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61
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by RonK on December 05, 2016, 10:30:26 pm »
The OP seems to have overlooked what is usually a Brit's worst nightmare - snakes. And spiders.
Better remind him not to put his boots on without checking first. :lol:
62
Routes / Re: New York State Bike Route 5 versus Erie Canalway Trail
« Last post by walks.in2.trees on December 05, 2016, 08:16:06 pm »
Thanks for your input.  I'm looking forward to what other's have to say.

It looks like following the Erie Canalway from Schnectady to Lockport NY is 296 miles.  Following NY Bike Route 5 is 296.  Not much difference, and it has a few good climbs.  Thanks for your input, Vertiganer.

Canalligators, what guide book are you referring to?   I'll be checking out your link to CrazyGuyOnABike shortly.
About using the path rather than the road for the stretch from Albany to Schenectady... The path is much nicer, and it's paved, if a bit wrinkled in places from tree roots.

On the other hand RTE 5 is a straight shot, and fairly easy going once you've climbed the hill out of downtown Albany if you'd rather shorten the travel time. Going through Schenectady early in the AM (4-5) there isn't much traffic at all, but it starts picking up around 6ish.

On the path, once you get into Schenectady where it takes to the streets, there's signage marking the route, but you really have to watch for them.




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63
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by John Nelson on December 05, 2016, 07:51:12 pm »
Dogs: Skip the pepper spray. If the dog is going to catch you, stop. The dog will lose interest.

Bears: Use good food practices and you'll be fine. Except with grizzlies. Grizzlies are unpredictable. Luckily there aren't many in the lower 48.
64
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by jwrushman on December 05, 2016, 07:47:09 pm »
If you check out You Tube videos on PCT method for hanging food bags, you'll be fine.  And as important, when you're trying to throw your weighted bag over a tree branch, you'll provide hilarious entertainment for your buddies!
65
Routes / Re: New York State Bike Route 5 versus Erie Canalway Trail
« Last post by jwrushman on December 05, 2016, 07:40:49 pm »
Thanks for your input.  I'm looking forward to what other's have to say.

It looks like following the Erie Canalway from Schnectady to Lockport NY is 296 miles.  Following NY Bike Route 5 is 296.  Not much difference, and it has a few good climbs.  Thanks for your input, Vertiganer.

Canalligators, what guide book are you referring to?   I'll be checking out your link to CrazyGuyOnABike shortly.
66
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by jamawani on December 05, 2016, 06:07:45 pm »
PS - Article on how to hang your food.

https://www.princeton.edu/~oa/training/bearbag.shtml

I always pack 50 ft (15m) of good quality cording plus a carabiner.
Learning how to do this takes a few tries - but will give you greater confidence, too.
Nearly all developed campgrounds in bear country have bear boxes or hanging poles.
It's only when you random camp that you will need to do this.

PPS - NEVER eat in your tent.
67
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by jamawani on December 05, 2016, 05:50:30 pm »
80% of the time effectively applied choice words do the trick.
10% of the time the dogs flee as soon as you jump off.
10% of the time it takes some real effort on the ground.
Watch their ears - as soon as they drop, you have them.
(If you keep pedaling, they will just keep chasing.)

The above numbers apply only to loose dogs - which is nearly all of them in E. Kentucky.

There a some black bears in the Appalachians in the East - not too many, not really an issue.
There are both black bears and grizzlies in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho.
I live in Wyoming and have cycled solo on remote dirt roads and have never had a problem.
But I always practice bear-country camping techniques.
Colorado and Oregon have only black bears - but wilder than their eastern cousins.

I will tell you that I am pretty certain that I have had a grizzly circle my tent on at least two occasions.
You can hear them snorting and the tracks are the size of dinner plates. But I was in the backcountry.
Nothing is 100% - but you could get hit by a bus the next time you cross the street, too.
If you are uneasy, make sure to camp in developed campgrounds in the Rockies.

Really, there is nothing to worry about - either with dogs or bears.

BTW - the same food cautions apply to raccoons - which are numerous everywhere.
They will rip your tent open to get to any food you have inside.
68
Routes / Re: Pacific Coast Route
« Last post by johnsondasw on December 05, 2016, 05:42:34 pm »
It should be ok, but be prepared for lots of foggy gray days along the Oregon and Calif coast throughout the summer.  Temps are ok for riding, and winds should be consistently from the north!
69
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by Soulboy#1 on December 05, 2016, 05:35:22 pm »
Thanks for the candid reply although I was still sort of hoping for you to say ah do t worry about it there is nothing to worry about. So dogs in Kentucky aren't the most inviting. Did you always get off your bike or just pedal the hell out of there?

Is there a particular part of the trail the is more prone to bears?
70
General Discussion / Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my!!!
« Last post by jamawani on December 05, 2016, 05:28:00 pm »
The dogs are probably worse than ever - been a few years since I have cycled eastern Kentucky, but things there are not good by any stretch of the imagination. Poverty, loss of coal mining jobs, prescription drug epidemic. Bootleggers have long ago switched from moonshine to pot - and dogs guard their plots. You can have packs of dogs come out after you. In rural Alabama a couple of years ago, I rode into the county seat and complained to the deputy about the problem. She said, "Jus' shoot 'em." I think my response was a stunned, "Oh!"

More important than pepper spray is an attitude of control. Yes, I've had some opera training, but if you blast their ears - with language that would shock your grandmother - they will always back down. I also ALWAYS jump off my bike in the direction of the dogs - not the other way. Plus, having a full-sized metal pump is nice, too. Dogs always freak out when you hold it by the bottom end and swing it with the pump flying out. I've ridden 100,000 miles and never been bitten, never used pepper spray - but I have been pretty hoarse from time to time.

About the bears - always ride and camp with a younger person. Bears have a great sense of smell and can tell who is the tender morsel. If you plan on dispersed camping, know how to hang your food properly and cook/eat 100 meters downwind from your campsite. Finally, NEVER eat in your tent - throughout the entire trip. The peanut butter sandwich you ate in your tent last week will still be a neon sign for Mr. Bear's nose even though you can't smell it.
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