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Messages - indyfabz

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Routes / Re: Gravel Roads/Alternative Routes along the Northern Tier
« on: April 17, 2017, 09:01:38 am »
1. Yaak Valley - Turn onto CH 508 just inside Mont. - paved, services at Yaak, comes out near Rexford
Incredible riding along Yaak River for miles - big climb and descent to Lake Koocanusa

I am planning to ride through Yaak this June. Was then going to head straight to Libby but found a journal on CGOB written buy a guy who did Kookanusa to Yaak. Sounds amazing so I plan to ride it. You can see the route he took here between mile 297 and 338:

Routes / Re: Gravel Roads/Alternative Routes along the Northern Tier
« on: April 17, 2017, 08:55:39 am »
I know Indyfabz has some knowledge here.  You've given some good tips in the past on here.  Do you have any suggestions?
Can't help you in WA, but I am planning on being on parts of the NT in MT this June, and I have been trying to incorporate more dirt in my trips.  One thing I have been considering to avoid some of U.S. 93 south of Eureka is this:

Don't have any experience, but from the profile you can see that there is a short, nasty section with a ruling grade above 15%. It puts you back on U.S. 93 just north of Olney, so you don't miss the town store juts off route.

And are you aware that the official route takes a break from U.S. 93 just south of Lupfer? It uses Farm to Market Rd. and Twin Bridges Rd. west of U.S. 93. Very nice back there.

When did you take NF-228/92? I was under the impression that it was paved, at least now it is?

Routes / Re: Lewis + Clark to Trans Am West to East in May?
« on: April 16, 2017, 04:03:30 pm »
and switching over to the Trans Am route in Missoula.
When would be your anticipated arrival in Missoula?

Routes / Re: Colorado Springs to Minneapolis route?
« on: April 12, 2017, 08:25:38 am »
Jeans are needlessly heavy and bulky, and if they get wet they don't dry easily. Convertible pants are a good investment. Plus, IA could be hotter that hell in July. It was when I did the Northern Tier. Topped out at over 100 degrees and every day was at least 90. MN wasn't exactly cool all the time either. We crossed over from ND on July 6th and had some warm, humid days during our two weeks in the state.

Routes / Re: Colorado Springs to Minneapolis route?
« on: April 11, 2017, 03:43:42 pm »
BTW...You need to carefully review any Goggle Maps suggestion re: a bike route, especially out west. It will sometimes pick dirt roads, roads that are not really roads, etc. The screen shot you included is not detailed enough to assess the route's viability.

Routes / Re: Colorado Springs to Minneapolis route?
« on: April 11, 2017, 02:41:42 pm »
and a week to two weeks worth of clothes.
Which means one or two sets or riding clothes (shorts, jersey, socks, etc.), maybe some rain gear and, for off bike, one pair of convertible pants, one or two shirts and two pairs of undies, right?  ;D

Routes / Re: Northern Tier to Transamerica
« on: April 05, 2017, 11:09:45 am »
If you want to stay on ACA routes, Check out the Interactive Network Map:

Un-check the box for Complete Adventure Cycling Route Network and check the boxes for the Northern Tier, Trans Am, Bicycle Route 66 and the Underground Railroad Route. The last two can be followed to connect the Northern Tier to the Trans Am.

Also check out the Pacific Coast route and the Western Express. The latter goes through Sacramento. Not the most direct route, but one option.

Gear Talk / Re: Packing Techniques for Ortlieb Front Roller Classics
« on: April 04, 2017, 10:37:13 am »
Nothing against your using containers within containers, but I prefer to avoid the extra layer of packing and just put my stuff directly into the pannier. If I do need some method of organization for small items, I use zip-lock bags. Yes you do have to sometimes root around for what you are looking for, but I find that tolerable.

On drawback to having something hard inside the pannier (like the lid of that peanut jar) is that it can cause abrasions on the pannier, especially if your bike falls over.
+1. I have Ortlieb Packer+ series. I don't have any "redundancy" in storage except for my ground coffee, which I double up the Zip-Loc for in case the first one gets a little hole, and my fuel bottle, which I put in a plastic shopping bag to keep any fuel residue off other things. If something came with a stuff sack (e.g., MSR Dragonfly) I will use it, but that's it.

Rigid containers can also waste space in several ways.

Pacific Northwest / Re: A Good Portland bicycle shop?
« on: April 03, 2017, 02:18:51 pm »
The Bike Gallery has, for years, provided mechanical support for Cycle Oregon. They have several locations, including one in downtown Portland:

General Discussion / Re: Bike Safety
« on: March 31, 2017, 10:49:55 am »
I have gone with a very light cable lock on most tours, but have also gone with no lock at all.  In places I perceive as high risk I don't let the bike out of my sight.  I seldom stay in cities or even large towns preferring to avoid larger cities in favor of rural small towns.  In rare cases where I have stayed in cities I usually just got a room.  I have wheeled my bike up and down the aisles at walmarts or grocery stores a few times where I thought the risk especially high.  I have also taken it inside and parked it in the front of the store a couple times.  In small town general stores or diners it is often leaned against the front of the building often not locked.

Many of the towns I stop in have populations with two digits and folks don't lock their houses or cars.  I never bother to lock in places like that.  I start to consider it a "big city" when the population has a comma in it :)  At that point I may get more serious about locking or watching the bike.
This is pretty much me.

BTW...If you do the entire NT proper there is an early foray into Canada (after Glacier National Park) at Chief Mountain. Was just up that way again back in '09. I highly recommend including this and going off route a bit to Waterton Village, where there is a great towne campsite in a dramatic setting. Note, however, that someone on this or another forum pointed out that this year is a big anniversary for Canadian parks and places are expected to be packed. As such, a reservation would be advisable.

Back in '99, crossing back into the U.S. at Del Bonito was a snap. Didn't see one other vehicle. In fact, I don't think we saw any vehicles between the border crossing and the outskirts of Cut Bank, MT.

Routes / Re: Transamerica route question
« on: March 24, 2017, 10:14:02 am »
In that case, I would consider having someone who you can mail unneeded stuff to when climate conditions change and who will mail stuff back when they change again.

It's been a while, but crossing the Peace Bridge was no problem with the right documentation.  If you already have a passport, there is not additional expense involved in crossing the bridge, and the ride up that side was very nice.

Our group stayed in town two nights at this place HI Hotel (not to be confused with the B&B of the same name):

It's away from the heavily visited areas but still close enough to walk to the falls.

Here is some information with a video about crossing:

Crossing back was similarly a snap.

Routes / Re: Transamerica route question
« on: March 23, 2017, 01:57:23 pm »
Jeans?  :o As other have said, don't go there.

Here is what I have been packing when I am touring in areas with a good chance of wide ranging conditions, including morning temps around freezing:

Synthetic, convertible (i.e., zip-off legs) pants
Synthetic t-shirt (might consider 2 for a x-country tour)
Underwear (2)
Warm, wool socks
Very light pair of sandals from PayLess
Long sleeve, synthetic pull over with hood that I wound on the side of the rode last year  ;D
Long John bottoms
Warm hat

Short sleeve jersey (2)
Bib shorts (2)
Short socks (2)
Arm and leg warmers
Rain pants
Rain jacket
Wool base layer
Long sleeve jersey
Short gloves
Polypro glove liners
Cold weather gloves
Skull cap that can be worn under the helmet

Routes / Re: Transamerica route question
« on: March 21, 2017, 02:00:29 pm »
A early to mid-May start will likely result in you running into others going the same direction.

As for attire, posting what you have picked out would be helpful.

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