Thursday, September 25, 2014

Get out and ride something

After changing my tire, the nice folks at The Bicycle Rack in Muskegon let me take their penny farthing for a spin.

Wisconsin to Ohio

I apologize for the delay in postings. We had been using a tablet and keyboard to write and post initially but the keyboard had absorbed a bit to much rain. This post is just straight from my phone which is a little tricky. Anyway, here's Wisconsin and Michigan!

The Motherland! Heather is now hooked on cheese curds.

No gas? No problem.


We seem to be on a lot of dirt roads and trails.

Peshtigo fire museum. They do not serve fries. 

The Peshtigo river, Peshtigo Wi.  

I wonder if you can train them to pull a dog sled.

The  view from the S.S.Badger crossing Lake Michigan. 

Are boats cheating? Maybe.

It's getting a little chilly some mornings. 

But the views are great.

Michigan has free roller coaster rides.

And ones you have to pay for.

Fishing in downtown Grand Rapids. 

Flat count
James: 13
Heather: 0

Michelin Protek Max tire with a thorn tube was no match for a 1/2in piece of sheet metal. 

With only 2000 miles on this tire it was showing a huge amount of wear and has to be replaced.

Tire count
James: 3
Heather: 0

Heather is using the Serfas Drifter 26x1.5in tire. Which has proven to be a fantastic tire.

Portland MI, close enough right?

Last night we completed the first Century of our trip. Being loaded down as much as we are the task has been a bit tricky. But we made it, Lansing MI to Toledo OH. 120 miles in one night. Since we were traveling at night pictures didn't really happen. But this morning I managed to snap this one. 

Bob is back in Business.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Catching up

A lot has happened since Great Falls. I've been neglecting the blog, sorry about that. Now some pictures.

We finally made it up to the Adventure Cycling Northern Tier route. Right here.
Pretty boring looking intersection but it made me happy.

Yep, it's a Fort.

This is about where the mosquitoes started getting bad. We rolled into the campsite right at dusk, hot and sweaty from the days ride. My blue socks pulled up to my knees. I had such a high concentration of skeeters on my legs my socks turned black.
 I have never experienced a swarm of mosquitoes like the ones in Montana.

Camping out in the town park. 

On the road into Williston. Here's some things the locals said about Williston MT

"It's the wild west up there"
"My brother worked up there for two months, 12 people went missing. It's hell"
"Don't walk alone, doesn't matter if you're a guy or gal. They'll rape ya"
" You guys together? Cuz it's men to women 87 to 1. Don't freak out if she gets hit on"

We found a couple trucker hats on the side of the road. Dressed Heather up in baggy men's clothing and road into Williston.

When in Rome do as the Romans. 

The oil fields of North Dakota are busy. They currently have a shortage of truck drivers. (I was having lunch and was just about offered a job driving truck) Which also means they have an abundance of bad truck drivers. Some even operate without a CDL since most of the driving is on private land.

It became very clear that riding in North Dakota would be extremely unsafe, so we hopped on the Amtrak and headed for Fargo ND. 

Don't mind if I do.

Fargo ND is bike friendly and easy to navigate. I was delighted to see bike lanes again. 

With high spirits we set forth into Minnesota.

Green grass, lakes, this is a good start. Liking this state so far.

Caution: 103 miles of well maintained bike path ahead.

The lake Wobegon Regional trail. Where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.

We stopped in Ashby to use the restroom. Got to talking with some of the residents. They set us up with a place to camp, showers and drinks. I'm pretty sure this is the nicest most friendly town in America.

This is Scott, he made us breakfast in the morning. 

I love this trail!

It does have an occasional speed bump.

Seems about right.

Pulling tricks near the end of the trail.

Shortly after this picture was taken Heather realized she had lost her sleeping bag. Doh!

Minneapolis, thinking about changing professions. Window washer seems like a fun job.

Minnesota is a wonderful state. The people are friendly, plenty of places to camp, fresh food is easy to come by and there are tons of cyclists. 

Monday, August 4, 2014

The rolling hills

It took us a few days but We made it to Great Falls!

The trip over the pass was a little tricky. There was a huge section of dirt and gravel road due to construction. 
Blue Skies and a lot of dirt. Dirt for miles.

 I was so happy to see this sign. So very happy.

Shortly after this was taken we decided to pitch a tent and wait out the storm. That's a nice way of saying "Sleep in a ditch on the side of the road." 

It's nice to look back on your progress. 

We found this nice old restaurant. This must have been a popular stop for people to eat and fill up their water bottles. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Layover in Missoula

We rolled into Missoula MT several days ago and have had the pleasure to ride and explore the city. The downtown area of Missoula is friendly and has a small town feel. It's not uncommon to see people walking and biking all over the downtown area. Separate bike paths line the sidewalks putting cyclists out of the door zone. The City did a great job of creating a bike route system downtown.

---Start Rant---
We are not staying downtown.

The rest of the city's bike system is a bit sketchy. Missoula sits on several highways, portions of the large roads have been converted into bike lanes. 
The bike lanes appear and disappear without warning. Pedestrian crosswalks and traffic signals are ill conceived and downright dangerous.

No one walks outside of downtown.
---End Rant---

No trip to Missoula is complete without visiting the Adventure Cycling Headquarters.
We bumped into Terry Richard from Oregon Live there and he wrote up an article on us!

We weighed in our bikes. I really try not to think about weight or miles. 
125 pounds! I dropped about 15lbs that day. 

We'll be hanging around Missoula another day and then it's onto Great Falls.