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Old 07-29-10, 09:21 AM   #1
Robert Foster
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I Was Impressed

I just got back from Vacation about a week ago. On the way home we stopped I Williams Arizona so we could spend a day or two at the Grand canyon. As we left Williams the morning we were heading for home two road bikes were riding down Highway 40 just as we got on the freeway. These were not loaded touring bikes slugging along these were road bikes with nothing but a small seat bag and maybe a top tube caddy and water packs.

I at first thought they were local riders out for a morning ride. We decided to stop in Kingman for the night just so my last day heading home wouldn't be such a long one. We got into Kingman in the real early afternoon and when I thought about taking a ride the 113 degree temps made me reconsider. However as we got back on the road heading for California the next morning, low and behold I passed the same two cyclists still heading down I-40.

I have heard of the trend called credit card touring but I wondered about the minimalist approach these two seemed to have. I have to hope they had SAG support somewhere as well because if they were heading along the same route were were their next stop would be Needles and as we got there the temps were about 103.

Like I said I was impressed. Not inspired to try the same thing, but impressed.
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Old 07-29-10, 09:53 AM   #2
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They may have had support riding behind that you did not see. Last summer I rode with two brother-in-laws across Pennsylvania from West to East on RT 6 over 4 days. Our wives were following in sag vehicles and all that we carried on the bikes was fluids and snacks/GU in our pockets. The plan was stay at B&B's each night then leave early each day for the 75 to 100 mile ride to the next B&B. While we rode the wives were following behind and visiting antique and art shops, wineries and stopping at other places of interest. We would always be a cell phone call away should we need SAG.

The plan worked very well until the end of the first day's riding. At the end of 90 miles we rode into the small town with the first B&B at about 2:30 PM and called the ladyfolk to find out when they would be at the B&B. It was determined that the ladies were at least 2 hours behind as they had just stopped at a small town about 45 miles away that was having it's annual yard sale. We proceeded to the B&B to inform the hostess that we were there, then drove our bicycles over to a local bar and each bought a 6 pack of beer and some nuts and chips then rode back to the B&B. We sat on the front porch reloading the carbs lost on the ride while waiting for the wives to return.

The same scenario played out on two of the remaining three days, only we learned to put more cash in our little seat packs. On one of the days we didn't know how to get to the B&B so we just went to a bar and joined the locals. One comment from the bar maid did bring a smile, she stated "we don't get bikers that look like you guys in here very often". They loved hearing about our trip and were amazed how far we rode that day.

I would do a similar tour again and would even consider one lasting a couple weeks, although my wife would probably have a differing opinion.
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Old 07-29-10, 10:05 AM   #3
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I suppose If the time of year was right I could do a day or two and maybe a week of a supported ride. I have often thought a ride down the coast of California from North to South would be a great trip. But I am pretty sure I could never talk my wife into sagging for me so it would have to be a group/club ride of some kind.
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Old 07-29-10, 10:27 AM   #4
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The system Brother Jet used might work on the wife just don't fill her mind up with all the minor details of your side of the tour.
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Old 07-29-10, 12:40 PM   #5
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Kingman, Laughlin and Needles would be a devastating trip this time of year. But I have seen people decked with panniers this summer. Hopefully they are on their way to better climates than Vegas and south.

BF should put together a wine tasting tour in the NAPA Valley this fall. The MTBers (like me) could take the dirt roads between vineyards. I could do three days of biking for that. My wife would do SAG support with all the shopping that could be done.
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Old 07-29-10, 01:23 PM   #6
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I did see a few cyclists out on 491 and then 160 from Gallup to Cortez. One bent rider looked like he had a few supplies with him and one road bike guy had paniers but then again there were a few without paniers. I wouldn't think this would be the time of year most people took a bike tour but I wouldn't be the one to ask.
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Old 07-29-10, 02:49 PM   #7
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I thought that was you Bob...and you didn't even wave as you went by!
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Old 07-29-10, 04:55 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Metric Man View Post
I thought that was you Bob...and you didn't even wave as you went by!

I waved but you couldn't see through the tinted windows with the air conditioner frosting up the glass.
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Old 07-29-10, 05:26 PM   #9
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Have bicycled on our tandem in the area many times, but not in the middle of summer. Much nicer in May and early June and also Sept/Oct.
We used to carry a total of 22 lbs and a credit card for the 2-of-us on our tandem bike.
Must be prepared to fix your own bike as there are stretches of several hundred miles without any kind of bike shop/stores.
Remember when our chain got bent badly at the north rim of the Grand Canyon . . . took a while, but fixed it.
Have lived in southern AZ for 33 years and have commuted and ridden in many 100+ degree days. "Warmest' was 117.
Ridden from the south rim of the Grand Canyon to Nogales, Mexico 4 times on our tandem (500+ miles, 22,000' of climbing) and once on a single bike.
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