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The Pedalshift Project 071: Bicycle touring India and Eastern Oregon

An interview with Pedal Dream’s Guthrie Straw on his adventures bicycle touring India, plus his thoughts on adventures in his native Eastern Oregon and keeping your touring bike secure in the land of sunshine and bunnies™, Portland, Oregon.

The Pedalshift Project 071: Bicycle touring India and Eastern OregonHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 071: Bicycle touring India and Eastern Oregon (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Interview: Bicycle touring India with Guthrie Straw

Guthrie Straw is a native of Eastern Oregon and lives in Portland. He created Pedal Dream as a place to fuel your sense of adventure, gain insight into what it’s like to tour by bicycle, and garner solid advice in the form of equipment reviews. It inspires you to get back out on the road, or if you’re already out there, keep pedaling the world with a perspective made possible by one of his favorite forms of transportation; the bicycle.

The Pedalshift Project 071: Bicycle touring India and Eastern Oregon

You talked about your India trip a little bit on The Sprocket Podcast (which I encourage everyone to go listen to if you haven’t). What was your route and would you recommend it to someone looking at India as a bike touring destination?
What was your experience transporting your gear to India and back? Any issues?
What is your typical gear setup and did it deviate much for India?
You’re from eastern Oregon, which is one of the most beautiful places in the US… and probably the least understood since most people from outside the northwest think Portland takes up the whole state and is a coastal city (like, for real). How would you describe eastern Oregon to an outsider?
What’s your favorite bike tour in eastern Oregon?
You’re working on a bike theft documentary in Portland… bike theft is a thing almost everywhere but it’s seemingly extra pernicious in Portland. What have you discovered in the course of working on the film and do you have any advice for bike tourists rolling into Portland on their trips?
Where can we find you on the series of tubes?

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!

Ethan Georgi
Matt Buker
Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Josiah Matthews
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Michael Riscica
Seth Krieger
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Noah Schroer
Harry Telgadas
John Sikorski
Richard Killian
Chris Barron
Scott Taylor
Brian Hren
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Paul Mulvey
Stuart Buchan
Todd Stutz
Mr. T
And all anonymous and past contributors for helping make this show happen!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

The Pedalshift Project 070: The magical mystery winter bicycle tour

A winter bicycle tour on the C&O is a rare treat for me… but warm February weather in the DC area made it impossible to resist. Come along for the ride with Belle Starr and me!

The Pedalshift Project 070: The magical mystery winter bicycle tourHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 070: The magical mystery winter bicycle tour (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Journal: The magical mystery winter bicycle tour

  • Washington, DC to Swains Lock
  • Check out the campsite review:

Gear Talk

The Omnicharge… first impressions:
  • A relatively large battery (20.400mAh 100W output). 
  • That said, it’s way heavier than comparable 20.4mAh batteries and bigger too.
  • 2 USB ports with smart charging tech that maximizes power and minimizes charge times.
  • Flow through charging – power devices while charging the battery (great for one outlet situations)
  • The difference (and reason for the bulk) is the ability to charge AC power with a “regular” plug (3 prong for US and similar countries; European and other outlets available too)
  • I love the screen that gives detailed battery data so I know precisely how much juice is left
  • The weight makes it more of a “camp” battery – wouldn’t keep it in a handlebar bag.
  • I think this is great if you are doing a longer ride with (a) spotty access to AC, and (b) AC powering needs.
  • If you’re only in need of USB power, this is not the battery for you. There are cheaper and lighter/smaller batteries.

Connections

  • More 5 stars
  • Hey, how’d you find the show?
The gentlemen over at Sprocket Podcast started the question… did you find Pedalshift first or Sprocket first? Or did you find both someplace else? Go over to pedalshift.net/whofirst for a quick 1 question survey. We’ll tally it up and we’ll know! Between you and me, I think more of you can from them… but let’s use this nonscientific poll to illuminate the subject!

Next week!

Guthrie Straw joins the Pedalshift Project to chat about touring in India and Eastern Oregon. Awesome chat… and the following week we’ll be talking about a hypothetical bike tour where you’re constantly chasing ideal weather. Got a great three weeks of shows coming!

 

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!

Ethan Georgi
Matt Buker
Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Josiah Matthews
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Michael Riscica
Seth Krieger
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Noah Schroer
Harry Telgadas
John Sikorski
Richard Killian
Chris Barron
Scott Taylor
Brian Hren
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Paul Mulvey
Stuart Buchan
Todd Stutz
Mr. T
And all anonymous and past contributors for helping make this show happen!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

The Pedalshift Project 069: Jasmine and Fiji bicycle the world, living the vagabond life

The Pedalshift Project 069: Jasmine and Fiji bicycle the world, living the vagabond life

A chat with global bike tourist –and all around awesome person — Jasmine Reese, on her journey, her four-legged companion, Fiji, and the adventures living the vagabond life.

The Pedalshift Project 069: Jasmine and Fiji bicycle the world, living the vagabond lifeHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 068: Basic skills you should have before going on tour (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Interview: The Vagabond Life with Jasmine Reese

Jasmine Reese is a violinist and self-described vagabond on a personal adventure she describes as her “Road School of Music.” On March 1, 2016, she hopped on her bicycle wither dog Fiji and violin in tow, living a boundless life full of musical opportunities. She believes in inspiring people, not just with her story, but also through the random acts of kindness and generous people she meets on a daily basis. Jasmine wants people to feel hope in a seemingly hopeless world.

The Pedalshift Project 069: Jasmine and Fiji bicycle the world, living the vagabond life
 

You are tackling the great challenge of any bicycle traveller – going around the world. What were the things that triggered this adventure for you?

You ride with gear that is pretty atypical for a world traveler… your fiddle and your dog Fiji to name two. What’s your setup like and how has it evolved as you’ve been traveling?

Most recently you crossed Canada this summer and you’ve traveled the US now and before… what would you say is the biggest contrast between the countries from a touring perspective?

Over on one of the FB groups you addressed your experience as a woman of color cycling the world. Sadly the thread got hijacked by some pretty awful people, but I was wondering if you’d talk about it here?

From a FB post: What do you like most about living on a bicycle? When I am riding, I feel powerful. I don’t feel fat. I don’t feel ugly. I feel like the most beautiful person in the world, exploring some of the most beautiful places. It was this year while bicycling that I finally said to myself something I’ve never said before, “I like me. I like myself.” <— Does that sum up 2016 for you?

What are your goals for 2017?

How can Pedalshift listeners follow or pitch in?

fijapaw.com
FijaPAW on Facebook

Listen to another conversation with Jasmine over on Cat Caperello’s great podcast, The Joyride too!

Update since we spoke, Jasmine has a line on possibly sailing to Mexico, so her adventures are really starting to warm up. Be sure to add her to your follow list on social media… as you heard, Jasmine is an inspiring person!

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!

Ethan Georgi
Matt Buker
Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Josiah Matthews
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Michael Riscica
Seth Krieger
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Noah Schroer
Harry Telgadas
John Sikorski
Richard Killian
Chris Barron
Scott Taylor
Brian Hren
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Paul Mulvey
Stuart Buchan
And all anonymous and past contributors for helping make this show happen!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

The Pedalshift Project 068: Basic skills you should have before going on tour

What are some of the basic skills you should have before heading out on tour? On this episode, I cover the 4 things I recommend you know!

The Pedalshift Project 068: Basic skills you should have before going on tourHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 068: Basic skills you should have before going on tour (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

Basic skills you should have before going on tour

  • flat repairs
    • YouTube videos
    • Your local LBS often has “how to” sessions
    • Local bike co-ops
  • understanding your spokes
    • Spokes are *really* necessary – they create equal tension across the wheel to maintain the perfectly round shape
    • If one spoke gets loose, the wheel loses its true
    • A tool I always recommend you carry: a spoke tensioner.
    • You can always notice a loose spoke… if the opposite one is tight, tighten the loose one.
    • If the spokes are all over the place, visit a bike shop in the next town
  • brake adjustment
    • Learn how to adjust the pad placement
    • Learn how to adjust the tension on the calipers
    • For disc brake people… understand how to replace a pad, and how to handle a bent disc. Also be aware of heating up discs on long decents (a squirt of water is your friend here)
  • saddle adjustment
    • Generally: the saddle should flat, unless that’s not comfortable for you
    • You want the saddle back so you’re pedaling straight down.
    • Pain in the knees? Very likely a saddle issue. Do some micro adjustments and knee pain will very likely go away!
    • Saddle perfect! Great! Mark it in sharpie so you don’t need to do it again!

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!
Ethan Georgi
Matt Buker
Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Josiah Matthews
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Michael Riscica
Seth Krieger
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Noah Schroer
Harry Telgadas
John Sikorski 
Richard Killian
Chris Barron
Scott Taylor
Brian Hren
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Paul Mulvey

Stuart Buchan
And all anonymous and past contributors for helping make this show happen!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

bike touring stoves

The Pedalshift Project 067: More bike touring stove tests, intermittent fasting and counterintuitive foot-warming advice

Follow-up on bike touring stove tests, an overview on intermittent fasting for those of us who, ahhh… maybe put on a few pounds since the end of bike touring season? Plus counterintuitive advice on keeping your feet warm on tour and more!

Pedalshift 067 Bike touring stove testsHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 067: More bike touring stove tests, intermittent fasting and counterintuitive foot-warming advice (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Journal

Another C&O fast forward option: MARC

Maryland’s regional commuter rail system is *finally* adding bike cars to all lines through 2017, which means you have another fast forward option to/from Brunswick, MD and Washington, DC… and it’ll be much cheaper than Amtrak’s Harpers Ferry option just 5 miles away. ($9 vs. $34)

Retrofitting of the first bike rack-equipped cars is expected to start early next spring and will be advertised once work on a critical mass of cars has been completed. Projected completion of this round of bike modifications should be sometime in fall 2017, with the rest of the fleet completed as funding allows. (MTA)

Weight gain and loss – the ongoing saga

My typical post-touring season weight gain rears its ugly head. Need to drop 20 pounds before touring season plus I would like to try to make it more permanent this time.
Trying something new this year: intermittent fasting

Important: I do *not* recommend this while on tour. In fact it could be dangerous if timed wrong. Also, check with your doctor before trying anything like this because fasting is not recommended for a lot of people (the young, pregnant women, etc.)

Combines calorie restriction with regular periods of fasting
Studies show it’s good for a variety of things beyond weight loss
Check out Eat, Fast and Live Longer by the BBC for more

5/2 (5 days at “normal” caloric needs and 2 days at 25%)
18/6 (18 hours fasting, 6 hours feeding)
Results? I just moved to the 18/6 method a few days ago and have continued to see fantastic results from a weight loss perspective. No issues with hunger although you’d be surprised how hard it is to jam all of your calories into a 6 hour window, even if they are reduced!

Reiterating: I do *not* recommend this while on tour. In fact it could be dangerous if timed wrong. Also, check with your doctor before trying anything like this because fasting is not recommended for a lot of people (the young, pregnant women, etc.)

Gear Talk

More bike touring stove tests

bike touring stoves
…and just to further the stove info.  I have an Optimus Svea and a cheap ebay burner for the ubiquitous canisters…both boil 16 ounces of water in under 4 minutes. I tested them both tonight because I can’t ride outdoors….18″ of snow so far and more on the way!  Both weigh around 20 ounces when full of fuel.  It really is a trade off when it comes to weight.  I really like the alcohol option compared to the Svea just for the fact that if I ever spill anything I don’t worry about contaminating the environment.. Same thing for the Ebay burner…if it leaks, it doesn’t pollute the ground….although it probably pollutes the air to a degree….hmmmm….
Continuing thanks to Pedalshift Society member Brian Hren for tackling this!
Counterintuitive advice
A randonneur friend of mine had already convinced me of the counter-intuitive wisdom of sandals for riding in rain. That’s right, sandals. In wet conditions, there is no chance of ending up with shoes full of water. Less obvious is that sandals work well in cold as well because you can easily add layers without fear of running out of room in your shoe. After my experience on Togwotee Pass, more recently I have worn two layers of socks under the SealSkins with my Shimano biking sandals in cold, rainy conditions in Washington, Idaho, and Scotland, and my feet stayed nice and toasty.
 
Hands are more of a challenge, but for cold I have found that thin smartwool gloves under Thinsulate half-finger convertible glove/mittens work very well. See this link on Amazon:
 
 
In all but a drenching downpour these do the trick, as they shed lighter rain pretty effectively and you can easily pull the mitten part back when you need use of your fingers. My only issue with them is that the finger openings on this particular brand are fairly tight, so I should have bought a size larger than I did. I have tried neoprene gloves, but found them to be ineffective and my hands ended up drowning in sweat.
 

PSS Member Seth Krieger!

The GoTenna

Staying connected when you’re on different cell networks or there’s no signal, or there’s signal for one but not another? Mesh networks using long range radios seems to be an interesting idea.
Since I don’t tend to bike with groups, this might not be for me… but for those who ride in groups that tend to get separated, this is a nice bit of insurance in areas with low or no cell coverage. 4 mile range (less in mountainous terrain I’m sure).

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!
Ethan Georgi
Matt Buker
Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Josiah Matthews
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Michael Riscica
Seth Krieger
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Noah Schroer
Harry Telgadas
John Sikorski 
Richard Killian
Chris Barron
Scott Taylor
Brian Hren
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Paul Mulvey
And all past and anonymous contributors for helping make this show happen!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

The Pedalshift Project 066: Bike touring locks and America’s longest rail trails

Kicking off 2017 with a bang, we cover lightweight bike touring locks, the longest rail trails in the US and an overview of what’s to come on the show in 2017!

The Pedalshift Project 066: Bike touring locks and America's longest rail trailsHey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 066: Bike touring locks and America’s longest rail trails (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

Happy New Year!

2017 is going to be a great year for Pedalshift… a few things:
– Last year we had more shows than ever. This year we’ll top that. My intention is to have the 2017 Holiday Spectacular be Pedalshift 100.
– That means we have to have 3 episodes per month, SO…
– The Pedalshift Project will continue as is with episodes every other week, and
– There will be a 3rd episode every month on one of the off weeks covering a single topic… sometimes gear, sometimes tips, but always something useful… whether you’re a beginner or more seasoned.
– I’m also going to try to expand into more interviews… last year I did more than the year before, and I hope to do the same this year.
– Pedalshift, like bike touring, is an escape from the rest of the world… what would you like to hear? Shoot me ideas and topics to pedalshift@pedalshift.net.
– Oh yeah, new logo too! Seems to be tradition around here to update the look every year… still orange. Because, of course.
What about 2017 touring?
– 2017 will continue 2016’s emphasis on shorter, more accessible tours.
– I hope to mix in a few new spots this year (more on that in a bit)
– A longer (more than 1 week long) ride is hopefully in the cards, but I don’t want to plan anything substantial this winter so I can spend my time more flexibly later as opportunities firm up
– I’m definitely going to integrate Pedalshift Tour Journals and maybe Pedalshift AM into the future rides… more to come when those get going later this year.
– I hope to interview more people who are tackling bigger, more adventurous rides so we can all learn from those too

Gear Talk

Did you get anything good this holiday season? If you got loaded up with gift cards or cash and want some ideas, go check out the holiday gift guide… I listed a lot of my favorites in case you’re in the market for some new gear.

Lightweight bike touring locks

I tend not to tour in spots that have high security needs, so the locks I use in DC don’t tend to come with me. Still, I like to have the peace of mind to lock up outside grocery stores and other spots when I’m leaving my bike outside.
Some people are good with just cable locks on tour… I used to be ok with them, but I think they’re SO easily defeatable with simple tools that I prefer something more secure.
No lock is foolproof… all can be defeated. The trick is to find the right risk management.
New folding lock styles are interesting. I really like my Inbike folding lock as a touring lock option. Only downside is TSA sees it as a multitool every time so you should pull it out of your carry on separately or risk the (often lengthy) wait. Better yet, check it.
I have a new lightweight cinch lock on the way I’m excited to test out (Ottolock) – I hopped on their Kickstarter so hopefully should have it soon. May be a great touring option.

The Journal

Here are the longest rail-trail conversions in the US, as calculated by Rails to Trails Conservancy:
1. Katy Trail State Park — Missouri: 286 miles
2. John Wayne Pioneer Trail — Washington: 253 miles
3. Cowboy Trail — Nebraska: 195 miles
4. Great Allegheny Passage — Maryland & Pennsylvania: 150 miles
5. Soo Line Trail – Northern Route — Minnesota: 148 miles
6. Columbia Plateau Trail State Park — Washington: 130 miles
7. Paul Bunyan State Trail — Minnesota: 121 miles
8. Flint Hills Nature Trail — Kansas: 117 miles
9. Soo Line Trail – Southern Route & Saunders State Trail — Minnesota & Wisconsin: 114 miles
10. OC&E Woods Line State Trail — Oregon: 110 miles
11. George S. Mickelson Trail — South Dakota: 109 miles
12. Blue Ox Trail (Voyageur Trail) — Minnesota: 107 miles
13. State Line Trail — Michigan: 107 miles
14. Wild Rivers State Trail — Wisconsin: 104 mile

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

FEATURED IMAGE,ONE-SEVENTY-NINE/THREE-SIXTY-FIVE (CC) LAURA BITTNER

The Pedalshift Project 065: The Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular 2016

It’s the end of the year and that means it’s time for the Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular! Join Shifty the Elf and Tim for a showcase of the best of Pedalshift in 2016!

The Pedalshift Project Holiday Spectacular 2016Hey it’s the direct download link for The Pedalshift Project 065: The Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular 2016
(mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshiftproject@gmail.com or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular 2016

The Pedalshift Project 065: The Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular 2016

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ latest release, Habitat, wherever cool music resides. And a little birdy tells me Jason’s recording some new music. More when I know…

FEATURED IMAGE,ONE-SEVENTY-NINE/THREE-SIXTY-FIVE (CC) LAURA BITTNER
Bike Touring Gift Guide

Holiday Bike Touring Gift Guide

Just say no to the bikey pizza cutter. I mean, delicious, but no. This is a bike touring gift guide for the bike tourist in your life (hint: this might be you).  These are (almost all) things I personally use and love.

Bike Touring Gift Guide

Tent: Alps Mountaineering Zephyr 2 person ($125)

This tent saved me from a flood. Like, for real.

Sleeping bagHyke and Byke 32º down sleeping bag ($99)

A newer addition to my gear… works great and super affordable.

Ultrlight StoveEtekcity Ultralight foldable stove ($9.99)
Runner up: Trangia Spirit Burner alcohol stove  ($14.53)

Love the Etekcity, and the Trangia is a great value.

Lights: Portland Design Works Radbot 1000 ($29)
Runner up: Ascher USB rechargeable LED set ($13.99)

I swear by PDW as my rear light, and I just bought the Ascher set for Kimberly.

Bike Touring Gift Guide

Panniers: Ortlieb back roller classic (prices/colors vary)
Ortlieb front roller classic (prices/colors vary)

Look, there are a lot on the market. But Ortlieb stands the test of time for me. Plus: orange.

Dry Bag: Sea to Summit eVent Compression dry bag, large ($42.95)

I think this is one of the most clever items on the list… waterproof but lets air out for easy compression. I use the large size for sleeping kits, but all sizes are great.

Support the Parks: National Park and Federal Land Annual Pass ($80)

I ride the C&O a lot, and while there isn’t an entrance fee, this pass makes me feel like I support the system. Oh, it also lets me in all the others… which is nice.

Water Bottles: Brita Sport Water Filter bottle (2 pack for $16)

Filters built in make this a great way to help less than tasty water sources (it filters out iodine taste too for you backcountry types with iodine pills).

External Battery: Anker Astro E7 ($60)
Runner up: Anker Power Core 20100 ($40)

Anker is my brand for these.. get the biggest battery that makes sense for you.

Rain jacket: Showers Pass Double Century ($159)

Best rain jacket I’ve ever had. Looks nice too!

Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Plus (Price varies by size)
or
Schwalbbe Marathon Supreme (Price varies by size)

Nearly puncture proof, but more importantly, Schwalbe stands by their product with great warranties.

Tune up: contact your LBS (price varies by service)

Your bike will thank you.

Maps: ACA maps for a future tour (price varies)

For you paper types!

Stocking stuffers:

  • Freeze dried instant meals
  • Caffeine pills
  • Electrolyte pills
  • VIA Instant coffee packets
  • First aid kit
  • Tubes
  • Patch kit
  • Wool socks

For you big spender types… a touring bike: 
Brompton, Pedalshift Style from CelverCycles in PDX (Oregon has no sales tax!) or your LBS… (just no orange)
Runner up: Surly Long Haul Trucker from your LBS


FYI, some of these are affiliate links.

The Pedalshift Project 064: Keeping hands and feet warm on bike tour

December means (for a lot of us) one thing: friggin cold hands and feet. On this episode of the podcast, let’s see if we can find some ways for keeping hands and feet warm on bike tour, and maybe even your chilly commutes! Also, followup on past shows and connections with you!

The Pedalshift Project 064: Keeping hands and feet warm on bike tourHey it’s the direct download link: The Pedalshift Project 064: Keeping hands and feet warm on bike tour (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

Gear Talk: Keeping hands and feet warm

– Layers, keep things dry
– No cotton, only synthetics or wool (I prefer wool)
– Wind chill is a real thing: need a way to break that

Keeping hands warm

Three tools:;
– thin base layer glove that breathes
– Medium weight warm glove
– wind and waterproof outer shell – mittens or lobster style are upgrades (get one size larger)
Dry and not too cold?
Base layer or shell only
Wet and not too cold?
shell only
Dry and chilly
Base layer and medium weight
Wet and chilly or colder
All three layers

Keeping feet warm

Had good luck with Showers Pass waterproof socks.
Same rules apply… go with layers and breathability next to the skin.
Little sandwich baggies around your toes work wonders!

Followup

Winter touring – Meridian, MS to Atlanta, GA

FOTS Paul Mulvey: Amtrak Crescent to Meridian, MS, then ride back through Tuscaloosa (Auburn U, another school with orange), Birmingham, and then onto the south’s gem – the Chief Ladiga/Silver Comet trail, and take that all the way home. About 370 miles over 6 days which gives me a good tour. I can also hop onto the train and don’t have to worry about shipping the bike to the destination.

Testing alcohol stoves

PS Society member Brian Hren tests an eBay stove, the Trangia MJ uses and a design of his own:
eBay stove boiled 16 ounces of waterin 5 minutes, Trangia in 8 and my homemade “penny” stove in 10. In terms of fuel efficiency I found the Trangia most efficient, followed by my penny stove and lastly the eBay stove. The Trangia and eBay stoves with their pot stands weigh roughly the same. The penny stove with its homemade pot stand weighs less than half the other two. I am thinking I could get the best of both if I used the Trangia burner with the homemade pot stand.
YMMV of course.
Fuel efficiency seems like a good reason to go with the Trangia for me!

Connections

PS Society member Scott Taylor on an under $30 one-person bivy
Interesting read because it straight up says it’s a cheap tent, but can be upgraded with some simple fixes (seam sealing, adding grommets, velcro, etc.)
I’m a bit of a claustrophobe and prefer freestanding tents, but this seems like a good entry level bivy for beginner bike packers. Downside is they make it up in shipping: both options are around $15. Still, for a little over $40 total, this is cheaper than most low end bivys.
Cycling Kiwi Style
 
FOTS Mark Van Raam did some cycling in New Zealand and had a good experience!
More five star iTunes reviews too – thank you!
Programming note!
I’m off to Portland tomorrow for a quick holiday visit, so hope to have some stuff from the land of sunshine and bunnies. Newsletter is NEXT WEEK, along with a bonus pod so be sure to sign up for the newsletter if you haven’t already. Next episode of this show is the year-end Pedalshift Holiday Spectacular. Producer Shifty the Elf is already hard at work pulling it together…

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. Five bucks, two bucks or even 1 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!
  • Ethan Georgi
  • Matt Buker
  • Kimberly Wilson
  • Caleb Jenkinson
  • Cameron Lien
  • Andrew MacGregor
  • Michael Hart
  • Josiah Matthews
  • Keith Nagel
  • Brock Dittus
  • Michael Riscica
  • Seth Krieger
  • Marco Lo
  • Terrance Manson
  • Noah Schroer
  • Harry Telgadas
  • John Sikorski
  • Richard Killian
  • Chris Barron
  • Scott Taylor
  • Brian Hren
  • And all past contributors for helping make this show happen

Thank you for supporting the show!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album which celebrated its TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY last month. Congrats Jason! Check out his band Sunfields‘ album, Habitat, wherever cool music resides.  I heard Jason’s new album in January and it is AWESOME. More info when that drops!

Thanksgiving ride

The Pedalshift Project 063: A Thanksgiving ride on the C&O

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone in the States (sorry, a bit late for you Canada!). On this episode of the Pedalshift Project, let’s go for a ride! I recorded this week’s pod in the saddle while I rode a portion of the C&O Canal Towpath, including some stories, some gear talk and more. Take a break from the holiday weekend and join me for a Thanksgiving ride on the trail!

The Pedalshift Project 063: A Thanksgiving ride on the C&OHey it’s the direct download link: The Pedalshift Project 063: A Thanksgiving ride on the C&O (mp3)

Reach out to the show via email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109.

The Journal: a Thanksgiving ride on the C&O

Thanksgiving ride
Chilly 35F wake up temps
Thanksgiving ride
Banks of the Potomac
Thanksgiving ride
Fall on the C&O
Thanksgiving ride
Sled dogs pulling a fatbike
Thanksgiving ride
Ride to see the cows
Thanksgiving ride
Ride to see the pigs
Thanksgiving ride

Gear Talk

Let’s talk tools Tim.  In episode 22 of The Pedalshift Project you speak with author Peter Rice; and by extension, Jerry the Dirtbag Bike Mechanic.  Peter makes a valid point when he says that we willingly climb into our cars and take them across the desert without fear or concern of them breaking down.  And by extension, without any knowledge of how to fix them if they did breakdown.
 
So why oh why does every touring gear list include the tool set-up of a basic bike shop?  In 40+ years of riding bikes I’ve never popped a spoke.  Never had reason to remove a sprocket.  Never re-packed a bottom bracket.  Never had a chain break.  Never had to replace my own brake/shifter cable on the road.
 
No day rider, even long distance day riders, go out with these concerns.  And even if I did break a spoke, I’m not certain I would know how to fix it properly anyway.  And most certainly not in a timely manner.
 
Tubes, tire levers, patch kit, pump, hex wrenches to tighten bolts and adjust parts.  I get all that.  But when you think back on your years of bike riding and touring, what is the actual and practical tool kit that you think the average ACA route bike tourist realistically needs?

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings. A buck, two bucks or even 5 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, and you can do it for a bit and cancel anytime. One-shot support is welcome too… annual or “choose your own adventure”  if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it out and join at pedalshift.net/society. And society members please go to pedalshift.net/stickers and let me know where to send some Pedalshift stickers to you! On to the Society!

  • Ethan Georgi
  • Matt Buker
  • Kimberly Wilson
  • Caleb Jenkinson
  • Cameron Lien
  • Andrew MacGregor
  • Michael Hart
  • Johnny K
  • Josiah Matthews
  • Keith Nagel
  • Brock Dittus
  • David Kolb
  • Michael Riscica
  • Seth Krieger
  • Marco Lo
  • Terrance Manson
  • Noah Schroer
  • Harry Telgadas
  • John Sikorski
  • Richard Killian
  • Chris Barron
  • Scott Taylor
  • Brian Hren

Thank you for supporting the show!

Music

The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album which celebrated its TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY this week. Congrats Jason! Check out his band Sunfields‘ album, Habitat, wherever cool music resides.  I heard Jason’s new album in January and it is AWESOME. More info when that drops!