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Messages - Nyimbo

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Routes / Re: Has anyone ridden CA hwy 70 aka the Feather River hwy
« on: August 19, 2015, 08:30:49 pm »
Thanks for the information, that is very helpful info with the good and the bad.  Since I live in the foothills I do 95% of my riding on roads without shoulders but, the majority of those roads have light traffic.  I have ridden hwy 49 from Auburn to Bullards Bar Reservoir, and the traffic is heavy but with shoulders most of the way, (Auburn to Grass Valley is the heaviest), but I don't enjoy that type of  riding nearly as much as a shoulder-less road with light traffic and very few trucks.  So, not sure what to think on 70. 

I know September will reduce the summer holiday traffic but I would guess not logging trucks and so on.  I would like to do some camping and exploring in Lassen Park but that would only be about 2 days worth, and I have 4 days planned, so not sure.  I guess I could just take the car up to Lassen and to the short riding around Lassen and  then drive down to Truckee and spend 2 days enjoying a leisurely ride around Tahoe, I've done Tahoe a few times before.  Anyway, thanks again for your help and the great picture.

Routes / Has anyone ridden CA hwy 70 aka the Feather River hwy
« on: August 19, 2015, 02:46:44 am »
I was considering lake Oroville to lake Almanor and from there on up 89 to ride through Lassen National Park.   I,ve been through Lassen by car several times but I have never ever been on the hwy 70 section. On the map it looks like it follows the Feather river all the way up the mountain.  I've got a few days for a short trip in Sept?

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Routes / Dipping spot for starting TA in Florence, OR
« on: August 06, 2015, 12:29:54 am »
I'm on the Oregon coast with my wife for vacation and while going through Florence today I thought I'd scout out the starting spot for my 2016 planned ride on the TA. With all the sand dunes in this area I didn't find an easy spot to ride from the ocean unless I just start from the parking lot at the jetty.  Any suggestions?

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General Discussion / Buying Used Question
« on: July 24, 2015, 03:30:19 pm »
Background: I took my trek fx 7.5 in to get a gearing upgrade the suggestion from a local expert re taking it cross country is in addition to new gearing is to replace wheels, (24) spokes, replace fork with a steel fork from trek 7.3, add bar ends. He said by the time you have done the up grads you have payed 1/3 the cost of a new touring bike - or 1/2 to full price of buying a used bike.

I started reading Craig's List last night and see two bikes in my size. A Fuji touring for 400. And a Cannondale T800 for 300.  I'm not going to offer to buy either because I need to learn some things first and I'm not in a rush.
So my buying used question: 1 how do I determine they are not a stollen bikes and 2. How do you determine the condition since I'm not mechanically inclined?

Any suggestions for thinking through this?

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General Discussion / Re: Northern Tier or better idea?
« on: July 24, 2015, 01:36:42 pm »
You can't go much further south on Amtrak and stay on the coast.  Once you hit Eugene the train heads over the cascades and comes out on the other side for a stop in Klamath Falls.  From Eugene you could head over to the coast and start south at Florence. 

I would guess its easier to get transportation from Portland to Astoria than from Eugene to Florence unless you are riding the bicycle from the train to the coast and then it wouldn't matter either way.


My low gearing 26x26 is fine on everything I ride here at home. (Live in the Sierra Nevada Foothills) but from my reading of the journals I'll be happier with something extra on the east coast.  I took my bike in this morning to my bike store.  Mechanic said he will swap my 11/26 cassette with a 11/34 for $34 plus a bit for installing  and I can watch.

Bobby I'm Not interested in camping without a sleeping pad.  I am interested in trying to keep it light especially if I try to use the Trek FX but not without pad and pillow.

I google searched touring with Trek Fx and the bikeforums discussion I found seemed to feel strongly that the Trek FX spokes were not up to the challenge but I'm not sure of the posters expertise - but maybe I shouldn't???

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Gear Talk / Re: Gearing for Touring Bike Followup
« on: July 16, 2015, 07:00:52 pm »
Thanks admin, that helps a lot

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Gear Talk / Gearing for Touring Bike Followup
« on: July 15, 2015, 11:08:12 pm »
Ok, I'm confused and have been for the past month of being introduced to the touring side of bicycling.  I'm guessing that the longtime tourers understand the reasons but I still don't understand.

In reading the articles, blogs, discussion groups it seems there is a consensus for most people in what are a good gearing ratios for touring bikes.  -- small chain ring at 24 or 22 and --largest cassette at 34-36.

But in my reading and learning about touring bike being sold, i.e. LHT, 520, Kona, Randonee, Fuji, and so on, (I did not look at high end or custom bikes) I have not seen one bike that comes with such gearing as standard. 

My question is --what is the reasoning behind the difference between what people seem to be using and what bike manufacturers are offering.  If seems like it would be a big selling point to offer tour ready bikes?? 

Cheers, Keith

Saving "$5 a day" for the past year has gotten me to the place where I think I can do this trip, I have really made a spending lifestyle change, I'm trying to wear my clothes and shoes until they are worn out.  Cancelled the Sat TV.  Began cooking at home -- eating out occasionally instead of daily, and on and on, and I agree it does add up in savings.

This is what I've learned so far this morning reading the comments above.  The motel cost are more expensive that I expected, and the camping can be much less expensive than I thought. 

I also read staehpj1's article about frugal touring, that is a helpful article and will help to think through each step.  I think the sleeping pad and pillow may be items I also don't want to scrimp on.

Regarding using my current bike, I will need to visit my LBS to ask them to explain to me about changing the gearing.  But thanks for the suggestion it is worth a look as I had not thought about that as an option.  Since I live in the mountains, I'm used to riding hills, I can't leave the house without them - but still lower gearing would be appreciated.

I wondered if there is much savings by doing my own cooking when you have to shop in small markets and buy small amounts of everything and so on?

when re-reading my question while posting I thought of some of what you said.  First do I want to continue touring for years or is this just my bucket list trip and I will stick with local riding  after this.  I wasn't able to answer the question.  I loved my short tours and I love riding, which I do regularly, but until I do a longer tour I just don't know.  I wish I could just afford to buy the touring bicycle and gear and not worry about it but truly I need to be careful with funds.

Regarding my tastes and how fast I'll travel, I'm probably an average rider I think 50-60 miles a day is my style, not more.  For food and housing, I always try to get the least expensive food and housing when I'm not traveling with my wife, and she isn't planning on the bike tour. 

This may not be a question someone can help me answer as its a personal choice thing, but at least writing it out has helped me to clarify my thoughts a bit.


I am really interested if anyone has already done the math or who just has a good understanding of what the cost comparison might be between credit card and self contained.  But keep in mind my complication is needing new equipment to do the self contained style tour.

I am interested in doing the TransAmerica Route in 2016.  Like many I suppose, I'm on a tight budget.  So I was planning to do the self-contained travel to reduce expenses.

But after spending the past month following the discussion groups and reading several journals/blogs I have learned that my current bicycle will not work for this option.  I will need to purchase  the basic touring bike (I looked at the REI Randonee bike for example) -- plus I need the front and back panniers and racks and tent, sleeping bad and sleeping pad, and some cooking equip.  I do not have any of these items.

I thought the other option of credit card touring would be much more expensive -- except that I have everything I need to leave tomorrow if I go credit card style.  I have a Trek FX 7.5 with 48/36/26 and 11/26 gearing - I think that should get me by ok. I have a Selle Anatomica leather seat and new Vittoria Randonneur Tires.  I have a rear rack and small panniers large enough for 20 lbs.

I'm not sure how to figure out the budget but seems like the cost of the new setup will pay for the motels and diners to do the trip.  But then what if I enjoy it so much I want to continue then I will definitely wish I had a nice steel touring bike....

BTW, my touring experience is limited. I have done 2 short trips credit card style, one 3 days and the other 5 days.

Thanks for any thoughts or questions that will help me think this through with more clarity. 

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