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Messages - David W Pratt

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Gear Talk / Re: Chair
« on: December 08, 2022, 07:52:32 pm »
The anti-sink pieces of PVC look like a neat idea.  I take my chair if I anticipate camping in unimproved sites, e.g. stealth camping.  In a campground, the picnic table serves.  I lightened mine by giving it to a canvas worker (think boat covers, etc.) and asking her to copy the cloth seat in something lightweight, I also substituted a nylon stuff sack for the cotton.  It also makes a good support for my solar panel to angle it for better exposure.

General Discussion / Re: how to lighten a load
« on: December 08, 2022, 07:30:38 pm »
How much you carry largely comes down to two issues:  How daring are you willing to be, meaning how thin will the survival, first aid and repair inventory be?  The second, is how grungy are you willing to be, how few changes of clothes will you wear?
In general, it is easier to find 5lb. you can live without on the rider than on the bike.  If you want inspiration, just think about how much money it would cost to get a bike that was 5 pounds lighter.  Losing that amount of weight is like paying yourself that amount.

General Discussion / Re: Camping in Churches
« on: December 08, 2022, 07:22:37 pm »
On the Erie Canal Towpath, I passed a church, around midmorning, and they offered camping, snacks, and use of the washer and dryer.  I didn't need their help then, but I liked the idea so I signed the guest book and left a few bucks in the donation box.  That was before the pandemic, so they may have changed. 

General Discussion / Re: Burlington Bikeway/Cyclosurce
« on: November 08, 2022, 04:17:36 pm »
So, Mr. 'Gator, are you in the background on that catalog?  It looks like it is also on the Bikeway, at the Parkin Colchester.

General Discussion / Re: chain grease on polypropylene raingear
« on: November 06, 2022, 07:59:48 pm »
Olefins, like polypropylene, have a high affinity for oils and greases.  I might try pretreating it with olive oil to try to mobilize some the grease with an easily washed oil.  Otherwise, I'd just consider the stains as part of the patina attesting to actual use.

General Discussion / Re: Getting to Your Starting Point
« on: November 06, 2022, 07:56:19 pm »
If you opt for one way car rentals, I've had good luck at airports.  They are open 24 hrs, 7 days a week and some small ones may even have free longterm parking (e.g. Lebanon, NH). 

General Discussion / Burlington Bikeway/Cyclosurce
« on: November 06, 2022, 07:52:14 pm »
I just noticed that the cover photo on the Winter catalog is the Burlington Bikeway at the bridge over the Winooski River, where it empties into Lake Champlain.  The credit for the photo doesn't mention that.
I've only ridden it in the summertime.

General Discussion / Re: Camping in Churches
« on: September 23, 2022, 07:31:34 pm »
OT, but, nice handle in the OP.  Not 'crunchy' I assume.

General Discussion / Re: L Route des Bleuets Trip Report
« on: August 07, 2022, 05:56:22 pm »
I read advice about bike theft in Montreal before I left.  I did see ordinary bikes secured with 1/2" cable, or equivalent chain, and other bike frames picked clean.

General Discussion / Re: Tents and panniers
« on: August 04, 2022, 07:50:33 pm »
Agree that speed is not my major focus.  Zooming past a place is not being there.  A light, pleasant load can make the trip more pleasant, even if you stop every 25 miles.

General Discussion / L Route des Bleuets Trip Report
« on: August 04, 2022, 07:46:40 pm »
Recently, I rode the Route des Bleuets, the Blueberry Trail, around Lac St. Jean in Quebec.  I started in Burlington Vermont and rode up to Montreal, stayed a couple of days and then took the train to Chambord, a small town on the lake, and rode around it clockwise.  Then I took the train back, and rode back to Burlington.  It was 400 miles of riding, 640 kilometers, and I took two weeks.  Customs was not a problem, either way.  To get in you have to register through ArriveCan, an App for your phone.  Strangely, as soon as you cross the border the land gets flat, a condition we have only heard about in Vermont.  Lots of people seem to speak much more French than English, but I got by.  I got Canadian money at a couple of banks in Vermont before I left, but used my Visa card for almost everything.  There were plenty of campgrounds on the way to Montreal and around the lake, all of them had mostly (99+%) RVs.  Saw lots of other bike riders, including lots with loads on their bikes.
The train to Chambord leaves from the Gare Centrale in Montreal and you can check your bike. It got into Chambord at 12:45 am so I just cowboy camped in a field.  If I were doing it again, I would call Bernard Renauld (415-265-1998).  He is renovating an auberge at the railroad station and might have room.  Say hi from me if you go.  The station seems to be closed, but you can reserve a seat by phone for the return.
Most of the campgrounds have stores and restaurants, I only used my stove to make tea in the mornings.  There are also tons of hotels, motels, etc.
It was very dry, I was almost never sweaty, and there was hardly any dew in the tent most mornings.  It was low 50s F in the morning and low 80s in mid afternoon.  A few thunderstorms came through, but not bad YMMV.
The street and road signs are excellent.  The road atlas I had was not so good.  Some of the roads it showed were un labeled, and others had labels of other roads obscuring them.  The Bike Quebec (Velo Quebec) is an atlas of the bike routes, of which there are lots.  For some reason the road atlas does not show the bike routes and the bbike atlas does not show the regular roads, that would be too easy.  Montreal is very bike friendly, so much so lots of people want to keep your bike there.  Secure storage at night is a must.
The feeling was very much going somewhere different, just  50 miles from Burlington Vt.
Happy to answer any questions.
Bon voyage!

General Discussion / Re: GAP and C and O Toe path
« on: August 04, 2022, 07:21:26 pm »
When I did it, I stayed in the Maple Festival Campground in Meyersdale and the lady who ran it gave me a phone number for a guy who ran a shuttle around the Paw Paw Tunnel.  I called him from Cumberland and he met me at a gas station and took me to Little Orleans Campground.

General Discussion / Re: Tents and panniers
« on: July 24, 2022, 03:33:19 pm »
The comfort of a tight dry tent on a stormy night can be worth a lot of weight and $$$.  I am very happy with my NEMO Hornet.  It is pretty light, sets up easily, and has weathered several thunderstorms and kept innumerable mosquitoes off of me.  It is nominally a two person tent, but they would have to be petite and intimate for that to really work.
I just did the Route des Bleuets, and only used my stove for making tea in the mornings, but the weight was not a problem.
In general, it is easier to take a pound off the biker than off the bike or the baggage.
Weight is the enemy of speed, not distance.  If the TransAm takes an extra week, so what?

General Discussion / Re: GAP and C and O Toe path
« on: July 24, 2022, 03:22:55 pm »
I did it last year about that time, it is a great ride with great places to stay or camp.
If you want to perform a little mitzvah while you ride, take some nice heavy chain lube for the pivot joints on the pumps at the hike/bike campsites on the C&O.  It will make your pumping easier, and that of those who follow you.
Have fun!

Classifieds / Re: For Sale Bruce Gordon Touring Bike
« on: June 24, 2022, 06:02:32 pm »
Not my size, and I have a 1992 Rock and Road that I love.
It is stable and responsive, unladen, or with full, kit for self-contained touring.
Mr. Gordon was a genius at designing and building bikes.  If this bike size is close for you, I would suggest that you give it a try.
Just my unsolicited $0.02.

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