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Messages - adventurepdx

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1
General Discussion / Re: Bike rentals for one way tours
« on: February 13, 2024, 01:38:25 am »
I agree. Im trying to locate a bike for my friend who is traveling from Germany. Shes experienced a lot of hassle importing/exporting her own bike. Good news! A friend might loan us a bike. Woot!

Sorry to hear about that. Moments like this make me thankful that I bought a Brompton. Folding bikes are great for overseas travel, I just brought mine to Tokyo.

2
General Discussion / Re: Bike rentals for one way tours
« on: February 13, 2024, 01:12:34 am »
Lake Michigan to Portsmouth. Anyone ever use a bike rental service for a one way trip? Does this exist? Could rent anywhere from Chicago, Wisconsin shoreline cities, or Ludington, Mi

I have not heard of one-way bike rentals, and doubt that such a service exists. Think about it this way: One-way car rentals are possible though often difficult, and the only reason why they can happen is because of a specific network. You can find Avis, Hertz, Enterprise, UHaul, etc. all around the country. But bike rentals are generally done by small, independently owned shops or services. You rent a bike from one shop and return it to the same shop. There's no national bike rental company. And I really doubt that there is any demand for such a service to exist.

Perhaps you can rent a bike from a shop, do a tour, and ship it back, but a) I'm sure the bike shop really wouldn't like that and b) you might as well have figured out a way to bring your own bike. (And by the way, why can't you bring your own bike?)


3
General Discussion / Re: Stealth Camping? Sleep Site!
« on: February 05, 2024, 04:43:14 pm »
Usually on most any road or trail you might take that crosses into USFS or BLM land there will be prominent and hard-to-miss signs telling you when you are entering and leaving.

I definitely have seen signs for entering/exiting USFS territory, but I've rarely seen them for BLM.

4
General Discussion / Re: Stealth Camping? Sleep Site!
« on: January 04, 2024, 06:47:15 pm »
I'm curious to hear about these rumors...

Both second hand stories I heard.

In September 2018 I rode from Olympia to Crescent City.  In Brookings I ran into some other cyclists who told me that some folks had their bikes and (nearly?) all their gear stolen from the hiker/biker camp at Harris Beach State Park.

This tripadvisor review also implies that Harris Beach is not a great hang:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g51780-d145586-r838473638-Harris_Beach_State_Park-Brookings_Oregon.html



That's a definite bummer, and sad to hear that Harris Beach campground has gone downhill. But it sounds like it's thievery in general there than targeted specifically at cyclists. (And I can do without that reviewer's editorializing.) I know they are not common everywhere yet, but I definitely use the lock boxes provided in some hiker/biker sites. They are there more for animal protection, but a padlock will at least be a deterrent for would-be thieves.

5
General Discussion / Re: Stealth Camping? Sleep Site!
« on: January 03, 2024, 07:40:56 pm »
There is also the "sketch factor".  Some hiker/biker sites (like Riley Creek at Denali, Camp Four at Yosemite, and Partnership Shelter on the AT) are infamous for thefts and sometimes other crimes.  I've heard rumors of thefts at other hiker/biker sites in OR and CA as well. 

I'm curious to hear about these rumors. I've been bike touring around Oregon for almost 20 years (only toured CA once, can't speak much about it) and I've only heard one story about theft at an Oregon hiker/biker. This happened maybe 15 years ago at Devils Lake in Lincoln City on the coast. I was working at the Hawthorne Hostel at the time and someone said they were at the end of their tour and got their bike stolen from there. When I finally checked out that campground a year or so later, I saw that the hiker/biker was a wide open spot on a city street, less than a block and in plain view of US 101. When I stayed there, I opted for a regular campsite instead, which was a bit more secluded. Paying a few more bucks was worth the peace of mind.

6
General Discussion / Re: camera choice
« on: November 30, 2023, 03:14:09 pm »

Sounds AI-generated.

What's even more interesting is that Alessa3322 keeps on digging up long-dead threads, then rayed responds shortly thereafter, generally with a link to a commercial website. (Or in at least one instance, it's rayed first, then Alessa3322.) Go check their post history. They both have about the same amount of posts, and registered a little over a week from each other in March of this year.

If these two are what they think they are, I find it fascinating that someone/thing finds this a good forum to do that on. But I guess with bots/AI, it doesn't really matter.

7
General Discussion / Re: Traditional Trans America group tour
« on: November 15, 2023, 04:42:22 pm »
I think PDX pretty much nailed it.  However, I have hope that these "young'uns" might want to start doing "traditional" loaded touring as they get "older".  I wonder why is cyclotouring somewhat common in Europe but not elsewhere?  Probably because of decades of the car mystic, Route 66 (which is ridden by mostly international riders based on who uses us for WarmShowers), shorter vacation periods, and of course, we are lazier and fatter than most Europeans so biking is too hard for most regular folk. 

Perhaps the youth will embrace trad touring in their older age. I agree about Europeans getting more vacation time leading to more touring time. As for the "lazy and fat American" trope that gets trotted out: Perhaps we are lazier because we've designed our lives around car use in a way that Europe or much of Asia hasn't, and since we don't get the copious time off that other countries do, we have less energy for physical activities. As for "fatter", well, as a Clydesdale Cyclist myself, body type does not always equate with touring ability.

8
General Discussion / Re: Traditional Trans America group tour
« on: November 15, 2023, 03:45:24 pm »
Self-contained touring is not a thing of the past, it's just evolved. There are plenty of young'uns doing it, though they usually call it bikepacking. Those same young'uns are less likely to spend the cash for an organized tour, ACA or not. So it looks like ACA is changing its approach for their tours, aiming at the demographics who have the cash, but want something a tad more luxurious than four-panniers-and-a-handlebar-bag and sleeping on the ground in the tent. Those who have been doing self-contained touring for decades are more likely to do it solo anyway so they don't have to deal with imposed itineraries and folks they don't know.

9
Pacific Northwest / Re: How to find camping spots
« on: June 21, 2023, 12:40:05 am »
You are making me reconsider doing my own route. Maybe it would be best to follow an ACA route. --Dale

Did you have a map of your proposed route you can share?

Following an ACA route will make things easier, but that's not necessarily a reason to scrap your plans.

10
Pacific Northwest / Re: How to find camping spots
« on: June 21, 2023, 12:35:00 am »
I've tried a number of other apps for campsites, but have not found them useful.

I'll second the advice of using Google Maps, but I will share one app that I have found useful: Allstays Camp and Tent. It does cost some $$, but it's a one time nominal fee--I bought it back in 2011 or so when I did my Cross-Con Tour, and it still works for me (and yes, I've switched devices!) It's got a nice map interface and breaks down campgrounds by type: National Parks, State Parks, National Forests, BLM, County/Municipal, Army Corps of Engineers, and private. It gives a basic overview of each campground's amenities. Unfortunately it doesn't indicate hiker/biker sites, but I don't know if any app does.

11
Pacific Northwest / Re: Starting a tour in Portland, OR
« on: April 17, 2023, 10:09:17 pm »
Hello there, markusl!

As someone who's lived in Portland for over 20 years and has done a bunch of touring around these parts, I usually recommend people use transit if they want to get towards the coast. It's not that riding west from downtown (ish) Portland through the westside suburbs is impossible, but it's often not that fun: You'll have to get over the Tualatin Mountains, aka The West Hills, at the very beginning, and they rise suddenly and steeply right outside of downtown. The couple best routes over them are also the ones people drive over, so they are busy. And getting through the westside suburbia is just not that exciting unless you wind through a lot of the quieter streets, which don't make for straightforward navigation. Many of the busier streets have bike facilities, if you want to go that route, but riding on four-to-six lane boulevards, even if there are bike lanes is not my idea of fun. YMMV.

It's pretty easy to take the MAX light rail from central Portland and get off at its western terminus in Hillsboro. That's where you can start my favorite way to get to the North Coast (Astoria to be specific):
https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/36638?a=316549

There's some other good info on biking to the coast here, all starting at the Hatfield station in Hillsboro:
https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/301633

Also worth noting, if you don't have the time or want to get to the coast faster: There are a few bus options from Portland to the coast, one goes to Astoria and Seaside, another from Portland to Tillamook.

Hope this helps!


12
You cannot check from Whitefish to the Portland section.

You can't bring an unboxed bike from Whitefish to Portland on the Empire Builder, but you can box a bike and check it from Whitefish to Portland.

13
Routes / Re: Cambridge to Boston?
« on: September 28, 2022, 03:08:22 pm »
I assume that after 20 years, mforrington has found his way home.

I know 2012 feels like a long time ago, but it wasn't that long ago.  ;)

14
General Discussion / Re: Pacific Coast from Vancouver, BC
« on: August 30, 2022, 08:54:17 pm »
There are hostels in seattle.

There are also hostels in Vancouver, BC, where they'll be landing. Seattle is a two to three day bicycle ride from the Vancouver airport. So I don't understand why you are mentioning this, especially since the OP didn't explicitly say they'd bike through Seattle.

15
General Discussion / Re: Big bikes on Amtrak?
« on: August 14, 2022, 04:25:04 pm »
My two cents:

  • 2.6" wide tires would be pushing it for the hooks in the baggage car, but may still work, esp. if you've deflated the tires a bit. I've used 2.35" wide tires on the hooks before and they'll fit. However, my bike has 26" wheels instead of 29"
  • The length of bike may be more critical to fit into the hooks. I haven't had a chance to look at the positioning of the hooks in the baggage cars up close to see.
  • One thing often forgotten in the conversation is weight of bike. There is a 50 pound limit on bikes, and if you are doing the unboxed bike service, you'll need to be able to lift the bike to the baggage handler in the baggage car. The baggage car's floor is usually about five feet from the ground, meaning you'll need to lift the bike over your head. (Some stations that see a lot of bikes, like Portland OR, will make it easier by having a baggage trailer (about three feet off the ground) between you and the baggage car. But don't count on it.)

If this was me, I'd "bite the bullet" and box the bike.
  • Use the Amtrak provided box, as it's the roomiest bike box you'll ever find.
  • It may actually be cheaper to box the bike. The current fee for an Amtrak bike box is $15, and the checking fee is $10. You should be able to check the bike from Fayetteville to Grand Junction, and that means you'd just pay $25 total. (Mind you, you would not have access to the bike again until Grand Junction.) If you do "roll-on" service, you'll be paying the bike fee for each segment of the trip. If you are using three train segments (Fayetteville-DC/DC-Chicago/Chicago-Grand Junction) you'll most likely be paying $20 per train, which adds up to $60. (And you'll have to physically retrieve your bike from the old train and load to the new one, twice.) I'd check with your local station first about if they can check the bike from Fayetteville all the way to Grand Junction.

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