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Messages - Pat Lamb

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As a friendly FYI, it is highly recommended you do NOT seek shelter under a bridge during a tornado, especially up near the top of the retaining slope.  Over the years, I can think of a small handful of times I have heard of deaths from people doing exactly that.  I don't understand why (I still think it would be safer) but the weather people usually remind us not to do that here in tornado country.  Best to lay in a depression or culvert.

I think there was a video (from early in the video days) of a couple who parked underneath an overpass and survived.  But the boffins say an overpass can funnel the wind so it's faster and harder under a bridge than in open territory.

Of course, the closest I got to a tornado, a cop stopped us all underneath the overpass near home and wouldn't let us go until the storm had passed.  Guess he hadn't seen the (years old) update.

Classifieds / Re: touring bike
« on: April 02, 2024, 08:45:25 am »
Good bike (I rode the TransAm on one in 2009).  You might add the size to your description to help interested parties.

I get chicken when a road is sliding off the hill and there may be heavy construction equipment.

CA 1 is a 4-5 lane road with light traffic except around rush hour (and an extra hill) up to the Vandenberg gate and back down.  IMHO it's a reasonable detour.

Routes / Re: Southern Tier (El Paso - Las Cruces)
« on: March 25, 2024, 09:48:27 am »
Note that part of the road is parallel to I-10.  It's usually the case that when an interstate is built parallel to another road, the interstate gets the lion's share of the traffic.  NM-28, though I haven't ridden or driven it, likely has local traffic only.  Just avoid rush hours, including the end of school.

Routes / Re: Tucson to Grand Canyon
« on: January 30, 2024, 09:19:42 am »
I've driven Tucson to Apache Junction.  As far as Pikacho Peak, you're always close to I-10 on the frontage road; the scenery is boring (look up, you're now a quarter mile closer to Pikacho!) and the road noise is loud.  Services are pretty limited from   Casa Grande was a nice 30 minute diversion.  I didn't zoom in on your route around Phoenix, but there are some fairly decent bike paths and canal roads on your way north.

Getting up to Oracle is a tedious ride with traffic and stop lights every 1/4-1/2 mile, and no bike path or shoulder when I drove it.  OTOH, it's a multi-lane road, so if you leave Tucson after a leisurely breakfast, traffic shouldn't be a problem.  Either way, there's approximately zero services from the outskirts of Oracle Junction to either Florence (missing Pikacho) or Globe, so take plenty of water.

Scenery is much more varied going to Glove, there's a serious climb going up to Globe, and the Gila River makes a nice change in desert vegetation and scenery half-way there.  No shoulders and traffic is close to none, so it doesn't matter.  Maybe one of the pickup trucks will stop to offer you some water?

You may come to appreciate the "suspension" aspects of the RS (and perhaps the Thudbuster) as you cross miles of roads with expansion joints from Missouri, through Kansas, to eastern Colorado.  Rough roads everywhere else are just bad pavement.  :/

O.P., you're setting yourself a high bar.  I'm going to suggest backing off a step for daily updates; as John and John note, it took me about an hour a day to maintain a journal with (usually) daily updates.

If you plan to meet your high professional standards, I'm guessing it'll take four hours a day with overnights in B&Bs or motels.  You might try an S24O (sub-24 hour overnight) trip with all the bells and whistles to see how close my guess comes to your experience.

Please, please, please, do not post 24 pictures and 3 videos per day with zero text!  Nobody but the poster knows why you took most of those, and you'll forget in a few years.  A good journal/blog needs at least a couple sentences, preferably a paragraph, to set the context for each picture.

IMHO, a trip journal is about the traveler's experience.  If you normally observe things from 25-100 off the ground, take a drone.

To limit your load, I'd suggest one reasonably good camera and maybe one video device (like a GoPro).  Some people do much more, like the people 30 years ago who took two 35 mm SLRs and five lenses.  Have you thought where to put all your clothes, rain gear, spare parts, food, and cooking gear?

If you want to make more of a production, perhaps you might consider keeping a simple journal while on tour; where you went, a two minute highlight with half a dozen pictures and a video with captions and explanatory paragraphs every day, for instance.  Go ahead and take lots more pictures and videos, archive and index them, and spend a few weeks when you get home making that professional production.

And for the sake of your own sanity, accept that you're going to miss some highlights.  I didn't take my camera to the city water park in eastern Colorado where we scampered about for 15 minutes at the end of a scorcher (the camera wasn't waterproof!).  Nor did I catch the bald eagle which came out of nowhere and dived into the river beside the road, flying off with a fish before I could even stop my bike to grab a camera.  Those are just etched into my soft tissue memory -- and I'm happy to have experienced them.

General Discussion / Re: Average Weight Loss/Gain on Cross Country Tour
« on: December 21, 2023, 08:50:59 am »
Me, in a convenience store, looking at a Hostess fruit pie:
At home:  300 calories! I can't eat this!
On the road: hmmm... 300 calories.  I wonder if I can get a dozen of these in my bags?

Yup.  Near the end of my longest tour I looked at the nutrition information on a snack outside the convenience store and blurted, "This is 1,050 calories I'm eating!"  My daughter swallowed and replied, "You're going to burn it off." 
The tough part is to stop eating like that when the tour is over.

Routes / Re: Ride with GPS elevation errors
« on: December 14, 2023, 08:53:41 am »
Not unique to rwgps.  You know the saying, "All generalities are false?"  That goes double for elevation on digital maps.  It's all too easy for a digital mapping tool to shortcut over a ridge, especially if the map database doesn't account for a narrow railroad cut.  Whatever you're using, treat the elevation gains with a grain of salt.

And if you have a good granny gear, you'll appreciate it at more points than you might expect on a cross-country ride.

General Discussion / Re: Advice on likely my last bike
« on: November 15, 2023, 09:41:56 am »
A few random thoughts (since I can't make your decision for you!):

Don't sell the Coda until you're sure the new bike is The One for you.  It's possible you'll spend the next few months reading all about bikes, and riding, and pick the absolute best bike on paper, and find you like the Coda better.

I wouldn't write off drop bars until you've tried some that have the bars about the same height as the saddle (like a touring bike).  If you like cycling and keep at it until you're doing some longer rides, it's possible you'll want the drops when you face a stiff headwind coming home.

Some people have found that the typical drop bar position is more comfortable than a straight/mountain bike bar.  If your torso is around 45 degrees, there's some flex at your hips you don't have if you're sitting upright.  Any bump that makes it past your tires and bike suspension (if your bike has it) goes straight into your lower back if you're upright.

Think of this as your next bike, not necessarily as your last bike.  That gives you some mental agility down the road.  If you need some exercise and perhaps a way to take off some weight, that's a lifetime goal.  Even if you find and buy that perfect bike this year, in 10 years things may change so you need something else to keep on riding.  A recumbent trike may be big, heavy, and unwieldy this year; but in 10 years your balance may decline, and that's just what you'll need then.

Final recommendation (for now): start planning ahead.  Touring bikes and frames are usually made in a small batch every year.  They'll likely hit the stores around March, and be gone by June.  So contact bike shops in your area, see if they're willing to order something in your size, and you can test ride them next spring.

General Discussion / Re: start tour operator business
« on: November 03, 2023, 09:12:22 am »
What's with the habitual digging up of old threads?

Nothing else to talk about at the end of the "season" I guess.  It's either dig up old threads (for some of these, you need a degree in archaeology) or start swapping old jokes.

What's brown and sounds like a bell?
(Pretty sure, this joke goes better with a British accent.)
Strikes me that a couple of the motorcycle fora I keep track of have joke threads that get some action this time of year.
(Be the life of the party: check out hundreds more funny jokes like this one!  ::) )

Dung! Dung!  ;D

Yuck, that joke stinks!

General Discussion / Re: Pedals and Shoes for the TransAmerica
« on: October 31, 2023, 11:37:33 am »
I am considering the Crank Brothers Candy 7 when mine go bad, but the guy at the bike shop didn't know if the float has a spring return or is it a free float like the Frogs, and the Crank Bros website doesn't say either.  Do you know?

I don't know if the Crank Bros. are completely free float -- there may be a slight residual from spring pressure on those transverse bars.  However, I do know that my Eggbeaters are much, much lower than the lowest spring pressure I ever felt on the SPD pedals I used briefly before I found Frogs.

General Discussion / Re: start tour operator business
« on: October 30, 2023, 10:09:27 am »
What's with the habitual digging up of old threads?

Nothing else to talk about at the end of the "season" I guess.  It's either dig up old threads (for some of these, you need a degree in archaeology) or start swapping old jokes.

General Discussion / Re: Pedals and Shoes for the TransAmerica
« on: October 30, 2023, 10:08:03 am »
Two more sets of cleats to wear out here...

FWIW, as I noted up-thread, I've got Crank Brothers Eggbeaters, now on two bikes.  IME they're not as easy to clip in or out as the Frogs, but they're better than SPDs for a bit of float.  I've read, in another forum, that Time ATAC are even better for float.

General Discussion / Re: Barge and Bike in the USA?
« on: September 20, 2023, 10:49:30 am »
Thanks, that's the very thing I was looking for.  Unfortunately, the McCready tours look great but I think my family would balk at $5,000 per head.

They'd probably balk at the price of a Santana, too!

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