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Routes / Re: Brit riding across the US
« Last post by jsc on January 12, 2023, 11:14:16 pm »
Are you still there, Oscar's dad?

My brother and I have finalized our route for an east to west crossing of the continent this year.  We will depart Washington DC on May 4.  The Potomac River at DC rises and falls with the Atlantic tide, so I consider it close enough to the coast for a starting wheel dip. We will head west pretty much along the TransAm Eastern Express route as it was laid out on the website that ACA took over last year (they adopted most but not all of the route).  It avoids some of the worst climbing on the traditional TransAm route (about 40,000' by my estimation). We follow the C&O Canal towpath, then the GAP rail trail to near Pittsburg; then across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois to just north of St. Louis. We follow the Katy Trail across half of Missouri before we start angling WNW across the rest of Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado to Fort Collins, then over Cameron Pass to Walden, Colorado. At Walden we join the original TransAm and follow it to Missoula, Montana, where we switch to the Lewis and Clark route west across Idaho to the Columbia River between Washington and Oregon to end up at Seaside, Oregon. Then back to Portland for a plane home. I've laid it all out in Ride With GPS and it totes up to about 3850 miles and 140,000' of climbing. The most challenging parts I think will be getting over a few high passes in the Rockies and the potential for a strong blast furnace headwind through the Columbia River Gorge (80-120 miles worth?). The attachments give a general picture of the route, though this iteration is many months old.
General Discussion / Strong wheels for narrow clearance bike
« Last post by Darenli on January 12, 2023, 10:09:14 pm »
I have an old Cervelo RS and it has pretty narrow wheel clearances...max tire 25mm and a Velocity Dyad rim at 24mm outer width will not fit. So to do some light touring/bikepacking I used some some Mavic Open Pros and Dura Ace 32 hole hubs. I've ridden this hard for 10 years including a Northern Tier US crossing, numerous 2 week tours and weekend centuries. I was just doing some winter maintenance and noticed that the rear wheel was not straight and traced the issue to a fractured rear hub drive side flange on one hole. So I now need a new rear wheel. Bottomline is are there any narrow strong rims I should consider apart from Open Pros?....I know narrow and strong don't really play well together, but I thought I'd ask. I'm also considering a 36 hole White Industries M15 for the hub as I've used them before and they seem bomb proof.
What are your thoughts?
General Discussion / Re: Return to beginning of ride info
« Last post by John Nettles on January 12, 2023, 09:49:41 pm »
First, welcome to the  ACA Forums!!

Your question is a bit difficult to answer since you don't say where the start of the tour is or if you mean home. 

Assuming you rode the Northern Tier, I would probably ride to Portland, ME (about a 3 day ride) and then take an Amtrak assuming you could do a roll-on or curb check (NOT boxed) bike add-on to Seattle.  Good part is that it allows you to partly retrace your route and "decompress" on the long 81+ hour ride back to Seattle. 

Option two would be to ride to Portland and drop the bike off at a bike shop and have them ship it home while you fly back to Seattle.  A lot quicker but more expensive and better chance of the bike getting damaged. 

Option three would be to ride to Portland (see a theme here) and rent a car one-way.  This allows you the most flexibility and safety of the bike but the cost is by far the highest and it about 3200 miles one-way assuming no major detours. 

Option four would be to ride to Portland and take the dreaded Greyhound back to Seattle.  This is by far the worst option to me.  It takes 7 transfers and 78 hours and is more expensive than the train which to me would be much nicer.

Of course, you could ride your bike back but then I doubt you would be asking this question if that was a viable answer.

Basically, the 4 options could apply to any ending point so long as the option is available, i.e. Amtrak or a car rental agency that allows one-way rentals is nearby. It basically boils down to your preference and budget.

Hope you have a wonderful trip!  Tailwinds, John
General Discussion / Return to beginning of ride info
« Last post by Stephen Hoover on January 12, 2023, 09:26:39 pm »
Is there a preferred way of returning to the beginning of a ride after riding to Bar Habor, Maine?
Routes / Re: Brit riding across the US
« Last post by jamawani on January 12, 2023, 08:19:00 pm »
Crossing the Great Plains -

Actually it's not the same everywhere.
The Sandhills of Nebraska are - - sand hills.  Amazing, but true!
Because the soil is sandy and does not retain moisture, they were never plowed.
And because it is hilly, the roads are not razor straight, but have gentle curves.
There are long stretches of riding in the Sandhills where you see the Great Plains as they were 500 years ago.
But because there are no farms - rather a scattering of ranches - there are almost no towns or services, either.

West to east, the best route is Hwy 92 from Arthur to Broken Bow.
But north to south there are two supremely magical roads -
1) Hwy 250 from Rushville to Lakeside
2) South Whitman Rd. from Whitman to Hwy 92
South Whitman Road is one lane, paved and is a cyclist's paradise - - albeit totally empty.
(way better than my photos)
General Discussion / Re: Your best single piece of advice
« Last post by Pat Lamb on January 12, 2023, 04:07:57 pm »
A corollary is, don’t make any significant decisions while climbing a big hill.

Which, in a flow of concious kind of way, leads me to:

Stop, pull out your camera, and take a few pictures on a long uphill.  You'll be going too fast to take pictures going downhill on the other side.
General Discussion / Re: Your best single piece of advice
« Last post by John Nelson on January 12, 2023, 01:28:55 pm »
The single best piece of advice is a tip I picked up on this forum: "Never quit on a bad day".

Great advice!

A corollary is, don’t make any significant decisions while climbing a big hill.
General Discussion / Re: Your best single piece of advice
« Last post by LouisB on January 12, 2023, 12:58:10 pm »
Thanks all for the thoughtful advice.
General Discussion / Re: Interesting satellite images
« Last post by jimsh991 on January 12, 2023, 02:13:32 am »
oh wow, i just love the images:)
General Discussion / Re: Your best single piece of advice
« Last post by donald.stewart.92 on January 11, 2023, 10:39:53 pm »
The single best piece of advice is a tip I picked up on this forum: "Never quit on a bad day".
So true!  My first backpacking trip after many years was a ‘bad day’. A torrential downpour minutes after I started. I was climbing with my hands up the mountain in mud flowing down the trail. Soaked to the bone and exhausted on the first day. I wanted to give up. I persevered and had a fantastic time. I found a cherry tree with a ton of ripe cherries. Had a bath in a warm spring. Camped with an Appalachian Trail thru hiker who played the guitar into the night. Had a coyote check me out in my hammock. Saw a bobcat. While sitting on a Ridge, a National Guard Warthog plane buzzed me several times. The pilot slowed way way down and waved to me at my level.  90 degrees a couple days I got to swim in an ice cold stream.

I’m glad I didn’t give up.

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