Thursday, August 31, 2006

Our Itinerary

The best way for you to get a feel for our route is to visit the PAC Tour website. On the left hand side of the home page locate Past Events and then select Southern. Scroll down the Southern page and you'll find the route. You can also see who else has registered for the event.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Life On The Road

Lunch on the road somewhere between Tucson and Wickenburg

Early morning preparations at Desert Camp

PAC Tour Support Vehicles

One of these trailers carries food; the other carries our duffle bags and bike parts and equipment.

A Typical PAC Tour Day

My first PAC Tour experience was Wisconsin Training Camp in May, 2005. We hubbed in Beloit, WI and did a diferent century (100 miles) each day. That was a trial run for me to see if there was a goodness of fit between my style and ability of riding with that of PAC. There was a fit. It was after WI Camp I knew I wanted to do my first transcontinental ride with them.

PAC Tour runs seven weeks of Desert Camp in Arizona each February/March, so I did a Tour week with them in March 2006. We rode about 80 miles a day from Tucson to Wickenburg and back. That was another trial run for me to see if there was a goodness of fit riding from point-to-point; hoteling it; and doing it again all over again the next day. There was more than a fit. I loved it.

So what does a ususal and typical day look like on PAC Tour?

For starters our schedule is precise.

5:00 a.m. Breakfast in the parking lot prepared by PAC Tour. (hard to find a restaurant open that early).

5:30 a.m. Trailers open so we can pump up our tires, get our gear bag in the trailer, and make final clothing decisions based on the forecasted weather.

6:00 a.m. Riding begins.

Pit stops are genearlly every 20-30 miles. Lunch prepared by PAC Tour and served at a road-side pit stop mid day.

2:00 p.m. earliest time we can check into the hotel. Before checking into our rooms we will do bike clean-up and maintenance. Most maintenace we can do ourselves, but Lon Haldeman and at least one other crew member are excellent mechanics. PAC carries plenty of supplies so if we need anew wheel, tires, tubes, cables, etc. it just goes on our tab.

Pre-dinner socializing in the parking lot of the hotel.

Dinner is on our own in whatever little town we're in. No haute cuisine for sure.

Early to bed. After riding >100 miles we're ready to turn in early. Plus we'll be up before sunrise getting ready to ride anothe 100+ miles and climb another 3,400+ feet.

I'm lovin' it.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


If you want to know who Bisti is, scroll down on the PAC Tour home page.

You might be a PAC Tour rider if...

  1. You walk down steps sideways.
  2. You don't know what city you're in without a route care.
  3. You have seen over 20 sunrises in a row.
  4. You have taken a shower with your laundry.
  5. You can identify the state by the roadkill.
  6. Eating breakfast in the parking lot seems normal.
  7. Your bike stops at yellow cones.
  8. You have dreams about grasshoppers jumping on you.
  9. You think that bag balm is the greatest invention of all time.
  10. Your favorite TV show is the Weather Channel.
  11. You think that foods ending in---bar are one of the baic food groups.
  12. You stood up on the plane ride home.
  13. You can clean your bike in five minutes.
  14. You know who Bisti is.

Compiled by Bill Roberts, Northern Tour 1996

Double Century Training Ride

Seattle To Portland 205 Miles--13 Hours 45 Minutes

12 Days Till The Transcon Begins!

On Sunday, September 10th I will join about 65 other cyclists for a nearly 3000 mile transcontinental bike ride from San Diego to Tybee Island, GA, just off the coast of Savannah. Since I'll be taking my computer with me in the SAG trailer, my plan is to post a blog as many nights as I can get a wireless connection so you can follow our journey.

I will be riding with PAC Tour, Lon Haldeman's and Susan Notorangelo's organization they started in 1981 which supports fast bicycle rides across the country. We'll be following the Southern Route through California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, and finally Georgia. We'll average 112 miles per day, ranging from 81 miles on the last day to 158 miles on the 16th day. Altogether we'll climb over 89,000 feet with an average of 3,400 feet per day.

We'll enjoy "luxury accommodations" in Best Western style motels. A hot shower (or a cool one after those over 100 degree days in the southwest) will be truly welcome as will a washer and dryer to freshen up our clothes. My roommate, Lara, is a member of the crew. The upside to sharing a room with crew is that I'm guaranteed a first floor room which beats having to carry my bike and 40 pounds of gear up a flight of stairs (for those elevatorless motels). The downside is that she's on the oatmeal brigade which means she'll be cooking oatmeal in our room really early--in time for us to have eaten before we start riding at 6:00 a.m. every day. Early starts help us beat the heat and the winds that usually kick up later in the day.