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Old 05-16-08, 05:21 AM   #226
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Your experience with the Continental 4000's has been my experience as well. That would have been my tire of choice doing a XC ride like yours. And I've had the same experiences with alcohol products. When you combine it with my poor habits of drinking too little fluids during a ride it's just not a pretty outcome. Looks to be a little muggy today but hopefully the weather will steer clear for you. Should be a fabulous day to bring that rascal home though.
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Old 05-16-08, 02:46 PM   #227
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Will, how many people started the tour and how many have ridden the distance?

Which type of Scwalbe tire didn't hold up? They are very popular for touring and some of their models are said to be pretty bullet proof. I know the Michelin Krylions are tough; I use them the most. I'm glad your Continental GP4000 tires did so well ;I haven't tried them yet, but will in the future.

I hope you pop the cork on a good bottle of champagne at the end. You deserve it!

Will you be driving or flying home? Don't forget to take frequent breaks and walk a lot because blood clots in the legs are possible after such marathon events when you are suddenly confined to sitting for long periods. Aspirin would help.

Thanks again for sharing your trip with us.

About half the tour bikers were in the SAG van at one time or another. We lost 5 members permanently.

I am trying to be careful here. Bontrager and Schwalbe are fine products for certain purposes. For instance: I have Bontrager 32 and 38 mm for my Hybrid on WI rails to trails. They are indestructible there. I hear that the Bontrager Road Tire has great traction and low weight. For this kind of tour they will not hold up at all. The Bontrager Hard Case lasted 750 miles on the rear tire and the rubber came off. The same tire last 3,000 miles on the front. The Schwalbe was the standard road tire 23 mm. Same story as the Bontrager. I am aware of the Schwalbe Touring tire with heavy thread. That one will slow me down too much on smooth pavement.
Continental 4000, Gatorskin and the above mentioned Michelin offer a compromise which works for this type of tour. I must say that the roads are ridiculous.

Thanks for the tip on blood clots. We do not need that. I will be flying.

Last edited by will dehne; 05-18-08 at 07:37 PM.
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Old 05-16-08, 06:41 PM   #228
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Day twenty-six, Thursday, May 16, 2008
Perry, GA to Vidalia, GA
Another uneventful day. 100 miles with 2,500 feet of climbing on comparably good roads. We can do such days in about 5 to 6 hours including stops. No big deal anymore. Time to get back to reality.

Update on Andrew: That is the first guy who had to go home because of a reported Heart Attack. We were told today that he suffers from some Blood disease. Therefore his problem may not be cycling induced. Of course we ask no questions. Privacy.

I may have not mentioned the importance of Aerobars. They come in handy against wind but even more important to relieve pressure on hands and butt. The weight shifts forward on the elbows and there can be low pressure on your behind. I biked a lot with cyclist who do not have them. They all regret that decision. BTW, I have worn out a new pair of gloves. There are holes in them now.
It is understood that Aerobars are no good in Pace Lines except leading and should not be used in traffic or other dangerous conditions. On the flats they are fabulous.
Another hot tip is to have a useful pump on the bike. We have bikers with 4 flats/day. That is a bit much for cartridges. I use a pump with a gage and foot rest and it can do 120 PSI: My Pump is labeled "MORPH ROAD G MASTERBLASTER". It works.
A red blinking tail light is a good idea and so is a little bag for wallet and camera mounted on the top cross bar.

MTB shoes and cleats are less likely to cause trouble than Road biker Cleats. Reason is that you may need to walk quite a bit and sometime in mud. MTB SIDI SPD can tolerate that better.

I did this whole trip with just sink laundry. It is fast. You need two pairs of everything because it may not get dry overnight.

Packing light but adequate is a skill worth learning. I spend too much time packing and unpacking.

Report on the last day tomorrow. Some pictures after that.
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Old 05-17-08, 06:12 AM   #229
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Way to go Will, Thanks for all the stories! I enjoyed this year's postings!
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Old 05-17-08, 06:56 AM   #230
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Lots of tour riders have butt problems. My Terry Touring saddle is much admired and envied.
Is this the Terry Liberator? I have it on one of the road bikes and love it.
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Old 05-17-08, 08:51 AM   #231
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Another hot tip is to have a useful pump on the bike. We have bikers with 4 flats/day. That is a bit much for cartridges. I use a pump with a gage and foot rest and it can do 120 PSI: My Pump is labeled "MORPH ROAD G MASTERBLASTER". It works.
+1 We have that pump on each of our bikes - great pump. Not only does it work as it should, but it's also easier for those (like me) with hand/wrist issues. It would be very difficult for me to hold the pump with one hand and inflate to max with the other. With the foot rest I can use both hands and my upper body strength to push down.

I've read great things about Terry saddles and was planning to try one if the stock saddle on my Roubaix didn't work out. To my great surprise, it's every bit as comfortable as my Specialized BG saddle on the hybrid!

Looking forward to the pictures, Iron Will.
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Old 05-17-08, 11:57 AM   #232
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Will and group should be dipping wheels in the Atlantic about now. Hopefully the winds on the East Coast didn't hurt them today-they seemed more out of the north. What a roller coaster of a ride these folks had this trip. Tip of the helment to the entire group. I can't imagine the emotions these folks were experiencing thinking about Darrell, Karen and the fellow with blood issues as they were knocking out the last several miles. What a trip. Thanks so much to Will for his regular updates and insights.
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Old 05-17-08, 12:36 PM   #233
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And he's done it TWICE now. He's made Titanium. Titanium Will.
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Old 05-17-08, 07:41 PM   #234
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Is this the Terry Liberator? I have it on one of the road bikes and love it.
Yes it is.
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Old 05-17-08, 08:59 PM   #235
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Day twenty-seven, Saturday, May 17, 2008
Vidalia, GA to Savannah, GA
We made it. The last day is comparably easy. All flat, good roads, variable light winds and no rain.
The 100 miles were covered in about 5 biking hours.
There was a formal dinner from the tour along with many speeches. It is a bit bittersweet at this point. you made friends in the 4 weeks but they come from all States of the Union and other Countries. You may not see them again.

The challenges were reviewed and different opinions stated. This group was very cohesive probably because of the tragedies we experienced together.

I was astounished to see so many spouses coming to this dinner. The cost is not low if you consider flying and some spouses came from England.

I will select a few pictures and attach them to this thread but it will take about a week to get the right photos.
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Old 05-17-08, 09:02 PM   #236
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Congratulations!
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Old 05-17-08, 09:04 PM   #237
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It's been a pleasure reading about your trip, Will. I'm glad you made it to the Atlantic safely. Enjoy a few days/weeks of rest!
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Old 05-17-08, 09:15 PM   #238
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Way to go, Iron Will! I can't even imagine the emotions of covering the last 100 miles on the last day, at the end of a trip like this. Thank you for taking us along on the ride with you -- I think it would be impossible to beat a ride report like this one.

Did you keep your own ride journal?
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Old 05-17-08, 10:44 PM   #239
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Congratulations, Will, and thanks for posting these daily reports so the rest of us could experience a cross-country tour, if only vicariously. I can't imagine what it would feel like to ride 27 centuries in roughly a month's time. Way to go, man!
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Old 05-18-08, 06:19 AM   #240
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Way to go Will, I had no doubt you could do it. The biggest thing on my mind was the weather, that time of the year their is a lot of bad weather, but I guess anytime of the year could bring bad weather. Anyhow congratulations and thanks for taking us on the trip with you.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:47 AM   #241
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Very well done. Thanks for the posts.
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Old 05-18-08, 08:14 AM   #242
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Great job, Will, and thanks for taking us along! I've followed your adventures every day since you began. In fact, I've added cycling across the country to my "bucket list", although it will take be a lot of work to be in a position to do what you have accomplished.

I'm a little sad that it is over. I imagine that re-adjusting to real life will take some doing for you -- I know it would for me. Real adventures are like that.

You have been an inspiration to people like me who feel that the chances for adventure are all in the past. Godspeed on your post-tour adventures!

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Old 05-18-08, 08:59 AM   #243
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Will,

Congratulations. That's a lot of biking in a short amount of time.

Looking forward to your pics!

Best,
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Old 05-18-08, 09:44 AM   #244
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Congratulations, Will, you are truly an inspiration to us all.

I am interested in what brand brake pads you used and how often you replaced them?
Also, after all is said and done, what did you find to be the best supplements for you? Did you stick to the same products every day or did you select them based upon what you thought the days ride would be like?

Again, thanks for your postings, I couldn't wait to read what you experienced each day, you made me want to do more and be a better rider.
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Old 05-18-08, 11:22 AM   #245
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Congratulations, Will and thank you for taking the time to share your experiences on that incredible ride.
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Old 05-18-08, 06:55 PM   #246
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Warning. This post is for prospective CC bikers only
Otheres will think it boring or silly. The main thing is that it is accurate:

Here is a short description of a Tour day:
Get up at 5:30 AM.
Collect all things including sink washed laundry from night before.
Lather up with Sun protection.
Put on that days bike outfit keeping weather in mind.
Prepare energy supplements and energy drinks to carry on bike.
Collect battery charger, phone charger, Laptop. Do not leave anything behind or it is gone.
Do bathroom things. Do upper body exercise with rubber bands.
Go to Breakfast no later than 6:00 AM. Eat as much as you can and know it is not enough.
Load van with your luggage.
Pump tires to 120 PSI.
Sign up for the day so they know where you are.
Get Cue sheets for the day and last minute route instructions.
Start biking.
After 20 miles you need some food again. That means energy bar or synthetic gel with water/Gatorade.
Mile 40 is SAG station. Food and water and check in so they know you are not lost.
Bike 15 miles and repeat as above.
Mile 80 is SAG lunchbreak or we go to a restaurant and eat a lot and fast.
Mile 100 you need some food again. That means energy bar or synthetic gel with water/Gatorade.
Mile 120 typical arrive at motel. Check in.
Unload Van.
Gulp down Recovery Drink of 1000 calories and/or chocolate milkshake.
Take shower, change clothes.
Do laundry.
See bike maintenance for adjustments. Clean bike and lubricate chain and other critical components.
Go to RAP to review the day and prepare next day route.
Go to dinner.
Do upper body exercise with rubber bands.
Follow up on e-mail and make calls and prepare packing so you are ready in the morning.
Post on BF, check if the outside world is still OK.
Fall into bed no later than 9:00 PM.

Does this not sound like fun?

Last edited by will dehne; 05-19-08 at 03:18 PM.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:14 PM   #247
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Equipment and necessities for a CC Tour
You are limited to a bag with 35# plus a computer bag. I will describe what I did. Other bikers did other things and they work also.
Cold weather clothing include a good Rain Jacket, Booth Covers, Leggies, full finger Gloves, Thermal underwear, Long sleeve bike shirt, MTB jacket for below F30. (We had below F25)
Two pairs of SIDI MTB shoes with SPD Cleats.
Three bike shorts.
Three short sleeve bike shirts.
Two pair of gloves.
HRM.
Sun Block, lots of it. Very good Sunglasses.
A&D ointment, Hydrocortisone. Sun block lip balm. Toiletries.
Recovery Drink, Energy supplements.
Exercise bands for upper body work out.
Camera, batteries, charger, Cell Phone, charger, Lap Top, charger.
Travel documents.
Several Credit Cards and lots of cash.
Sink drain stopper, Laundry detergent.
WD-40 to clean chain, White Lightening to lubricate chain. Cleaning Rag.
Street clothes, street shoes.

It is tough to do all that within the weight limits. It is very difficult to keep organized.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:15 PM   #248
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Congratulations, Will. You did it and so did we because of your posts that made us feel like we were part of the tour!

Relax and get ready for your upcoming vacation. Your are truly a Ironman and the leader of us "mature" cyclists.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:19 PM   #249
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.................................................................................................... .................................

Did you keep your own ride journal?
Yen,
This is it plus the log from Bamacylist.com
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Old 05-18-08, 07:25 PM   #250
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Great job, Will, and thanks for taking us along! I've followed your adventures every day since you began. In fact, I've added cycling across the country to my "bucket list", although it will take be a lot of work to be in a position to do what you have accomplished.

I'm a little sad that it is over. I imagine that re-adjusting to real life will take some doing for you -- I know it would for me. Real adventures are like that.

You have been an inspiration to people like me who feel that the chances for adventure are all in the past. Godspeed on your post-tour adventures!

Paul
Yes, four weeks is a long time. We have a good marriage and it does take a toll. I am afraid what it would be without such a challenge. It recharges the batteries so to speak. You have a total change of life.

One tour rider is 70 and he plugged along just fine. Better than some younger ones.
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