Author Topic: Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont  (Read 698 times)

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Offline schwingep

Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont
« on: June 28, 2013, 05:20:44 pm »
Hello fellow avid cyclists!

I decided to give myself a 2-week vacation and plan a solo ride from Brooklyn, NY to Rutland, VT and return. I'm not quite sure why most of my friends don't see this is actually considered a vacation 8)

I have numerous centuries under my belt, but nothing of a tour to this extent.

Approx 550 miles round-trip. I have a place to stay around mile 65 then again around mile 105 (and return). The waypoint is at approx. 270 where I will stay for 3 days. In between I plan to stay at camp sites, or just find an area to set up a tent for the night.

Where I am currently at:
  • Planning the route - Go all the way up through NY then over to VT? or Cut to MA from Poughkeepsie then up to VT (decisions)
    Looking up the national map
    Researching bike shops
    Campgrounds
    Need more gear (bike rack, rack trunk, hydro bakpack, tent) - any suggestions on these would be great

What going into my bag/on bike
  • Sunscreen
    Chamois cream
    Extra tubes
    Toolkit of all accessories and patch kits
    Pump
    Tons of Protein bars and gels - again product suggestions are welcome.
    Toilet Paper
    Wipes
    Many, many socks
    Towel
    2 Thermal Bottles
    Lots of aspring, advil,
    Neosposrin and other bandage stuff/ ace bandages/wraps
    Bengay
    Cell phone with backup battery and additional external charger.
    Duct tape - because you always can find a use for duct tape
    Chain degreaser and lube
    Inflatable Pillow
    Blanket

I would appreciate any tips & tricks from you experienced riders. I know that whatever I think I have prepared enough, will not be enough - as well as the fact those days I think I can tackle another 60 miles through the hills up north will instead end up being 30 miles while my legs are crying at yet another 18% grade :)

I look forward to hearing your suggestions.

Thanks!
- Peter

Offline John Nelson

Re: Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2013, 07:34:28 pm »
There are many things on your gear list that are just dead weight. Remember that you're not touring on the moon. Taking "tons of Protein bars and gels" seems very silly to me. About half of the rest of your list is unnecessary too. Take only the stuff you will surely need and cannot buy en route. Eat local food.

Offline DaveB

Re: Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2013, 09:29:38 pm »
John has it right.  Your list reads more like a Pharmacy than a travel kit.   You will have access to drug stores and grocery stores every day to get what you need, if you need it.     

Also, since you plan on camping a couple of days at least, "a blanket" won't hack it for sleeping f you run into a really chilly night and it can very easily happen.   I've seen overnight temperatures in the 30's even in the summer.   

Offline BobG

Re: Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2013, 04:53:40 am »
You haven't told us where you already have overnights planned so it's hard to give you route suggestions, but here goes.

You could take the ACA Atlantic Coast Route from Poughkeepsie to Millerton NY. Follow NY 22 & 22A from there to Poultney VT. I don't know from experience anything about it's cycling desirability or traffic volume. For round trip variety, pick up VT 100 in central VT for the trip back south. Wind your way back through the Berkshire hills of MA to the ACA route in CT or cut back over to NY 22.

Another option with added miles would be to return south down the CT River Valley through Westfield MA and re-connect with the ACA route in CT back to Poughkeepsie or pick a more direct route of your own back to NYC. Enjoy!

I deleted an earlier post I made with directions to eastern VT (Duh!)  ::)

Offline JayH

Re: Tips & Tricks for my First 15-day Bike Tour NYC -> Vermont
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2013, 09:44:54 am »
I would say that following Rt 7 to Rutland is perfectly suitable.  Rutland itself is another story but there may be ways around the downtown area and there is a sidewalk but a lot of downtown where Rts 4 and 7 merge is like 4 lanes (2N and 2S) that are heavily trafficed (for VT) and no shoulder with lots of lights and traffic coming in and exiting.   However, there are roads east of it that I think you could ride to avoid a lot of it and there is a sidewalk if you have to.   (or you can go through it at off hours).

Also Rt 7 is kind of iffy between Lenox and Pittsfield, but there is definitely ways around that east of Rt 7.

You could ride 7 through bennington, VT as that is not bad but there are also ways to avoid that too if you want to. 

Jay