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Messages - indyfabz

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General Discussion / Re: Short colorado ride.
« on: February 04, 2012, 02:59:14 pm »
36 is unpleasantly busy between Lyons and Estes Park, especially going uphill.

Rode that in '00. Couldn't agree more. Non-stop traffic in early August.

General Discussion / Re: First long distance ride?
« on: February 03, 2012, 01:55:31 pm »
FWIW, I discovered during lunch that there is an article in today's NYT about crime on reservations. It mostly focusses on the failure of a recent crackdown on reservation crime (which I had no idea had existed) to stem the crime rate on the Wind River Reservation in WY, which I believe is on/close to the Trans Am route. Sounds like the crime is primarily "internal" in the sense that it is not directed at passers through.

General Discussion / Re: First long distance ride?
« on: February 03, 2012, 10:01:29 am »
I would not recommend carrying one for protection against grizzly bears.  Unless you're carrying something high caliber, you'll just piss him off.


Also, what part of your route gives you grizzly worries? Will you actually be in any particular areas that are known grizzly habitats? For example, there are grizzlies in MT, but only in a relatively small portion of the state. So the simple fact of riding in MT doesn't mean you will have the chance of having a run in with a grizzly.

I have ridden thourh several Indian reservations. The only reason I knew I was on a reservation was because the map told me I was. I have read that there are some restrictions about wandering off the rode in places, such as for hiking. For example, there is some nice hiking in the Looking Glass Hill area (MT route 49), which is on Blackfoot land. According to one travelogue I read, you are free to use the road, but you need a permit if you want to hike off the road.

Routes / Re: New York - Buffalo to Albany Options
« on: February 03, 2012, 09:40:17 am »
Hi Lynn. Your concerns are valid. My experience there is 12 years old now, so I cannot speak to flood damage. I found the Erie Canal towpath to be slow and boring, although one very often can take parallel rural roads. The scenery is mostly rural and not terribly interesting.

+1. Even with 37c tires it was a pain in some places. Ended up getting off and taking roads into Brockport. I remember the rest of it we did to be pretty boring. Eventually headed north through Mexico to Lake Ontario.

Is there some reason you want/need to go to Albany? You could just follow the NT all the way to Bar Harbor.  The trip into Canada is worth it, IMO. You pass through Ticonderoga, where you can visit the fort. And the route through VT and NH is very nice.

I find it hard to believe that Surly would sell the CC with a triple crank minus the small ring. What would be the point?
The point would be to simplify their inventory.  One crank fits all.

But why leave off the other ring? Cost?  Insignificant.  Weight?  Same.

Routes / Re: Cell phone
« on: February 02, 2012, 09:27:31 am »
Have you checked Verizon's on-line coverage map? I checked the map before last summer's trip in MT. It seemed a bit "conservative" in the sense that I had a good signal in at least one area where the map suggested I would have problems. Where I was supposed to have a signal I always did.

I see the LHT and Cross Check come with the same crankset.

I would check on that. While the model numbers listed are the same for both bikes, the photos show two different cranks. Perhaps the crank model number is inccorrect on one. Or perhaps there are double and triple versions of the ASC124 (or whatever it is) crank. I find it hard to believe that Surly would sell the CC with a triple crank minus the small ring. What would be the point? Next time I am in Trophy Bikes I will ask.  They usually have at least one CC in stock.

Sea Gull Century, Salisbury Md?

Too crowded for my tastes, but very popular.

That's the only thing that comes to my mind.

I did it three times ('95-'97) before I came to the conclusion that the only reason I did it the second and third times was because I was supposed to like it even though I didn't.

Routes / Re: Summer heat on the TA
« on: January 30, 2012, 04:33:25 pm »
Are you doing the entire TA or just the portion in those states?  If the former, don't discount the 'skeeters out west. We did a few days on the TA out of Missoula in late June/early July and they were insane in places.
Big Hole Valley, ~15 mph, mid afternoon, and the sun was out.  We were being bitten through two layers of clothes bu flies and skeeters.

According to the locals, last year was a really bad year due to the heavy snow and subsequent melt.  Five miles outside of Wisdom we hit a little rise that slowed us down to around 7 mph. We got swarmed. I could see at least a dozen on my GF's butt biting through her spandex. When we got to town she volunteered to wait outside with the bike while I went into the grocery store. She was inside within 3 minutes due to the 'skeeters. We stayed in a motel rather than camp at the infested American Legion park. We had to kill some 'skeeters in the room. Twin Bridges was so bad in the evening that we could not sit outside at the bike camp. Watched the 4th of July fireworks from inside the screened shelter.

Didn't have any problems with bugs on the NT until Sprague Creek Campground in Glaicer N.P., but both times I left Seattle in late May, so it may have been a bit early for them. Heading to Missoula from Columbia Falls they were pretty bad at Lake Alva in '99. Again, the winter had been very snowy.

Routes / Re: Montana 83 riding conditions?
« on: January 30, 2012, 04:20:07 pm »
We managed to squeak into the last spot at Lake Alva.

Do you know if the loons were nesting there? There used to be a pair that came back to Lake Alva every year.

Routes / Re: Summer heat on the TA
« on: January 30, 2012, 10:54:48 am »
Are you doing the entire TA or just the portion in those states?  If the former, don't discount the 'skeeters out west. We did a few days on the TA out of Missoula in late June/early July and they were insane in places.

Routes / Re: Another Great Parks North Ques...
« on: January 30, 2012, 10:36:03 am »
We did a loop from/to Whitefish in ’09 using part of the Great route and connecting the ends using Rte. 93 to Elko. I second going to Waterton Village. (Also stayed there in ’99.) The town campsite is great. Right on the lake. It can get very windy, but there are indoor camp kitchens where you can cook. We actually slept in one in ’09 as it was very cold and extremely windy.  If you can take a day off, there is a boat ride/hike combination that’s supposed to be fabulous. We had to cancel our day off for schedule reasons so didn’t get to do it. Another reason to stop there is that there is nothing except for one restaurant between Pincher Creek and the border crossing at Chief Mountain, where you may find a vending machine or two. That restaurant is in Twin Butte, which is maybe 20 miles south of Pincher Creek. You won’t find any other commercial establishments until U.S. 89. (In the vicinity of Babb, we stopped at the Fire Horse Café on the left. I believe it’s on the Blackfoot reservation.  Great burgers.) The climb that starts at the Jct. of PR 5 and PR 6 is a tough one, both physically and psychologically as much of it is laid out in front of you. There’s another climb to get to the border crossing. And you will almost certainly have a stiff headwind on U.S. 89. I think making it from somewhere like Pincher Creek all the way to St. Mary in one day would be a daunting task.

If I remember the AC route correctly, you come down from Baynes Lake to Rte. 93 to Elko. If so, 93 was a long false flat. And if you have good eyesight, you get taunted by the flashing traffic light at the Jct. with PR 3.  :(  Little traffic and a shoulder. Elko to Fernie wasn’t bad, although many have reported heavy traffic on PR 3. We had little traffic. It mostly came in spurts.  Maybe it being late June had something to do with it. There is a dirt alternative on the other side of the river which can be picked up near the store in Elko. Someone recently asked about it on this forum. Sparwood has a nice campground on the edge of town with free firewood. And you ride past the world’s largest truck. Approaching Coleman all the way to the turnoff for Rte. 507 traffic picked up. The stretch between Coleman (great café in a former church) and 507 was the worst. A good deal of traffic and noisy, and the towns along the way are drab. Rte. 507 was traffic free and pretty, albeit extremely rolling in places. If you come down 22 to 3, it might be worth backtracking a bit to take 507 into Pincher Creek, which is another sad little place. Doing that will also allow you to see the famous Burmis Tree, which is near the junction of 3 and 507.

Gear Talk / Re: Folding tires
« on: January 28, 2012, 11:14:03 am »
I've used the dollar bill trick on 2 inch blowout.  It got me 12 miles to the next town and made feel all McGuyver-like.   8)
Would a $10 bill last 120 miles? :)

I have booted tires for myself and for others using bills. It has worked well. Once all I had was a $20.  That's why I always try to carry at last one $1 bill on rides.  PowerBar wrappers supposedly work well, too.

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Connecting Transam and L&C
« on: January 28, 2012, 11:01:05 am »

Could you explain where I can find the location of fairgrounds or do you know a place that lists campgrounds in Wyoming and South Dakota campgrounds in Wyoming and South Dakota?

Google "camgrounds south dakota" and the same for Wyoming and you will find some resources, although I doubt they are complete. If you have a general idea of the towns you will be passing through you can search Google Maps for "campgrounds near [name of town]." Zooming out once the map pops up will broaden the search results. County and town chamber of commerce/visitor web sites can also yield results. If you will be passing through national forests, the search the U.S.F.S. web site for the particular forests. Same thing for any national parks/recreation areas.

Routes / Re: pacific coast- astoria, OR to San Diego, CA
« on: January 27, 2012, 03:52:27 pm »
See this for general weather info for the OR portion:

It also has some other good information.

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