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Old 03-02-05, 01:28 PM   #1
amahana1
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How far is too far?

I am going with some family members on vacation this summer and I want to ride my bike down and meet them. Its about a 200 mile ride over various terrain, some very big climbs and some very long decents in the middle of the utah/arizona desert. I have two days to acomplish this ride. Will I be pushing it? I have done many tours that were longer and more extensive but never tried to do that much in a two day period. This wont be a loaded tour by any means. No trailer or panniers just what I need to carry for water because I will be eating on the way and sleeping in a motel for the one night I will be on the road. Anyone do this kind of mileage is this short of time and in similar conditions? Any experience or advice is greatly appreciated!!!!.
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Old 03-02-05, 01:30 PM   #2
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i say go for it!
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Old 03-02-05, 03:04 PM   #3
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I'd say go for it and maybe have one of those family members ready to pick you up in the event that something goes wrong. Hows the cell phone coverage in the middle of those deserts? A double century over steep, dry terrain will be quite a challenge.

Maybe start hill training now?
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Old 03-02-05, 03:13 PM   #4
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I concur. Go for it! And have a great time!

Sounds like a great ride, too. Make sure you're in shape for the back-to-back centuries though, otherwise you'll be sleeping all through that family gathering--or is that the idea? The good thing about big trips like that is that you get to eat like a cow en route.

Don't forget your camelback.
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Old 03-02-05, 03:28 PM   #5
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You didn't say from where to where or when during the summer.
There aren't too many possibilities given that there is an awfully big hole in northern Arizona. US 89 has fairly heavy traffic - plus when they want to add a passing lane, the shoulders disappear. Also, prevailing winds are FROM the south so if you plan on going from Utah to Arizona you will most likely be dealing with headwinds - - get an early start each day. Double plus - the later you go into the summer, the greater the chances for afternoon thunderstorms. Just a heads-up. But 100 miles per day without any gear is very doable.

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Old 03-02-05, 09:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amahana1
I am going with some family members on vacation this summer and I want to ride my bike down and meet them. Its about a 200 mile ride over various terrain, some very big climbs and some very long decents in the middle of the utah/arizona desert. I have two days to acomplish this ride. Will I be pushing it? I have done many tours that were longer and more extensive but never tried to do that much in a two day period. This wont be a loaded tour by any means. No trailer or panniers just what I need to carry for water because I will be eating on the way and sleeping in a motel for the one night I will be on the road. Anyone do this kind of mileage is this short of time and in similar conditions? Any experience or advice is greatly appreciated!!!!.
Back to back centuries like that are definitely do-able ... I try to do a few each summer as a part of my training.

If you ride at a fairly relaxed pace, stopping for lunch, etc., you should be able to do each in about 8-9 hours each day.

Check out my site for century riding tips:
http://www.machka.net/
http://www.machka.net/century.htm

And check out the UltraCycling site for even more info:
http://www.ultracycling.com/
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Old 03-03-05, 02:16 AM   #7
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If you're in the desert, consider doing as much of the ride as possible at night.
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Old 03-03-05, 08:50 AM   #8
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You certainly wouldn't be the first--but as Chris L. suggests the desert can get incredibly hot in the summer, so be careful. Some very fit athletes have croaked from heat stroke in the middle of practices or events. Personally, I wouldn't do it--not at that time of year, but that's just me. You might love it.
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Old 03-03-05, 08:53 AM   #9
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200 miles.....wow. I also say go for it. But yea, might want to take some precautions just in case something does go wrong on the way. But heck yea....go for it.
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Old 03-03-05, 10:46 AM   #10
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I think I will go ahead and plan it and go for it. I will for sure take some really careful precautions. Ya for sure I will be doing the hardest riding in the very early hours of the moring and again in the evening.
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Old 03-03-05, 11:26 AM   #11
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Also make a note that if you do travel at night almost every store on the Arizona strip (section of Arizona between the Grand Canyon and Utah) and southern Utah will be closed. There is usually a store in Kanab open (Panguitch as a 24 hr store too if you are coming that way), but last time I was through Fredonia in the wee hours of the morning I don't remember seeing anything open. The store at Jacob's lake is not 24 hrs. If you are going through Page, Az I have gotten caught with no stores open there (was out of gas, luckily I made it to Cameron, thank goodness for a car that doesn't get too thirsty) Make sure you are very sure of how much water you use at the temperatures you will be riding in. Also remember to factor in how much the heat will slow you down in your water calculations. Spare parts would also be critical too as you will be a long ways from the nearest bicycle shop at times.
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Old 03-03-05, 11:44 PM   #12
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I agree with having people on call in case something happens. But, come on! If you leave at 7 am, bike 10 hours at ten mph avg, with an hour for lunch, and two half hour breaks, that's still only a 12 hour day. You can do it, Skywalker! Your legs might be saying "hello" at the end of two days, but you can do it!
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Old 03-03-05, 11:46 PM   #13
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And I meant 7 pm! Bike at night!
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Old 03-08-05, 12:05 PM   #14
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I agree, Go for it. Will it be easy? NO! Will it be a challenge? I hope so! (otherwise everyone would be doing it).

Last summer my daughter and I did basically what you did, maybe with less climbing, on a tandem. We did 120 miles on day 1 and 85 on day 2. We really pushed ourselves to do that extra on day one. We wanted to stop at the midpoint but were really glad on day two we only had 85 left to go. My advise is to do 60-65 % of your total mileage on day one if you can.

Our fitness level was good, but not great. We had probably about 700 - 800 total miles prior to departure and had about 4 or 5 rides of around 60 miles each. We could have been better prepared, but managed it just the same. Go for it and enjoy!
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