Author Topic: Biking for Local Food  (Read 9167 times)

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Offline PeddlePusher

Biking for Local Food
« on: March 02, 2010, 01:42:05 am »
I've started planning a trip from the West Coast to DC.  I am hoping to do a mix between the Lewis & Clark route and the TransAmerica route.  I'm a recent graduate of MSU in Bozeman, MT and have altered the Lewis and Clark trail to go through Bozeman.  I am also originally from Steamboat Springs, CO so I've adjusted the TransAmerica route to go through Steamboat. Otherwise I am following the routes provided by this site. 

The real kicker is that I am hoping to source as much food from local growers, farmers markets, CSAs, etc. as possible.  I found this site: www.localharvest.org/ that I'll be using along with others to locate sources for food. 

Being my first loaded tour, I am open to any and all suggestions, advice, criticism.  I am in the market for a bike, am debating trailer options for carrying several days worth of fresh food and could use any advice offered.

The dates planned for the trip are from late June through August of this year.  Thanks for any and all input!

Offline staehpj1

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2010, 08:19:32 am »
Good luck with that.  We found that fresh produce sources were few and far between much of the time on the TA.  Many places you pass through only small towns for considerable distances.  In the little general stores fresh produce was extremely limited and generally not fresh at all.

I would rather make do with what is fairly readily available than carry a lot of food.  My advice is just enjoy what you find and consider it a bonus when you manage to get decent produce, local or otherwise.

The places on the TA where we saw a produce stand or someone selling produce off their tailgate we definitely took advantage of it, but they were few and far between.

Offline tonythomson

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2010, 11:46:47 am »
Yes my experience was the same asstaepj1 - despite meticulous planning still ended up at time eating rubbish from convenience stores  at gas stations.  They sell candy n beer.

I like to eat organic and whole foods but certainly wouldn't carry loads of the stuff - like s said make do with what you can find and enjoy it better then

My other thoughts about dragging food behind would be a) the effect of sun on it for several hours a day & b) what animals it is going to attract - I don't so much as mean bears but mice and squirrels - they will get in anywhere and spoil your cache.

You won't go hungry and if you do for a day it isn't going to hurt you.
Good luck
Just starting to record my trips  www.tonystravels.com

Offline dubovsmj

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2010, 11:52:19 am »
just to add a thought...

your body will require a lot more calories/day.  eating fresh produce won't cut it and finding local foods that are super high in calories/protein/etc is dunna be a pretty steep task. 

good luck in wyoming.

maybe you could fill BOB trailer with dirt and grow the food as you go...it'll get plenty of sunshine/rain/etc and won't go bad as fast? : ;D

Offline tonythomson

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2010, 04:26:40 am »
maybe you could fill BOB trailer with dirt and grow the food as you go...it'll get plenty of sunshine/rain/etc and won't go bad as fast? :

This idea is great gave me a good laugh this morning, thanks  ;D  ;D
Just starting to record my trips  www.tonystravels.com

indyfabz

  • Guest
Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2010, 11:15:08 am »
maybe you could fill BOB trailer with dirt and grow the food as you go...it'll get plenty of sunshine/rain/etc and won't go bad as fast? : ;D

Ha!  The visual I have in my head is priceless because I can see someone doing something like this if it hasn't been done already.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2010, 12:32:08 pm »
maybe you could fill BOB trailer with dirt and grow the food as you go...it'll get plenty of sunshine/rain/etc and won't go bad as fast? : ;D

Ha!  The visual I have in my head is priceless because I can see someone doing something like this if it hasn't been done already.

You could actually sprout your own sprouts as you go.


FWIW...
My idea of "local food" on tour is sampling the regional dishes that are available.  Seafood on the coast, grits or maybe biscuits and sausage gravy in the south, and so on.  Also I figure that eating some junk food or fast food won't kill me as long as I manage to get some decent variety.

Offline PeddlePusher

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2010, 02:32:22 pm »
Thanks for the input.  I appreciate that there are gonna be stretches where finding local food will be tough but I'm determined to do it.  Certainly there will be times when we are unable to do it and end up having to by processed crap from quickie-mart  I am hoping to spend a day or two at various farms, volunteering in exchange for food for the next leg.  Certainly pests getting into the food will be an issue, as well as preserving the food and making sure we have sufficient calories, but these are not impossible to overcome, and input that will help us overcome these obstacles is greatly appreciated!

Thanks again for the input

Offline dubovsmj

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2010, 06:20:13 pm »
maybe if you do a north to south route (i.e. seattle to san diego) you'd find more of what you're looking for (i'm guessing not just local but healthy/quality local foods). 

even a north/south of the east coast will find you biking through plenty farmer's markets and most likely on a more daily basis?????

Offline PeddlePusher

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2010, 05:57:58 pm »
I suppose I need to make my intentions a bit more clear.  Although this is certainly going to be an enjoyable trip for my riding pleasure, I am hoping to make a bit of a political statement with it as well.  I have grown frustrated with aspects of both our food system, and our transportation system.  By riding a bike across the country, I hope to illuminate the lack of alternatives to auto or airline travel.  By eating locally, I hope to illuminate the need for decentralized food production. 

With that said, I've used Google Maps to plot out a route as well as to plot farmers' markets along the route.  Here are the maps:
Cannon Beach to Portland: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.000480409a8cd074b2974&ll=45.713521,-123.25231&spn=1.164073,2.200012&z=9
Portland to Missoula: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.0004804a545f0f6f0988b&z=7
Missoula to Bozeman: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.00048067c880324c3ab8e&ll=46.316584,-114.455566&spn=4.605692,12.98584&z=7
Bozeman to Jackson: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.00048067e1a8e5a3ff524&z=8
Jackson to Steamboat: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.00048067eef5cd0cb34ac&z=7
Steamboat through Kansas: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.00048066555120b491caa&ll=38.959409,-101.25&spn=10.364872,25.97168&z=6
Missouri: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.000480680c896a7e8e06d&z=7
Kentucky to DC: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&msid=101797866712193207690.000480c25ec32f5f180c4&z=6

I have located many farmers' markets along the way and marked them.  It seams that there are enough farmers markets along the way.  An issue may arise regarding the timing of the markets; because most of them are held during the weekends we may have to arrange special concessions with farmers to get produce outside of the markets. 

Thanks again for input

Offline tonythomson

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2010, 05:11:21 am »
Hi PP I have to admit to being slightly sceptical at the start - as I tend to eat the healthiest options available, try and convince myself that orange flavoured chocolate can be counted towards the 5 pieces of fruit a day.  But I like what you are doing and have made a note of the FM's from Washington to Berea (as I plan to head North from there) but will try and look others now along my planned route.

Good luck and do let us know how you get on.
Just starting to record my trips  www.tonystravels.com

Offline dubovsmj

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2010, 08:31:13 am »
looks like you're route will swing close to staunton, va.
if that be the case then you will most def need to stop at polyface farms and hang out with joel salatin.

mr. salatin and his farm are talked about extensively in the book "the omnivores dilemma". 
so ch-ch-check it out.

http://www.polyfacefarms.com/



Offline John Nelson

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2010, 11:09:22 am »
I figure that eating some junk food or fast food won't kill me as long as I manage to get some decent variety.
Yea, me too. I figure a steady diet of Hostess isn't good for you, so I like to mix in some Little Debbie too. That way I cover both food groups.

Offline PeddlePusher

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2010, 02:31:02 pm »
wow, your right, I didn't even realize how close I will be going to Staunton, VA.  I will certainly have to make a stop at polyface!  Joel seams to be an interesting man, he's also interviewed in Food Inc. if anyone is interested in watching it here is a link: http://www.novamov.com/video/pg1hprm38oahy 

Offline dubovsmj

Re: Biking for Local Food
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2010, 03:53:55 pm »
yeh....FOOD,INC was awesome movie.
I was gonna recommend it when I posted this morning, but alas, after working night shift my mind couldn't recall the name of it. ha.
I also assumed you prob had seen it.

When I went to see it there were folks lining up buying bucket loads of popcorn and of course the movie focused a lot on all the corn in our diet.
Gotta love the irony of it all.