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Messages - Figaro

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31
Gear Talk / Re: My Bike Set-up for TransAm
« on: May 09, 2018, 08:21:56 pm »
On the question of whether bear repellant is needed or not, a waste of space or not, here is what I have to say about it.

I fully expect that I will end my TransAm trip and will not have ecountered a bear, thus will not have needed to touch the bear repellant. Therefore, I guess when I'm done I could jump on the bandwagon here and declare that Bear repellant is not needed and a wast of space. After all, I didn't need it, people told me I wouldn't need it, and I haven't heard of a TransAm bike rider being attacked by a bear before. Silly me for wasting my space carrying bear spray that was clearly not needed....

But, I also fully expect I will end my TransAm ride and will not have crashed and cracked open my helmet...I expect no big truck will pass me, throw up a rock, him me in the head and leave a large dent in my helmet....I expect I will not fall over/off my bike and crack my helmet against the ground. In fact, I fully expect I will end the TransAm and may think....A helmet? What a waste of space...those things are not needed. After all, I've been training for this trip since last September, wearing a helmet every ride and have never really needed it.

But then again, you don't really need something until you need it....right? So, for all you brave people who ride and camp in bear country and have never needed bear spray, by all means, feel free to not carry it--leave your helmet and anything else you've never really needed at home as well. Me...I'll waste the space and carry my bear spray ;-)

For anyone who may still be on the fence about bear spay, take a look at this....starting around 9 min. When I listen to him talk and then imagine myself camped at Jenny Lake in my tent at midnight, reflecting back on this thread, I think I'm not going to mind that extra weight of that useless bear spray at all.

https://youtu.be/a0a5aVRtaSE

ps...if you like good bike touring videos, I would recommend watching all of his videos--they are really good.

32
Gear Talk / Re: My Bike Set-up for TransAm
« on: May 07, 2018, 09:04:24 pm »
I'd be curious to see your packing list. 

Have you tried the spray? 

I'll be posting a link to a video that shows the contents of my bags either this weekend or next weekend. I haven't tried the spray--watched someone demo it on youtube and it looks exactly like what I want. It sprays a huge cloud of repellant and that's what I want if I have a 800 lb grizzly charging me. I don't really care if it gets on me--I can get over the spray, but doubt I could get over a grizzly mauling. If you haven't already you should watch some grizzly charging videos on youtube--they will get your attention and I don't think that small can is going to do much in the unlikely event you need to use it on a bear.

33
Gear Talk / Re: My Bike Set-up for TransAm
« on: May 07, 2018, 09:00:21 pm »
Neat film made for family - thouygh I am also very curious about your packing list for I also do not think I could pack everything in 2 rear carriers.

Am also curious about the bear holster you use - what brand + type is it?

Have fun in about 2 weeks time on the trans am - do you keep a blog or something be nice to follow you and your adventures.

I'll be making a video showing the contents of my bags either this weekend or next...I'll post a like to this thread.

Here is the Bear Repellant I bought

https://www.counterassault.com/

34
Gear Talk / My Bike Set-up for TransAm
« on: May 06, 2018, 07:22:36 pm »
Made a video of my bike set-up for the TransAm. I'll be heading out on the 26th. I know I have stuff I don't need, but if you see anything you think I really do need and don't seem to have, please let me know. One thing I forgot to point out are the Marathon Supreme tires I put on it a few weeks ago. I debated whether to add those or just stay with the stock Bontranger tires--I'm glad I added these based on feedback in the forums here. Have a couple hundred miles on them and although I don't have scientific evidence, I do believe they roll easier than the stock tires. Made this for family and friends, so forgive me pointing out things that are obvious to the experienced biker.

https://youtu.be/0sRg3kWYeF8

35
General Discussion / May 26th TransAm Start
« on: April 16, 2018, 10:48:22 am »
Just reserved my rental car to drive to Yorktown and made my motel reservation for May 25th. Starting the transam rain or shine on Saturday the 26th of May East to West, unsupported camping and some motels. Been wanting to do this for nearly 20 years now and am finally making it happen. Based on input here in these forums, I've decided to follow the TransAm to Missoula then follow Great Parks north to pick up the Northern Tier and finish in Anacortes. I'm communicating with one other person starting on the same date--if there are others, please let me know. Would enjoy riding with company at least some of the time.

36
Gear Talk / Re: Marathon Supremes...
« on: April 14, 2018, 05:46:39 pm »
Replaced my Bontranger AW1 700 x 32 with a new set of Marathon Supreme 700 x 32 today and took them for a 30 miler. I like them...seem to roll a bit easier than the stock Bontrangers. I have a little over a month to break them in before I head out on the TA.....hope they live up to the hype.

37
General Discussion / Re: Across America 2018
« on: April 06, 2018, 05:52:40 pm »
From "Across America in 2018" to "American Politics"....I guess whoever said "Everything is politics." may have been right ;-)

38
Gear Talk / Re: Marathon Supremes...
« on: April 04, 2018, 07:33:32 pm »
Ok, I'm ready to buy new tires for my Trek 520. I have almost 2k on the tires that came on the bike and although I'm sure they have a lot of life in them, I want to put on a new set before my transam trip this summer. I was going to just buy the same tire, but have decided to go ahead and go with the Marathon Supremes. My current tires are Bontranger AW1 700 x 32. I assume I would buy the 11600787 32-622 (700 x 32C) V-Guard from the list below as the correct replacement? Thanks.

https://www.schwalbetires.com/bike_tires/road_tires/marathon_supreme

39
General Discussion / Re: Riding in or around Myrtle Beach
« on: April 03, 2018, 09:17:10 am »
Thanks...I'm here and decided to just leave the bike home and take a week off from riding. Will hit the road again in the evenings when I get back to Lexington tomorrow...winter is hanging on in Lexington though...calling for snow on Saturday.

40
General Discussion / Riding in or around Myrtle Beach
« on: March 27, 2018, 01:32:18 pm »
I'm training for my TransAm trip starting in late May riding everyday that I am home with weather permitting. My wife and I are going to Myrtle Beach on Friday and will be there Saturday through Wednesday visiting daughter and grand kids. Have been there several times but have never contemplated riding by bike there. Would like to take my bike this time and get in some 30 or so miles a day, but just from my car driving experiences there it doesn't really seem like a "bike friendly" area. Would appreciate any local knowledge/recommendations if there are places close by that I could get in some good training rides this weekend and early next week...may determine whether I take my bike or just take the days off from training. Thanks.

41
Greetings fellow cyclists! I will be departing Yorktown May 26th heading west on the TransAm. I have started a blog with a planned itinerary and equipment list here: https://rustycrankc2c.blogspot.com
I know of one other cyclist who intends to start from Yorktown the same weekend. Are there any others? We would be interested to start a Facebook group to share info and such. It would be great to hear from east-bounders as well.

Hello Rob. Yes, I'm the other one planning to start on that day. Would be great to hear from others.

42
General Discussion / Re: TransAmerica
« on: March 12, 2018, 08:54:10 pm »
I bought a 2017 Trek 520 in August for my TransAm trip this year. Have put about 1,600 miles on it so far and really like it. I'm 58 and will be starting the TransAm solo in May--east to west. I'll be able to tell you more around the end of July when, god willing, I finish :-)

43
Gear Talk / Re: Search for the perfect touring bike mirror
« on: March 09, 2018, 07:53:26 pm »
After trying several mirrors and not being satisfied with any of them, I've finally found what works best for me on my Trek 520. I removed the left bar-end shifter and replaced with a downtube shifter--leaving the right bar-end in place. That freed up the left bar end for me to install a nice Hafny Bar-end mirror. Took it out for a 20 miler today and love it. The mirror is in the perfect place--doesn't interfere with my hand positioning and I can always see it regardless of whether I'm on the breakhoods, dropdowns, or any other position on the handlebar. There is virtually no difference between reaching down to shift a bar-end and reaching down to shift on the downtube--I think it would be a little less ideal if it were the right shifter (with the more frequent shifting), but on the left it's no problem. The Hafny mirror is great quality--can see very well with it. After a lot of trial and error and going through a lot of mirrors, I'm very happy with the end result.

44
Gear Talk / Re: AegisMax UL Sleeping Bag thoughts
« on: March 06, 2018, 07:19:00 pm »
Got this last year and love it. Wait for the member sale and use the coupon.

https://www.rei.com/product/135411/sea-to-summit-comfort-light-insulated-sleeping-pad

Paired with a compression sack, this packs down to about the size of a football, and it's lighter and cheaper than the Nemo:

https://www.rei.com/product/111165/rei-co-op-igneo-25-sleeping-bag-mens

The sleeping pad looks interesting, but the bag is just not for me--can't deal with mummy bags. I got to have room to move :-)

45
Gear Talk / Re: AegisMax UL Sleeping Bag thoughts
« on: March 06, 2018, 11:44:07 am »
Your air mattress makes a huge difference to your warmth too.
Remember a true "air mattress", i.e. just an inflatable plastic shell, provides nearly no insulation under your sleeping bag.  I recommend a foam filled air mattress like the Thermarest  or one of it's knockoffs.  They can be reasonably light and roll up small but do provide some insulation.  Non-inflatable foam sleeping pads can be light and do insulate well but aren't the first choice for comfort.

I'm thinking about getting this. Seems a little bulky, but I guess I can just bungie it to my rack. Seems to have really good reviews.
https://www.rei.com/product/829826/therm-a-rest-z-lite-sol-sleeping-pad

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