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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 08-16-13, 09:00 AM   #51
Machka 
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Well, between mid-June and mid-October 2012, Rowan and I spent 3 weeks in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan (Hokkaido), and 3 months in Europe ... all without a car.
http://www.machka.net/RTW_2012/RTW_2012.htm

We did acquire vehicles for the remainder of that trip (Canada, US, Western Australia).


We haven't done too much travel since we returned to Victoria in early February 2013, but we continued to cycle here, there, and everywhere through the summer and autumn (evenings, weekend, hub-and-spoke tours), and are looking forward to getting back into that sort of thing come spring.

Now last weekend, we did a little touristy adventure. We drove our van to the closest city train station, parked it there, and took the train into Melbourne. Then we spent the afternoon touring Melbourne by tour bus and tram. The cycling bit was stopping off at our favourite cycling shop.

If you were "car-free", Melbourne would be fairly easy to get around by train and/or bicycle. And like many bigger cities, it has guided tours (tour buses (hop-on, hop-off), trams, boats on the river, walking tours etc.). Or perhaps you might prefer to cycle the 100+ km of cycling trails (which we've also done).
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Old 08-17-13, 09:33 AM   #52
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hey all,

just thought i'd update you guys on our bike vacation if you haven't been following us in the tandem forum. our touring trip from the SF bay area to Disneyland went off without a hitch. We had tons of fun and my wife (who's not a big cyclist) and my 8yo did great. I was really proud of them. We made it there on time and in once piece, i couldn't have asked for anything more.

i posted the pics and blog post up for our trip. it's a bit of a read, but we really wanted to remember the trip so we got pretty detailed with our post. Some post are by me, others by my wife. it all starts here....

http://planetpayne.com/blog/2012/10/...to-santa-cruz/

if you don't want to read all our blabberings you can go straight to the pics here...

http://planetpayne.com/blog/other-tr...to_Disneyland/

cheers
droo
Awesome vacation tour! Thanks for posting a blog. It provides moral support against those who would accuse me of child abuse for taking my 9-year old on 40-mile days. Well, maybe "child abuse accusations" is a bit of an exaggeration but I do get tired of those shocked reactions as if there's something wrong with taking a kid on a bike ride for more than an hour and actually working toward a destination. Great job and great bike!
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Old 08-17-13, 09:40 AM   #53
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We will be car free and downtown in several cities on our upcoming trip. I think we will be using mostly mass transit but I'll campaign for bike share whenever possible. I'd like to ride a bike-share bike up each of the seven hills of Rome.
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Old 08-17-13, 10:35 AM   #54
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We will be car free and downtown in several cities on our upcoming trip. I think we will be using mostly mass transit but I'll campaign for bike share whenever possible. I'd like to ride a bike-share bike up each of the seven hills of Rome.
I've been to Rome and a few other Italian cities before. I remember the subway/metro being
cheap and convenient way to get around. There were no bikeshares available when I visited.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3kIsFD0an0
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Old 08-17-13, 11:16 PM   #55
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Yup, staycation all the way; my sister started getting on to me last year about the fact that I haven't taken a "real" vacation since '96, when I went to FL for my 2nd daughter's HS graduation. I started looking into things. . . a buddy wanted to do a few days on the Maah Daah Hey, but that would have been a $300, 18-hour bus ride, followed by 6-7 hours in a car, for what would have been just *2* days of riding. Didn't happen. So I started looking at solo getaways.

Most promising is Mackinac Island; if I can work out the logistics (rent a car, drive up, take the ferry to the island, hotel it with my bike and just explore the island, rent a car back home), I may be able to make it happen next year. Kids will be disappointed, though; Sis is pretty much DEMANDING I be "good to myself" for once.

Dollars and timing will determine that for the kids; I WOULD like them to see places like this.
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Old 08-19-13, 01:55 AM   #56
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Awesome vacation tour! Thanks for posting a blog. It provides moral support against those who would accuse me of child abuse for taking my 9-year old on 40-mile days. Well, maybe "child abuse accusations" is a bit of an exaggeration but I do get tired of those shocked reactions as if there's something wrong with taking a kid on a bike ride for more than an hour and actually working toward a destination. Great job and great bike!
thanks man! i have to say some of my fondest memories of the trip was the look on people faces when my daughter told them where we were going or where we had started. bike touring with a kid on a tandem definitely has its challenges but as long as you don't try to kill it with 60-100 mile days it's totally doable and you can really go anywhere. in some ways doing our tour in Oct was nice because it set a pre-determined limit on how far we could go in one day since it would get dark around 6:30/7....but then it meant getting up early which my family is not used to doing

my daughter rarely admits to enjoying that bike ride but we recently took a garden tour by bike with our tandem and they started the ride off asking everyone's name and favorite bike memory. she told them all of our ride to disneyland and you could see a little pride showing through

the only downside is now she complains about any seat that isn't a brooks!
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Old 08-19-13, 03:41 AM   #57
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thanks man! i have to say some of my fondest memories of the trip was the look on people faces when my daughter told them where we were going or where we had started. bike touring with a kid on a tandem definitely has its challenges but as long as you don't try to kill it with 60-100 mile days it's totally doable and you can really go anywhere. in some ways doing our tour in Oct was nice because it set a pre-determined limit on how far we could go in one day since it would get dark around 6:30/7....but then it meant getting up early which my family is not used to doing

my daughter rarely admits to enjoying that bike ride but we recently took a garden tour by bike with our tandem and they started the ride off asking everyone's name and favorite bike memory. she told them all of our ride to disneyland and you could see a little pride showing through

the only downside is now she complains about any seat that isn't a brooks!
Many of my worst memories of childhood are of spending excessive amounts of time in the car. I find it ironic that I transport my child now by bike and he gets bored on the bike. I've sort of realized, though, that it's just that kids get bored being on the road for a while, whether its in a car or on a bike. It's just something they have to go through to develop traveling endurance and at least with the bike they're getting exercise and fresh air. Nowadays with all the media distractions available for in the car, the patience/endurance-training of travel might be suffering somewhat. Convenient that you were able to rig up some kind of media for yours on the bike. It seems like a bit of a trade off in that she loses the opportunity to train her endurance and learn to find interesting things to look at on the 'boring' road, but on the other hand it probably makes it a lot easier to bike a lot more without mutiny on the bounty, so to speak.

The pride/joy of accomplishment is there in retrospect, I think. With mine, he'll whine about all sorts of things when I'm planning them but at some point you can tell that he thinks it's cool that he's doing something challenging and exceptional. People will ask him how he likes sitting on the bike for so long and he'll say it feels like 30 minutes to him. It seems like he might be lying but I actually think the way the ride gets broken up by variations in the route, taking breaks, talking, playing games, etc. it ends up seeming like its shorter than it actually was. I also think the exercise aspect of it makes it feel shorter than sitting in a car. Even in a shorter car ride, being cooped up has the effect of overloading the nervous system with energy. When that energy is getting used on the bike, it has a calming effect. Stir-craziness makes shorter periods of time feel much longer, I think.

I've done 50+ mile days with mine though I think you're right that 60 is the point of pushing it. Really it depends on the scenery and how he feels at breaks, though. We stopped for ice cream after 30 miles the other day and by the end of the ice cream he was ready for another 10-15. Then, after staring at an uninteresting 4-lane road for 8 miles he got grumpy again but once I convinced him that at the end of that road there would a town, it motivated him to keep pedaling. Allowing a session of knock knock jokes was a big sacrifice on my part but it re-invigorated him to tell them
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Old 08-19-13, 10:16 AM   #58
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Convenient that you were able to rig up some kind of media for yours on the bike. It seems like a bit of a trade off in that she loses the opportunity to train her endurance and learn to find interesting things to look at on the 'boring' road, but on the other hand it probably makes it a lot easier to bike a lot more without mutiny on the bounty, so to speak.
yeah the headphones & audiobook were a last resort and thankfully we only used them as such and she only used them one day. i made the mistake of telling her we might stop in one town (cambria) or go onto the next town (morro bay). so once we got to cambria she was all ready to check out for the day and got fussy when we decided to push on. in retrospect if i had never mentioned we might stop there she would have never fussed about not doing so and there wouldn't have been any issue.

we did play lots of word games though which helped a lot. we'd play the name game where you'd say the name of someone famous, real or fictional (plus family members when playing with kids) and the next person would say someone else who's first name starts with the first letter of the last name of the person you said. then we'd play the alphabet game where we'd think up different themes, like movies, tv shows, things we've seen on our trip, things/people from Harry Potter etc, where you go down the alphabet listing things that start with A, B, C, etc. They are good games that keep everyone engaged and even i enjoy playing them as they definitely help time go by faster. we still play them on any ride longer than a few miles and it's also our go-to for keeping her from getting bored on hikes. they sound silly but they are fun to play, granted they are a little more fun with three people you can play with two no problem.

the only hard part now is finding another bike vacation that ends somewhere as fun as disneyland
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Old 08-19-13, 04:24 PM   #59
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yeah the headphones & audiobook were a last resort and thankfully we only used them as such and she only used them one day. i made the mistake of telling her we might stop in one town (cambria) or go onto the next town (morro bay). so once we got to cambria she was all ready to check out for the day and got fussy when we decided to push on. in retrospect if i had never mentioned we might stop there she would have never fussed about not doing so and there wouldn't have been any issue.

we did play lots of word games though which helped a lot. we'd play the name game where you'd say the name of someone famous, real or fictional (plus family members when playing with kids) and the next person would say someone else who's first name starts with the first letter of the last name of the person you said. then we'd play the alphabet game where we'd think up different themes, like movies, tv shows, things we've seen on our trip, things/people from Harry Potter etc, where you go down the alphabet listing things that start with A, B, C, etc. They are good games that keep everyone engaged and even i enjoy playing them as they definitely help time go by faster. we still play them on any ride longer than a few miles and it's also our go-to for keeping her from getting bored on hikes. they sound silly but they are fun to play, granted they are a little more fun with three people you can play with two no problem.

the only hard part now is finding another bike vacation that ends somewhere as fun as disneyland
Those are good game ideas. Another good game is if you know the terrain, you can make it into a video game. I divided our latest trip into "levels," with rewards at the end of each level and bonus points for making it to the tops of hills and bonus points when you reach the bicycle symbols of the bike lane. We also made "double-speed stars a la Super Mario" appear at the tops of hills and the object was to keep the speed of the downhill momentum up for as long as possible. You could probably get a lot more elaborate. I've found destinations involving swimming to be motivating but it's true that Disneyland is hard to top in a child's mind.
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Old 01-24-14, 07:37 PM   #60
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We're planning a weekend in the middle of February. We'll drive to a town on the other side of the State, park the van, and do a bit of a hub-and-spoke style tour. But why that particular town ... well, they're putting on a big cycling related event to celebrate Ordinaries!! Who knows, I might come home with one.
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Old 01-25-14, 07:02 AM   #61
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The first week of November (2012), my wife and I rode from Fort Smith (AR) to North Little Rock. This last November (2013), we had a friend dump us at Greenwood (LA) and rode home to Arlington (TX). Ok, we cheated and "hotel camped" each time. In Texas, there just are not enough places to camp and we have never stealth camped.
Planning to do Vicksburg (MS) to Marshall (TX) next year. The current goal is to bicycle US80 from Vicksburg to Fort Worth in segments.
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Old 01-25-14, 07:11 AM   #62
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Ok, we cheated and "hotel camped" each time.
That's not cheating at all ... perfectly valid way to travel.
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