Springtime tours are kicking into gear (bike humor). On this episode I preview my C&O bicycle tour with Belle Starr, the bike touring pug, plus how to handle 2017 Pacific Coast bike tour disappointment and work around that bridge outage in Big Sur. Plus connections!
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The Journal: C&O and 2017 Pacific Coast bike tour
Preview: A spring through tour of the C&O with Belle Starr the touring pug
- Bike to Union Station
- Ride direct to YMCA (rain likely)
- Camp at YMCA under the shelter to minimize wet gear
- Rain should end overnight and be dry for the remainder of the ride
- It’s going to be chilly each night, but manageable
- Probably not going to do a tour journal for this one but will do some recording for one of the upcoming episodes
- Going to be doing more writing up of the new Pedalshift Guide to Bicycling the C&O, which now has a featured spot over at pedalshift.net! Breaking the towpath up into 10 mile segments so you can read up on things ahead of any tour.
2017 Pacific Coast tour route closure: “dude.”
From the ACA:
(Feb 2017) TRAVEL ADVISORY AND DETOUR: There are multiple closures on SR 1 due to mudslides and the failure of Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge just north of Big Sur (on map 47) and south to Ragged Point (on map 49). It is unknown when then bridge will be replaced. Due to a lack of nearby roads, an extensive detour is required. The Salinas Valley Detour is 147.9 mi. and can be found at this RideWithGPS link: ridewithgps.com/routes/19189649 It is about 30 miles longer than the Pacific Coast route. It begins on map 46 in Marina and ends on map 50 south of Cambria. Services are limited for the 60 miles between King City and Paso Robles. Note that the roads around Lake Nacimiento can carry heavy traffic including pickup trucks pulling boat trailers. Also, because this detour travels inland, the weather will be significantly different than that on the coast. It will typically be drier and up to 20 degrees hotter.
To follow the status of the SR 1 closure, check Caltrans Current Highway Conditions at www.dot.ca.gov/cgi-bin/roads.cgi For more information, see also The Big Sur Blog at www.thebigsurblog.com and their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BigSurInformation/?fref=ts and our Forum discussion at forums.adventurecycling.org/index.php?topic=14377.0
- Inland route looks like craaaaaap. Sorry, it does.
- Curious how this impacts bike touring numbers on the coast this year? Less overall?
- More from Canada to SF? Less south of Big Sur?
- My recs for handling this if you’ve planned a Pacific Coast tour this year
- It’s going to be there again. Do not despair. The bridge will return and so will you.
- I strongly recommend Vancouver or Victoria to SF at minimum.
- A full coast ride may still be possible with a fast forward:
- One-way car rental from Monterey to someplace south of Big Sur (SLO?) uising inland roads (101, etc.)
- Amtrak isn’t super helpful here unless you bail on a lot of the ride south of SF.
- Transit doesn’t appear to be an option (Line 22 for Monterey-Salinas Transit goes to Big Sur, but the bridge being out kills that).
- Wouldn;t be surprised if some enterprising types do some shuttles for hire, but havent heard anything.
- TL;DR – this sucks. There are ways to continue on, but they are far from ideal. Vancouver to SF is plenty awesome.
- ADDENDUM TO THE SHOW: The bridge is super not there, so nevermind with stealth crossings!! Not that you should have done it anyways you reckless malcontents! 😉
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Mark Van Raam
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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…