I am planning a monumental undertaking starting around April 1... OMG that is less than 2 months away!
I've never traveled long distance by bicycle, although I've been riding for a long time and used to do some long distance racing, etc. But, without going into the gory details... I am fully embracing what appears to be by all symptoms the dreaded mid-life crisis lol... Got a go-nowhere job, with a go-nowhere relationship, living a corporate gerbil go-nowhere existence... and I need some kind of kick in the pants to accomplish several things. First and foremost - I want to get healthy again!! OMG. If I told you what I weigh, you would fall off your chair. It's a "I went to a Weight Watchers meeting once for help, and I ate the Presenter" kind of weight problem. Thanks to decades sitting on a plane, in a car, at a desk, or in a meeting, combined with regularly crossing time zones and eating at restaurants, I am not able to bring the weight under control or exercise regularly and I am not willing to wait for the heart attack that will inevitably either kill me or snap me out of my stupor. So I am taking control of my life starting NOW. There's also a little bit of a "Forrest Gump" aspect to this personal journey as well - but hey, we all have our tales of woe and have all at one time or another sang along with the country song on the radio about how "she done me wrong" lol... so I ain't going there, if you know what I mean.
What I DO want to talk about is HELP with a couple things. I need help ROUTE PLANNING! I would like to get a set of the AC Maps for the Southern Tier and the Northern Tier if anyone has a set they would like to donate to my "cause" or sell on the cheap. I also need help with route planning where the maps don't cover. I'm planning to ride from Salt Lake City, UT to Phoenix, AZ where I will connect up to the Southern Tier. However... there are some MAJOR mileages that need to be dealt with just to get to that point, across some rather foreboding landscapes... Does anyone have route suggestions, camping/lodging suggestions, etc. for getting out of Utah and down to Phoenix?
I'm looking at ways to save money and save weight, because I will be hauling all my camping gear and will be riding solo. Also to limit my need for electricity. I'm looking at using the "ridewithgps" app so I can consolidate as many functions into my phone as possible. If anyone has any gps routes that they would love to share in whatever format they have, that would be HUGELY appreciated as well as the maps.
Also (and I know this has already been a novella lol) but I am going to be flying some logos for the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Southern Utah, to help solicit donations and raise awareness. I will be setting up a blog and a will be collecting donations and blogging along the way. Any help anyone would like to offer in helping to keep the blog updated would be a super help!
Thanks for reading and any help / advice you may be able to provide!