Author Topic: Newbie with bunch of questions!  (Read 4109 times)

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Offline Josh M

Newbie with bunch of questions!
« on: September 29, 2009, 02:46:03 am »
Hello. I am thinking about taking a trip from Yorktown, Virginia to San Fran, California beginning in January 2010. I plan on camping throughout the trip and do a lot of hiking.

I was wondering if anyone who has done the trans-continental trip solo has advice for absolutely necessary clothing, gear, food, amount of $$, etc. I plan on doing a lot of fishing for food, and working odd jobs along the route to pay for meals. Any advice on super cheap meals, places to eat, free food? What about incredible hiking and camping on the route? Or just amazing scenery, old indian ruins, historical must sees... really anything worth seeing. I am graduating college and want to take this trip before marrying my fiance in June.

I know the west and midwest fairly well in terms of places to see (yosemite, muir woods, death valley, grand canyon, 14ers in colorado, etc.) east and central I'm lost. ANY and all help appreciated.

Whats the weather like during january and february out east? What stuff in the Apalachian mountains should I visit? I'll keep doing my homework, but first hand knowledge and experience is always best.

Any recommended books would be great too. Alright, thanks guys.

 Josh from Denver, CO
 Hiker, Camper, Snowboarder, Runner, Cyclist.

Offline JMilyko

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2009, 08:24:38 am »
I plan on doing a lot of fishing for food, and working odd jobs along the route to pay for meals.

This part of your question caught my eye. Be sure you know the rules and regulations when you decide to fish. I believe a fine for illegally fishing can out weigh any benefit you might gain from catching your own meal. A good resource for this kind of information is: http://www.takemefishing.org/.

Good luck and have fun!

.Jennifer.
*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*

Jennifer H. Milyko
Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring and empowering people to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x205
www.adventurecycling.org

Follow Routes & Mapping on Twitter: @acaroutes

Offline MrBent

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2009, 09:16:08 am »
So are you planning to start in February?  If so, I would consider the Southern Tier route.  Crossing the Appalachians in Feb./early March could be a pretty nasty experience depending on your luck or lack of it, although one Nordic madman crossed Canada in the middle of winter, so anything is possible, eh?

My best advice would be to go to the articles archive on this site and spend a lot of time reading on Crazyguyonabike.com, which has many journals, articles, etc.  Many of the journals will have sections that deal with specific problems, considerations, etc.

Unless you're really broke, you probably won't have to work to support yourself if you can save up a couple of thousand bucks before starting out.  Camping out, living on the bike can be pretty cheap.  I stayed in only about four motels and five or six campgrounds in my crossing in 07.  The rest of the time I stealth camped or stayed with people I met.  Also, do some research regarding Warmshowers.org and Couchsurfing.com--great resources.

Cheers,

Scott

Offline Josh M

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2009, 04:03:14 pm »
Awesome advice, Thanks. The couchsurfing resource will definitely come in handy and I'll check out fishing regulations. A few thousand dollars for a cross country trip doesn't sound that bad.

Anyone who has done a cross country trip, was it worth it? What did you learn? Thanks again.

Offline Josh M

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2009, 04:09:13 pm »
Another question: whats the best way to pack when riding cross country and camping? Backpack, bike trailer... thanks.

Offline whittierider

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2009, 05:32:12 pm »
Quote
Another question: whats the best way to pack when riding cross country and camping? Backpack, bike trailer... thanks.
The topic at http://www.adventurecycling.org/forums/index.php?topic=5051.0 will be a good place to start.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2009, 03:44:11 pm »
Panniers or a trailer.  For safety and comfort reasons, you don't want all that weight on your back.

And I think you need to consider your timing carefully. 

Offline whittierider

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2009, 05:07:31 pm »
Quote
Panniers or a trailer.  For safety and comfort reasons, you don't want all that weight on your back.
+1, also for fatigue reasons, not just comfort and safety.  Put it on the bike, not on your body.  I read it too quickly and saw "panniers, bike trailer" which is what my link discusses, and missed the "Backpack" part.

Offline MrBent

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2009, 09:23:39 am »
Josh:  Read up on the trailer/pannier threads for sure.  And the ONLY thing I might consider wearing on my back would be a hydration pack--but that's it.  And a good case can be made for not even wearing that.

Re. whether it's worth it or not?  Hmmmm, on this forum odds are way against a negative answer!  Riding across the USA was, flat out, one of the best things I've ever done, right up there with climbing the vertical face of Half Dome, getting married, that kind of thing.  The experience will be very trying at times, but that's half the reason for going.  The ride is rich beyond imagining and will echo in your mind for a long, long time.  Go do it.

Scott

Offline Westinghouse

Re: Newbie with bunch of questions!
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2009, 03:10:22 pm »
I was thinking the same thing when I saw Mr.  Bent's post. The TA beginning January from Virginia. Not too sure about that. It depends on when you stop and go and work. I would not do that route that time of year. Take the ST.