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Messages - johnsondasw

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1
I agree with DaveB and use a bar end mirror for all rides. I have been using one for over 30 years and would not ride around the block without it.  I disagree with Russ.  I think the mirror can save your life.  I can ride safely, watch the road and the mirror.  A mirror allows you to actually have some control over the situation when riding.  After a while, you can get an intuition about what a car is going to do, whether they are erratic or not, etc.  A mirror often can tell you when it's best to "take the lane" or even leave the road.  I've done both.  Another thing you can do if you sense a car is not taking you seriously is do a little swerve into the road.  This often makes the car driver wake up.  You can see and hear them slow down and work to go around you. It takes a lot of riding to really get a sense of how to effectively use a mirror. Without one, you're helpless and completely at the mercy of whatever is coming.  I've discussed this with scores of riders.  Those that do not use a mirror always say they don't use one because there's nothing you can do if a car is going to hit you.  This is a fatalistic and wrong view, in my experience.  I want to control the situation, and a mirror gives me way more control. On the Pacific Coast ride, this is esp important, because there are parts of HWY 1 in Calif with no shoulder, narrow and curvy roads. And oblivious, often elderly drivers, sometimes driving wide RV's.  I'd get a mirror and start practicing.

2
ptr52, I see you are hoping for roads that are not busy and have decent shoulders? The regular route on HWY 1 in Calif has lots of roads that are very busy and have no shoulders.  Riders must be prepared for those types of roads on this route. Also, there are often wide trailers and vacationing drivers of all ages.  Use a mirror and be ready to get way over to the right sometimes. I left the road once for a speeding pickup truck that was hogging the lane and would not slow down when there was another vehicle coming the other way putting me in a pinch--all this on a minimal shoulder section. 

3
Gear Talk / Re: Tent choice for Northern tier
« on: March 07, 2017, 11:38:58 am »
When in doubt, go light.

4
Thanks for the good descriptions and pics! I have biked most of the route and agree that it's a great one. this reads like a trip report, and I'd like to see more of those here. I think there should be a TR category on the forums, so we don't have to go to Crazy Guy....to read them.

5
Gear Talk / Re: Sources for Ultra Violent Protective Clothing
« on: February 18, 2017, 12:56:23 am »
I just use regular biking jerseys, shorts, etc, and sunscreen--every time I go out in the sun season.  I also get checked by a dermatologist twice a year.  I get in trouble if I don't, b/c my daughter is a dermatologist.  I have had two basal cell skin cancers removed, which puts me at higher risk for the scary ones--melanomas.  They must be found and removed as they tend to metastasize (spread) to other organs and can therefore be fatal.   

6
Routes / Re: Pacific Coast route
« on: February 13, 2017, 12:12:54 am »
I have ridden all around the Olympic Peninsula.  I would be a good way to start the ride. the ferry will take you to Port
Townsend, and then you can go west out to Forks and then south to Aberdeen and from there tie into the Pacific Coast route.  I thought this ride around the peninsula was a great one.  Be sure to bring rain gear.  We had no rain and favorable winds, but that was a July ride.

7
Gear Talk / Re: Should have learnt the easy way.. some advice guys
« on: February 10, 2017, 11:35:36 am »
Yes, what they really do is allow you to control much of what is going on all around you and, for those things you can't control, they allow you to have a better chance to avoid an accident. I could ride without one, urban or rural, and I ride both, a lot.

8
Gear Talk / Re: Should have learnt the easy way.. some advice guys
« on: February 07, 2017, 11:18:52 pm »
I've been using one for 40 years.  There are many kinds.  I use a bar end one now. 

9
Gear Talk / Re: Should have learnt the easy way.. some advice guys
« on: February 07, 2017, 11:41:39 am »
[quote

 It kind of feel like you need eyes in the back of your head

[/quote]
A mirror gives you this, but you have to know how to use it.  I especially helps avoid the right hook problem, when the car passes you and then immediately turns right so you hit it.  My mirror has helped me avoid that situation and the situation when a passing car is not giving me room enough.

10
Crank Bros eggbeater style.  Love 'em for day riding or touring.  they never get gummed up in dirty conditions.

11
Pacific Northwest / Re: Crossing the Columbia River
« on: January 27, 2017, 11:32:28 am »
I rode it at twilight on 6/21/05 in the rain.  It did not seem to bad to me. I recall an adequate shoulder.  Better than you'll have on parts of HWY 1 in CA.  It's the only time I've ever seen a roadkill starfish. 

12


You may also wish to encourage Mr. Usher to get on a bicycle, himself.
And include this image with your encouragement.

[/quote]

Funny!  good one. 
I have cycled through parts of MT on three different trips, and have found the roads and scenery to be superb.  the only drawback has been some bad drivers that did not slow or give safe space for bikers.  I also found the Confederate flags in the pickups to be revolting.  These seemed to be more frequent than in other western states I've visited.

Anyway, if MT decides to go with this kind of law, I'll take my $$ elsewhere, of course.  And encourage others to do the same.

13
Jonsondasw, fair play to you...Can you carry that eggshell pad on your bike?

Yes, I could carry it on the bike (straps and bungees!) but I don't have to.  I can use my trailer.  The pad weights very little--less that the air mattress I used to use.  And, most importantly, it will never deflate, which happened to me twice backpacking in the past two years.  That's what led me to give up on inflatables.  I'm pretty rough on equipment, and sometimes have to camp on rough spots.  My most recent air mattress failure occurred due to sharp rocks.

14
I use a Big Agnes Seedhouse 2 tent.  It's only about 3 pounds.  The Seedhouse 1 was just too cramped. I also use one of those eggshell looking foam pads.  They are very light but not very thick, and they don't compress for packing.  And I just bought a blowup pillow.  I have not tried it yet.  It's packs to about 3 inches long--tiny little thing.  I'll be interested to see if that helps. At 68, I'm trying to find a way to get a decent night's sleep for backpacking and bike touring.

15
General Discussion / Re: ?How easy are SPD pedals to get use too?
« on: January 03, 2017, 06:08:22 pm »
They can come loose and fall out in the weeds.

Nonsense.  Lies.  Fantasy.  Whatever.  SPD cleats are attached to the shoe soles with two bolts.  Allen bolts.  They are about 1/2 inch long.  If they got loose, the cleat would wiggle and squirm for miles and miles.  Anyone would notice this.  You would immediately stop and see your bolts are maybe coming loose.  You would then get out your 3mm Allen wrench and tighten them.  When you got home you would take the bolts out and reattach them using blue Loctite.  They cannot fall out by themselves without you knowing they are going to fall out for hundreds of miles before they fall out.
Actually, Russ, my partner did not notice they were coming out so in reality I'm not a liar.  This really happened on July 25, 2010 in South Bellingham, WA.  It's rare I've seen someone on this forum call names like that.  This is a friendly, helpful site, usually.  Maybe consider it's possible you are mistaken before you submit such a post. 

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