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Messages - BikingBrian

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General Discussion / Re: Washington Hiker/Biker Campsites?
« on: June 30, 2014, 09:23:57 am »
I only was in that situation once there, but yes they squeezed me in next to the bathrooms.
That wouldn't be any worse than some of the "normal" hiker/biker sites in Southern California!  ;D

General Discussion / Washington Hiker/Biker Campsites?
« on: June 30, 2014, 01:33:02 am »
I've cycled the Oregon and California coasts and found the hiker/biker sites to be cheap and plentiful. Next on tap is Washington. I found this link which shows that they're aren't many hiker/biker sites on the Olympic Peninsula route.

But the end of that link says, "Although Washington state doesn’t have such an official policy, I was assured by a parks customer service specialist several years ago that “they would do their best not to turn away any camper arriving under their own power (hiking or biking) but would find a site even if it was just for the night.”" Is that the collective experience of the group here?

Great, thanks. I already factored in some time for some detours, which I will certainly use for La Push/Mora and Hoh. I have a bit of a dilemma since the AC route uses 112/113, while Sol Duc and others are accessible from 101. And I have an extra day in my back pocket, is Hurricane Ridge Road worthwhile? I might grab a room in Port Angeles and ride it unloaded.

I was looking at the western half of the AC Washington Parks route, which is also covered in "Bicycling the Pacific Coast" by Kirkendall and Spring.

In their 2nd edition book, K&S have the out and back detours off 101 to La Push and the Hoh Rain Forest as part of their main route. But in their 4th edition, they no longer have them as overnight stops, but just as side trips. So are they worthwhile overnight stops?

Gear Talk / Nitto Noodle 177 Bars
« on: June 19, 2014, 01:35:23 am »
Any opinions on these bars? How do you like the "flare" on the flats? I have 44cm bars on my normal road bike, go with these bars in 44cm or a bit larger in 46cm?

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast: Vancouver or Bellingham?
« on: June 16, 2014, 01:20:11 am »
I'm a bit late to the discussion, but thought I'd share my two cents since I am flying up to the area for my summer tour. I got a dirt cheap non-stop flight to Vancouver, and so I ran with that option. That was also influenced by the possibility (at the time) of doing this tour with friends from Vancouver. So I will ride to Tsawwassen, ferry to Swartz Bay, ride to Victoria, ferry to Port Angeles, WA, and then ride down the Olympic Peninsula.

As part of my tour this summer, I'll be riding from Sidney to Victoria, BC, then catching the ferry to Port Angeles, WA. I'm having a hard time finding a map for the Lochside Trail, anyone know where to find one?

General Discussion / Re: Cardboard Box for Bike as Checked Baggage
« on: June 15, 2014, 07:43:52 pm »
My boss has a small jet, I would love it if he flew me to a small town airport with my bike. In that case, I would gladly assemble my bike at the airport and ride from there!  ;D

General Discussion / Re: Cardboard Box for Bike as Checked Baggage
« on: June 15, 2014, 06:52:21 pm »
Sounds like you got it covered.  I will say that I get a kick out of riding out of the airport and kind of consider it a plus.  Just me though.
I will admit that I am attracted by the novelty, but knowing myself, I know I'd feel rushed and leave something at the airport!  ;D

General Discussion / Re: Cardboard Box for Bike as Checked Baggage
« on: June 15, 2014, 06:19:14 pm »
I've been corresponding with WestJet on Facebook and found out the following: the 80" limit for oversize baggage doesn't apply to bicycle boxes, and they do not have bike boxes available at any of their airports. But I am welcome to use whatever other cardboard box I can find.

Upon further reflection, I suspect the Amtrak boxes (where you remove the pedals, turn the handlebars, and roll the bike in) have worked well on the train because those boxes spend most of their time standing up. That may not be the case for a similar sized box on an airplane, which would probably spend more of its time sideways and therefore have luggage stacked on top of it.

Another thing which I hadn't considered is that a smaller box would be easier to fit in a hotel shuttle, while a bigger box would might be too big and force me into riding to the hotel straight from the airport. I'm a former bike commuter and so traffic doesn't bother me, but I'd rather assemble the bike and make sure it's ready in the comfort of my hotel room.

Since I have some lead time, I'll ask the LBS to hang on to the biggest box they can find, and I'll have them pack the bike in advance. One less thing to worry about before going to the airport. Thanks for all the thoughts and words of wisdom.

General Discussion / Re: Cardboard Box for Bike as Checked Baggage
« on: June 15, 2014, 01:54:11 am »
Yeah, I saw the 9.8 feet and figured too big wouldn't be an issue. I didn't see the 80", where did you see it? If that's true, then it's a game changer. The Amtrak bike box I had previously used measured 70" x 41" x 8.5". Although I haven't used them, bike boxes provided by airlines seem to also be about that size. The box shipped from the bike shop for a prior return leg was 54" X 28" X 8", that was a tight fit for the bike with one wheel removed, but even that would be over the 80". So I'm guessing that the 80" limit doesn't apply to bicycle and is superseded by the 9.8 foot limit, but I will have to call WestJet on Monday to be sure.

General Discussion / Cardboard Box for Bike as Checked Baggage
« on: June 15, 2014, 12:58:15 am »
Surprisingly, with all the touring I've done, I've never had to take a full-sized bike with me on my flights. For past tours I've shipped the bike to a bike shop or hotel, shipped via Amtrak to a train station close to my starting point, etc. But my tour next month is starting in Vancouver, BC. So UPS/FedEx across the border doesn't seem practical, and Amtrak won't ship across borders at all. So taking the bike with me on the flight as checked baggage seems to be the most attractive option by far, especially since the fee is only $50 on WestJet.

Now I need to find a cardboard box which I will dispose of at my destination. Once I'm in the oversize category, WestJet doesn't seem to care how big the box is. The LBS has bike boxes which will work, but I'd rather not remove the front wheel if I don't have to and play games trying to get the front wheel, racks, seatpost, etc. to fit in the box with the rest of my 60cm bike. Or maybe I could use one of those huge Amtrak boxes where you pretty much only have to remove the pedals and turn the bars (well, in my case, I have to lower the seat too). Do the airlines still sell boxes these days, and if so, does anyone know the typical dimensions?

Routes / Re: Tenting on the Pacific Coast Route
« on: April 08, 2014, 10:11:27 am »
I noticed your route only goes as far south as San Luis Obispo. The issues with hiker/biker sites are when you get further south of Santa Barbara. However, these are more populated areas where you shouldn't have a problem finding a Warm Showers or a Couchsurfing host.

On another note, I see you are going through Sheridan and Buffalo, Wyoming - I took another route in that area which you might find interesting, check out Day 29 here:

Classifieds / Sold: Sierra Designs Lookout CD Tent, $175 plus shipping
« on: March 10, 2014, 12:58:20 am »
Sierra Designs Lookout CD 3 person, 4 season tent.

Dimensions are width 48"/69"/58", length 90", and total packed weight is about 7 pounds.

Photos here:

$175 plus shipping Sold

Classifieds / Sold: Kelty Zen Tent, $75 plus shipping
« on: March 10, 2014, 12:54:42 am »
Kelty Zen 2 person, 3 season tent. This served me well when riding across the US about ten years ago. It got used a few more times after that on shorter tours, but then it went into hibernation. It's not freestanding and need to be staked.

Dimensions are width 35"/58"/39", length 90", and total packed weight is about 5 pounds.

I have two rainflys, it's been so long I don't know why. The original white one with the orange trim is a little sticky on the inside. I think that's why I got the gray one, and that one has a much bigger vestibule too.

Photos here:

$75 plus shipping Sold

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