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  1. #1
    Senior Member brewer45's Avatar
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    Grand Canyon Tour

    Stoker Malkin and I are planning a mini-tour to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. We'll drive to Jacob Lake and ride the Redster to the North Rim from there. It's about 45 miles and 1300 feet (up and down). We've been training for that distance and that elevation and are pretty excited about the trip. We're planning to pull a Croozer loaded with water, snacks, and the other stuff we need.

    The trip is planned for the last week in June. PM me for details if you're interested in going along.

    Also, what tools and parts should I remember to not forget? Anybody have the ultimate packing list?

    Cheers!
    2008 Red Co-Motion Speedster Co-pilot (Redster)
    2009 Surly LHT (captain's commuter)
    2009 Surly Crosscheck (stoker's road bike)
    2007 Giant FCR2W (stoker's commuter)
    1980's NOS Legnano (stoker's toy)
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  2. #2
    Tandem Vincitur Ritterview's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brewer45 View Post
    It's about 45 miles and 1300 feet (up and down).... We're planning to pull a Croozer loaded with water, snacks, and the other stuff we need.
    You are going to haul a 25 lb. trailer on a 45 mile ride? On my 72 mile ride with 4653 ft of climbing this morning my pack list consisted of a delicious home made meusli bar, some Endurolytes and HEED powder, all in one of my back pockets. I didn't really miss having a Croozer.


  3. #3
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Have ridden the exact trip 25-some years ago. BTW there is no lake at Jacobs Lake, had just cabins and a store/restaurant then.
    There's no a bike shop within 200+ miles, so bring your usual kit, including a second innertube and a folding tire.
    A great ride; elevation change is not drastic, but it is 1,000 ft higher elevation than the south rim. So if your lungs are not acclimated to 8,000+ ft that can be an issue.
    When we were there the cabins at the north rim were pricey and extremely small . . . but that's all they had then.
    There's not near the crowds or overlooks as at the south rim; Bright Angel Point gives you a 300degree view of the chasm. Well worth the short hike
    We did the ride on a Memorial Day weekend and took cold weather gear; turned out to be a beautiful 70 degrees with snow still in the shadows of the trees.
    Enjoy the ride TWOgether!
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  4. #4
    Senior Member brewer45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ritterview View Post
    You are going to haul a 25 lb. trailer on a 45 mile ride? On my 72 mile ride with 4653 ft of climbing this morning my pack list consisted of a delicious home made meusli bar, some Endurolytes and HEED powder, all in one of my back pockets. I didn't really miss having a Croozer.
    So what you're saying is that you are a stronger, fitter, more aggressive rider than me and my stoker. And that my question concerning our plans for a lovely tandeming day in the Kaibab forrest including photography gear, a change of clothes, food and water, and road repair tools and equipment does merit a simple and direct answer.

    hmmm....

    Things seem to have changed around here.

    Cheers!
    2008 Red Co-Motion Speedster Co-pilot (Redster)
    2009 Surly LHT (captain's commuter)
    2009 Surly Crosscheck (stoker's road bike)
    2007 Giant FCR2W (stoker's commuter)
    1980's NOS Legnano (stoker's toy)
    1970's Stella rebuilt as fixed-gear (captain's toy)

  5. #5
    Senior Member brewer45's Avatar
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    Hey Rudy!

    We'll turn a few pedalstrokes in your honor.
    We do most of our riding at about 5,000 ft. and are sure to find the air at 8,000 a bit thin. We aren't working to set any speed records, though, and have all day to do the 45 miles.
    What I'm really wondering is about chains and cables. How do you prepare for losing either the timing or drive chain? Do you carry extra chains or just links? Do I need a backup pair of brake pads? That sort of thing.

    It's also completely possible that I'm simply worrying too much about this rather simple/short ride.

    Cheers!
    2008 Red Co-Motion Speedster Co-pilot (Redster)
    2009 Surly LHT (captain's commuter)
    2009 Surly Crosscheck (stoker's road bike)
    2007 Giant FCR2W (stoker's commuter)
    1980's NOS Legnano (stoker's toy)
    1970's Stella rebuilt as fixed-gear (captain's toy)

  6. #6
    Live Everyday
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    Regarding chain issues...We always carry a spare link that fits both chains in our seat bag with the usual stuff (tubes, muti tool, patches etc) ....with your near new '08 Co-Mo, 'that I trust you've cared for well, you should be fine on the mechanical side unless you just have some horrible bad luck.
    Since you already ride at 5000K feet I don't need to remind you that most importantly, keep your hydration and pre-hydration at the top of your planing list. Also, we've froze and we have been roasted in June in the Arizona high country so be ready for either .... you just never can be sure ....
    sounds like a pretty cool ride... have fun!

    Bill J.

  7. #7
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brewer45 View Post
    Hey Rudy!

    What I'm really wondering is about chains and cables. How do you prepare for losing either the timing or drive chain? Do you carry extra chains or just links? Do I need a backup pair of brake pads? That sort of thing.

    It's also completely possible that I'm simply worrying too much about this rather simple/short ride.

    Cheers!
    everybody has their own comfort level, and some people are more risk adverse than others, but personally I wouldn't be that concerned about things. I would carry a couple of spare links, and pins, and a minitool with a chain tool.

    I would not worry about spare cables, particularly on a new bike. When was the last time you broke one? And in the vanishingly unlikely event you did break one, you'd still be able to finish the ride, albeit with some limitations.

    As for brake pads, no way a couple of thousand vertical feet burn up regular (i.e. not cork for crabon tubular) pads. Just make sure the pads aren't excessively worn.


    As for pulling a trailer, again, to each his own, but it may that you could go a bit lighter, and have a more pleasant ride. 4 waterbottles on the bike, a few items stuffed in jersey pockets, and a seatpost mounted rack/bag combo, or other bag or bags can carry a lot of stuff, and may make for a more enjoyable day ride.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  8. #8
    Tandem Mountain Climber
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    There's nothing wrong with hauling a trailer... It's probably better than putting a stuffed backpack on your back for 3-4 hours, that's for sure.

    What if they want to go on a hike and take pictures, etc... They said they were bringing a change of clothes, camera gear etc... You can't stuff that stuff in your jersey pockets!

    With that said, I would probably just use a rear rack and 2 panniers, for such a short trip (not an extended tour, or camping, etc..)

    We go grocery shopping with just two panniers and can fit A LOT in there.

  9. #9
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    OK, do a few pedal strokes for us up there!
    As suggested mini chaintool and couple of extra links could be useful.
    When we did it we had neither links or chain tool. Did manage to have the drive chain screw up and had to sit by the roadside using a small screwdriver to loosen up a couple tight links. But we had a great trip.
    Don't over-worry and don't over-pack; and yes weather can change fast/drastically in the high country. If you don't want to carry rain gear (it does happen) take a couple big garbage bags. Cut hole for head and arms and you've got instant rain gear . . . been there, done that.
    Am sure you'll enjoy the ride TWOgether
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  10. #10
    DoubleTrouble cgallagh's Avatar
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    Sounds like a really fun trip and hope you enjoy it. As for pulling 45 lbs around, I have read you ride posts and seems you and Malkin are quite capable. I have pulled the dogs around in their trailer over about the same distance. The total for them is pretty close and the climbing was around 4K. I was at lower elevation. As for chains, I always pack a bit of spare links and pins plus a chain tool and a leatherman multi tool. Never now when you may need a roadside repair.

    Enjoy the trip and post pics. Pics or it didn't happen.
    Two blondes walked into a building-You think one of them would have seen it.
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  11. #11
    Tandem Vincitur Ritterview's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brewer45 View Post
    So what you're saying is that you are a stronger, fitter, more aggressive rider than me and my stoker.
    No, the supplies needed by a cyclist relates more to time spent in the field than it does to miles traveled. Time-wise, my 70 miles (4 hours) and your 45 miles is probably roughly equivalent.


    Quote Originally Posted by brewer45 View Post
    And that my question concerning our plans for a lovely tandeming day in the Kaibab forest including photography gear, a change of clothes, food and water, and road repair tools and equipment does merit a simple and direct answer.

    hmmm....

    Things seem to have changed around here.

    Cheers!
    I'm all in favor of you and your lovely stoker having a terrific time at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. My advice to further that goal is to redirect your thoughts towards how little you can bring, not how much. If your team is fledgling, then it is likely that your power output is relatively scant. Better to lighten your load, as those watts you have should be directed to forward movement, rather than overcoming the weight, wind resistance and friction of a load such as represented by a trailer.

    You didn't mention photography gear in the OP. The photography gear for most cyclists consists of a compact digital camera, like my trusty 145 gm Nikon Coolpix, that fits in your back pocket. If you are bringing along an SLR camera with zoom lens, etc, it really isn't a bike ride any more, but a photographic trip.

    Water is handled by the bottles in your water bottle cages. You'll want to find out where there is water available on the road. If there is some distance, here's a tip. The usual water bottle holds 750 ml. At your local convenience store you'll find Smartwater, which is sold in 1 liter bottles that fit perfectly in a water bottle cage. On top of these you can screw a Platypus Push-Pull cap. While you are getting the Platypus cap, get a Platypus bottle as well, as you can fill these and carry them in your back pocket for extra water capacity, but they fold up tiny and weigh next to nothing when you are done. So too can you use a dry Platypus bottle to carry electrolyte solution such as Heed at first, and then for extra water capacity as needed.




    A change of clothes is not generally needed on a cycling trip.

    You'll want to scout ahead by finding your ride on MotionBased. I think you are doing this ride. Note how long it took this cyclist who averaged 13 mph. Note as well that the elevation gain, which was 2700 ft, not 1300, and the rider remarked about the stiff wind. Click on the Google Earth link at that ride summary, and you'll see the ride as only Google Earth can show it to you. You'll also find that you are not in a howling wilderness, but 6 miles in there is a Food Mart, and there are amenities at the North Rim as well. So, you can provision yourself along the way, burdened only with your credit card.



    So, if you are used to finding genuinely useful information here at the Tandem sub-forum, I'll hope you agree that things haven't changed so much. And please do not bring that trailer.

  12. #12
    BWF
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    I think you're going to have a great time. One can never spend too much time at the canyon. Just be mindful of weather. It is likely to be hot, but summer monsoons have been arriving earlier and earlier each year. They cool temps down quick but only last for a short time. No need to carry so much gear unless you're just wanting the extra assurance. Park and forest rangers are in high quantity in case you do need help. I hope you have a nice ride!

  13. #13
    Senior Member brewer45's Avatar
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    Thanks to all for the suggestions and information. Stoker Malkin and I will find a way to make good time on our trip. We will post pictures!

    Cheers!
    2008 Red Co-Motion Speedster Co-pilot (Redster)
    2009 Surly LHT (captain's commuter)
    2009 Surly Crosscheck (stoker's road bike)
    2007 Giant FCR2W (stoker's commuter)
    1980's NOS Legnano (stoker's toy)
    1970's Stella rebuilt as fixed-gear (captain's toy)

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