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As a rail supporter since the late 1970s, I have seen a steady erosion of baggage services nationwide. Since many stops outside urban corridors have, at most, one train each day in each direction, it is prohibitively expensive to staff a station. For liability reasons it is risky to have people do their own loading. It's one thing on urban routes with raised platforms or low-level car doors to have cyclist bring their own bikes on board - - but to get a bike into a baggage car may involve too much risk.
If I weren't to take the Bike Friday, it would mean purchasing a new bike. My dad always talks about getting a "real bike", however he is referring to a road bike, and I'd be shopping for a touring bike. We only have so much money and so much room in our shed, so for me to buy a pure touring bike for my trip would be a stretch. More practically, the touring bike I purchased could also double as something my dad and I could take out on rides for fun/exercise.
I'd appreciate any feedback on my situation! Should I stick with the Bike Friday? Should I investigate a new bike?
According to locals I have spoken with, they love September in Glacier. The bugs are gone as are many of the crowds. Apgar, Sprague Creek and Avalanche Campgrounds, all on the west side of the road, have hiker/biker campsites. A visit to Lake McDonald lodge is a must on the west side. Grab a beer at the bar and enjoying it down by the water.
I would check the park's web site. There has been an ongoing road rehab project in the park. In past years, the park service has closed portions of Going to the Sun for periods in September to allow for uninterrupted constrcution work. Later in the year they will likely post closure information on their web site.
This is the site for the HI Hostel in Seattle:
I think there are a couple of others. The HI Hostel was packed in late May. Don't know how busy it is at other times, but a reservation is probably advisable.
This shows the ferries:
It's been a long time, so I don't remember the exact ferry that took me close to the ACA Pacific Coast Route, but I am pretty sure it was either the Bainbridge Isnand or Bremerton ferry.
I went thru Glacier last (early) September, the weather was perfect. I came in from the east side, hit Going to the Sun Rd a little after dawn and traffic was so light I don't think I got passed by a dozen cars on the way up. The top 100m of elevation was fogged in but it cleared up again almost as soon as I started the descent.
They had started some road work on the east side, 2 or 3 spots flag people were out and it was 1 lane, but as a cyclist they just waved me through. On the way down volume was building going in the other direction but over the 50± miles I never felt crowded by traffic a single time.
And as for the West -
and I must admit as a Westerner there is no place better -
You have incredible options.
I rode NYRATS, New York Ride Across the State, which went from Niagara Falls/Buffalo to New York City. The only public place I know of to view the maps is at
If you get to Buffalo, I suggest going a little further to Niagara Falls. View is better if you cross into Canada.
In general, the route follows a diagonal path through the Finger Lakes region; hilly. You will also cycle though the Catskills; hilly. Catskill: where Rip Van Winkle woke from his sleep.
Going north from NYC traffic is lighter west of the Hudson River; you can ride over bridge at Newburgh.
Actually I did not invent the idea. Frank Berto did an article for bicycling called building a bicycle for an adult female. He did radial right and 3 cross left. He pointed out nearly all of the torque would be transferred to the left side which is under less stress. You are certain to bust a flange with radial spoking.
Hi Ben -
The only part of the trail that I dislike is around Rochester. There are sections where the tree roots have pushed up the pavement and it a jarring/bumpy ride. There are also some section where you integrate with roads and there was broken glass to deal with. Only around Rochester though from my experience.