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Messages - mucknort

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31
General Discussion / Re: Long distance trip alone?
« on: March 12, 2012, 05:16:21 pm »
I know this isn't advancing the discussion, but I read the thread title and shuddered. I love long distance touring, but have absolutely 0 interest in EVER doing it alone. To me, sharing the experience with one or more humans is an absolute essential and pleasure and makes the journey all the better. To me, bike touring solo would be the perfect mix of heaven and hell: bike touring (heaven) and doing it solo (hell). I wish those of you that are hard-wired to do it solo all the best!

32
General Discussion / Re: Affordable/free camping idea
« on: March 07, 2012, 02:16:25 pm »
I'd forgotten about it until now, but while riding on a recent cross country trip I found it interesting that some towns that were located on established A.C.A. routes (or had rail trails running through them) obviously catered to the bicycle tourists that were riding through their towns, yet many did not. We were always delighted to see a sign pointing out bicycle accomodations, supplies, cycle tourist's favorites (ice cream/ fresh fruit/ etc.). So many struggling towns in the U.S. that are begging for tourist dollars (and are located on regular bicycle routes) could be doing so much more to reach out cycle tourists. Offering a simple camping area for cyclists (as a number of towns do) would go a long ways to keeping some extra tourist dollars.

33
General Discussion / Re: Affordable/free camping idea
« on: March 07, 2012, 01:51:07 pm »
Sorry, I disagree about Warmshowers.

Sorry to hear you had a bad experience with a warmshower guest and even more so that you never used warmshowers as a guest yourself. Being able to conveniently pull up to a stranger's house, share a meal, have wonderful conversations, sleep in a bed/floor, enjoy other hospitalities, and usually reaching some point of feeling that you were re-visiting long lost friends - all for free, is a wonderful aspect of bike touring.

For others considering being a warmshowers host, know that you always have the option to say no to anyone that asks to be a guest. Whenever we get a call/email from someone that wishes to be a warmshowers guest I always look up their account on the WS site and read recommendations that have been left from others (we also do this when on the road and searching for a host). If there are 0 recommendations, or any bad ones, I'll just ignore the request. But even if they are new to warmshowers, you can always "google" their name and find out about them before saying yes or no.

Jamawani, I'm wondering if you read the recommendations of the guests you hosted that were rude to you, or if you wrote a negative report on those folks to prevent the same experience for other hosts. Warmshowers isn't a perfect system, but I find the checks and balances make it feel a safe opportunity to host or be a guest.

34
General Discussion / Re: Affordable/free camping idea
« on: March 06, 2012, 09:08:28 am »
Warmshowers.com is a great idea but it has the drawback of having to trust strangers. 

Trusting (and meeting) strangers is a huge appeal of warmshowers for me. Everyone I've met as a guest and a host has been great.
As far as simple campsites for bike tourists, I wish campgrounds across the US followed the Hiker/Biker model of the Pacific Coast State Parks and had a separate little section that was  cheap and simple and located away from the vehicles. (Heck, I wish the sponsor of this fine website had a simple Biker campground (on or offsite) at their headquarters in Missoula, MT. While the hospitality is wonderful when you visit, the only campground in town is a KOA.)

35
General Discussion / Re: how safe is it to ride in the US?
« on: March 05, 2012, 02:01:22 pm »
... and the window rolled down and out came a hand with a cold beer for each of us!

We had a pick-up truck stop ahead of us and get and stand next to his truck waiting for us. We nervously rode up and were surprised by handfuls of fresh picked apples being offered to us.

I can't comment on sections of the US I haven't ridden, but I can say that 99% of the drivers between Boston,MA and Seattle,WA and Portland, OR and LA,CA have been courteous and friendly (or at least left me alone).

36
General Discussion / Re: how safe is it to ride in the US?
« on: March 02, 2012, 12:18:33 pm »
Boston to Seattle on bikes w/o any incidents = safe.

37
Classifieds / Rans Stratus Recumbent Bikes
« on: March 02, 2012, 12:16:38 pm »
I have 2 Rans Stratus bicycles for sale. $800 each or $1500 for both. PM for details.

38
General Discussion / Re: Communications on tour
« on: February 28, 2012, 10:11:38 am »
I voted something else, as this is not a multiple choice poll (after checking it looks like this forum doesn't allow you to create multiple choice polls) and we used cell phone and netbook about equally. But the most common way we communicated on tour was talking the folks we met on the road.

39
Classifieds / Re: New Schwalbe Marathon XR tires, 700x35 and 700x40
« on: February 22, 2012, 04:11:40 pm »
Hello Neil,

Good to see you on this website. Many a reference has been given from here to your crazyguyonabike.com site, so it would be cool to see you posting in the touring forum here.

If anyone is considering what Neil is selling, I can vouch that the items will be in as advertised condition.

40
General Discussion / Re: No ride reports???
« on: February 21, 2012, 04:36:46 pm »
http://bikeovernights.org is also another Adventure Cycling Association site worth checking out if you have not already.
Nope, never seen that one either. Looks very cool!
Why do you people hide these things so well???

41
General Discussion / Re: No ride reports???
« on: February 21, 2012, 01:47:25 pm »
If your looking for ride reports and or journals you might want to check out http://bicycletravelbloggers.org for daily inspiration and entertainment.
Wow, I'd never heard of this. And the bigger surprise was to see that it is sponsored by Adventure Cycling!

42
  We are now in our late 60`s, creaking bones  and camping out in the cold and rain is becoming more of a test of endurance rather than an enjoyable experience. 
Another vote for warmshowers.org, we are on it and would love to host you for a night. As far as a route, the leaves start changing in the far north and then work their way south. Which means fall colors are at peak in Maine/Canada in early September and are peaking in Mass./Conn. in October some time. There are websites that track this progression every year. Regarding those creaking bones, you may want to plan more of your trip in Southern New England if you want to avoid more of the steep hills.

43
General Discussion / Re: Cost - WE to TA
« on: February 17, 2012, 03:25:36 pm »

Dollar menus at McD, a $5 hot 'n ready pizza at little Caesars, Taco Bell's great cheap menu, lots of choices for cheap hot food.  Keep your eye out for festivals and potlucks and crash them!  :D 
Subway Sandwich shops are everywhere now and their $5 footlongs are a good deal because you are only limited on how much bread, meat, and cheese you are allowed. Otherwise, they will load on an incredible amount of veggies to make it a very filling meal. (This is what saved us financially riding cross country with a teen boy. He would have them load at least a jar's worth of pickles/olives/banana peppers on his BLTs)

44
General Discussion / Blatant Anti-Cyclist Comic in Today's Paper
« on: February 08, 2012, 03:46:18 pm »
http://www.gocomics.com/pearlsbeforeswine/2012/02/08

"And that's why I try to run them over." >:(

45
General Discussion / Re: Most interesting states
« on: February 06, 2012, 03:29:18 pm »
The reason Idaho has such a low representation is the need for a passport at the borders.
That, and the fact that Idaho drivers showed us the least courtesy toward cyclists of any state we travelled through, and that the roads had the smallest shoulders and worst road conditions. At least, this was true on Hwy 200 along Lake Pend Orielle. Spectacular scenery, otherwise.



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