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esnikna 02-15-11 10:29 AM

Want To Bike 1000+ Miles Over 11-Days?
So it began as a, “I really want to ride to Florida on my bike for my 50th birthday.” Riding from Pennsylvania to Florida has always been on my bucket list. Though RAAM seemed kind of fun and crazy, with reality check, Florida looked a bit more logical. Afterall, looking at a map ... it's all downhill (right?). ;)

I know I am 10-years past “mid-life” crisis, but that’s if you only live to be 80. Let’s work on the assumption I am shooting to have my birthday someday announced by Willard Scott’s successor. In that case, “50” IS mid-life!

Doing one of these ‘riding many miles’ things isn’t really a new concept. Phil Keoghan rode from LA to NYC in 2009. It was after having joined his group for about 25-miles of the Phila to NYC leg that my wheels started spinning.

Now mind you, I should have begun the planning back when my brain started to spin, but I didn’t. I started in September of 2010 with a goal of an April 2011 ride. Though I knew the planning wouldn’t be “cake” … I didn’t think it’d be “fruit cake”.

My first ride concept was a bit simpler “logistically”. Me, bike, lightweight backpack with essentials and the open road. Hey … when I was in my twenties, it worked out when I was stationed as a paratrooper in Northern Italy and touring on bike during a weeks R&R. So what's the big deal?

Flash forward 20+ years with a (lovely) wife and kids, “No… you’re not riding alone.” So the gears started turning again. Ok, more effort, more planning, a support vehicle. Let’s turn this personal challenge into a fundraising endeavor.

What began as a 'solo ride desire' to Florida is, simply based on need, growing to a four cyclist ride from Pennsylvania to Florida to raise money for a children's home in Mexico.

Aside from the struggles and challenges of finding interested supporters and sponsors, I am finding it somewhat challenging to find “like minded” individuals who'd like to bike to Florida. Are you that "like minded" person?

I am seeking a few more riders who, not unlike me, may share a similar desire to step outside of the box and do something a bit different—on a bike.

WHAT: Approximately 1150-miles over an 11-day period. Each day is a ‘century-plus’ ride, with evenings at hotels/motels

WHERE: Depart Bucks Co., PA – Arrive (outside) Orlando, FL

WHEN: Was April … but now looking at May/June

WHY: Raising money for ‘Casa Hogar’ – a children’s home in Mexico

I’ve been working on the mapping for the ride. I have a broad route, but have been working on each days leg. Up to #6 so far. Are they proven routes? No, not exactly. But, using various online mapping programs I believe I am working it out.

There will be a support vehicle (donated) for spare bike(s), equipment, luggage, water, food, etc. It’ll also server as our return vehicle to PA.

At this point the ride is self-funded by those who ride, splitting certain things 4 ways. I am still working on gaining support and sponsors who’ll hopefully assist with offsetting certain needs. Participating riders would need to help me get the word out there, assisting in the ultimate goal—raising money for the children’s home. Will conduct local training rides before the ride.

So … curious … interested? Wondering about the 'how much' ... I have some budget estimate. Please contact me if you are serious.

gavtatu 03-20-11 03:42 PM

nice ride !
i like the thought of doing multiple 100 mile rides, i did 120 mile in one day a few years back, on my recumbent, and felt really good at the end.
and this year, i wanna ride 110 miles on the saturday, look around on the sunday, then 110 mile back on the monday !
so good luck to ya, hope it all goes well !

esnikna 03-21-11 06:53 AM

Thank you.

I was hoping to have some more interest from like minded individuals wanting to ride a 1,000+ miles over 11-days, but sadly not. Looks like it will be just Me, bike, lightweight backpack with essentials and the open road. Needless to say ... my wife doesn't like that plan at all.

I won't say that I don't have some reservations about an 11-day, Century-Plus per day, ride ... I do. But I think (hope) that mental weight will pass after finishing day one, getting some decent rest, and after the initial AM spinning on Day #2.

In addition to a personal desire and goal of riding 1150-miles ... I am also working to raise money for a Childrens Home in Mexico.

If anyone wants to join me on the ride ... please email me.
If you'd like to offer support ... please email me.
If you have any input ... please email.

Regarding your back to back Century ride. I think Nike says it best, "Just Do It". Do enjoy your 110 mile out ... then 110 miles back.

Thanks so much!

10 Wheels 03-21-11 08:58 AM

That is too many miles for most riders.
70 miles a day is more realistic.

esnikna 03-28-11 05:56 AM

"That is too many miles for most riders. 70 miles a day is more realistic."

Agreed, when I thought about and started planning this ride from PA to FL, I wasn't thinking of the masses and "most riders". Not that I am comparing my ride to RAAM ... RAAM isn't for "most riders" either. It's for a select few who have a desire to push their limit and do something completely outside of the envelope.

I am hoping to find 'one or a few' who wish to pedal outside that proverbial envelope.

vanvanj 04-05-11 09:30 AM

My friend and I are riding from Princeton, NJ to Florida after we graduate college May 19ish to whenever we get down there, crossing it off our bucket lists as well! Do you have a route made up yet?

esnikna 04-11-11 06:14 AM

@vanvanj - Yes, I have planned a route (as it were) ... although not 'proven’. Not sure if you guys are doing panniers/camping or hotels? At 50, I prefer a lighter ride and hotels in the PM, though 'the minimals' with a lightweight backpack was being considered. Thankfully my sister has offered to provide sag support – which is huge. Do you guys have a route? Is your departure date firm? My departure is June 2nd, two weeks to the day later. Depending on how many miles you're thinking about covering a day... and if you're flexible with the dates... contact me. Maybe discuss joining efforts?

esnikna 04-11-11 07:18 AM

Sorry, just realized that I had not updated the What, Where, When and Why of this post.

WHAT: Approximately 1150-miles over an 11-day period. Each day is a ‘century-plus’ ride, with evenings at hotels/motels

WHERE: Depart Doylestown, PA, Arrive Maitland, FL

WHEN: June 2nd thru June 12th.

WHY: 1) Bucket List item opportunity and 2) Raise money for ‘Casa Hogar’ – a children’s home in Mexico

Cue Sheets: I’ve been asked if I have a route. Short answer—yes. Long answer—using Google Maps (for bikes) and MapMyRide I’ve created an 11-day route from PA to FL. Is it proven and foolproof? No. I still need to post 4 more days, but you can see what I’ve posted at

So yeah, am I happy that I postponed the ride. Yes, given my children’s sports commitments, poor area weather (rain and colder than normal weather conditions) and not having a sag driver onboard … the delay should be a bonus.

I do thankfully have a sag driver, which really is huge. Going it light with a packpack is off the table. Gives me the opportunity to bring spare wheel sets, additional tires, necessities, clothing, food, etc. Beyond that, covering the safety needs is also a bonus. My sag will also be able to bounce ahead at times to confirm the route and verify road conditions.

So are there apprehensions about making this journey? Sure, if I said no ... I’d be lying. Despite safety issues with simply riding your local routes, we probably feel a little bit more comfortable with our normal area rides. A false sense of security—maybe, but having a more intimate knowledge of the area and roads can create certain ease. Though it shouldn’t give you a false sense of security to the point where you become complacent and less aware and unsafe. So (as a solo rider) not really knowing the area, roads and road conditions is a wee-bit concerning.

Obviously riding a century ride day after day for 10-days is also on the mind. But I am hoping that once I set out and my legs start spinning … that instinct, (good) habits and demeanor will take over and I’ll get into the mindset and groove needed to make the journey. I’ll also be doing my fair share of daily prayer for safety, energy and endurance.

I certainly wouldn’t mind having a partner to join me for the ride … or even multiple riders over different segments of the total ride. If you think you’d like to join me during a segment of the ride, please contact me.


leekun2010 04-24-11 07:30 PM

I'm interested but I'm from FL who wants to bike to Pennsylvania lol

rekrapdier 04-26-11 07:45 AM

I dont have much funding to contribute to your ride but may a couple of bucks, but I would love to partner up with you making your journey. email me [email protected]

Sincere112 02-10-14 07:32 PM

Hey, I'm from Allentown Pa, and I plan on leaving this Thursday to ride to Miami Fl. I plan on doing this with will power. I don't have any funding for this project but I hope I can change that within the next few days. I plan on staying at halfway houses or any nice samaritan who is willing to over there home. I also don't have much food which is why I'm hitting the airways. I have my camera which I will use to track my journey and I will map all of my stay. Since your more knowledgeable about all of this more than I. Please help find a sponsor. This trip is long, I want to completed in 12 days and should be documented. Thanks

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