Bicycle Travel > General Discussion

Realistic time requirements

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US 12 - You have a moderate climb up the Belt Mtns from Townsend - nothing too tough - campground at the summit.  Hot springs at White Sulphur Springs.  Last time thru we camped in the grassy area behind the motel for free just by paying the bathhouse fee.  You follow the Musselshell River valley for 100+ miles - Mennonite farms - a few have really deep wells with delicious water - if you see some Mennonite men out, don't hesitate to ask for water.  They have always been wonderful to me.  Roundup was really hit be the 2011 flooding.  Rolling and quite remote from there to Forsyth.  Bar/Cafe 1/2 miles off road in Ingomar is only service.  Funky, essential stop.

Willing to do any dirt between Forsyth and Miles City?

Jamawani, Your discription of Hwy 12 sounds really lovely, the kind of travel I live for. Actually, I was considering cutting across from Miles City through Ekalaka on to Camp Crook SD on dirt but I don't really know if it would be possible or feasible. I would be running on scwalbe 32c's but I can mount 45's on my 98 trek 7500 hybrid with the dead rocksox fork. I'd be a bit concerned about the bentonite in some areas. I did a sliding 360 on a mountain road in CO with my pickup on that shit. Had to change my undewear.:)


--- Quote from: John Nelson on January 14, 2013, 04:25:02 pm ---
--- Quote from: freightbike on January 14, 2013, 04:03:36 pm ---I was wondering if US 12 was terribly hilly between,say, Townsend and Forsyth. I have a co-worker at my job who worked on the airforce missle silos who said MT 200 was endless ups and downs out of Greatfalls.

--- End quote ---
So what. 80% of the country is endless ups and downs. It goes with the territory.

--- End quote ---
I just remember doing RAGBRAI across the southern part of Iowa and the route was so hilly there was an equivalent elevation gain to bicycling up mt. Everest.

You time frame sounds doable, but daily mileage is certainly an individual preference.  I find that anywhere between 50 and 80 miles per day including rest days and half days works for me.

I will say that I always find that it is much more satisfying to not have a firm deadline though.  Much better to have more time and money that you think you will need.  That allows you to just take things as they come.  Whether you feel like riding consecutive 100+ mile days every day or taking a few days off to see a national park or whatever, it is nice if you schedule can accommodate your spur of the moment choices.

BTW another option that will allow flexibility with a fixed time deadline is to have a flexible end point.

Where possible I ride from the end of the tour that requires the most consideration in travel, ending in the location that require less advance notice for airline, bus, or train tickets.  If I can finish the tour close enough to home to either ride home or be picked up, so much the better.  If you have a friend or family member who is an airline employee willing to share a friends and family pass, flying standby on the trip home might be a good option that will allow finishing whenever you happen to get there and even from variable end points.

Thank you, Staehpj1, Yes it is definately better to have no end date. Unfortunately I have only four weeks vacation a year. I had thought of taking the northern tier route and ending in Minot or some place further west of that. I like taking the roads I haven't already biked on and some of the NT area I did back in 83 and on candisc trips. I will have to research what the options are for bus travel getting back if I find myself not wanting to or unable to keep up a grueling pace. With luck the west winds will be calling and I can do some days like my last candisc return, 340 miles in three days. :)


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