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Messages - BrianW

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Urban Cycling / Re: top bicycle-friendly cities and towns
« on: December 18, 2016, 08:08:51 pm »
Philadelphia is actually a very bike friendly city, with plenty of bike lanes and a good network of rail trails in the area too.

Routes / Re: East Coast Greenway or Atlantic Route
« on: December 09, 2016, 08:26:53 am »
I believe true e-bikes, ones where you have to pedal rather than just power along without input, are considered bikes just about everywhere and are allowed on trails, at least on any trail the ECG would use.

Rocky Mountain / Vehicle parking in Jackson, WY
« on: December 03, 2016, 03:53:05 pm »
Or call the National Park Service at Grand Teton NP and see if they offer long-term parking in their lots for an extended adventure. Most parks do if you ask in advance.

General Discussion / Re: Riding with golf clubs
« on: November 28, 2016, 11:11:09 am »
The Burley Travoy trailer seems like it's almost custom-made for golf bags. You could even unhook it and use it on the golf course!

Gear Talk / Long distance tour bike for small lady
« on: November 27, 2016, 05:57:42 pm »
I have a very nice, used Co-Motion Pangea with S&S couplers for sale in your size. It's posted in the classifieds section here on the forums:

Bump: price lowered to $1750 firm. Otherwise I'll wait until spring and put it on ebay.

A great price for a rare and high-quality bike!

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 17, 2016, 04:14:29 pm »
You can also leave the bike boxed and checked, and use a bikeshare bike.  Or transit.  Our large cities have pretty good transit, elsewhere it's very skimpy.

Yes, Philadelphia has trains 2x/hour from the airport to Center City. I assume Boston has something similar.

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 17, 2016, 09:55:28 am »
BTW...If you want to take a day off in Philly to see the historical sites there is a HI hostel that's a pretty easy bike to downtown:

+1 on this! Philly is worth a visit :-) Most airlines allow you to break-up your flights by up to 24 hours, so you could fly into PHL, stay over, and then fly north the next day at some point. Only issue is where to store your bike box. Since you have an ongoing flight the airline *should* hold your box for your next flight. Some years ago we did a bike tour in Europe with some friends from California. They flew in from California the first day, stayed overnight with us in Phila, and then we all flew to Germany the next day. The airline held their two bike boxes for them overnight and put them on the Europe-bound plane the next day.

General Discussion / Re: Trangia Stove / Meths
« on: November 11, 2016, 04:59:59 pm »
I've found standard butane canisters are now available in the sporting goods section of most WalMarts. This is great for the bike tourist!

Also, I'd be careful of walking into a store and asking for "meths"! The methamphetamine (aka "meth") drug problem is unfortunately quite pervasive in many communities at the moment.

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 11, 2016, 04:55:46 pm »
Pain = Quite A Lot of ££££

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Ah, yes, well there's that...

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 11, 2016, 04:34:53 pm »
I'm looking at flights and Bangor is a real pain to get to from London.
If I fly to Boston and keep my bike boxed up, it looks as though these guys will take my boxed bike and transport me straight up to Bangor.

Anyone ever traveled with Concord Coach?

How is it a pain? Flying American Airlines/British Airways, it's two flight legs: LHR-PHL-BGR, connecting in Philadelphia. Same day, even (e.g., one option is to leave LHR at 10:05 am, arrive BGR 5:08 pm same day). The only thing you'd need to confirm is that the regional jet to BGR can take a bike.

Otherwise, I'm sure Concord Coach would be fine, although I've never used them myself. I've seen them all over the highways in New England. If you can catch a bus directly from Boston to your final destination, that might be worth dealing with the bus connection (assuming the times are convenient).

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 11, 2016, 10:45:16 am »
Addendum: after some thought, if you want to do the "full down east" tour, start from Perry, not Calais (shaves off a few miles and time on the shuttle bus). Not much in Calais, except a border crossing into Canada. Looks like the shuttle bus stops in Perry before it gets to Calais.

Also, my referenced Google map was just a quickie, rough route. There are quite a few smaller loop roads that go off Rt 1 and get you closer to the coast in places. If you have the time, I'd definitely add them in, because that will let you see the "true" Maine coast, not just Rt 1 stuff. Like Rd 186 that loops down into the Schoodic Penninsula, Winter Harbor, and another part of Acadia National Park that many people miss (there's a campground there, too).

I had planned to ride the southern part of this route last July (Brunswick, Maine, to Rockport, Mass) on a long weekend, but decided to ride the GAP instead, as I didn't want to deal with the in-season traffic along Rt 1 in southern Maine. But now that I'm typing all of this, I'm getting the urge to bike the entire thing myself! :-)

General Discussion / Re: How often do you do pedal maintenance???
« on: November 10, 2016, 04:17:23 pm »
SunTour XC Pro old-school pedals (running four sets of them) = never, so far. These have grease ports, but I've never used that function. I guess the build quality is why these pedals go for $100+ on Ebay in decent condition.

SR Low Fat Pro Comp MTP-129 old-school pedals (four sets of these as well) = very occasionally I'll take them apart and regrease the bearings when they start feeling stiff. An easy and fast service with only a 10mm socket and 15mm pedal wrench needed.

Routes / Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 10, 2016, 12:36:50 pm »
Not the ACA route, but riding Rt 1, 1A, etc. (see the Google map I linked). The ACA route in Maine (from what I've seen of it) avoids the coast to skip potentially trafficked roads and instead puts you inland where the scenery isn't as interesting (IMO). If looking at just the ACA route, I'd probably agree that the Maine portion is no more or less interesting than Richmond to Boston or whatever. The scenery along the coast more than makes up for any possible traffic IMO. And I still think there won't be bad traffic anyway in mid and late May. A different story in late June through August, to be sure, especially along the coast south of Portland.

Routes / Re: Atlantic Coast Traffic - Bar Harbor going South in May '17
« on: November 10, 2016, 09:35:43 am »
Couple of things:

1. I did the AC route from Bar Harbor south to my home in Philly back in '99. I wasn't thrilled with most of the riding in "Down East" Maine. I can only imagine that things are the same or worse development and traffic-wise.

2. Unless you are a low daily mileage person, two weeks is a long time to do Bar Harbor to Boston.

I disagree with indyfabz on #1 above. I think the Maine coast is amazing and well worth the trip. The scenery is beautiful and the small coastal fishing villages you go through are worth the trip on their own. Acadia National Park is worth several days; you could easily spend 3-5 days in that area alone and have plenty to do and see. I really don't think traffic will be too bad in mid-to-late May, except for Memorial Day weekend, as I mentioned. I wouldn't let that deter you. The Pacific Coast Route has plenty of traffic, but people still love riding that. Personally, I think Boston to Richmond would pale in comparison from a scenery standpoint.

For #2, I agree somewhat, but there are ways to fill that time and enjoy yourself if you aren't just about riding tons of miles every day. Here's a basic Google-map route of 384 miles from Bangor airport to Bar Harbor to Boston, via the Maine coast with some detours, Massachusetts coast, etc: Like I said, Acadia National Park and surrounding areas are worth several days. Maine towns like Camden, Boothbay Harbor, Freeport (touristy, but fun), the southern coast, etc., are all worthwhile diversions. And Portland, Maine, is a great small city, as is Portsmouth, NH. Down the NH seacoast is touristy, but pretty. And the northern Mass coast (Rockport, etc.) is nice as well. There's a reason that this whole area is popular: it's very scenic!

Or, for a longer route and more remote scenery at the start, fly into Bangor, Maine, and take a bus ( - scroll down to see "Wests Coastal Connection") from there over to Calais, Maine, on the Canadian border and ride back via the coast (a 478 mile route: You'll see the "real" less-touristy Maine coast this way.

If it were me coming from an overseas flight, I'd fly into Bangor and transfer to Bar Harbor via shuttle (or stay over night in Bangor the first day, but there isn't much to see there), and stay there for a few days to get over jetlag, put your bike together (several bikes shops in Bar Harbor if help is needed), and explore the park and environs. Then, take the Coastal Connection bus shuttle from Ellsworth (right outside the park) up to the Calais area and ride back down the coast to Boston.

For flights, American Air (partner with British Air) connects to Bangor, Maine (code BGR), with regular service (small regional jets) from Philadelphia. AA and BA have several direct flights a day from LHR to PHL. From Bangor it's an easy ride (or shuttle) to the Bar Harbor/Acadia area. You can also fly right into Bar Harbor airport (BHB) from Boston, but it's on a tiny plane (3 seats across the width, last time I flew that segment). Fly into Philadelphia and maybe indyfabz and I can show you around for a day! :-)

Also, to clarify about Memorial Day weekend (May 27-29 in 2017) with regard to season traffic, it's a singluar event usually, with traffic and tourism spiking just for that weekend, especially up in Maine. The week/days before and after the Friday-Monday holiday weekend should be fairly quiet, with just typical shoulder-season tourism and traffic. In the northern Maine coast, the "official" season doesn't really start until almost July 4. Last summer we were in Acadia in mid to late June and it was pretty quiet.

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