhere between Seneca, SC and Highlands, NC, I can get you to Asheville on lower-traffic roads.

From Front Royal, you can take the W&OD paved trail to Washington, DC (trail starts in Purcellville, VA) where you can connect with Atlantic Coast Route which would bisect the Canal Trail.  Another option is to ride along the coast in NJ and come thru NYC that way (via ferry on the rough parts) and take the various trails north of NYC to Poughkeepsie and connect with the AC route there.

If any of these sound good, contact me privately and I will see about getting you the route.


Routes / Re: East Coast to West Coast Trip
« on: March 26, 2014, 12:03:22 pm »
Got it.  Since everyone's goals are different, in 35 years of touring, I have not heard of a program that exists.  Basically, you will need to buy the individual map segments you need, review them, make a rough draft of your itinerary to see where you can be each day based on your individual needs.  There are way to many variable to do a realistic program.  For instance, you may need a motel and/or restaurant at the end of your daily goal but only a campground exists.  Therefore, you will need to decide what is best for you, cutting the daily distance or going longer.  If it is very hilly, you may choose shorter.  If flat and you have a tailwind, go longer.  But you need to visit Aunt Sally who lives 20 miles off route also.  This is why a program doesn't work.

Realize, no plan will survive a few days it seems so just be familiar with what you can do and what you want to do.

Again, best wishes!

Routes / Re: East Coast to West Coast Trip
« on: March 26, 2014, 11:27:58 am »
I am not trying to sound rude, but you have checked out the ACA maps, correct?  If so, I am confused as to what you are asking.

In either case, based on your pretty ambitious goal of a 30-day crossing and ending at the Golden Gate, you will almost need to do something very similar to the TransAm route to Pueblo where you connect to the Western Express.

Best wishes!

Using the AL and MS traffic count maps and google streetmaps, I came up with a quick route.

Aliceville to Pickensville via Sapps Road (low traffic county road) to AL-86 (low traffic state road).  Pickensville to Brooksville via MS-388.  Brooksville to Louisville via Lynn Creek Rd and Brooksville/Louisville Rd (all low traffic county roads).  Louisville to Kosciusko is MS-14 (low traffic after you get out of town a couple of miles) to Knox Rd (county road about a mile before MS-19).

By low traffic I mean sub-2000 average vehicles per day.  A lot of the county roads are sub-1000.  This was compiled by using the AL and MS traffic count maps and google streetmaps.

Remember, you get what you pay for .  If you use it, please post how it went.

Bicycle Route 66 / Re: Route 66 - Sullivan to Marshfield Mo
« on: March 11, 2014, 11:27:19 pm »
While I do not have topo maps, I have driven the I-40 numerous times between Tulsa and St. Louis.  The route you want is in the hear of the Ozarks so you will be either going up 300 foot in elevation or down 300 foot in elevation.  It gets a little better toward Marshfield.

If you are concerned about hills, I would suggest you take the Katy Trail to Clinton and from there I can get you a detailed cue sheet to Girard, KS.  Much flatter.  Only a day or two of a few noteworthy hills.

Happy Riding, John

If you like gravel AND can handle remote high altitude (9,500') AND you are traveling after July 4th (NFS travel restrictions), I would recommend you consider Gravelly Range Road.

Do a bit of research (especially looking for pics) on this high-meadow road. You would need to follow the ACA TransAm route to the McAtee Bridge CG and then head up into the range.  It will drop you off onto your mile 260.  There are forest service cabins and a couple of campgrounds (along with dispersed camping) but only stream water (if that) so you would need to filter.

A lovely route with lots of wildflowers, etc.

This is a nice route but you do know that it has gravel from mile 219 to 291, correct?  I have no issues with gravel but some bikes' tires are too narrow so wanted to point this out.  Also, there is camping at Henry's Lake at a small county park you ride by a few miles before mile 219.

Routes / Re: Florida Loop Parking
« on: December 19, 2013, 08:39:03 am »
When I did a ride from the upper Keys to Key West and up toward St. Augustine, I parked at the Walmart on the south side of town in St. Augustine so the car would be there when I would get back.  I asked permission from the store management and they were fine (just park away from the store) and so they would not tow the car.  I cleaned out the car so anyone peering in saw there was nothing to break into the car for.  Other options are a car dealer and there is a public parking garage downtown but they will charge.  The other is to book a hotel the night before and the night you get back from the loop and they typically will allow it also.

Have a great ride!

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: starting Vancouver finishing Tucson
« on: November 25, 2013, 05:23:31 pm »
I would recommend you fly into Edmonton and ride over to Jasper then down to Banff to connect with the Great Divide.  The big drawback is it will be cool with possible snow.  Very very scenic however.

Once you are near the southern end of the GD, I would suggest you break off at Silver City (cool town) and ride to Lordsburg (get a train if you are running behind), then to Animas.  From there you can either ride south on  NM-338 to CR-3004 (Geronimo Trail) to Douglas, AZ (at the US/Mexico border)  OR you can ride another scenic road west to Portal, AZ; gravel to Chiricahua NP with a ton of hoo doos (eroded stone pillars); to Douglas (another neat town).  If you want to end up in Antelope Wells, you can take Mexico 2 from Antelope Wells to Douglas.

From Douglas, you can continue west on NM-92 to Montezuma Canyon Rd (very remote gravel) to Parker Canyon Lake to Sonoita via AZ-83 to Green Valley to Tucson.  If you are tired of gravel, take AZ-92 to Sierra Vista then over to Sonoita thru the Fort Huachuca and AZ-83.

Tucson is a good finish as it has planes or trains.  Amtrak, the US train service, has HUGE bike boxes.

For a detour, you might consider breaking off in Jackson, WY and heading south to Alpine, WY then take Greys River Rd./Emigrant/CR-306 to Kemmerer, WY.  From there head over to Manila, UT then toward Maybell, CO via Browns Park Rd./CO-318.  Between UT border and Maybell, head north on CR-10N to CR-25 just over WY border.  Head east on extremely remote CR-25/CR-4 (not scenic, to me at least) to Baggs, WY, then WY-70 to CR-129 where you reconnect with GD.  The roads between Alpine and Kemmerer are very beautiful and very quiet.  You miss a lot of the heat of the Great Basin but CR-25/CR-4 are just as wide open as the Great Basin (check streetview on Google maps).  Again, this alternate is very remote for long stretches.

If you want GPS routes or cue sheets, contact me privately and I will send to you in December.

Best wishes on your trip!

Routes / Re: Transam Motels around Jeffrey City, Wy?
« on: November 14, 2013, 06:54:10 pm »
Unless they have added something the past 18 months, there are hardly any businesses there at all.  If you require indoor lodging, you could head south to Rock Springs from Jackson and then over to Rawlins on I-80.  Yes, it is blah scenery along I-80 but you would have multiple options for indoor accommodations (and camping).  Plus there are a couple of places to get some really big ice cream cones.  Basically, you trade nicer scenery and less traffic for a lot more services.

Routes / Re: Money and access
« on: November 11, 2013, 01:38:03 pm »
Almost all food supply stores (convenience stores, groceries stores, etc.) accept credit/debit cards.  Some hostels do.  All motels do.  Almost any town over a 500 people should have a bank and/or ATM.  However, small stores in the middle of nowhere may not, especially if they do not sell gasoline.

I did part of the GD this past summer and basically carried about $100-150 in cash at all times and resupplied on cash when I came across a bigger town or an ATM.  Had no issues.

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