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Starting Cross country solo in 3 weeks. Need help with Basic route!

Old 08-18-13, 08:05 PM
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Starting Cross country solo in 3 weeks. Need help with Basic route!

So I have been planning/training for a self contained cross country bike trip starting the 2nd week of August. Want to Start in Richmond, VA and end in San Francisco, CA. I am having trouble trying to decide which route to take! Is it going to be too cold once I get to Colorada and Utah? Should I just head south on the East coast and gulf coast? Where are some places that I should see? What is going to be the best route when considering all of the above? Any suggestions are appreciated!

Thanks,
Dave
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Old 08-18-13, 08:26 PM
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Both these sites should help:

https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/?o=1

https://www.adventurecycling.org/

Check out the maps option.

Good luck,
Richard
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Old 08-18-13, 08:46 PM
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Mon Ami -

It's already the 3rd week in August.
Do you mean the 2nd week in Sept.?
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Old 08-18-13, 09:02 PM
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Assuming you plan on using one of the adventure cyclist routes, I'd check out their three cross country routes (there may be more now but last I looked a few years ago there were three) and take a look at average temperatures. I'd probably start out on the Transamerica and put off making a decision whether to head south or not after I hit Colorado. There are plenty of connecting routes from there: https://www.adventurecycling.org/rout...rview-map-pdf/

You'll have a blast.
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Old 08-18-13, 09:14 PM
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The answer is:

If you leave Va in August, mail cold weather gear ahead to whereever you hit the western mountains. Then be prepared to wait out the freak snow storm, and stay on roads that are likely to be plowed, either ACA or DIY. Should be in SF by November.

Or head south, do the ST with little worry about the weather, then head north on the CA 1/101 to SF. Should be there in December.
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Old 08-18-13, 09:17 PM
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What I remember about Colorado weather- in the Fort Collins area- September is usually pretty decent, good hiking in the mountains, but cooler than August. But you CAN have snow that early. On high mountain passes, beware! Now, if you start in September, what time are you getting out that far? Halloween is usually pretty snow/icy, if that helps.
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Old 08-18-13, 10:57 PM
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yeah, too late for CO and the northern rockies. this time of year, do a pacific coast trip, or start in SF and head west, get the mountains done earlier.
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Old 08-19-13, 04:25 AM
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Originally Posted by valygrl
yeah, too late for CO and the northern rockies. this time of year, do a pacific coast trip, or start in SF and head west, get the mountains done earlier.
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Old 08-19-13, 06:01 AM
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oops ;-)
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Old 09-01-13, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
Assuming you plan on using one of the adventure cyclist routes, I'd check out their three cross country routes (there may be more now but last I looked a few years ago there were three) and take a look at average temperatures. I'd probably start out on the Transamerica and put off making a decision whether to head south or not after I hit Colorado. There are plenty of connecting routes from there: https://www.adventurecycling.org/rout...rview-map-pdf/

You'll have a blast.
The route shown through co and UT looks awesome. Just be prepared for some long stretches btwn towns.

In the CO mountains, Sept is usually great. Oct is often great, though cooler. A storm is a possibility, but not likely in my experience. Oct would be perfect for the desert portions of UT.
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Old 09-01-13, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by dgodave
The route shown through co and UT looks awesome. Just be prepared for some long stretches btwn towns.

In the CO mountains, Sept is usually great. Oct is often great, though cooler. A storm is a possibility, but not likely in my experience. Oct would be perfect for the desert portions of UT.
The Donner Party reached the foot of the pass over the Sierra on Oct. 20, and never made it over:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donner_Party#Snowbound

Have stayed at the hike and bike sites at Donner Lake on several tours (nice ones), but a trip through the museum at the park is sure depressing.
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Old 09-01-13, 11:38 PM
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Columbia river kept cutting through the mountains as they rose, [in geologic history]

so that is one place you dont have a summit to cross.
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Old 09-02-13, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
Columbia river kept cutting through the mountains as they rose, [in geologic history]

so that is one place you dont have a summit to cross.
That sort of adds quite a bit of distance to get to SF, though. Well, if you run into weather trouble in the Sierra, you can always take a bus or Amtrak over them, unlike the Donner Party. If you are thinking about heading south to do an endrun around the Sierra, there's still a couple of 8000 ft passes on that route...1000' higher than Donner Pass. Hmmmm...Highway 70, north of Donner Pass, never gets higher than 5000 ft. to cross the mountains, and never crosses a pass over them; it just follows the Feather River from the silted-up lakebed of Sierra Valley through the canyon it's cut through the range.
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