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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    206

    Smile Leaving Thursday for tour

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    I want to share that I'm leaving on Thursday, June 2, for a tour. I'll be riding solo from Cincinnati, Ohio, to Bar Harbor, Maine. Anyone who is interested can follow my blog here; I'll try to post once a week or so, depending on computer/internet access.

    I've been planning this tour since January, and the fact that it's almost time to leave feels a bit surreal. I'm shipping my bike by Fedex to the start point, so I had to box it up today, and tomorrow I get to sit around all day and wait for the Fedex truck to show up. I just can't believe that it's almost time to go!

    Something that's been difficult to deal with is the number of people (all women of a certain age) who are terribly concerned about my safety and seem to be convinced that doing something like this is tantamount to committing suicide. Um, really, I live in a large urban area, and I suspect that I'll be safer on tour than I am at home. My biggest worry is that my house will be broken into while I'm gone - daytime burglary is rife in our city and my husband works long hours. I suspect that many of my naysayers don't understand the desire to go and accomplish something like this alone. There's something about being an introvert that some people just don't get

    Wish me luck!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,636
    Luck luck luck <--- wished your way!

    I think you are awesome for doing this! Denise Goldberg (I think you can look her up on crazyguyonabike) has done lots of solo touring and actually lived to tell the tale.

    I don't know that I'd want to solo tour, but not so much from a fear factor (I love solo riding!) but just from an "I want to share every bit of this with someone special") standpoint.

    I totally get what you are saying, though. My DH and I are moving to Belize later this year, and we get the same reactions. It's crazy how scared people are of life! I got this reaction when talking to a couple about Belize at a rest stop on a ride this weekend. I finally said "If I were scared of life, I wouldn't be riding on the road". They took pause, since they were also riding on the road!

    Good luck! I will follow your blog. You rock!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,132
    I, too, think it's great that you're doing this, and I wish you the best of luck!!! I've done some solo traveling myself--nothing as adventurous as your tour--but still, I got the same reaction that you got. Some people just make a career out of worrying. The truth is that those were the best trips of my life. I love my husband and my friends, but the time I've spent in my own company and under my own steam are some of my most cherished memories.

    Happy and safe travels!
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952
    It sounds like an exciting adventure! I have friends like that as well, they are convinced that riding solo dooms me to an early and violent death - the dog attack hasn't helped that...but I understand where it comes from.

    I am excited for you and looking forward to following your adventure on your blog, thanks for giving us the chance to follow your journey!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Posts
    5,269
    Best of luck on your adventure! Here's to wishing you many happy, peaceful, exciting, adventurous miles. I'm not going to tell you to be safe, because I don't think what you're doing is inherently dangerous (unlike most people who don't understand the need to seek adventure and live life outside the box).
    I wish I could come along with you!!!!!

    Keep us updated with pictures and stories. I'll be checking back in for updates.
    Have a BLAST!!!!
    Check out my running blog: www.turtlepacing.blogspot.com

    Cervelo P2C (tri bike)
    Bianchi Eros (commuter/touring road bike)

    1983 Motobecane mixte (commuter/errand bike)
    Cannondale F5 mountain bike

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Virginia's Blue Ridge
    Posts
    500
    Good for you!!! Have fun and ignore the naysayers!

    I've taken 90 percent of my vacations alone over the years and generally prefer to sally forth solo. Great way to recharge and explore without worrying about whether your partner or mate or friend is in sync with your energy level, mood, interests. I haven't done any bike touring solo yet, but it's on my list.

    Just use common sense and listen to your gut! Have a ball!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,318
    I can't wait to read your blog. Do be careful, but enjoy the adventure. I get a lot of that same kind of concern because I like to ride alone. They mean well. And I don't even tour! I'm riding around safe bike paths.

    I guess it's big-city thinking.

    I hope you learn a lot about yourself. Safe journey.

    Roxy
    Getting in touch with my inner try-athlete.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    34
    My, my, my how I envy you! This will be over 900 miles......very nice! I now do all of my tours solo, and love it. All will be well with you. I've come to learn that people out there seem to have a great deal of respect and total interest the cycle tourist. They will rush to engage in conversation and extend their services if needed. Are you going to take the Little Miami Bike Trail? If, you, have a nice 100 miles free of traffic and all other interferences, depending on your exit point. May you enjoy your travels! I look forward to your postings.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Nebraska
    Posts
    1,193
    Good luck! I wish I were going with you.

    Don't worry about the nay-sayers. What do they know? They have no experience touring.

    When I went on my first tour, my brother wanted me to take my gun along. I didn't need it. All, and I do mean all of the people I met and talked with were kind, helpful and positive. I suggest you leave your gun at home, along with the kitchen sink and anything else heavy like that.

    Me, I worry more about mosquitoes than people. (So take bug juice of your choice)

    Do take your smile and sense of humor. They don't weigh anything and are so useful on tour.

    Also, don't forget to take pictures. You can't take too many, really.
    Give big space to the festive dog that make sport in the roadway. Avoid entanglement with your wheel spoke.
    (Sign in Japan)

    1978 Raleigh Gran Prix
    2003 EZ Sport AX

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    206
    The FedEx truck just came and took my bike away. Yikes! I'm having the bike shipped separately because it is cheaper, more convenient (that box weighed 65 lbs, no way I want to haul that on the airport bus) and doesn't involve the TSA trying to search and repack my bike.

    Thanks for all the words of encouragement. I've taken many smaller solo trips before and I've always enjoyed traveling alone. I get to decide what time I get up in the morning, what restaurants look good, etc.

    Biketouringrook, my parents live 3 miles from the Little Miami Trail. I was 11 years old when the first trail went in through Xenia. We thought they were nuts. I'm sure that many of the locals still think that the trail system is nuts, but the trails are recognized as a community asset and the tourism dollars are very welcome in that area. As an adult living far away, it's really cool to hear nice things about the area I grew up in.

    emily_in_nc, good luck in Belize!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Beautiful NW or Left Coast
    Posts
    5,645
    good luck on your ride! i got similar admonishments when i went to Sicily.. " you can't go there ALONE"

    have fun. you can do it.
    I like Bikes - Mimi
    Watercolor Blog

    Davidson Custom Bike - Cavaletta
    Dahon 2009 Sport - Luna
    Old Raleigh Mixte - Mitzi

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Posts
    780
    Someday, I think it would be cool to do a tour like this, so will be following your travels. I'm from the Queen City as well, and have ridden the Little Miami many times, the first longer distance ride I did was on that trail in fact.

    Wish I could ride the first few mies with you... Tho I've no doubt you'll do fine flying solo. Will try and turn the ac on high so it'll be a little cooler around here when you set off!

    Shannon
    Starbucks.. did someone say Starbucks?!?!
    http://www.cincylights.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    654
    Best wishes on your trip. I admire what you're doing.

    What's your proposed route? If you're anywhere near the Northern VA area, stop in for a warm shower and a meal.
    Specialized Ruby/Selle Italia Flow
    1991 Specialized Sirrus, steel frame
    Dahon Eco C7
    Surly Long Haul Trucker/Terry Fly RS
    Trident TWIG Recumbent


  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,834
    One more day 'til takeoff! Have a great ride. I'll be checking out your blog. Nice knitting!
    '02 Eddy Merckx Fuga, Selle An Atomica
    '85 Eddy Merckx Professional, Selle An Atomica

    '10 Soma Double Cross DC, Selle An Atomica

    Slacker on wheels.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Boise Idaho
    Posts
    1,192
    Sounds wonderful, we have been freezing in Idaho so anything over 60 degrees sounds good today. Just in case you haven't already done so, here is the link to Warm Showers, great group of friendly bike riders that will put you up overnight and are often great resource for local bike route updates as well.

    enjoy the ride
    Sky King
    ____________________
    Gilles Berthoud "Bernard"
    Surly ECR "Eazi"
    Empowering the Bicycle Traveler
    biketouringnews.com

 

 

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