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  1. #1
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Blue Ridge Parkway...end to end

    Hi all. New to this forum. A few weeks ago I biked the Blue Ridge Parkway over six days of riding. I logged 485 miles and over 49,000 feet of climbing. I created a blog with lots of pics and whatnot, and thought you might like to check it out. Agreat ride if anyone is looking for a new bike trip destination. Autumn should be beautiful out there.

    Cheers,


    www.crazyguyonabike.com/journal/gerald

  2. #2
    A Little Bent Hammertoe's Avatar
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    Great story, great pics, great ride. Thanks for sharing an epic journey. I need to work on my recovery some more before I could attempt back to back to back.....rides.

  3. #3
    train safe buelito's Avatar
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    I skimmed the introduction and the pictures- Looks like you had a great trip! congratulations! I had a friend do the same route (but I think he went South to north, solo, with a credit card). Somehow I don't think he enjoyed it as much as you did

    train safe-

  4. #4
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    thank you. it was a great trip, but I do feel like I was credit card touring as well, only with support. My companions made it much more enjoyable than it would have been solo, for sure.

  5. #5
    Used to be a climber.. GuitarWizard's Avatar
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    Damn....I just went through all 10 pages of pics - that was some good stuff. Don't worry about the whole "credit card touring" bit....you climbed nearly 50,000 feet in under 500 miles.

    My dad and I did a motorcycle trip of the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway back when I was in 7th grade....that was an awesome trip. Would love to go down there again someday....
    1999 Trek 2500 - hit by a car on it in May, 2011 and currently bikeless

  6. #6
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarWizard
    Damn....I just went through all 10 pages of pics - that was some good stuff. Don't worry about the whole "credit card touring" bit....you climbed nearly 50,000 feet in under 500 miles.

    My dad and I did a motorcycle trip of the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway back when I was in 7th grade....that was an awesome trip. Would love to go down there again someday....

    Man...sounds like an AWESOME trip in the 7th grade. Did you burn your calf on a hot muffler at any point? Just one of those little things you never forget. Reminds me of biking from New Orleans to Pass Christian with my Dad, brother and a few friends when I was in about the 5th grade.

    Anyway...I don't feel so bad about the credit card thing, being over 40...in fact, copy and paste this search term in Google (the hyphen apparently is important) and see what the number one hit is... "forty-one year old hottie"

    Apparently the first time those words were written on the internet...
    Last edited by orcanova; 09-08-06 at 03:56 PM.

  7. #7
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    spectacular ride, beautiful pictures, wonderful family, what a great narrative, felt like I was on the ride too!!!

  8. #8
    hell's angels h/q e3st ny brunop's Avatar
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    great!!!
    ". . .a striped jersey under his jacket; bared calves (outside the bicycle track); cap pushed back; feet in a false position on the pedals; a barking horn, a disorderly appearance, an always-dry tongue, and a definite fondness for wine merchants. . ."

  9. #9
    Used to be a climber.. GuitarWizard's Avatar
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    BTW, your site has inspired me to perhaps someday try this....although I don't know if my girlfriend would be as willing a DS as your wife was. I'm quite sure I'd have to put up with some regular *****ing, if I could actually talk her into doing it in the first place.
    1999 Trek 2500 - hit by a car on it in May, 2011 and currently bikeless

  10. #10
    Senior Member balto charlie's Avatar
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    Looks like a great ride. Wonderful pictures. I have been wondering about camp touring this road in the fall. probably not this fall. The hills look like they were brutal. Charlie

  11. #11
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Guitar Wizard...panniers on an MTB wold be an option if you don't have a willing support vehicle. My wife was in no way interested in doing it...hell...my parents who are retired weren't even interested.

    balto charlie...I wouldn't call the climbs killer...the grades weren't all that bad...they just went on forever. Its definitely the kind of trip where you have to be comfortable climbing all day at a slow speed...which I kind of dig...

    It would be an awesome trip to camp tour in the autumn...for sure...

  12. #12
    Used to be a climber.. GuitarWizard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by orcanova
    Guitar Wizard...panniers on an MTB wold be an option if you don't have a willing support vehicle. My wife was in no way interested in doing it...hell...my parents who are retired weren't even interested.
    Well....chances are, if I wanted to do it bad enough, she'd end up doing it.....but it would probably require someone else to go along with her to keep her company and go sightseeing.

    That amount of climbing/mileage in a week is still a few years out for me to build that sort of base so that I don't die. Well, not so much the mileage....but moreso the climbing.
    1999 Trek 2500 - hit by a car on it in May, 2011 and currently bikeless

  13. #13
    Senior Member Rob944's Avatar
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    I enjoyed your story and the excellent photos. I would love to do something like that someday. What saddles did you use on the trip?

  14. #14
    Senior Member balto charlie's Avatar
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    Hey all: I was just checking out this ride I found this site. There are 3 pages, I think page 2 has the needed info. If time allows check it out. Then let us know what you think about this guys comparison of flat road vs hills of BRP. If his numbers are correct then orcanova did 150 (flatland) miles per day for 6 days....impressive. charlie
    http://www.nukefix.org/parkway/

  15. #15
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob944
    I enjoyed your story and the excellent photos. I would love to do something like that someday. What saddles did you use on the trip?
    I used three Specialized saddles and a Sella Filght Italia gel. THe Specialized saddles are the Alias, the Avatar and the Toupe. I started the trip with the Alias. I developed some saddle soreness I think due to a pair of shorts that had some fraying in the seams of the chamois, not the saddle. But once I was dealing with the chafing and whatnot, I coudn't find the right saddle or position. I tried the toupe which I had with me and it was too thin for all day riding. I tried the Selle Flight Italia gel but i missed the anotomical cutout. Ten I bought the Avatar, which was like the Alias but more forgiving with chrome-molly rails and a bit more gel. Wound up sticking with that one.
    Last edited by orcanova; 09-08-06 at 04:16 PM.

  16. #16
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by balto charlie
    Hey all: I was just checking out this ride I found this site. There are 3 pages, I think page 2 has the needed info. If time allows check it out. Then let us know what you think about this guys comparison of flat road vs hills of BRP. If his numbers are correct then orcanova did 150 (flatland) miles per day for 6 days....impressive. charlie
    http://www.nukefix.org/parkway/
    I had seen his site and it has a lot of interesting info. I have no idea about caparisons between flat miles and climbing miles. They are kind of two different animals. Climbing, you just get into a groove that works for you, and you stick with it all day. The speed doesn't vary much on the climbs becasue the climbs tend to maintain a consistent grade, although each climb has its own unique grade.

    On a day ride around the DC area, on flat to rolling terrain, my HR is usually around 160 bpm. On this Blue Ridge trip, it was around 145 bpm on the climbs. So even though it was longer distance and theoretically tougher terrain, I was working at a lower intensity than I normally do. This is probably because I was conserving enegy somewhat, but also because the climbs make you go slow...

  17. #17
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarWizard
    Well....chances are, if I wanted to do it bad enough, she'd end up doing it.....but it would probably require someone else to go along with her to keep her company and go sightseeing.

    That amount of climbing/mileage in a week is still a few years out for me to build that sort of base so that I don't die. Well, not so much the mileage....but moreso the climbing.

    Well there's two ways to approach it:

    1. Train your tail off to get into peak shape and do the ride.

    2. Use the trip as your training camp to get yourself into good cycling condition.

    The second option was my approach this year, and it makes the demands on yourself a lot less daunting. If you pick a moderate pace you can handle, then you can ride all day. IT's that simple.

  18. #18
    Senior Member bike4life's Avatar
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    Excellent! I am so very, very jealous! What have I been waiting for?!? You have inspired me to plan a week long trip next summer with my two teenage sons. Thanks for posting this, you made my day!

  19. #19
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    I've ridden the length of the BRP a couple of times, last time including much of the Skyline Drive also. Each time we've used a sag wagon, which makes the trip quite luxurious. Both times we had four riders and would switch out drivers each half day. So it worked out that we would ride a day then on the next day drive half the day. Of course you could drive ahead and ride back to the group or do whatever during that time. I'm not the type that has to ride every single mile to feel like I've completed the ride. It is almost 600 miles in all after all.

    If you have the time, the second and third week of September is the best time to go, IMO. It is usually dry, with cool mornings and warm afternoons. Traffic is less due to school having started and the Fall leaf peeping season yet to come.

    It's a great ride no matter how you do it or when you go and each season has something to offer.

  20. #20
    Senior Member orcanova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bike4life
    Excellent! I am so very, very jealous! What have I been waiting for?!? You have inspired me to plan a week long trip next summer with my two teenage sons. Thanks for posting this, you made my day!

    Your welcome! That is an awesome thing to do with your kids. They will never forget it...

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