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Should I change my cross country route?

Old 05-11-17, 01:08 PM
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BicycleCrazy
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Should I change my cross country route?

My plans as of now are to take Route 66 to Missouri and then get on the TransAM route (beginning the ride on June 11th).
I follow a guy on youtube who just started a tour of Route 66 in his RV last week. In his video today he indicated that there have been several occasions already (still in California) that he gets to a section that has barriers across the road saying that it's closed for one reason or another and to turn around to get on the interstate. In one case he had to drive 40 miles back to the interstate to get around the closure. Backtracking 40 miles on a bike in that heat would be miserable!!!
Maps already purchased but this plus concerns about the heat have me reconsidering my route. Thinking about just taking the TransAM route the entire way.
Your thoughts???
BTW, I am going solo...
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Old 05-11-17, 01:20 PM
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Heat:

Get some Good lights.

Leave Early like 5 AM, arrive at your destination by 12N -1PM.
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Old 05-11-17, 01:52 PM
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The local department of motor vehicles (transportation) should be able to tell you which roads are open or closed.

California has had some significant flood damage with several bridges closed. Slides? So, it would be worth trying to verify which bridges are open or closed, and whether, or how pedestrians and bicycles are getting across.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:02 PM
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Yes, although you might have to detour around McKenzie Pass depending on what goes on out there between now and then.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Yes, although you might have to detour around McKenzie Pass depending on what goes on out there between now and then.
I heard last week that the Mckenzie Pass is open to cyclist, but as you say, "depending on what goes on out there between now and then."

A pretty straight forward detour is to just stay on Hwy 126 to Sisters.

OP, Unless I had some sentimental reason for doing Route 66, I'd much rather ride the TransAm. Route 66 would be an interesting ride, but IMO the scenery is much better on the TransAM.

Last edited by Doug64; 05-11-17 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:30 PM
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There was a thread about potholes recently, which had more slides and sinkholes than potholes. But, the cyclists tended to be able to figure out a way around them. So a barricade that blocks a car may not block a bicycle.

I've also found that road crews are typically fairly accommodating to bikes.

Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Yes, although you might have to detour around McKenzie Pass depending on what goes on out there between now and then.
The McKenzie pass is great, if the OP wishes to come north. Technically closed until July, but bikes can often get through on sunny days. The snow level does vary considerably this time of year though. And unfortunately, nobody provides real-time road condition data. Most of my spring rides up there have been out and back, so if I got stopped, I could simply turn around. For a through route, if one found the road to be impassable, then backtracking 20 miles to the Santiam pass would be a pain.

I also had a great ride last fall from Eugene to Crater Lake, which would drop one down on the other side of the mountains in the Klamath area. Again a summer/fall ride, unless you wish to do part of it on skis and snowmobiles. I did hit one hill that was pretty steep, and pushed the limits of my touring capabilities.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
I heard last week that the Mckenzie Pass is open to cyclist, but as you say, "depending on what goes on out there between now and then."

Pretty straight forward detour is to just stay on Hwy 126 to Sisters.

That's good news. It's a fun ride, although I have only done it in very nice weather. IIRC, someone in WA recently reported that WADOT is warning Rainy and Washington may open pretty late this year.


Things seem to be odder than normal depending on where you are. It's 80 in Missoula right now--21 degrees warmer than Philly. And it has been warmer there than here all week.



Yeah. I think that detour is listed on the relevant ACA map.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Heat:

Get some Good lights.

Leave Early like 5 AM, arrive at your destination by 12N -1PM.
Yep! Made it through the southwest deserts in the middle of JULY without problem by doing exactly this. Perfect, beautiful, dry air. Get off the road by 1:00 at the latest.
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Old 05-11-17, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
That's good news. It's a fun ride, although I have only done it in very nice weather. IIRC, someone in WA recently reported that WADOT is warning Rainy and Washington may open pretty late this year.


Things seem to be odder than normal depending on where you are. It's 80 in Missoula right now--21 degrees warmer than Philly. And it has been warmer there than here all week.



Yeah. I think that detour is listed on the relevant ACA map.
I heard about the Pass being being "open" from a cyclist friend. There is nothing official about it. It is designated as a State Scenic Bikeway, and their site states that the official opening is June or July. However, I think this is when it is open to everyone. There is usually a pretty good period before the official opening when cyclists can use it.
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Old 05-11-17, 03:02 PM
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Usually it's legal to ride on the interstate shoulder in California when there is no alternate route...sometimes a local CHP officer is ignorant of this provision. If the sign on an onramp does not specifically bar bicycles, it's legal, and this can be checked via Street View. Nevertheless, riding many miles in baking heat on a noisy freeway shoulder through the barren desert is not my idea of fun.

There are alternate routes on lonely highways through Nevada that should be cooler at that time of year--you'll still get that "town that time forgot" vibe in the occasional settlement. You can cross the Sierra on a choice of passes that vary in difficulty and traffic--the ACA route goes over Carson Pass on 88 and then splits off on the Mormon Emigrant Trail two lane road to Sly Park. Passes that are not really recommended are Echo (US 50) and Donner (I80 corridor--did it once, problems where the only route went onto the very rough I80 shoulder, and then the shoulder was closed for construction! YMMV)
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Old 05-11-17, 08:58 PM
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Check the addenda on the Adventure Cycling website. Route 66 addenda https://www.adventurecycling.org/rou...66&s=6#results
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Old 05-19-17, 05:59 AM
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I decided to change my plans and will now be taking the TransAM trail the entire way.
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