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Messages - John Nelson

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General Discussion / Re: Bike from NYC to Las Vegas?
« on: November 30, 2017, 11:41:00 pm »
If this is possible, then that must be one heck of an e-bike. You’d need to do about 280 miles a day at a time of the year when there’s only 9 hours of daylight a day. What’s the top speed of the bike, how many miles can it go between charges, how long does it take to recharge, does it have a light, and will there be a support vehicle? And how does the bike do in snow?

Gear Talk / Re: Should I buy a road bike?
« on: November 28, 2017, 12:13:10 am »
I ride both a Trek 520 and a carbon fiber bike. I would never consider taking the 520 on a club ride. There’s no way I could possibly keep up. But you don’t necessarily need carbon. A good aluminum road bike will be fine.

Thanksgiving is pretty soon to start from zero. Your biggest challenge in that short of time will be to acquire gear. Start finding gear lists, and decide what subset you want to take. Because time is short, you may not be able to take advantage of sales, or spend a lot of time considering the options.

Before considering a two-week trip, I suggest you plan an overnight trip.

But that's just me. I'm a planner. If you're more of a "wing-it" guy, then you can get by with much less planning that I can.

If you're an avid backpacker, you may have much of the equipment and skills you need already. You'll need to add repair tools and spares, and something to carry it all in on your bike. You may even need a different bike.

General Discussion / Re: Bike Computer
« on: November 07, 2017, 05:53:42 pm »
Most bike computers (without GPS) run off of button batteries that last for years. No charging necessary (or possible).

Routes / Re: Western Express Trail/Grand Canyon Connector in winter
« on: November 07, 2017, 08:59:52 am »
Camping in snow is certainly feasible, although heavy, especially up those Utah hills. Cycling in snow is a bit more problematic. What kind of bike are you taking?

Routes / Re: Going to the Sun
« on: November 05, 2017, 05:10:02 pm »
Logan Pass is on Going To The Sun Road. Lolo Pass is in Idaho.

I rode up Going To The Sun Road in June, five days after it opened. I left from Avalanche Campground at first light. Traffic was not a problem.

Going To The Sun Road is the best cycling on the planet!

Can I safely assume that one can camp in all State parks?
No. Check first.

What was the camp possibility like along Hood Canal and Columbia River?
Because the Hood Canal is a recreation area, there are lots of campgrounds, most with hiker/biker spaces: Kitsap Memorial State Park has hiker/biker spots, as does Illahee State Park and Bellfair State Park. Twanoh State Park has walk-in sites. That's all in the space of 40 miles, which is about the length of the Hood Canal. I camped at Bellfair State Park. At $12, Washington State Park hiker/biker spaces are generally more expensive than Oregon State Parks (usually $6) and California State Parks ($5 to $10). All of them have showers, most of which require tokens, which are available for 50 cents.

I followed the ACA route. I have no knowledge of the book route. Although the ACA route does not follow the coast, you'll get plenty (enough in my opinion) of coastal riding once you get to Astoria. On the ACA route, I enjoyed the Hood Canal, Mandy Road, riding and camping along the Columbia River, and the ferry across it.

General Discussion / Re: ACA Tour catalog question
« on: October 03, 2017, 05:37:17 pm »
It seems to me that the OP is perhaps asking what "13 Riders" means. Is "13" the min, max or average?

General Discussion / Re: Absolute necessities?
« on: October 01, 2017, 12:14:04 pm »
There are no absolutes. Many tour without GPS. Some wouldn't leave home without it.

Where are you going?

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast Northbound advice wanted
« on: September 29, 2017, 01:50:34 pm »
The wind is the most-oft cited reason for going southbound, but there are other significant reasons too.

The wind favors southbound travel, but not by a huge amount. And it varies by season. The summer winds are more commonly coming off the ocean from the west, but occasionally from the northwest. I think, from a wind perspective, it's entirely feasible to go north, although it will slow you down a bit.

The Washington, Oregon and California DOT know that southbound cycling is much more common than northbound cycling. So they have invested most of their cycling infrastructure resources towards southbound travel. E.g., the southbound shoulder is wider than the northbound shoulder.

Furthermore, the view is better from the southbound shoulder. Also, because automobile drivers will be looking west at the beautiful scenery, they are much more likely to see you on the ocean side of the road. Also, almost all of the pullouts are on the ocean side of the road, so northbound riders will have to cross the road every time they want to stop.

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast - Road closures in Big Sur area
« on: September 21, 2017, 03:49:13 pm »
I want to know if you suggest me to bypass this section by taking a bus/train from Monterey to San Luis Obispo, or just wait for the roads to be fixed.

Neither. Take the Salinas Valley Detour.

Unfortunately, you'll miss the incredible scenery of Big Sur, so come back and do that in a few years.

Routes / Re: Seattle to Astoria
« on: September 21, 2017, 12:33:03 pm »
The ACA Pacific Coast map section between Centralia and Longview is rather meh.

My experience differs. Part of this is on Mandy Road which is so serene that it will make your whole day. I also really liked Woodside Drive in Cowlitz County.

Hwy 4 between Longview and Cathlamet is somewhat busy and narrow - but scenic.

This part I will agree with. It's a narrow, busy road that isn't much fun on a bicycle. But I did enjoy camping right on the banks of the Columbia River and watching the salmon fishermen bring in big ones and the barges going up and down the river.

I went across the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and enjoyed it. Mackinac Island was a special treat. Eating all those pasties was a bonus. The Pere Marquette Rail-Trail in the Lower Peninsula is really nice.

The Lake Erie Connector (northern shore of Lake Erie in Ontario) was very nice too, and you get to see Niagara Falls from the Canadian side.

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