Cycling in the U.S.?
Hi guys, gals & whatnots,
I've been considering visiting the U.S. for a while and being into cycle touring, I got this wacky idea of visiting various states by bike - or possibly riding from LA to NY (or something similar, depending on flights & other costs). Odds are this would take place in 2015/2016, as I'd need to save quite an amount of extra money and get a ~two month vacation. Also, I've already planned to ride Finland-UK next year (Kettering, Northamptonshire to be exact, a festival called Alt-Fest will be held there).
Now, I know I probably should ask this on a US-focused cycling forum but hey, I'm guessing there are a couple of people here as well who could give advice without the discussion turning into gear etc. in a heartbeat :)
So, how is interstate cycling / touring in the U.S.? Are the roads in decent condition in general? How much would you estimate that a necessary daily living budget needs to be (nothing fancy, would live in a tent most of the time, food needs to be reasonably healthy/nutritious but simple enough to prepare on the road)? Would you describe interstate travel by bus (might be necessary if something breaks down) as cheap or expensive?
I'd love to do the LA-NY -trip (or vice versa), but it depends on money/vacation. I'm thinking:
-> New Mexico
Another option would be to stay in the west coast, visiting states surrounding CA or possibly riding up LA-Seattle.
Thanks for any advice :)
PS. Why LA (CA)? A friend of mine lives there nowadays.
4,000 km cycle run? All the power to you!
Thanks! It's not that big of a deal actually, just needs time and patience :) I'd say that just about anyone can do 100-150km/day, 5 days/week if they keep themselves properly fed and don't think that one has to go nonstop at a 30km/h+ speed. Too bad I can't get two months off next year, otherwise I would've rode back home as well (now I'll have to fly back from London) :/
I would probably not attempt to cross the US on bicycle. I think you would be better served by picking and choosing areas to ride in. Many of the highways are quite dangerous, and really offer nothing to see. (It is not legal to cycle on interstates- might be a language difference in the name.) A buddy and I just cycled the Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia and North Carolina, in 5 days- 470 miles and 44,000 feet of climbing. It was a wonderful experience. There was minimal traffic, wonderful views, and just was an awesome experience. You could do it camping, although my friend and I decided to go with minimal baggage- about 15 pounds each- and stay each night in hotels.
There are similar rides around the country you could do. A different buddy just did an awesome ride in the mountains out in Colorado- I believe it was sagged by a for profit touring group.
If you are going to be in California, you have lots of options. I was cycling along the Carmel Valley and along the Pacific Coast Highway a few months ago. There was a group doing a loaded tour along the PCH. Parts are a little dicey, but much of it is very nice. California would be a nice place to be based out of for lots of cycling trips.
Road conditions vary from state to state. For instance, New Hampshire takes much better care of their roads than Massachusetts does (I've live in both). Also, some states are more considerate of cyclists than others by providing bicycle lanes on their roads. Others, not so much.
Go straight to Maui and ride up [and then down] Mt Haleakala. 38 mile, 10,023ft accent from ocean to top. Took me 5 hours and 4 minutes up and about 1 1/2 for down. A ride of a lifetime.
Good luck and safe travels!
Nothing like sailing through a winding stretch and suddenly coming upon a pack of cyclists blocking the road. I understand them riding abreast on straightaways but why can't they drop down to single file for the curves since passing is illegal for cars yet an automobile driver might not want to drag along behind them for a mile of two at half the speed limit -one section near here has no passing for almost 4 miles. It's too the point that it is obvious some of the cyclists block the road for "sport".[/rant]
Areas with designated bike lanes are the way to go. Be careful.
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