I plan a cross-country bike trip with a couple friends. We are planning on going from Savanna to San Francisco this summer. This trip is going to be a charity ride.
We do not have bikes. Because this is a fundraiser and we are college students we do not have a lot of money to spend on bikes. We are trying to not spend over $800 on a bike but preferably less. Do you have any tips for getting a good bike in our price range? What would you recommend for a cheap touring bike, or would you recommend that we try a different type of bike. Could we get a hybrid or mountain bike to work well for this trip? We also heard that you could take a normal road bike if you pulled a trailer. Is that true? We could probably get a nice used road bike for cheap.
If a couple of the guys were to get mountain bikes while the others had touring or road bikes would the mountain bikes be able to keep up? Would it take a lot more work to stay with them or with smooth tires could they ride with the road bikes just fine?
Where did this idea of a cross country bike ride come from? Charity ride? Do you ride a bike now? Have you ever ridden a bike over long distances? A lot of your questions about bikes implies you know nothing about bicycling. I'm not a fan of giving bike buying advice to someone who knows nothing about bikes. I'd suggest you postpone your cross country ride for a few years. Buy a road bike now. Ride it for a half dozen years. Ride 5,000-10,000 miles a year for the next half dozen years. Learn about bicycling. Then ride across the country.
I rode an entire summer immediately following college graduation. But I had been riding for 10 years and knew what bicycling involved. Touring for a summer wasn't much of a stretch for me.