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Messages - indyfabz

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1
FYI...The only way to actually ride into NYC is via the George Washington Bridge from Fort Lee, NJ, which is way up on the northern end of Manhattan. It's a very congested part of the world and dicey if you don't get good advice. The ACA's NYC spur off the Atlantic Coast route ends in Summit and uses train service to get you to NYC. Other options include ferries from Hoboken, NJ and the PATH train from Newark, Jersey City or Hoboken, NJ. (New Jersey is the most densely populated state in the country, and Newark is the most densely populated part of New Jersey.) Don't know about the ferries, but there are times during the weekdays when you may not take a bike on either New Jersey Transit or PATH trains.

If you are not dead-set on ending in New York, reaching the South Jersey shore via Philadelphia, PA poses fewer logistical issues. It's then easy to return back to Philadelphia (either by bike or train) for transportation options home.

Personally, I think 45 days is unrealistic for the reasons mentioned. Also, during June and July in the Midwest and northeast you should be prepared for serious heat and humidity.

2
General Discussion / Re: trikes
« on: November 29, 2016, 04:21:31 pm »
Back in June in MT I encountered a guy riding the TransAm on a trike pulling what looked to be a heavily-loaded trailer. First saw him west of Darby and then again in Jackson so he had clearly done some mountains. Don't know anything specific about his ride, but the gearing did look very low, and the two times I saw him moving he did appear to be going slowly.

3
Gear Talk / Re: Recommendation for front light?
« on: November 28, 2016, 01:31:35 pm »
For a light you can see by in complete darkness on unfamiliar roads, I recommend at least 800 lumens. If you have young eyes, you can probably do with less. Modern LED lights can obtain this level of illumination in a small package at a reasonable price.

Yeah. The OP states that he has a Planet bike Blaze 140. Just last night I used my Planet Bike Blaze 750 for the first time. Darn thing is pretty damn bright. In flash mode the light reflects brightly off street signs more than a city block away. Picked it up for about $48 during REI's recent sale.

Only thing for me is that it charges through a USB cable. I don't take any electronics with USB ports so I would never take it on tour unless there is some sort of adaptor I can get that will allow me to charge it through a regular outlet.

4
General Discussion / Re: Best pre-ride supplement?
« on: November 28, 2016, 10:16:57 am »
Perpetuem by Hammer works well for me as "liquid food." If, during a tour, I know I have a long day with few/no services en route, I will pack a single pack and mix it at the start of that day.

5
Gear Talk / Re: Long distance tour bike for small lady
« on: November 27, 2016, 10:47:33 am »
Smallest size Surly Long Haul Trucker fits my 5' tall ex pretty well.

6
General Discussion / Re: Surly Review
« on: November 27, 2016, 10:45:53 am »
You have an account with BF which indicates you have a Surly Disc Trucker. Plenty of discussion of Surly bikes in the Touring forum of BF. Just ignore troll Squeezebox.

7
Gear Talk / Re: LKLM & Krangear
« on: November 22, 2016, 10:03:46 am »
Sounds neat. I live in Philly.  I did the Lower and Ghost Town Trails back in '98 during Pedal PA's Penn Central tour, which was a Pittsburgh to Philly tour started by an old friend of mine. Stayed in Indiana, Penn State Altoona and Penn State main campus the first three days.

In 2013 I started in Warren, OH and rode home to Philly following much of PA Bike Route S to Bloomsburg and then headed south into Schuykill and Lancaster Counties before heading home. The route included the Allegheny River Trail from Franklin, PA to Emlenton. If you are ever up that way, it's a very nice ride, and it's almost all paved.

The Delaware Canal towpath is just o.k. Rode the portion from Easton to Riegelsville most recently back in September during a tour home from Brattleboro, VT. The surface is a bit gravely and dusty in places. My bike and body got bike filthy from just those short miles. Not sure what sort of shape it is in around the pedestrian bridge between the Black Bass Hotel in Lumberville and Bulls Island S.P. in NJ. At one point it was pretty much unrideable due to flood damage. Some repairs were made and it got damaged again by flooding. Don't know if that damage was repaired. The real issue with that trail is that if you start out on it and come to a section that is closed, the road alternatives of PA 611 and PA 32 are not good ones. I was riding it a few year ago during a tour and came to a section where a giant drainage pipe was being replaced. I was so unwilling to ride PA 32 that I walked down into the giant ditch/hole with my heavy bike and managed to get it up the other side and continue on down the trail.

If you do get back to Easton and ride it, Mark, the owner of Dogwood Haven campground just off the trail on Lodi Hill Rd., is a nice guy. The place is nearly all quiet, seasonal campers, but there are a few regular sites. The place is a bit, uh, "rustic," but it's serviceable and completely shaded, and Mark charges cyclists only $10/night. He has a day job so he doesn't arrive back at the place until 4:30 or so. Ride up the gravel driveway. If he's not around, head straight down the gravel road to site A, B or C (A is the best), pitch your tent and flip him $10 when he shows up. He'll probably be enjoying a beer by the time you find him.

8
Gear Talk / Re: LKLM & Krangear
« on: November 21, 2016, 03:45:34 pm »
and two through the rolling hills of Pennsylvania.

Where in PA?

9
General Discussion / Re: Connecting with other members to ride trans am
« on: November 21, 2016, 10:18:03 am »
Thank you. That is very helpful. The idea of riding solo is appealing. I guess there are a lot of riders along the way to keep company with.

I have done some of the MT portion of the TransAm three times in the last few years, including back in June of this year. Met lots of other people along the way. Thus June I met two guys who were travelling together who had hooked up informally with a solo rider. A few days later I spent two nights at the Bike Camp in Twin bridges. Two solo riders and a group of three stayed there. All were heading east. In 2014 I camped in Jackson with more than a half dozen other riders doing the TransAm.

I also agree that riding alone or with maybe one or two other people tends to lead to more "intimate" interaction with locals. My first tour was ACA's group Northern Tier tour with a total of 13 people. The neatest interactions with locals happened when group members were on their own or with one or two others. For example, me and one other guy had taken a side trip in Indiana to visit a bike shop. While we were on our way to meet up with the rest of the group, we stopped at a café for breakfast. We ended up talking to a farmer who was the town's former mayor. After he left for work, we asked for out check. The waitress told us the farmer had paid for our breakfasts. Doubt any of that would have happened if there had been a half dozen or more of us.

After that trip ended, I rode home down the east coast alone and was the recipient of far more offers of kindness that I did when I was with the entire group.

10
Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 17, 2016, 08:34:58 am »
BTW...If you want to take a day off in Philly to see the historical sites there is a HI hostel that's a pretty easy bike to downtown:

http://www.philahostel.org

11
I routinely ride unpaved roads on my Surly LHT. Some of them are rough, mountainous roads. As the decal on the chainstay reads "Fatties Fit Fine." I use 37c Conti Top Touring II tires, but you can go wider.

Hard to tell, but the washboards on this road in MT were very bad:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/105349603@N05/27981608346/in/album-72157667672266654/

Several other unpaved stretches can be seen in the album. About 40 of the 545 miles of that tour were unpaved. I also did almost the entire Mickelson Trail, which ain't exactly smooth. I have even done Gibbons Pass on that setup. I can post some photos of that later.

12
General Discussion / Re: The Schwarzenetruber Amish.
« on: November 16, 2016, 12:50:33 pm »
A federal judge has ruled that preventing horses and wagons from using the roads is a violation of the religious freedom clause of the United States Constitution.

BTW...Got a case name and/or citation? I have been unable to find either.

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General Discussion / Re: The Schwarzenetruber Amish.
« on: November 16, 2016, 12:09:52 pm »
FYI...You wrote "federal judge." That implies District Court. The decision is only binding in the area that court covers. Even if it's upheld by the Circuit Court of Appeals for that district, t will only be binding in the areas under that circuit's jurisdiction.

14
General Discussion / Re: Which Route Would You Suggest?
« on: November 14, 2016, 01:31:52 pm »
My suggest is to start in Missoula, MT (it has an airport)

And a campground about 3 miles from the airport. And an REI (OP: Outdoor store where you can pick up last minute things like stove fuel) about a 3 block walk from that campground.

15
General Discussion / Re: Which Route Would You Suggest?
« on: November 10, 2016, 10:58:33 am »
If you're looking at ACA routes, the western (and northern!) parts of the TransAm or Great Parks North would be good.  You might start at Anacortes and take the Northern Tier to Glacier NP, then head south to Yellowstone and the Tetons, before flying out of Jackson.  If you've got a bit of extra time, head south into Colorado.

Did just this many years ago, although I started in Seattle. Finished on the Great Parks South at Cortez, CO because I had the time. (If you can make it that far, you can ride another day to Durango, CO for a flight.)

If you want to cut down on the climbing and/or don't want to deal with the crowds at Yellowstone, you could do the beginning what's suggested above but then take the L&C route from the TransAm and end up in North Dakota. (Airports in Bismarck and Fargo. Don't know about Minot.) Or just the Northern Tier proper, but I think that would be less scenic.

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