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General Discussion / Re: Look for 2 month bike trip in the USA this summer
« Last post by alessandra on May 25, 2016, 11:45:16 am »
Pete, thank you so much. I'm not indimidated, your message made me just much more eager to be there!

I was just looking at the maps: I think it would be interesting to go from SLC to Zion-Bryce-North Rim-Capitol Reef and end up in Moab. Stay in Moab to visit Canyonlands and Arches, hire a car to go back to Las Vegas and stop in Goosenecks, Monument Valley, Lake Powell and South Rim, if I have enough time.
That would also solve the problem of going back to LV ,and it might be cheaper than buses with bike transportation.
And  I could shunt the road from SLC to Moab.

Wow, I can't wait!

General Discussion / Re: Look for 2 month bike trip in the USA this summer
« Last post by zzzz on May 25, 2016, 10:55:09 am »

You've picked a beautiful route. I road down from Spokane,Wa last September and wrapped up in Flagstaff, Az so I covered the route you're taking almost exactly I believe. If you haven't already I would pick up the ACA maps Western Express #3 and the Grand Canyon connector. You'll have to fudge it in some places but 400 or 500 miles will be an exact match and it will be a real help to have them.

I wish I could give you a great way to get from SLC to Moab but I can't. I will leave that section of your trip for someone else to comment on. I know the way that I came down (191) was the worst part of my 2500 mile trip. Busy highway but it did have a decent shoulder (at least until the Green River to Moab section). It would be your baptism by fire.

There is an alternate thru Dinosaur (a very cool place) and down western Colorado but I have not ridden it myself. Or you can start your bike trip with a car rental and drop off the car in Moab.

Moab is a very cool town and a destination in and of itself. Both Arches and Canyonlands are big climbs up to the sights. I'm sure you've seen the photos of Arches and so no need to explain further why it's a worthwhile stop. If you're just going to Canyonlands for the the day you probably want to go to Dead Horse State Park. It's what you'll hit first on the road and the vistas are similar and just as spectacular.

From Moab you go back on 191 north to 70 (I-70 is not bad here), go west two exits and then drop down to Hanksville. In Hanksville you pick up the Western Express route which is like no place else on earth for the next few hundred miles. Through Capital Reef and Grand Staircase you will have 1 extraordinary vista after another. If you block off a day to hike at Bryce Canyon I think you will have seen much of what it has to offer.

Then a big downhill and get off the WE route and make a left on 89S and head down to Zion. Zion was the highlight of my trip. I considered that place magic. I would block off 3 days and do the 3 iconic hikes there. Observation Point, Angel's Landing, and The Narrows. The Narrows Hike is highly dependent on the river level and in fact it was too high when I was there to do anything other than hike in a mile or so. Hopefully you will have more luck. Also, you say you want to hike down to the river when you get to the Grand Canyon. That hike is unique but these hikes in Zion are pretty stout & will tell you if you're capable of the big GC hike.

Go back out of Zion the way you came and get back on 89S and down to the North Rim. It is nominally nicer than the South Rim and nominally less crowded so it is worth going up the 90 mile round trip dead end road. It is still really crowded. Then over to the South Rim, 230 miles on the road to go 20 miles if you hiked it but it's not wasted time. After the big descent from the North Rim you'll be riding by Vermillion Cliffs and surrounded by buttes for miles.

South Rim of the Grand Canyon will be Very Crowded. And the park service will warn you that if you hike down to the bottom of the canyon and back in one day you will die. Here's the strategy for doing it safely. Leave very early, first bus to the South Kaibob Trailhead was at 5:30 in the morning when I was there, be on it. The trail is wide and easy to follow, even in the dark with a head lamp. Stop at "ooh/ahh" point on your way down and soak up the sunrise lighting up the canyon. You should be down at the river by 9, load up with water and go back up Bright Angel Trail which unlike S. Kaibob has water along the way at least one place, maybe two. You do not want to be at the bottom of the canyon hiking out in the heat of the day. That's when people get in serious trouble.

For this entire trip I would make it a point to start early, like dawn. It will likely be very hot except when you are at elevation. In addition to the 2 water bottles on my bike I had two 2 liter poly bags that when I had a long way between stops I would fill up. There was 1 95 mile day where the wind was up and I went thru all 6 liters of water I was carrying. You will fortunately not be doing that particular stretch on your trip but there will be several 50-60 mile stretches between supplies. You do not want to run out of water out there.

Don't let any of what I've written above intimidate you. Be aware of your limits and respect them.You are going to have a trip that you will remember for a lifetime

Gear Talk / Re: Touring with hammocks: any other Pros & cons?
« Last post by Timberhack on May 25, 2016, 10:17:29 am »
Big hammock fan here too. Did the western half of the Trans-Am with one last summer and concluded that in the plains states a tent would be the way to go. With a little creativity I was able to find methods to hang without trees, that was not the problem. The problem is if it looks like it might rain, you need the tarp up, and with a tarp that's above the ground, it acts like a big sail. 30+ MPH winds are a major PITA with a hammock tarp. That being said, it would be hard to go back to the ground after the comfort of my W.B. Blackbird.

 Disclaimer: I'm old. When I was young I could sleep on a pile of rocks and snooze like a baby.
General Discussion / Re: Look for 2 month bike trip in the USA this summer
« Last post by alessandra on May 25, 2016, 08:04:43 am »
I forgot to ask for campgrounds issue: where is it possible to camp outside official campgrounds? Is it possible to ask people to camp in their garden or under their porch (in Europe you can try...).
I'm a bit afraid about encounters with the wildlife!
General Discussion / Re: Look for 2 month bike trip in the USA this summer
« Last post by alessandra on May 25, 2016, 08:00:59 am »
Well, time to get started!
I finally found a way to arrive in Bozeman and to leavre from Las VEgas.
That allows me to ride a 2200km/2 month trip from Bozeman thru Yellowstone-Grand Teton-Salt Lake City and the Utah-Arizona parks-GCNP-Las Vegas (by bus?).

2 problems:
1) Heat, even if I think I'll just ride in Zion, Brice, Grand Canyon, but not in the Monument Valley: do you think that on the high plateau temperature will be bearable in August?
2) The trip: until SLC, no problem. After SLC, I hesitate. As I cannot cross the Colorado in the GCNP, I could just stay on the north rim (coming down from SLC, thru Bryce and Zion), and from there going towards Capitol Reef and Moab. Or I could go from SLC to Moab (by bus?), stay in Moab some says to visit Arches and Canyonlands.
To see Gooseneck and Monument valley I think I'll hire a car in Moab.
Any suggestion to include the South rim? It would be easier from there to hike down to the Colorado and back, but it seems very demanding in terms of miles.

Every advise and hint about things to see or do is very welcome!
Routes / Re: Erie Canalway Towpath trail
« Last post by etsisk on May 25, 2016, 05:40:40 am »
Thanks! I'll be getting a guide book for it before I go.
California / Re: SF Based. Any groups doing overnight rides?
« Last post by tex232 on May 24, 2016, 10:49:16 pm »
There are Facebook groups like East bay bike camping.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk


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General Discussion / Re: How to figure average miles per day
« Last post by DaveB on May 24, 2016, 06:38:39 pm »
To some extent it depends on who is asking.  A few years ago another couple and my wife and I took a winter vacation in FL.   We were there for 10 days and the other guy and I rode about 300 miles in that time, just day rides for two or three hours in between other activities with our wives.  When we got back and were asked about our riding we got two types of responses.

The non-riders said something like; "WOW, 300 miles!  Did you do anything but ride???"
The riders said; "Only 300 miles huh?  I guess you didn't ride much."
Gear Talk / Re: LHT with 26 Inch Wheels?
« Last post by bikemig on May 24, 2016, 03:21:23 pm »
You should just ride the bike stock and see if you like the bar ends. They are dead easy to use. As others have said, the bike is designed around 26 inch wheels and that is a plus in a small frame size. There are no real negatives to this.
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