Cycle Tour

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This page contains information on a cross-country cycling trip I hope to take. As I don’t have any details planned at this moment, it is pretty general about the topic. Once something is in the works, I will post much more detail here.

The Project

Who? Me. I’ve been a off and on again cyclist since I was a kid. I’m addicted to blogging and this will be much more interesting to write about than my life of late. I have always wanted to travel and see the country. I’m a Ham Radio operator and a tech nut. I sometimes help build robots.

What? A long-distance self-contained ride around the country on my recumbent trike. I’ll spend as much of the time as I can camping, or staying in places offered to touring cyclists. In the event of bad weather, physical illness or just for a rest, I’ll do an occasional hotel.

When? The Spring/Summer of 2011. Soon. Okay, update for 2016. I still haven’t done a long tour like I envisioned, but I’ve done several multi-day rides with camping, bikepacking as we call it, and am actively planning on doing more very soon. I have come to realize I am hampered by the long winter here near Buffalo. Mild as it was this year, I missed some great weather in March and now I’m sitting here in April looking at snow. I’m realizing I need to travel southward to find good riding/camping conditions in the spring and late fall.

April saw a weekend trip to London KY for the Redbud Ride and a few days camping.
May: I took a bike along on a trip to Florida. Not much riding in Florida, but some great riding in Virginia Beach.
June: a small ride headed to Rochester is happening. See the info page.

Where? Yet to be determined. I have several routes in my mind, but nothing definite planned yet. In recent years, I’ve traveled the Great Allegheny Passage twice, part of the Greenbriar Trail in WV, many parts of the Erie Canalway Trail, as well as many one-day trips around here.

I’d like to visit the GAP and Greenbriar Trails again. I am signed up for a ride in Tennessee called the Redbud Ride. Camping is involved, but at a fixed spot, not where I need to lug everything with me. I’ll be taking my bike to Florida with me when my wife and I go in May, hoping to try out the trails they have there.

To build up to a longer trip, I am thinking about doing a ride along the Lake Ontario shore from campground to campground. There are a number of state parks campgrounds and I could easily end up in the Thousand Islands.

In the back of my mind is doing some of the Southern Tier Route from Florida to Texas and on to California during the winter months. If I can break away from things long enough. That would let me extend my cycling season to year-round and maybe avoid the couch potato syndrome during the winter months.

How? I told you, on a recumbent trike! I’ll be carrying everything with me, camping gear, food (stopping at stores along the way) and the tools I need to capture this adventure and share it here: camera, computer, Ham Radio gear, smartphone, etc. Also, to power all that, a solar panel and storage battery to keep it running. (No, no electric motor on the bike!)

Why? Why did the mountain climber climb the mountain? I’ve wanted to do this for years, but work and a family came first. Now, I’m retired, the kids are grown to the point of near self-sufficiency and it’s time to do this. My wife probably has no interest in doing this. She’s also still employed. I may not be physically able to do this by the time she quits or retires. So, it’s now or never.

Getting out of the house and doing something will probably mean I can do something like this later, because I hope it will keep me fit longer. I know for sure, if I don’t, I won’t be.

More Why? I’ve read a number of accounts by people doing variations of this. It’s not at all new and therefore is very doable. I hope I have learned a little from those who have gone before me. I’ve certainly been inspired by them.

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