I went on the Northern Route with Adventure Cycling. I had the pleasure of being the lone Canadian in an international group of 11. I cannot say enough good things about the team leader and the great people in the group. What a fantastic life adventure. Even today I still have flashbacks of the trip.
I now ride a Bacchetta Giro recumbent and plan to add racks and use my Arkel bags for my tour of Quebec in the summer of 2005.In 2006 I plan to ride the Pacific Coast route. One of the riders on the trip used a Easy Racer Tour Easy recumbent. He blew us away in terms of speed on the plains and he did well uphill as well.
One of the lessons I learned is have your bike geared properly to go over those challenging mountain ranges. Look for something in the neighborhood of an 11-34 on the rear cassette and a granny gear on the front of 24. In your training program practise spinning at 90 RPM. I put 1000 mile on my bike in preparation for the trip. My legs were never tired during the 60 mile days and I credit it to the conditioning. Your weight will melt of and then you can enjoy all that ice cream and pie that you eat during the the trip.Due to heart condition that was diagnosed after I returned I was not a strong steep hill or mountain climber. I was not in the least embarassed about walking the bike. We were partners. My condition in no way limits me. Before I departed for a rim to rim hike of the Grand Canyon this year my doctor said to listen to my body. I did fine and finished only 10 minutes behind a couple of 40 year olds.
Go for your dream. You are only coming this way once. See America for what it is. Absolutely fantastic country. You'll meet many absolutely fabulous people on the trip like the complete stanger in Cardston Alberta who cooked all of us buffalo stew with bisuits.