Type 2 Diabetic. Bike tour guide. #NextBurgh Flâneur.   Coffeeneur.    Errandoneur
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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Washington DC Pittsburgh Bicycle Trip Summary

06/02/12 241# 0m

Daily bike trip reports from Washington DC to Pittsburgh:
Day1, Day2, Day3, Day4, Day5, Day6, Day7.

I had a much better ride than the last time I did this in 2010.
I had a really good time (and in the end, it's all about me, right?).
I was fortunate to be among really good people.

A specific goal was to get some "non-hotel" touring experience and that certainly got accomplished.

The equipment worked well.
The weather was normal.

I think the big lessons sink in over time, but my initial take-aways are:
  • Everybody has to find their own path up the hill.
  • On the trail you wear "green blinders"; you don't know what's on the other side of the green tunnel. Smartphones and coverage are awesome, and so are people with local knowledge.

Technique Issues:
The thermal mat may not be as important as a sleeping bag for summer use.
The Ortlieb panniers are great, but top-loading is not uber-efficient

Casualties (things that were damaged):
I sheared one leg off my Esge-Plesche two-legged kickstand
the new 10-Liter solar shower leaked along the seam, but I'll replace it
handlebar wrap gone in the rain

Treasures: (things I was very glad to have)
solar shower
kitchen sink
JetBoil stove, Knorr-Lipton rice packets, tuna
Six regular Water Bottles

Analyze what I used / what I never used
Write down what to do differently next time

To Devise/ Obtain:
Windscreen for stove
foot powder
a better rig for hoisting the solar shower.
internal compartments for panniers

Some personal opinions:
  • If all other issues (logistics, travel) are equal, I believe that Pittsburgh-DC (eastbound) is the preferred route.
  • The GAP with its modern design and materials is much safer than the C&O Canal, which is a Civil War donkey path whose historic status prevents upgrades.
  • If a Pittsburgh group wants to ride 300 miles over six days, they should ride to Cumberland, round-trip.
  • Hancock, MD is doing the most of any town to embrace the Trail Economy - by building the WMRT and pursuing the expanded PawPaw-WMRT project
  • The wayfinding resources between McKees Marina and Pittsburgh are insufficient

   July 2, 2012 Week 21
this week:
307 miles
  241#   2nd Qtr 1275 miles
20.5 mi/day2-QTR
2012: 2291 miles

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