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Messages - adventurepdx

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General Discussion / Re: State Park Camping
« on: February 13, 2016, 01:43:20 pm »
Are you sure that's true, even in Michigan? Have you seen that policy in writing?

Adventure Cycling talked about Michigan's (and other state's) no-turn-away policy on the blog:

General Discussion / Re: Juneau - Seattle
« on: February 13, 2016, 01:35:16 pm »
Anyone cycled BC much? I was hoping to check out Whistler for some downhill as well to be honest...I've done a couple of big tours (Transam, Pacific Coast) so know the day to day issues with touring but BC is really drawing me in...

I haven't done that much touring in BC besides the coastal areas. That's definitely a cool place with a decent amount of services, but don't know if that's what you are going for. If you are set on BC, then that's what you should aim for! But it is possible to incorporate the Icefields Parkway into a BC tour, if you started from Jasper, then headed south, then west. And as said previously, the Icefields are nice...

General Discussion / Re: Juneau - Seattle
« on: February 06, 2016, 01:12:33 pm »
PS - You can ride the Canadian Rockies staying in hostels every 30 miles/50 km.

Yep, you can do that! I did that when I toured the Icefields in 2011. Most of them are spaced 20 miles apart, though the longest stretch was about 40 miles. But most of the hostels are very rustic, with outhouses, no electricity, or showers. And while there are some private rooms, they are mostly bunks. You do need to book in advance, though, as those hostels fill up regularly during the short summer.

The Icefields Parkway and the rest of the Canadian Rockies are a beautiful spot to tour.

General Discussion / Re: Juneau - Seattle
« on: February 06, 2016, 01:06:19 pm »
Again that sounds like a good idea. It would be nice to travel somewhere on the ACA routes as they tend to be the most tried and tested. 3 weeks is probably the maximum I could get off work and even this will be a push. Plotting my original journey on google maps has yielded some positive results in terms of a possible inn-to-inn journey but as you say, they are few and far between if I suffer mechanical failure etc.

Have you done much lightweight touring? I'm still unsure if I should go for a tripple chainset or not, some of the climbs can a bit too much and I have seen a lot of people injuring knees this way.

I haven't done lightweight touring, but did parts of the NT there on a fully loaded bike, using a classic touring triple. While there weren't many steep-steep grades on the route, those mountain grades are l--o--n--g. You'll be grinding away at a 5-7% grade for hours and hours. So having low gears helps.

There should be others here that did inn-to-inn tours along that section of the Northern Tier. You should check out Crazy Guy on a Bike. And maybe start a new thread here, because with the subject "Juneau-Seattle", those folks who did a credit card NT tour might not look here!

General Discussion / Re: Juneau - Seattle
« on: February 06, 2016, 12:15:14 pm »
That's quite interesting. To be honest I didn't have my heart set on that particular starting point as it's still in the idea phase at the moment. It looks like it would be a great ride if I was to go Inland from Prince Rupert and make my way to Prince George and head south that way. How is the cycling in BC?

I have never been up that way, so I have no personal experience. Everything I've seen and heard, however, says it's a rugged and remote ride. And you'd have to go far inland first to get south.

But a tour like that doesn't look like it goes along with your preferences. You say in the OP that you want to try to do this tour as an inn-to-inn. This is an area with few/no services, and towns spaced widely apart. I wouldn't want to do a tour in this area without camping.

Are you just looking at a three week tour with nice scenery, mountains, and services? Doing something like the Northern Tier from Anacortes to Glacier National Park would be a good choice, and possible to do without camping if you plan ahead. If you're travelling fast and light, you could do it in three weeks, and then have time to spend at Glacier. You could also catch Amtrak out of Whitefish to get back to where you need to.

General Discussion / Re: Juneau - Seattle
« on: February 05, 2016, 08:52:54 pm »
Okay, I'm not an expert here, nor have I ever been to Alaska. But one important bit of info about Juneau, if you want to ride a bike there. This comes straight from Wikipedia:

"Juneau is rather unusual among U.S. capitals in that there are no roads connecting the city to the rest of Alaska or to the rest of North America (although ferry service is available for cars). The absence of a road network is due to the extremely rugged terrain surrounding the city. This in turn makes Juneau a de-facto island city in terms of transportation, since all goods coming in and out must go by plane or boat, in spite of the city being located on the Alaskan mainland."

So, you're going to need to ferry or fly in/out of Juneau from somewhere else. And you wouldn't pick up the Pacific Coast road until Lund, British Columbia (about a couple hundred km from Vancouver). Though from Prince Rupert you could take a ferry to Port Hardy on the north tip of Vancouver Island.

General Discussion / Re: Routes North from San Diego in Feb
« on: January 28, 2016, 03:38:43 pm »
(We) are heading to San Diego mid February to bike from there to Canada. Originally we had considered going along the coast but the prevailing winds might be a problem. We are now looking at the Sierra Cascade route with a possible detour into Utah or towards the great parks south route.  My questions are
1.  Would that be too early to climb some of the passes in California?  Are there possible alternate routes around these passes?

I'm no expert, and haven't done this route, but I would say, yes, way too early for the Sierra Cascades. Others will weigh in soon.

As for the coast, the predominant wind is generally out of the south during the winters, so if there is ever a time to head south to north on the coast, February would be it. Be prepared for rain and storms, though.

Thank you everyone for the responses. I've been scheduled to TA for a marine bio course at Friday Harbor for the second week of my break, so I may see about touring around the San Juans or Victoria for the first week.

You really can't go wrong with the San Juan/Gulf Islands plus a bit of Vancouver Island! And you might luck upon some decent weather, esp. since we're having an El Nino this year!

Routes / Re: Great Parks North - Canadian Camping
« on: December 18, 2015, 02:06:01 pm »
Thanks for the report! Sounds like a good trip.

Yep, I can vouch for the expensiveness of food in the Canadian Rockies. It's because it's a tourist area, and trucks also have to come from long distances away. It's quite a sticker shock to go into a store and find items double or even triple the price you would pay elsewhere! Reminded me of touring Big Sur and finding $2 candy bars (in 2006). The best bet is to stock up in Banff and Jasper, but being on a bike, you're not going to be able to carry all the food you need.

Sorry to hear about the weather. Yeah, in the higher elevations, you can hit snow anytime. But that's a drag about the low clouds. I remember it being pretty much overcast the entire time I was in the Canadian Rockies on my tour in July 2011. Thankfully, the clouds were usually higher, so I got to see a lot. And also rain only happened a couple times. But I think it's rare to get lots of clear sunny days.

Quote from: PacificNorthwestRider92 link=topic=13603.msg70532#msg70532
PS: I'm out in Beaverton. Hope you didn't flood too bad in your area! This was my street yesterday.

Yeesh, that's flooding! Thankfully I didn't need to leave the house yesterday, so I didn't. I had enough flood dealings with my basement!

One other thought on the whole blog/picture thing, how will you back things up...I suppose you could back up to the cloud, but given the size of many digital originals, you'd be abusing free internet pretty hard to back up a couple day's worth, or perhaps pushing a reasonable monthly data limit...

I understand your concern, but I don't think backing up to the cloud will be a big issue, data storage wise. Any phone photo I've made gets automatically backed up via dropbox. I've been doing this for a few years, and only recently have I reached the free limit. Granted, phone photos are rarely more than 4 megapixels, and I don't take as many photos daily as I would on tour (where I use my real camera), but that's a bit. And I could always purchase more storage space.

But a better approach would be using flickr. They now give out one free terrabyte of storage to everyone. That's a lot! I've been using flickr, have lots of photos, maybe 10,000, and many of them hi-res. Right now I've used up a miniscule 3.42% of my free storage. That's it! Of course, flickr is meant for sharing, but you can always upload everything and keep it private until you sort out what you want to keep. (Or just upload the stuff you know you want to keep.)

Thanks for the suggestions. As mentioned above though my blog will be on a cancer foundation website and not on a blogger website like Blogger or WordPress. There will be no application available for the website that will be hosting my blog.

Do you have access to the blog now? It would be good to "test" blogging before you get on the road, so that way you can see how certain devices work or don't work in relation to the website.

I suppose if I bought an iPad I could leave it behind and use the tablet to text/make calls. They're not cheap though.

Y'know, getting an Android tablet would be a lot cheaper than iPad, but not as "cool". My Nexus 7 came in at about $150, which was a good deal!

FWIW, I prefer a netbook for a couple of reasons. First, I use a "real" camera, and it works quite nicely with a netbook.  It might work with a tablet, I don't know.

As I mentioned above, you can use a "real" camera with a tablet. In fact, I've been using my tablet for most of my photo editing these days, as it's a bit faster and less clunky than using my "desktop" Photoshop.

You'll need a separate SD card reader, though. I think mine was six bucks. I have an android tablet, so I had to buy the "Nexus Media Importer" app, which was around four bucks. From there I use the free Photoshop Express app, but there are plenty of other free photo editing apps.

But for your other reasons, a netbook will be a lot better. The separate bluetooth keyboard for my tablet is serviceable at best.

My two cents:

When I did a big long tour in 2011, my girlfriend and I brought a small Netbook (Acer Aspire One, the same netbook I am typing from right now!) This is probably the "best" solution for blogging on the road, especially for long tours. However, while a Netbook is definitely lighter than a full-blown laptop, it still takes up space and weighs a bit.

I've been using a mix of smartphones and tablets since then. Smartphones are great if you are going to make short posts on the way and maybe write something longer when you get home or get to a "real computer", but it won't be easy to write long posts, and trying to edit anything is difficult.

The compromise is a tablet. I got a Nexus 7 earlier this year, and I like it a lot better for blogging purposes, mostly due to the bigger screen and more memory than a phone. However, it's not going to be as good as a netbook or laptop. But you make it work better with an add-on bluetooth keyboard. And one of the advantages of using a tablet vs just a smartphone is photo editing. I bought an SD card reader for the Nexus, so I can use my "real" camera, edit photos via an app (I use Photoshop Express, it's free and pretty good), and upload them on the way, whether via blog, flickr, or other social media.

The key to making it easy to blog via smartphone or tablet is to get the appropriate app. As mentioned above, both Blogger (Google) and WordPress have apps. In my opinion the WordPress app is far superior to the Blogger app, at least from the last time I used the Blogger app a few years back. Of course this may have changed since then, but I always got the feeling that Google hopes Blogger would go away so they don't do much to support it. In fact, when I started to blog via "device" five years ago, Google didn't have a Blogger app, so you had to use a third-party app instead.

As jamawani says, expect cool/wet. But it's an El Nino year, which means drier/milder winters for the NW, so you just may luck out! I'd still steer clear of the higher elevations because of cold/snow. Eastern Oregon/Eastern Washington/BC Interior could be a workable option if you avoid the more mountainous areas, but services can be few and far between, and wind can be a factor.

If I had a week or so off in March to tour the NW, I'd aim for the areas around the Inland Sea (Puget Sound/Strait of Juan de Fuca/Georgia Strait.) You get all the sea you want, but it will be drier than being on the actual coast itself. There's lots of campgrounds, some with hiker/biker sites, and they should all be open in March. Lots of indoor lodging options as well. Plus there are many islands to explore and ferry trips to be had.

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