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Messages - John Nettles

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Routes / Re: Gravel roads leading into the TramsAM Teton Spur?
« on: April 09, 2013, 01:00:29 pm »
You do not need to take the Wilson Road (part gravel but quite rideable) since they now have a paved separate bike path from near Jenny Lake to Jackson.  The spur along Wilson is more scenic but the other is quite nice also.

Routes / Re: Avoiding Yellowstone
« on: April 03, 2013, 10:03:25 am »
You do not say what, if any, parameters you need.  I “assume” you want to avoid gravel and you are self-contained.  If so, consider continuing south on US-93 (from junction with MT-43 on TransAm Route) to Arco.  A remote way would be to take ID-28 from Salmon to ID-33 then points east.

Then take ID-33 east (via Rexburg, Sugar City, Tetonia, Driggs, Victor, Wilson, WY to Jackson.  Take US-191 from Jackson to Rock Springs.

From Rock Springs you can take Interstate 80 (blah, but legal) with its services east to Rawlins, WY and reconnect with the Great Parks South Route.

Or for a much more remote experience, from Rock Springs take WY-430 south to Hiawatha Road to Baggs, WY to Craig, CO (really really remote) OR take WY-430 south to CO-318 then east to Craig, CO (just really remote) and then continue east to Steamboat Springs and reconnect there.

If you go via Rawlins, I highly recommend a detour from Saratoga, WY to Centennial along WY-130 then south on WY-11 to Fox Creek Road (8 miles of decent gravel road) to Woods Landing/WY-230.  Go south to junction with CO-125 where you reconnect with various ACA routes.

Enjoy the ride!

Routes / Re: Northern Route oil and gas activity
« on: March 14, 2013, 01:09:07 pm »
ACA recently redid the route to avoid the gas activity.  However, it is mainly along the interstate (blah!).  Be sure you have the most current map and you will be fine.

Routes / Re: Great Parks
« on: March 08, 2013, 10:08:43 am »
My bags were thoroughly searched (44 yo man at the time) at the Emerson port south of Winnipeg.  I don't know what made them think I was carrying anything (I wasn't) or maybe they were bored.  I was glad afterwards they didn't question my Halt! dog repellent as I "think" they consider that a weapon.

There must be ways to legally get a gun across the border due to hunting but I do not know what they are.

Maybe just call the Canadian Border Protection (or whatever they are called)???

Routes / Re: great divide road after Banff
« on: February 22, 2013, 08:19:35 am »

You should strongly consider Mathieu's words as he is one of only a few who has done the entire route more than once, and one of a handful who has done it both ways.  What he did not mention is that on his first trip he took a BOB trailer and on his second trip he used panniers, primarily due to safety  I am not trying to tell you about the route or if to take a trailer or not but just to seriously consider his suggestion that the GD is not a place for a two-wheeled trailer.

For a good and informative read, read his journals on the GD (over on CrazyGuy).  His first includes incredible pictures by one of his companions Auke.

Routes / Re: USA Corner to Corner
« on: December 17, 2012, 11:46:55 am »
Oh I am not saying schedule around it.  I was just showing what the weather in the middle of the country is like as Norsman indicated he did not now what to expect on the TransAm.  To me, May is a great month to bike in Kansas.  Just be knowledgeable about the weather.

Routes / Re: USA Corner to Corner
« on: December 17, 2012, 08:56:46 am »
If you hit Kansas between early-May and mid-June, you could have some fairly violent storms (50+mph winds, 1.5+" hail, tornados, etc.), not like the gentle rains the NW & NE have.  That said, just pay attention to what the locals says.  If it is going to be had, they will assist.  Listen to a local radio station or ask a farmer.  If sky is a pale green, take cover as hail is in the immediate area.

As far as your mileage goes, it is fairly high.  I have crossed the country 5 times plus tons of other tours.  For me personally, I have found anything over 65 miles per day (overall average, not riding average) makes for "all riding, no play" and drops the enjoyment factor noticeably.  If you have not done tours with that high of mileage, the extra 10-15 miles per day (AVERAGE) really add to the riding days mileage.

You also mention you wanted to be done in 80 days @ 60mpd, or 4,800 miles.  Isn't your route closer to 5,500 miles or 69mpd?

Overall, start as early in the spring as you can tolerate and enjoy a pace so if you want to stop and/or not do high mileage you can.  After all, you are retired so enjoy the time. :D

I think IRC's idea of doing the San Juan Islands from Vancouver is an excellent one.  They are great for biking, mostly car free, and very pretty.  You could always go the Lake Erie Connector (Canada side of Lake Erie) if time is short.

Ah choices, choices, what are you to do?

Routes / Re: Swede going solo from Miami to New Orleans, route suggestion?
« on: November 21, 2012, 03:04:51 pm »
Opps, I was typing my reply while you added the 3 weeks.  Sorry.

Routes / Re: Swede going solo from Miami to New Orleans, route suggestion?
« on: November 21, 2012, 03:03:57 pm »
If you want a route that goes along the coast beginning near the panhandle of Florida, send me a private email and I can send you a cue sheet and some GPS coordinates.

I rode the route from Wauchula (on the ACA Florida Connector route) which is near Tampa to Pensacola and some friends continued onto Baton Rouge to reconnect with the ACA route.

The difference is that there is more traffic (not unbearable), and more beaches.  Due to my preference of staying on lower traffic roads when possible, there are more turns probably than the ST route.  You also get more services but the services are probably more expensive due to being near the beach.

Also, if time/money permit, I would HIGHLY encourage riding on the Florida Keys.  Again, more traffic but it is nice.

If yonovice a noive cyclotourist with limited experience riding in  traffic, these routes may not be the best for you.  They are not bad at all but if you prefer seeing only a few cars every hour, these are not the routes.

Whatever you choose, enjoy the ride.

I agree with PDLamb to take the Northern Tier to Glacier NP in Montana, then down to Missoula.  I have ridden the PC, TransAm, and NT.

The PC in Washington is so so as far as scenery goes.  I really like both Washington State (NT), and Oregon (both PC & TransAm).  Another option is to ride to Astoria via PC or Portland (via Sierra Cascade) and the ride the Lewis & Clark section along the Columbia River and join the TransAm in Kooskia, ID.  Idaho is another pretty state. I have not ridden the SC or L&C sections so can not comment on that option but would think the SC would be nicer than Washington's portion of the PC.

Routes / Re: Pueblo to Yorktown only- best months?
« on: October 29, 2012, 09:51:40 pm »
Late April thru early June is prime tornado season in Kansas.  While the chances of you actually being in a tornado are small, the chances you could be in a wide-spread severe storm with 1+ inch hail is definitely there.

If you are good at reading the weather, are willing to listen to the locals, and willing to ride or not ride accordingly (not chicken out just due to the "chance" of severe storm), you should be fine.  However, do not blow off the warnings and be familiar with the county you are in and listen to the radio and locals.  Be especiallobservantnt for the weather overnight if hail is included as your tent will not protect you from 1+" hail.

Once you get to central Missouri, the tornadic weather lessens (but does not go away completely).  I would think the starting on or after May 1st would be pretty nice if you are eastbound.

In all seriousness, enjoy the ride!

Routes / Re: Ronald Reagan Airport to C&O Canal route
« on: October 03, 2012, 02:09:58 pm »
I can't help with a hotel, other than to say there are several in the airport region. There is a bike path immediately outside of the airport that connects to the C&O.  Just look at Google Maps and select bicycling in the upper right section of the maps.  That said, several of the paths are actually on very wide sidewalks.

Routes / Re: Route from California to Canada - WIND DIRECTION?!
« on: September 26, 2012, 02:46:49 pm »
You can rent a Toyota RAV4 from San Diego to Salt Lake City for about $150/day (based on weekend).  Ride from SLC to Jackson, WY and see Tetons and Yellowstone before heading to Canada.

You can rent same car from San Diego to Bellingham, WA (between Seattle and Vancouver) for about $175/day.

Same car to Jackson, WY or Whitefish, MT (near Glacier NP) is a horrible $275/day.

You can get to any of the above locations in 2 or 3 days of driving.  Figure $4.50/gallon gas at 22mpg to play it safe.

A fare and # of transfers by bus (Greyhound) to SLC $90/2 Jackson $100/4, Whitefish $109/5, Bellingham $109/4, and Jasper $119/5.  Bike fees (maybe $20 each) are extra.  If traveling out of Los Angeles,transfer tranfer required.

Airfare to SLC is $109*; Spokane $248*; Jackson $500; Missoula, MT $225; Edmonton$180; Calgary $160 ($190 NS). Bags and bikes are extra $20-$50 each). * = first 2 bags free.

You could do a combo of things.  For instance, say you want to see the Grand Canyon on your way north to Jackson.  You could rent a car for two days to SLC.  Then take a no-transfer bus (Mountain States Express (MSE) NOT Greyhound) for $70 (up to 3 pieces of "luggage or bikes) to Jackson.  This would cost about $300 for car and $70 per person for the bus.  If you wanted least amount of transfers would be to take a bus from Los Angeles to SLC then trantotalingSE totalling 3 transfers.

Finally, if you could start in latter part of June, I would think that you could start in Edmonton and work your way south without danger of snow.

Routes / Re: Route from California to Canada - WIND DIRECTION?!
« on: September 26, 2012, 09:51:34 am »
I have no experience with the Sierra Cascades (SC), but do have a rhetorical question.  Why not just book the flight say into Vancouver or Seattle and head south?  Assuming your preferred route is the Pacific Coast (PC) and not the SC, unless you are continuing on with your journey when you reach Canada, i.e. Banff to Jasper and flying back to Germany from Edmonton the benefits of going south to north are not as strong.

No matter which route you choose, enjoy the ride!

BTW, I did the PC south to north many moons ago and can verify it is not the preferred way to go.  However, it is doable.

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