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Messages - Westinghouse

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General Discussion / Re: Florida-traffic on connector and coast routes
« on: December 17, 2013, 11:56:24 pm »
90 is pretty good traffic-wise. Actually, I have cycled them all.Traffic density is really reasonable. Avoid Orlando, US 1, and such main arteries where many cars come and go. Parts of highway 27 are Florida's suicide route in winter. Farther north 27 is good. Our Gov said FL is no longer the "dive or die state" for cyclists. Well, uhh, I think the Gov hasn't bike toured the state. The ST is fairly good for motorized traffic density. However, many cyclists get creamed here. In 20 years in my small town (16,000 people) eight people I knew  have been killed on their bikes. I did not count the surviving injured. Maybe 20-25.  The eight were people I had known to some extent in this town. Many others I did not know have been killed or injured. I have experienced such blatant negligent disregard of myrights as a cyclist by motorists it could be described as gross criminality. Even with many witnesses and police present nobody said a word as though it was acceptable behavior which it most certainly was not.

In short, your interaction with traffic will depend on where in particular you cycle.The ACA ST route is quite safe. Use it.

General Discussion / Re: Road bike for touring??
« on: December 17, 2013, 11:34:17 pm »
I have used a road bike for very long, pannier-loaded tours. It works just fine. My last big tour was Stuart, FL to San Diego, CA, 54 days total with 43 days on the road at age 61 in the winter of 2009-2010.

General Discussion / Re: Free camping on southern tier
« on: December 17, 2013, 11:23:21 pm »
Highway 90 in northern Florida runs through areas where free camping is easy to find. One thing about treed areas in and very near towns is this. They are often surrounded by uncrossable drainage ditches. Nice but you can't get in. Try outside the towns. There are long expanses of trees and forests. If you should happen into Ponce de Leon at day's end, try the main road going north past the grave yard. The Florida portion of the ST east of 90 has many unofficial sites for a night's sleep.

General Discussion / Re: Day Jobs?
« on: October 19, 2013, 04:09:54 pm »
I teach. I just had time off but it was too hot to do the trip I wanted to do. I wanted to cycle from Florida to California.

I'd have to agree with Raybo. If you aren't that pressed for time, take the 101 loop around Olympic Park. We did it in 2009 - journal here -> Have given considerable thought to doing this area again, and here's some of what I would change. From Fairhaven, consider stopping at Bogachiel and touring into the Hoh rain forest. Stay a day or two at Kalaloch. After Lake Quinault, consider going out towards Copalis before heading into Hoquiam and Aberdeen (no ferry across the mouth yet.). After that it's a pretty much a straight run to Oregon and the coast. To me the inland route in Washington is not appealing. There is the factor of rain which has a stronger presence on the WA coast. Best.


I just went through your entire PCBR ride on CGOAB. I wish I could do that ride again soon. Right now the exigencies of economic necessity require that I continue with my employment. I enjoyed your trip with you remembering so many towns I went through back in 1993. As for myself, I just stop and go with minimal planning. I believe that route is the best in the world.

General Discussion / Re: new to site
« on: September 04, 2013, 11:58:51 am »
England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Czech, Poland, Ukraine, Moldavia, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece.

USA, Canada, Mexico, China  37,000 miles through 19 countries.

I don't recall any thefts. I don't remember any robberies.

Study safe cycling practices. Crimes happen. Cycling does not make you immune from possible criminal misconduct. It's just that of all cycling posts and journals I have read for several years, there were no reports of crimes. Don't worry about it. Just do it.

General Discussion / Re: bicycles on the roadways
« on: September 03, 2013, 01:53:10 am »
I follow traffic rules and keep an eye out for traffic. If I am riding at 2 am in a small town and I come to an intersection where there is obviously no traffic anywhere in sight for a mile in every direction, I blow through the red light. I go through stop signs on small side roads where there is obviously no possibility of traffic. Sometimes I have to laugh at people in cars who pull into  completely empty large parking lots at 3 am, and go very slowly stopping at every little crosswalk stop sign. I am a safe cyclist, but not a conditioned robot. Where traffic is present, I obey all the rules. If I come to crossroads out in flat farming country where it is obvious there is no other moving vehicle for miles in all directions, I'm not stopping at that stop sign. Some people would stop there. Not me. That's for traffic control. When there isn't any traffic, what does it matter? There have been times when I came to no-traffic situations and stop signs, and little kids were somewhere watching, so I stopped anyway because I did not want to give the little ones the impression it was ok to ignore stop signs. Other than that, if there is no traffic whatsoever, I keep going.

General Discussion / Re: new to site
« on: September 03, 2013, 01:35:08 am »
I have not been mugged or robbed on a tour that I can recall right now. I have done shorter round-trip bike tours, but my long ones used the bike out and other transportation back.

General Discussion / Re: Around the world cyclists killed in Thailand
« on: August 25, 2013, 11:16:41 pm »
The thing that struck me was that of all the millions of places somebody reached down and picked something up and veered out of control, it had to be exactly where those two people were cycling. It's like I've said all along. Bears with four legs are not the ones you have to be wary of. It's the two-legged kind that drive cars and trucks. Damn bad luck if you ask me. This has always been a dangerous and uncertain world. Hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

Here in my hometown of Stuart, Florida I have known eight guys killed on their bikes over a period of about 20 years. Those are only people I knew or had met. There were others I didn't know, and this is still a small town.

General Discussion / Re: Trikes and rumble strips...
« on: August 18, 2013, 02:06:25 pm »
I concur with MrBent. Rumble strips are a pain in some places.

Depending on your route your encounter with them my be minimal. Some such as those west of Baton Rouge on the ACA southern tier are no problem whatever cycling over. Others such as those gouged out on the roadsides on some parts of the AC route are hell to hit even once with a wheel, and the damn things leave little room if any for cycling to the right. There are many areas where you can ride right of the rumble strips with an inline bike. A trike would be a problem in some of these stretches of road.

General Discussion / Re: Complete newb, TA in 2014
« on: August 18, 2013, 02:00:15 pm »
Get the best bike you can afford. Do not skimp or save on the tires because if you do, you are not really saving. Do your homework. Get really good tires. Don't get anything below a Schwalbe Marathon. Most any well made frame will get you there, but it must be built at correct angles, and it must be a good fit for you personally. Wheels and tires are extremely important. Get tires that will go all the way across. There are plenty of old used frames that can be had for very little. Minus a triple crank set, you can fit it out for under $200.00.

General Discussion / Re: Low Carb and Long Distance Touring
« on: August 18, 2013, 01:47:50 pm »
I went on the Pritikin rapid weight loss diet before starting my first long tour in 1984. I was muscled up pretty well at 210 pounds. I went to 172 pounds in six weeks. I stuck to the diet 100%. Of course, I did a lot of exercise too. I found my optimum weight at 180 pounds below which there was an uncomfortable loss of strength. The weight loss was too rapid.

What I discovered for myself way back then was it was difficult keeping up enough energy on fruits and vegetables to cycle across the USA.  The thing was to try and get fresh fruits and vegetables as much as possible, and to get other sources of energy. I use Cytomax for extra fuel. One problem is you might spend days in areas where only or mostly only convenience store food is available. Pizza, fried chicken, and potato logs will keep you going, but some stores do not have even that. Bologna sandwiches and potato chips and beer aren't the best fuel. IMO you must cycle with the low carb diet and work it out for yourself. Cycling around town and on short trips and cycling across a continent and camping are very different matters where energy needs are the subjects for consideration. You must keep maintain your energy or it can become an unpleasant drain.

The difference between cycling around town and on day trips, and cycling across the continent is like the difference between sailing a boat around the river and harbor, and sailing across an ocean. It's a different world.

Of course nobody knows all the details. Maybe the driver had a heart attack or something. I saw pictures too. It seemed like a straight shot and level in broad daylight. Barring medical problems that caused the driver to lose eyesight or consciousness, it is hard to believe the he / she was not able to detect the cyclists' presence in the road. Sometimes there just isn't a good explanation. Does anybody know anything more about it?

General Discussion / Re: Realistic time requirements
« on: June 26, 2013, 07:26:32 am »
I was going to say there are unknown variables that reduce and add to daily mileage on a bike that are no so important in enclosed motorized transportation, but that has been said in word and in deed. Snow had me  tied down for six days in Van Horn, Texas while cars and trucks went flying by on the interstate. You need to allow for some leeway when you are scheduling for a transcontinental bicycle tour. Plans don't always go as we would like them to go.

General Discussion / Re: To Go Home or Not...That is the Question?
« on: June 26, 2013, 07:17:49 am »
Cat's answer is right too. If you are determined to complete your journey, visit your family, and keep on going no matter what they say or think.

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