Right now I'm in the middle of final exams (which is a horrible, soul-killing trial) but the semester ends May 20th, and I'm leaving that night by AMTRAK to visit my sister in Port Angeles, then riding my bike back to Berkeley. I have limited time to do this tour, since I'll be starting an internship almost immediately after getting back, so I'm avoiding camping by staying in hostels or with friends (and covering a lot of ground each day). I'll be riding a 2006 Jamis Quest.
I haven't had much time to make preparations for the trip lately, and it's going to be a sprint all the way to the end. What should I be doing in these last couple weeks? And what will I forget to bring (I generally pack as light as possible - being comfortable in adverse weather conditions just isn't a priority, though being safe is)? I'm also an utterly incompetent bike mechanic. Fit, yes, but I don't trust myself to do anything other than fixing a flat.
Do I really need a triple chain ring? I'm a bit strapped for cash, and swapping it out would also mean a new bottom bracket, chain, and rear derailleur, running $217 just for parts. But on the other hand, it would probably resolve an issue I've had shifting onto the big chain ring (though that might just be a limit screw adjustment).
I happen to have tickets to see a great band in a great venue on June 1st in Berkeley...I could probably sell the tickets but part of me wants to stop in Eureka and take the AMTRAK back. Please rate this idea on a scale of (1-10) where '"1" indicates abject lameness and "10" is cool.
Thanks guys! I've been enjoying the forum posts.