Getting Ready

Well, we’ve got a little over a week to go, and Megan and I are both scrambling to get ready. I’ve got some work to finish up, and Megan has to move out of her apartment. Unfortunately, all this last-minute tying up of loose ends means we won’t have as much time to get in shape as we’d like – but, then again, it’s not like we’d ever let a silly little thing like weak legs stop us!

Anyway, I think I’ve gotten the website working pretty much the way I want, so I can leave it alone for a bit – let me know what you think!
Over and Out

Careful with those spokes…

It’s T minus 4 days and the pressure is on to get everything done before we hit the road. We’ve been doing as much training as we can between packing and programming. Greg, Nick, Nick’s friend Adam, and rode across the Golden Gate Bridge and into the Headlands on Saturday. The climb up was pretty steep, but once at the top we explored a tunnel complete with places for guns to protect SF. Once we made it to the other side there was a gorgeous beach calling our names. After that, we went back the flat way and had lunch in Sausalito and took the ferry back from Tiburon.

Last night, after I left work, I decided to ride out to Walnut Creek for delicious dinner with my friends Aaron and Dana. The ride up the Oakland Hills was pretty rough, but I made it! I went up Shepards Canyon Road, which has fewer switchbacks than the other roads, but the last 500 feet is super steep. I took my time going up. the downhill was lots of fun, but just at I was coming off one of the hills, I started to hear a clinking noise. Just as I was thinking about how I need to true my wheels before I leave, I looked down and noticed how wobbly my front wheel was. I had a pretty good guess about why that was, and when I stopped to check it out, I was right…broken spoke. That brings my spoke destruction total up to eight. At least for variety, this one was in the front. Anyone know how spokes in the front break?

Greg and I are having a little going away party Thursday night, so e-mail if you are interested!

Testing picture messages

Here are some photos from the ride we did last weekend. I’m uploading them from my cell phone! That’s right, folks – now i’ll have no excuse for not giving you visual updates of every hill we climb and every burrito we eat! Plus, it looks like i can send longer messages than before.


Almost Ready

Well, it’s very late and we are still packing! We had a very nice goin-away party for Greg, which involved him shaving off his beard and all his hair. He is hoping for less wind resistance. It’s been a long day of getting ready, but we’re almost there. We’ll be picking up the car very early tomorrow morning so that we can get ont the road first thing. We’ll be staying with Greg’s frind Vann in Seattle for a night, and then the adventure begins!

So it begins….

Ok – We’re here in Seattle, hangin’ out at Vann & Liz’s. Vann and Maxwell just took off to catch a World Cup game at the pub ’round the corner, leaving Megan and I to case the joint. I have to say, we’re not exactly as prepared as we ought to be….the last week has been pretty hectic. I worked 10 hours on friday trying to wrap up the project I’ve been working on – 10 hours with a killer hangover. I was up till 3am scrambling to get stuff together, and Megan didn’t go to bed much earlier. We got up late to pick up the car, making our craigslist traveler wait at BART. Anyway, we pretty much threw everything we could find in the back of the car, and took off for the 12 hour drive to Seattle – we’ll keep you posted on all the things we left behind. First on the list appears to be the bicycle map of Washington. This shouldn’t be a problem, since the first leg is pretty much a recap of last year’s journey out of Seattle, and then we hook up with the Adventure Cycling route, for which we have better maps.

Vann’s been a most gracious host – gave me a ride back from dropping off the rental, shipping our bike rack back home for me, filling my dreams with dancing sugar-plums. Unfortunately, Vann and Maxwell failed to inform me they were starting a mustache party, and i chickened out on the rad biker-stache that paul gave me. Megan wishes me to inform you all that Vann and Liz live above a vegan cafe that makes a pretty amazing blue-corn blueberry pancake – you should check it out. Allright – we’ve got to pick up a few last-minute items from the store (Dr. Bronner’s all-are-ONE!), pack up the bikes, and we’ll be off on the road!

Wagons East!

Right now we’re in the stylish town of Winthrop. And luckily it has an internet cafe. We’ve spent the past couple of days without any cell reception. Yesterday was a very rough day. We spent almost all of it going up. We climbed for 27 miles to Rainy Pass, at an elevation of 4600 feet. Then we got a mile-long respite going down, only to climb back up again to 5477 feet at Washington Pass. Then, a very fast downhill to Mazama where we splurged on a delicious dinner at a local Inn. Interestingly enough, we have not yet paid for camping. We;ve also been pretty good about not eating out. We’ve bee carrying enough food for a couple of days at a time.

It’s been super hot in Central Washington since we started biking. MOst places, it’s been hotter than it’s ever been in June. We’ve been taking lots of breaks and drinking tons of water to stay cool.

Even though yesterday was hard, we started out the trip with a couple of easy days. Most of our first day was on a bike path. We’ll be going over three more passes, probably all in the next three days. Hopefully we’ll be in shape after the climb yesterday!

We learned some trivia at a diner: More people are killed each year by champagne corks than by poisonous spiders. That’s good considering the showers (yay showers!) on the second day were full of spiders.

We’ve been meeting lots of cool people, even a couple of tourists. We’re posting some pictures along with this update. Enjoy!

Note from Greg: It should be noted that Megan is already attempting to shatter the record she set last year for most broken spokes. Other than that, our steeds have been holding up well. We’ve already been meeting lots of other bike tourists, with whom we’ve been swapping stories. This is a good sign, since it hopefully means I won’t get too lonely after I feed Megan to the bears in Montana. Ok – enough of this ‘internet’ – Bikebums….Ride On!

Rough ridin’

Yesterday we climbed another 4000ft pass. Unfortunately, our screaming 20 mile descent was interrupted by construction.Our brake-clenching steep ride through loose gravel got worse when a rock in megans chain broke her bike.Then i got our 1st flat!We got into town just in time to watch the mill burn.We’re waiting for the bike shop to open

going gets tough, tough eat pastrygoing gets tough, tough eat pastry