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Messages - Spokey

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Routes / Re: Bicycle Across New Jersey ?
« on: September 08, 2011, 04:39:05 pm »
regarding the earlier comments on US 206.  I can verify that in central NJ it is pretty good.  I regularly ride roughly Somerville to Princeton.  There is the occasional spot where there is no shoulder but it is not bad. 

I used to go further north to Chester and thought it was good there too but since my brother moved to PA a decade ago, I haven't really bike it so I don't know conditions.  Same thing for the sourthern leg.  My memory is that the road is decent.  I will find out the 15 or so miles north of Hammonton in a couple weeks on my way to FL but might not be able to update here.

Unless you really want 206, I'd switch over to County (?) 601 from S Hillsborough to Princeton.  You'll end up at a light at 206 after it turns in Princeton.  601 shoulders are not as good but unless you're doing this in rush hour, it has much less traffic.  The continual noise on 206 has started to bother me.  And rush hour seems to start around 3:30.

Note that a couple miles further, where 206 and 130 meet, it will be a little tricky and busy but once they split again a little later, 206 quickly becomes better. 

I have camped in Atsion. My recollection is that it is 10-15.  Has water and showers.

Routes / Re: Addenda Confusion
« on: August 29, 2011, 05:43:43 pm »
Had not had coffee myself when I responded.  And had to do it from that little Droid (was in a waiting room waiting for the oldest to come out of surgery).

My previous experience with ACA maps has been good.  Hey I keep buying them.  I first thought of biking to Jimmy Buffet's in 2004.  Just finished putting together my third set of AC maps 4 through 7. 

Heck, I even have Bike Centennial Trans Am maps (think they're worth premium collector prices on ebay?) from I think the mid-90s.

My brother has already started babbling about our next big trip.  Fortunately not around my wife.  Just talking about bike trips costs me Caribbean cruises.  The actual trips are worse.  The Key West trip is going to cost me a couple weeks roaming around Ireland.

Routes / Re: Addenda Confusion
« on: August 29, 2011, 12:42:39 pm »
Already?? Haven't even left for Key West yet! Still working on connecting to AC map 4 from central Jersey (that's almost done)

Routes / Re: Addenda Confusion
« on: August 26, 2011, 01:20:23 pm »

Guess I need to look at the back of the maps more :D.  Been a couple years since I've used ACA maps and I guess I forgot about that climate, riding, etc section. 

Routes / Re: Addenda Confusion
« on: August 26, 2011, 10:37:30 am »

Section 7 works now. 

Still have a question for section 6 although it doesn't look like it ultimately matters but might help further clarify.

In the ATLANTIC COAST ADDENDA, Section 6 (BC-1403 2009) addenda is
The shoulder of SR 200/A1A from Yulee to Amelia Island Pkwy. is in bad shape, ride with caution (Aug 2011)
I haven't gotten my new 2011 Section 6 yet but I don't think you usually see that sort of thing on the paper map.  So shouldn't that be in a 2007 addenda? 


what's this vacation stuff?  Who said you guys get to take vacations!?

have a good weekend!

General Discussion / Re: Gotta eat, but don't want to cook/boil
« on: August 25, 2011, 08:38:24 pm »
Maybe PB&J.  I like PB & cheese myself.  Might try to carry some of that plastic american cheese and see if it lasts. Or maybe buy one of those cheese in a can thing.

Routes / Re: Addenda Confusion
« on: August 25, 2011, 08:33:08 pm »
The Oswald West State Park permanently closed its campground four years ago but this change didn't show up on the addendum until this month.

If that is the Oswald Park right after the funny tunnel that you can trigger a light for bicycles, that's too bad.  We stayed there in 2003.  I liked it.

Yes, the map would really have to hot off the presses to include August 2011 changes.  I ordered it and it supposed to be in transit.

General Discussion / Re: Gotta eat, but don't want to cook/boil
« on: August 25, 2011, 06:49:09 pm »
My whisperlite says it burns white gas, unleaded gas, kerosene, and diesel.  You need to swap a jet for the latter two.

But that's really 3 as far as I can tell.  What is the difference between white gas and unleaded?  We called unleaded gas white gas many years before there was a whisper lite. 

My brother and I each carry a fuel bottle in the third water bottle cage.  When one runs out we hit the nearest gas station and fill 'er up.  Works for us.

That being said, we are heading for Key West and are not taking cooking stuff this time.  We'll be camping but plan getting up and riding say 5 miles for breakfast and eating either before or near camp.  Leaving from NJ so I don't expect to be away from civilization.  We're going to carry peanut butter and bread for emergency use.  Knowing us, it might require occasional replenishing even without emergencies.

Routes / Addenda Confusion
« on: August 25, 2011, 06:29:09 pm »
I'm a little confused about addenda.  I copied this from the Atlantic Coast (AC) section 6 2007:

To update an older map, you must download ALL newer addenda for maps subsequent to this map. The BC number incorporates the update year in the last two digits: e.g. 07 means the map was reprinted in 2007. (Oct 2009)

As I understand it, if I have the 2007 version, I should combine the addenda for 2007, 2009, & 2011.  Except there is no 2011, but the 2009 addenda has August 2011 entries.  Shouldn't those be in a 2011 addenda which doesn't exist?

Also, I guess this needs input from an ACA staffer.  There are two addenda listed for AC-Sec7-2011.  Neither works.  I did a contact yesterday but haven't heard anything.  If this isn't fixed shortly is there any other way to get this?  I'm leaving in 2 weeks for Key West.

Routes / Re: Shelf life of A.C.A. maps
« on: August 24, 2011, 05:18:15 pm »
I haven't found any good online mapping tools to use with the gpx files.  google doesn't upload the route at all.  Just show all the POIs.   RideWithGPS isn't too bad but if you want to tweak the route a bit, you can have the thing go haywire.

If all you are interested in is pre-trip planning, use the Garmin MapSource if you have that.  My brother got that in to his Garmin gps with some difficulty.  I spent an inordinate amount of time failing to get the ACA gpx routes in to my droid.  Tried many online and PC tools.  I have Mapsource too so we can share the planning long distance.  I wasn't able to get the route in to my Nuvi but maybe that doesn't do that sort of thing (I also didn't try very hard).

On the TransAm, I had a set that might have been 10 years old.  They were old enough that they were Bike Centennial maps and my brother had whatever was current in 2003.  They were different enough that we would look at the next day for differences so we didn't go our separate ways.

I'm sticking with the paper (just ordered a couple current sections of the AC route).  This will make the third set since 2005(?).  But I'm finally hitting the pedals mid-Sept for Key West so I won't have to buy a fourth.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: Routing Software
« on: August 22, 2011, 01:11:08 pm »
I have a couple problems with it.

First, if I use my Droid's My Tracks, I can upload just fine.  I can view it just fine.  But if I try to edit it, nothing is there.  I think this is because it is tracks and not routes.  But given the xml spec, that would be trivial to handle.

Second.  Like many other similar pieces of software, it thinks it knows best.  If I upload an ACA route, it shows up fine.  But it might need some tweaking as the points don't exactly land on the map.  Sometimes I can tweak and I'm fine.  But often as soon as I move a chunk from near a road to the road, a large part of or the whole route gets recalculated.  Sometimes I can minimize that using Control Points (I think that's what they're called).  But sometimes, merely trying to add the Control Point causes a recalculation.

I can get better results by starting and drawing the entire route manually.  But then that defeats the point of using the ACA GPX file or uploading my Droid file.

Third.  Occasionally the recalculation just goes crazy.  I try to move the route a little say near the beginning of a 30 mile ride and RideWithGPS decides I am adding to the end and creates maybe a 55 mile route.  The original and back to my edit.  Sometimes the undo will fix that.  Sometimes the undo does nothing.  Sometimes the undo deletes a chunk of the existing route.

Fourth.  It doesn't include all the turns in the cue sheet.  Not sure why this happens but if the route makes a right hand turn from highway A to highway B, the cue sheet should reflect that.  Yes I can manually add to the cue sheet, but why should I have to do that?

For some of the above, I can minimize the problems by saving every or every second edit.  Of course that is a pain too.  Except the save also fails sometimes although I think I have always been able to save as a new route when that happens.

If RideWithGPS worked better, I'd pay for it.  But not in its current state.  The owners also need a better set of documentation, better release notes, and a better issues arrangement.  

All that said, RideWithGPS is probably the best of the breed out there.  BikeToaster (or something like that) has all the same problems above but is much worse.  Google might not even make the category given that I think they still don't even let you save a bike route.  Funny given that RideWithGPS (and others) use Google maps as a base.

I started this exercise with the idea that I would put the Atlantic Coast route in to my Droid as a supplement to the paper maps.  I finally gave up.  The only software that really worked without an enormous amount of trouble is the Garmin MapSource.  Unfortunately I couldn't find a way to get from that to my Droid.  My brother has a recent Garmin unit.  He finally got the route in to that although he says it wasn't as good as he hoped.  Apparently only some of the POI transfer.   I recently bought the new versions of I think maps 4 & 5 as mine were out of date.  The droid will be relegated to getting us back on route if we say go off route to an attraction or restaurant.  And I'm hoping we use it to get to provide us with early hurricane warning as we'll be pedaling down the outer banks.

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Chesapeake Bay Tunnel to ACA AC Route
« on: August 18, 2011, 06:07:32 pm »
I know it might be different now, but how did it go?  They told me to call them 3-4 days before I wanted to cross. 

How precise did you need to be?  Did you have to make a reservation 3 days in advance for say 10AM and be there by 10AM? 

Or did you just let them know and call when you got there on day 3? 

If that, did you have to wait long?  Come to think of it, did you have to wait long regardless the answers above?

I realize 2004 is a bit long ago, but any details on the contacts, hookup, where they picked up and left off would be appreciated.


BTW, I think it is $12 now.  But I don't know if that is per ride or per cyclist.

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Chesapeake Bay Tunnel to ACA AC Route
« on: August 15, 2011, 03:07:55 pm »
Thanks.  I've heard of people doing that.  A little harder as there will be two of us.  Having now heard it on a blog, Jennifer's reference, the VA DOT site, and actually calling them, I'm pretty comfortable this cart a bicycle across exists and should work for us.

It would be nice to actually talk to someone who had done it to find out how precise our arrival needs to be.  For example, we call up a few days beforehand.  Do you need a precise ETA?  Hard for a cyclist.   Or do we call again when we get there and wait 30 minutes?  1 hour?  4 hours? 

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Chesapeake Bay Tunnel to ACA AC Route
« on: August 11, 2011, 04:56:43 pm »
Thanks.  Was able to confirm that.  I was told to call "3 or 4 days beforehand".

Connecting ACA Routes / Chesapeake Bay Tunnel to ACA AC Route
« on: August 09, 2011, 05:23:13 pm »
My brother and I are heading for Key West starting mid-Sept.  We have planned a route to Cape May NJ -> Lewes Ferry -> Assateague (camping) -> Chesapeake Bay Tunnel -> ACA route.

I read a blog a couple years ago that you could call the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel folks and for the price of the toll, they would cart you to Virginia Beach.  I think that I called them at the time and verified this and my brother is going to do it again (soon I hope), but was wondering if anyone here could verify this and/or provide other information.  How long did it take?  How well did it work?  How much advance notice?  etc.

I would also appreciate the advice of anyone who has done something like this or who lives in the area with tips.

This is the route we have planned at this point

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