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Messages - Ty0604

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Gear Talk / Re: My cooking gear
« on: March 02, 2024, 04:50:32 pm »
Well all ride our own rides.

For me, like I said, I usually am able to resupply every day and can do without milk on those days I do not.  And usually when I resupply it is less than twenty miles from there to where I plan to camp for the night.

Sad experience has taught me that ziploc bags containing stuff like powdered milk (or powdered drink mix, or hot chocolate) inevitably fail at inconvenient times and places.  So I always double ziploc bags containing stuff that would make a horrid mess.  Also, the "zipper" on the lightest-weight bags that pack the best also tend to fail sooner.  Freezer bags tend to be bit more durable.

I try to reuse such bags as long as I can, and have recently started experimenting with the fancy ones that are designed to be reused and washed.

If you like creamer, I’ve always had luck stopping at the closest gas station to camp and grabbing some of the single serve creamers for the morning. I usually buy a soda or something and sometimes they charge me 5-10 cents each for them but more so than not they give them to me at no charge.

Gear Talk / Re: My cooking gear
« on: March 01, 2024, 07:01:33 pm »
I’m not too picky on coffee. If it’s too strong I’ll just add more creamer. I’ll also just grind my coffee at home to a coarser grind so nothing gets through the filter.

Thanks for the suggestions though!

Gear Talk / Re: My cooking gear
« on: February 29, 2024, 09:35:36 pm »

I picked it up today at REI. It fits nicely on my collapsible Sea to Summit cup that I use. Also fits into my JetBoil Flash so don’t have to worry about it getting damaged. Thanks for the suggestion!

Gear Talk / Re: My cooking gear
« on: February 28, 2024, 08:55:25 pm »
I just use instant coffee.

Do you like instant coffee?  I don't happen to like it, Do you like pour over coffee? 

I used to take an AeroPress, but like you, it took up too much space in a pannier, so I bought a GSI Outdoor Ultralight Java Drip pour-over maker, and it makes much better coffee than instant, at least in my opinion.  It's easy to clean, just shake in reverse firmly and the grounds come flying out, then rinse under water to get the remaining residue out.  The GSI folds flat and will fit under a standard-size fuel canister, and it hardly weighs anything.  Now I can use whatever coffee I want.

Not particularly. I’m just lazy and I add enough creamer to make it tolerable.

My sister once asked me do you want some coffee with your creamer?

I’m going to Google what you have and check it out though. I’m riding OTET in May and would love some normal coffee.

Routes / Re: Chicago to Wisconsin loop
« on: February 28, 2024, 04:56:21 pm »
This website may be of some assistance to you as well.

Gear Talk / Re: My cooking gear
« on: February 28, 2024, 04:02:38 pm »
Nice set up. I have a JetBoil Flash with a collapsible cup, bowl and UCO Switch Spork that I carry. I use to carry the French press attachment for my JetBoil but the clean up was more than I cared for so now I just use instant coffee. I only use my JetBoil to boil water so the small canister will last me 3 weeks easily doing a single boil a day with the occasional 2 boils.

Routes / Re: Chicago to Wisconsin loop
« on: February 28, 2024, 03:45:02 pm »
I’m from Chippewa County, Wisconsin. It’s a great state to ride in. I haven’t done your specific route but did ride from Osceola—->Cumberland—->Rice Lake—->Menomonie—->Stoddard and then into Iowa where I crossed into Illinois and rode to Chicago eastward on a trip from Oregon to Maine.

I absolutely LOVE WarmShowers. I don’t use it much anymore as I much prefer to be alone after a long day of riding but it’s so much more useful than just looking for a place to stay! I’ve messaged folks to get route information, recommendations on LBS’s, places to eat and a few times to catch a jump when highway construction or road closures made riding impossible. Once I used it for a jump to get ahead of an incoming hurricane. I’ve definitely been hosted more than I’ve hosted but only because I don’t live in an area where my tourist come through. Look at their reply rate and when they last logged in. Sometimes they have their cell phone number listed so I’ll text them instead of sending a message through the app.

Routes / Re: Teton Pass from Jackson
« on: December 28, 2023, 09:41:23 pm »
Have ridden it twice on a fully loaded touring bike and didn’t have any issues with it and never needed to stop. The only pass I’ve ever had to stop and push my bike up was the Vail eastbound.

Classifieds / Re: STOLEN: Heron touring bike
« on: December 22, 2023, 10:32:39 pm »
Hi John,
Immediately after the theft I notified all local authorities, all the local bike shops and various local cycling groups. No leads in close to three weeks, so I thought I'd post it here as well. The more eyes out there, the better!


I own a place in Denver and ride around fairly often. I’ll keep an eye out on local marketplaces etc in case in ventured down this way.

Just an update that 20 has reopened and the campgrounds jamawani linked are also opened except Gorge Lake and Colonial Creek North and part of South but the walk-in sites at Colonial Creek South (64-73) are open on a FCFS basis.

Routes / Re: 3-4 month USA 2024
« on: September 28, 2023, 04:22:59 pm »
+1. And with 4 months, you could probably take some deviations, like the Pioneer Mountains Scenic Byway, which is one of my favorites.  Leave the TransAm after Badger Pass out of Dillon, Montana, ride the Byway, and hook back up with the Trans Am in Wisdom, Montana. Another possible detour would be to head north from Missoula up to Glacier National Park, ride up and pack down the west slope of Going to the Sun and then follow the Northern Tier route to Mount Vernon, Washington then south to end in Seattle for easy transportation home.

+1 for the Pioneer Mountains Scenic Byway. We did this in 2021 as a short loop from Darby over Gibbons Pass (before the fire luckily) to Wisdom, to Bannack State Park (creates a slight backtrack but not far) to Wise River to Anaconda to Phillipsburg back to Darby over Shalkaho Pass.

I will say that the skeeters in the Big Hole Valley, especially in Wisdom, and in Wise River, are rhe worst I’ve ever seen in the contiguous 48 states. They were so bad in Wise River we packed up and headed out to Anaconda. They were swarming all day and all night. It was gnarly.

As for the winds, I’ve ridden east to west twice and I’ll never do it again on a longer trip. Headwinds were miserable at times and definitely had more headwinds than tailwinds going east to west. That’s just been my experience though so take it for what it’s worth.

You could start as early as February if you wanted to hit something like the Southern Tier out of San Diego and ride east to St. Augustine. The passes of Arizona and New Mexico should be clear by the time you reach them. If you start in April and are determined to ride easy to west, I can’t say anymore than the recommendations already made above.

Routes / Katy Trail Review
« on: August 23, 2023, 05:32:43 pm »
We recently completed the Katy Trail in Missouri and wanted to pass on a quick review of the trip. We started in downtown St. Louis and ended in Lenexa, Kansas in the greater Kansas City region.

Day 1: St. Louis—>St. Charles: From downtown St. Louis you can catch the Riverfront Trail at the Gateway Arch and ride it north to Chain of Rocks Bridge. Cross the bridge into Illinois, which is also part of the ACA’s Route 66 route and is pedestrian only, and take the Madison County Train Confluence Trail (MCT) to the town of Alton. At Alton cross the river back into Missouri on the Clark Bridge aka US-67 (bicycle lane). Once in Missouri turn right onto St. Charles St and then right onto MO-94 when the road ends. Fairly busy road but has a sufficient shoulder. (You can also turn left onto Dwiggins Road off of MO-94 and ride this quiet two-lane country road for a few miles until it ends at MO-94). From there turn left onto Machens Rd to access the eastern terminus of Katy Trail State Park. Go around the cable and take a left on the gravel road as soon as you cross the RR tracks and the trailhead will be around the bend.  We camped at an AirBnB a few miles east of St. Charles. It was $20 and we has access to the house including showers and bacon/eggs for breakfast but one of the homeowners dogs ate part of my bicycle shoes when I wasn’t paying attention.

Day 2: St Charles—>Marthasville: Take the time to explore the historic downtown area of St. Charles, the original capital of Missouri. Cute town. There’s a Wal*Mart in town if you need supplies. We camped at the baseball fields in Marthasville for $5. Access to showers and bathrooms all night. Huge covered area in the event of rain. We were woken up at 4am to tornado sirens and had to scramble to get the tent taken down before it blew away. This wasn’t in the forecast but memories were made! (Me in my boxers trying to pack up as a torrential downpour slammed the area). There’s a convenience store near the baseball fields and a Dollar General a short walk away. A lot of long stretches on this day without shade so FYI if it’s hot out. Along the way you should take the short 1/4 mile detour to see the original burial site of Daniel Boone. 

Day 3: Marthasville—>Jefferson City: Only a single trailhead in 31 miles, at McKittrick. If you take the spur here to Hermann there’s a local grocery store a few hundred feet down the highway. Not much else to see. You can camp at the Noren River Access in North Jefferson for $5 but no showers and I hear it’s where all the teens hangout and cause trouble at night. I opted for a campground 13 miles south of Jefferson City that is owned by a friend of a friend so they picked me up at the Wal*Mart in town and dropped me back off in the morning. JC has a lot of cool stuff including the old Missouri State Penn which has a museum etc. We didn’t visit since it was Sunday.

Day 4: Jefferson City—>Boonville: Rain all day so we didn’t stop much. Hartsburg has a bakery that sells amazing cinnamon rolls though. We were suppose to camp in New Franklin at Katy Roundhouse but because of the rain we opted for a $60 hotel (Days Inn) a few miles off the trail in Boonville. Town has all services needed. There’s a Casey’s in New Franklin just off trail. It’s my favorite place while on tour. Best donuts and coffee IMO.

Day 5: Boonville—>Windsor: Camped at Katy Rock Junction in Windsor. $15 and access to showers/bike storage garage. Literally right off the trail. Windsor isn’t big but it does have a few stores and restaurants. Boonville and Sedalia both have depots with museums and gift shops inside. Sedalia is a big town and you can also camp at the fairgrounds in town but the fair was going on when we passed through and it’s crazy expensive to camp during the fair. $70 is what we were told.

Day 6: Windsor—>Clinton: Met another cyclist and decided to have a short day to the end of the Katy Trail. You can camp for free at the Clinton Community Center. Access to showers and bathrooms from 5am to 9pm. Free coffee in the morning. It’s in a quiet part of town and they have a big covered area with picnic tables next to the camp area. 24 hour restrooms located near playground but the showers are inside and only accessible during open hours. Big town so has all the services you need.

Day 7: Clinton—>Lees Summit: We took Highway 13 to the junction of the Rock Island Spur 15 miles north at Post Oak. Busy road but has a sufficient shoulder. The tiny town of Chillhowee has a store that’s open every day except Sunday. Free camping at the town park there but no bathrooms or water so we passed and kept going. Pleasant Hill has all services. From here you can catch the MoPac Trail and a few local roads to Lees Summit, home of Longview Lake where we camped for the night. It was $32 for an electric site, on a few dollars more than a primitive site. Showers etc. You can also hop on and off of the Rock Island Spur but it’s patchy after Pleasant Hill so we opted for the more direct road route.

Day 8: Lees Summit—>Lenexa: You can catch the Trolley Trail and take that to the Indian Creek Greenway which will take you into Kansas. I ended here because I have a rule that I have to enter and exit a state fully to make it count. It was a short day. About a mile from the end I hit some mud at a stop light and fell over on my bike.

All together I did 411 miles. I rode with 32 GatorSkin Hardshells and didn’t have any flats. I would probably use my 28s if I did it again. The trail can be soft in spots after a rain though and bumpy when crossing driveways from washouts. Some blowdown after storms is almost a guarantee as well. The state is usually pretty quick about clearing these though.

I can’t say I was too impressed with the Katy Trail and not sure I’d do it again but it’s only of those trails I feel like everyone should do at least once.

If you have any questions etc feel free to ask. I tried to keep it down to a summary so I left out a lot of info.

General Discussion / Re: Stay Bear Aware
« on: July 27, 2023, 02:02:20 pm »

Especially in light of the fatal bear attack in Yellowstone last week. I’ve seen dozens of grizzlies and black bears on all of my tours, including a few that have crossed too close for comfort.

On our last tour we crossed several grizzlies and a few black bears. I wear a size 11 and look at the size of his/her paw!

Routes / Re: Crossing the Palouse in summer
« on: July 19, 2023, 04:08:15 pm »
I am currently on a cross country trip from Washington DC to the Olympic Peninsula.  Since I am a proud 1986 graduate of the University of Idaho, I am stopping in Moscow Idaho in a day or two.

Hey Don! In the future consider riding the Palouse to Cascade State Park Trail, which will soon be the longest Rails to Trails Route in the USA, replacing the Katy Trail in Missouri.

Graduated from Washington State in 2015 and miss the Palouse so very much. I dated a girl who went to UI and I rode the trail between Pullman and Moscow fairly often. I purchased my first bike at the LBS in Pullman and that’s where I got hooked on bicycle touring.

Go Cougs

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