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View Poll Results: If you were a beginner cyclist, what would you change about this tour plan?

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  • Too hilly - make it flatter (somehow)

    0 0%
  • Not hilly enough - re-route towards the Highlands

    0 0%
  • Too long - start in Middletown

    0 0%
  • Too short - start closer to the shore

    0 0%
  • I have to sleep in the same tent as neilfein? Ew!

    4 100.00%
Multiple Choice Poll.
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Martha's Second tour

    After a sucessful first tour with Martha (Mrs. neilfein), we're going for our second one. We did the 2-day Greenway tour, now it's time for a tour with camping. We're going on Memorial Day weekend, in 2 weeks.

    We'll take the train to Red Bank, and ride to Cheesequake park, where we'll camp. We'll ride home the following day, to Highland Park. Here's the draft route:

    http://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path...our-2009289894 (2 days, 35 miles)

    We own two tents: A hevy 4-person tent for car camping, and a lighter 2-person tent I take on tour. Even though it'll be cramped, we'll bring the lighter one. Martha's camped several times, and she went on a tour that's longer than this one will be. What's gonna be new to her are the hills (not all that many) and combining camping with touring. Distance riding isn't her thing at this point, hence the super-short days.

    Does anyone have thoughts on my plan, or ideas to make it smoother? I'm trying to keep this unintimidating and fun.

    Edit: The Historian will recognize much of this route - we rode a version of this for our first tour, and got lost in Cheesequake. I learned from experience, and we'll approach the park from the east, where there are gravel trails leading to the camping area.
    Last edited by neilfein; 05-13-09 at 07:46 AM. Reason: See text. Also added the poll.
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  2. #2
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    After a sucessful first tour with Martha (Mrs. neilfein), we're going for our second one. We did the 2-day Greenway tour, now it's time for a tour with camping. We're going on Memorial Day weekend, in 2 weeks.

    We'll take the train to Red Bank, and ride to Cheesequake park, where we'll camp. We'll ride home the following day, to Highland Park. Here's the draft route:

    http://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path...our-2009289894 (2 days, 35 miles)

    We own two tents: A hevy 4-person tent for car camping, and a lighter 2-person tent I take on tour. Even though it'll be cramped, we'll bring the lighter one. Martha's camped several times, and she went on a tour that's longer than this one will be. What's gonna be new to her are the hills (not all that many) and combining camping with touring. Distance riding isn't her thing at this point, hence the super-short days.

    Does anyone have thoughts on my plan, or ideas to make it smoother? I'm trying to keep this unintimidating and fun.

    Edit: The Historian will recognize much of this route - we rode a version of this for our first tour, and got lost in Cheesequake. I learned from experience, and we'll approach the park from the east, where there are gravel trails leading to the camping area.
    Martha rides a Navigator, if I recall correctly. She may have problems with the climbs at seven miles from the start and eight miles from the end. Navigators require a lot of work and patience when climbing. I don't think there's much you can do about Holmdel Road - I remember it climbing forever.

    You didn't include "don't change a thing" in your options above, so I couldn't vote. It looks like a nice touring route.

  3. #3
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    Martha rides a Navigator, if I recall correctly. She may have problems with the climbs at seven miles from the start and eight miles from the end. Navigators require a lot of work and patience when climbing. I don't think there's much you can do about Holmdel Road - I remember it climbing forever.
    Yeah, there's not a practical way to route around Holmdel Road if I want to go through that area. The hill near the end includes getting across route 18. I can route up the Old Bridge Turnpike and avoid some of it, but I remember that not being a particularly nice ride. (We ended up on the sidewalk of Route 18 for a few blocks.)

    Yes, you recall correctly. Hers is a smaller frame than yours, of course.

    I figure that one big hill each day should be fine, especially considering we'll be warmed up by that point.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    You didn't include "don't change a thing" in your options above, so I couldn't vote. It looks like a nice touring route.
    Thanks! It's a second draft.
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  4. #4
    Neil_B
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    [QUOTE=neilfein;8901974]Yeah, there's not a practical way to route around Holmdel Road if I want to go through that area. The hill near the end includes getting across route 18. I can route up the Old Bridge Turnpike and avoid some of it, but I remember that not being a particularly nice ride. (We ended up on the sidewalk of Route 18 for a few blocks.) [/HTML]

    I gather she's comfortable riding in traffic? And NJ traffic at that?

    HTML Code:
    Yes, you recall correctly. Hers is a smaller frame than yours, of course.
    I should hope so, since she's smaller than me. Still, the older Nav hardly climbed well, and the newer models are even more crank-forward. Tell her to spin, spin, spin when she comes to rises.

    HTML Code:
    I figure that one big hill each day should be fine, especially considering we'll be warmed up by that point.
    The one on the second day looks short enough to walk if need be. The one on the first day on Holmdel is the one I'd worry about. Where in Red Bank are you starting from? The hotel we stayed at?

  5. #5
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    I gather she's comfortable riding in traffic? And NJ traffic at that?
    Very much so. She grew up in DC, and rides in traffic very well.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    Where in Red Bank are you starting from? The hotel we stayed at?
    No, we're going to take the train down to Red Bank on Saturday morning. I originally thought about riding to the park from home on the first day, but this is more interesting even though it means I don't get to try the trailer out on tour just yet.
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  6. #6
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Sounds like the two of you are going to have fun! Enjoy the tour!
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  7. #7
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    My knees have been bothering me lately, so I'm gonna have to take it easy on the hills - particularly carrying cammpng gear.

    Neil, did you have any trouble getting a rack on your Navigator? We're having problems getting one on Martha's bike.
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  8. #8
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    My knees have been bothering me lately, so I'm gonna have to take it easy on the hills - particularly carrying cammpng gear.

    Neil, did you have any trouble getting a rack on your Navigator? We're having problems getting one on Martha's bike.
    No trouble at all. Then again, my shop put it on for me. What is the problem you are having?

  9. #9
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    The eyelets near the seatpost are places so you can't use a regular stay; the brakes are in the way.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    It is possible to route around Holmdel Rd, sorta:

    http://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path...-tour-2009-v-2

    This gets rid of about 50' of climbing.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    We started packing last night, and need to pick up some stuff sacks and straps tonight. We never were able to get a rack on Martha's bike, so she'll take a backpack and I'll have all the camping stuff.

    She's getting over a cold, and my knees have been bothering me. Rain is predicted this weekend - not a problem for the riding, more for the camping. We may have to postpone, but I want to try if at all possible.
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  12. #12
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    We started packing last night, and need to pick up some stuff sacks and straps tonight. We never were able to get a rack on Martha's bike, so she'll take a backpack and I'll have all the camping stuff.

    She's getting over a cold, and my knees have been bothering me. Rain is predicted this weekend - not a problem for the riding, more for the camping. We may have to postpone, but I want to try if at all possible.
    Keep the backpack as light as possible. And good luck!

  13. #13
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    Have fun. I wish my wife would tour with me. I got to go by myself for my first short tour next month.

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