Full Spectrum Cycling Podcast #16 Talking Touring With Jeff
Ladies and gentlemen. You know at that. Catchy riff means I just got a little dizzy dancing to my must be seven PM on every other Wednesday time for the full spectrum cycling podcast with J. Hello Donny Berger. How's it going? Tony and today special guest, Jeff is in the studio to talk about touring stuff in a little bit. Welcome Geoff, a whole going well got some weather out there that finally looks like cycling weathered only follow. Oh. The natives have been bringing in their hairs and some bikes have been going out the door and nothing gets job done better than the last minute. That's for. So what happened since the last show seems like something must have happened. But it'd be darned, if I know what it is. Now, just some random rides random cycling, trying to find ends truck trying to find Owen not finding own. I saw some guy build up a twenty nine plus in wrote it around quite a bit. Nice L while L built it. Oh me. And Greg wrote it, I've ILD, most of it did dish the wheel nice for me that would be able app. House are in shop repair guru. If you've need your stuff fixed here. Everyday cycle shop. He'll probably have a hand in it just road by the old bike fixer recipes. Now all the al-sane. Yeah. Yeah. On the Dory, check yesterday to just to make sure it's there if it was funny. I heard reference, but I had no idea. But until that dude walked in Lascaux, if you have a chance to watch him work. He's impressive guys really knows his way around a bike, that's for sure. So since a lot of our rides are beer, fueled birth world. It only makes sense that our shows beer, fueled. Yes. Tony brought a new beer today. We'll wolf pup session IP from golden road brewing. I do not know said brewery, Cindy ago, Santiago. Jewess Anglia's tirec Nuys this. It's sandiego. I must apologize. They forgot the meat I was going to bring in some Lon Jagger's in some scorpion pepper jerky. And I got halfway here on foot. Around the lateral mission already. I know it'd be endorsed. I'd be intrigued as hell. But I know I would pay a lesson, do not do not apologize for not bringing beef jerky. It's we can always say anything at all. You're better off, you probably right there at Brezhnev's, but I did mentioned, it yesterday that I would we can always foundation after we will go to phone days there. I was there Monday night and enough to jerky, delicious, even mile of my wife had some, and she's not much of a jerky fan and she's like this is really good. Just the note when you're too, or biking, drinking, beer and eating jerky. Make sure you're the lead. The wind exact Renate wind. That's a good philosophy. Yeah. So the whole point of this show today, basically, is that Jeff has joined us to talk a little bit about touring. He's done eleven cross country trips and numerous up and down and back and forth ones and is going on his twelfth across the continent trip coming up in June, and we wanted just to get his views on touring and on that note he's going to be here in the store, three weeks, from today, which is Wednesday, not Friday when you're listening to this, June fifth, he's going to do a demo of what he takes on a touring ride. And how what is philosophy is and stuff like that might getting philosophy a little today? But right. It would be a good opportunity for you to see somebody who's been there and done that. And what they take and why they take what they take, and it'll be a good thing, June fifth seven PM. Rear blast? Everyday cycle. Shop, Milwaukee, Wisconsin should we states? Mirka USA. Israel's create a Facebook event for the service at probably not a bad idea, probably ought to do that. Beautiful river west, Wisconsin. And if, if any freaks wanna call in, we still have that call in number number again seven seven seven seven two or five three seven one seven seven two seven bike. We were like Ellison chains within harmony right? Lanes, the dead guy, right? Crosby Stills Nash and young real quick. Just getting. I know I can't sound like him but I can't be I would like to be young electric guitar electric car lecture cargo tar. He's gotta he's built. He has the largest gas car built he made into a an electric car. Yeah. We're at something about it's pretty awesome. You also Lyonel trains, which I think is pretty unmarried Jerrell heaven. Yeah. Yes. Secretly. Right. Right. And she has legs now. Right. She doesn't have the fin anymore. Yeah. Is it run on nine volt the right? She actually really funny fact. That runs on biodiesel purchased from a buddy of mine out in Colorado, the name of chars- Ford. Right. I'm fun facts. Facts facts? So let's, let's get Jeff in the conversation here, and I met Jeff quite a while back and talked about, touring a bit, and wanted to get him in the store here. We're we've got him on the Mike today. So welcome Geoff. She just give folks a little bit of a rundown on your experience. And why we should listen to you about touring on your bicycle, which, by the way, tell them, what kind of bike, you got even well my riding my, my main Steed for this is owned nine cannon wail, t one canny wail made these specifically for touring their little elongated the maverick wheels on 'em. Have six extra. Spokes in the back came right from Cana whale this way for extra in the front because of course when you tour, you are carrying a lot more weight than you normally would. And yeah, it's a real comfortable ride. It's got tomato Alta GRA. It's a twenty. What is it not to thirty speed and I gotta gotta granny gear in it because you know most of the people I tour. I'm in my mid fifties. Now and a lot of times, I take college students with me. And you see these youngsters boil tell you, they give me a always I always laugh because they're, they're just so much energy when they first start out. Are you gonna make it proffers? You gonna make it and I'm like, well, we'll see about that. And then you know that ninety five percent of the ri- they can't keep up. You know see tour. Biking is not a day, right. It's not a week. Right. It's Springer knows. No. It's not. And, and so, yeah, this, this canon wail, even though it's an aluminum frame, it, it actually is a very comfortable ride for me. And for me, I'm, I'm a Clydesdale class writer. So I mean if I if I was one hundred seventy pounds I can go with a nice chrome Ali frame, and they're even more comfortable great. It's been great. So you've done eleven trips across the country. Right. And those have run the gamut from the south to the mid to the northern tier. Oh, yeah. And the new one the one coming up in June to tell us about that route. Well, I've done the northern route before across. Like in and out of Canada. All we across across northern Wisconsin up in Canada, all the way to a Montreal. We stopped in Montreal this particular ride. We're going to do it in the states, but we're going to leave from the Seattle area, and we're biking or staying in the states and we're going to come to Wisconsin here, right mortgage and go around Lake Michigan across Indiana all the way along Lake Ontario. Like Erie then, like Antero crossed New York, then Vermont New Hampshire Maine and then up through New Brunswick over down into. Though scotia. I ride land in Halifax and your ears Lal. So how many people just just a friend of mine, and this, this particular ride, we, we need to get away? It's kind of a reset for me. It's I sit in a classroom. We just got done grading papers here, Marquette university, and I'm like, okay, now this is like cleared the mechanism. Yeah. And you said you're starting in Seattle, right? Yeah, we're gonna start in the NCAA. So how do you how do you pick a route once you've decided you're going to do say the northern tier do you? What resources do you go to, to make your route friendly to bikes instead of cars, right? There's the most infamous of, of bike routing is from American cycling association, and they have put together incredible maps map plans all the way across their countries like a grid. And those are okay if you're only going to do one in your lifetime, you might wanna check one of those out, because it's navigates you through all kinds of national forests national parks, national monuments. What if you've done it? You've seen all that before. Then we try to we try to take roots. We haven't been on before, and it takes us through towns that one of the things you have to decide what do you want out of your tour? Do you really wanna see a lot of spectacular nature? And if you've seen it, and if you've never done that by all means that's, like, that's like, number one on the, the starter list is to for sure you. So you'd recommend somebody that hasn't done it before to go with an established route and over shirt. Yeah. Yeah. Because not only that, but on that route so many other people have taken it that the folks that you when you're biking, through their town or they've seen hundreds of you before. Four. They're much more welcoming. They understand you local law enforcement. They don't kick you out of there. I mean that kind of thing, but it can be a lot slower because you have to go off route to get many of these locations, MIR you, you know, you have to go point to point to point this particular Ruper were trying to do more of a bird's eye view kick through a lot of though at sounds like you're out is going to be a lot less populated and definitely not the touristy route that might be well on the western part, it will be okay on the eastern parts this going to be different. We are purposely staying ever biked around Lake Michigan. Which is a great ride by the way, even the time he go through Chicago. I mean we stay right on Lake Michigan and it is really cool. And, and we stay right on the lake and then we'll stay right on Lake Erie, all the way, there's a great bike trail that goes all the way Longley. Sounds awesome. Yeah. That. Well, when we were talking the other night, you'd mentioned that you stay in a lot of unusual places you don't usually take camping gear, right? No. We, we choose not to. We, we do what's called minimalist writing. And so it helps because inevitably you think you're taking what you need. Oh, I need this. Oh, I need this. And you go through put all your gear out and you swear. You have to take a trailer with you. And you feel you obligated to take the stuff, but then you get out there in the very first thing you do the very first day, if you leave the west coast, you have to deal with the cascade mountains, and you're going from sea level to nine thousand feet they in the first day. Ooh. Welcome to bike to. Yeah. Turn back. Now all this extra crab. And it's in really. That's part of the philosophy of touring. You really have to decide what you want out of your tour. If you really wanna do the parks and the nature and things like this, and you feel compelled to stay out in nature almost every night, then by all means bring a single man tent bring a where things like this. But then you have to force yourself to use it every day. It's a big deal because means you getting to you location early in the evening to set your tent up and fire and cooking food. Yeah. And then you're not leaving your tent all of somebody's gonna steal it from you, perhaps. So then you committed disdain there now if you're not, if you stay in way of stealth places we can talk a little bit of that. Stay other places then you can leave your bike and you can go to a pub. You can gorge yourself on, on food, rather than having to cook everything. So you turn this minimalist, which I like, but it's not credit card. It's not like you're staying in a hotel every night. Right. Own out at all right. Tell us some of the places you've stayed because some of those sound pretty interesting. So our main thing because my occupation teaching theology and being involved in churches. We have a lot of Churchill that either invite us to stay in their local in the local worship center or even in their homes. And so we've, we've really had a good good luck on that. Then we're also members of warm showers and couch surfing, which is very easy, because I have hosted many people here in Milwaukee, biking, through hiking around the lake or something, a lot of people come to summer fest, and they crashed by my place, right? Downtown in Milwaukee. Milwaukee Bucks are going for their first win against the rapper snide, folks. Yeah. I hope that's, that's always. Good thing. And so, so then we'll call ahead and we'll get like minded people just let us crash in their place. And in doing so they want here our story while they're cooking dinner for us in a lot of that. It's not we don't even pretty awesome. But we don't even expect that we really don't expect it. And so, but, but the that's the thing the thing is, there's something about minimalist writing that allows for the unknown happen. You don't have to have everything micro planned from the beginning. If you do that, I'm telling you now it's just gonna be a disappoint from because, as soon as you miss day, one or day to it throws every other day author. I could see that. Yeah. What if you weren't feeling like riding a hundred miles that day you only wanted to twenty and now you're obligated to get the other eighty miles in because you're set up for a campsite that you booked months in advance? Exact kind of like the saiga spike turning thing might be pretty good. I mean, I the most I've done is rag Bri, which is seven days in that you are planned in sort, because, you know, where overnight towns are right? But that doesn't mean you stay in those overnight towns, we kind of do an alternate rag Bri, which usually follows the route about ten miles off of it or something. But, you know, seven days one thing, you're going to be gone for six weeks on this one, right? Minimum of six because that would be actually hundred miles on on the on the nose to get us across in six weeks. So you're forty one hundred miles on this one is, is roughly well, and so, but even but, but it's not the same as rag Bri, because in rank Bri, you're not carrying all your gear. Right. True. Well beer, I mean, carrying all your gear. That can that can load your bike down pretty good. It's like me right now. I'm carrying my winter with me until I. I drag Bri. I made the mistake of bringing a backpack and trying to wear that thing all day long every day. Wow. What a nightmare. Yeah. I've learned a lot even with that. I mean back in the day where Camelback and things and I shed that in, like three days because you had that bladder sitting in the hot sun. No way. Yes. Nice. No yours. Good for me. And you can feel the sweat pouring down off of, you know way. So water must be obviously, the most important thing you can take what, what do you do to carry enough water. Well, okay, that goes along with route planning, if you plan a good root, you're always going to be going. We're always going to be going through small towns, we can fill our water bottles. And so we'll, we'll take no twenty eight points to twenty eight water honor and our water bottle cages. And then what we'll do is we will when we get to places where we know there's going to be no services for the next thirty forty fifty sixty miles, sometimes even longer than we actually buy, like a gallon of water and a water jug in, then we'll just strap that on just for that time anymore. Shed will shed it soon as we can. There's no reason to keep. It. I'm super curious when you come in three weeks to see, you know, if you're going to bring your bring your setup like you're going to or enter, and we'll put a Facebook, what do you call that thing event up there and people Jeff's done this a lot? I think his insight has given me a little bit of a vision of touring that I didn't really have before, because I'm always thinking long haul, trucker loaded to the gills, maybe even pulling a Bob drought, or or worse. You could be Josh will build a cargo bike, and then put way too much on it, and try to ride across country, and then get to San Francisco and say, screw going home. Yeah, good. Do that. The one might not have to though. Right. So okay, water's important. But that's something you can get on the way we talked a little bit talked a little bit about where you stay. You said place like Zibo offices. Yeah. All sorts of. Yeah. There's, there's one of my favorites is. Yeah. Post offices when you ride into town and post office boxes, who have have to be able, let people get to their post office box. So there's outside door never locked. And so if you're really beginning late really don't wanna set anything up really don't have a place to stay you can stealth camp there. We've stealth camped in community centers and whole bunch of places ziebel's parks, anywhere. Yeah. Dugouts baseball dugouts. Oh. That's a good. Well, it's especially oh, we got we got it was horizontal. Rain. One time is in Kansas or somewhere, and we snuck into what we went into ballpark area, and we just crashed inside the dugout. Never not a drop of water on this was fantastic. So you do take sleeping bag. Yes. I like do you do a busy sack or something that's waterproof? No, no. Just this just that's for the rough comes in. And then. I have a thermal rest pad that I sleep on because whether we're inside or out, no matter what you wanna get something. I mean, you're biking all day long. And, you know, when you get to be our age. It's not easy, just to crawl on just go to sleep on a concrete floor and wake up next morning. Oh, I'm so relaxed. Let's do it again. It's horrible. You don't want to stay in a room with Chad, and Dave, and then have to sleep in the closet, 'cause they're making too much, especially actor beer, for sure. The know how come hotel ranked Jeter. Yeah. There you go. Cool. Okay. So that's a little bit about that stuff. What about tools? What do you do about repairs? You, you know how many flats are you gonna get to wear in tires out, or you wearing are you wearing stuff out on this trip or are you mostly repairing as you go? All right. And that's that's, that's another great question on route choice out, west the, the highways out, west first of all, we're not, we're not any major highways were always on, like, Chuck's highway or gyms highway. Yeah. Off the beaten path. And so he never kind of know what you're going to get. But because of this thing called Google maps, or you can drop that little guy down. And you can take three sixties no matter where I do enough recon to find out that these highways were on have nice shoulder that we're right biking on. And so we're pretty confident that, we're, we're gonna be okay. Now, typically in a four thousand mile tour. I we average about six to seven flats lotta times are just pinch flats. You come across uneven pavement, you had that you hit something really hard and, you know, it's just pops Popstars fix it going. Sometimes when you're around trucking areas in out, west yet, a lot of farming, and you have a lot of implementing a lot of gravel or something on the road. Sometimes it's just you're just so much debris. You just can't you can't avoid it in years subsidy away from recycling. Senator. Oh, I mean, because like, oh, everything is never. Okay. So typically, it's. Yeah. And we just repair most at most I take it depends on how many writers we have. It's another good question. I'll segue into that the tools we take. I just we just make sure we have enough tools to repair the bikes on the tour. So a lot of times, I liked having like-minded bikes. So that everything less tools at one person carries. A pump one person tubes wanna reciting Kerry. Right. So you get you get away from his Schrader vows. I got pressed develops. Forget it. You know, we're doing, you know this is what we're doing. And, and I'll kind of works out. But I've got I've got the patch kit in the cement, and other guy's going to bring, you know, we have my body's got half. I'll have the other half. I noticed your bike is set up for traditional pennies on a rack, have you done any soft beg camping like seat? Bag frame bag handlebar bag type stuff touring. I should say not can't. No, no, I know. I. Yeah. Locally, I'll I'll have like a rack on my back. I have handlebar I do have handlebar hat that sits on the front. But because of those dog on the way, the, the cables are set up they cross right from the beginning each put nothing in the between those handlebars. There's traditional drop handlebars which you asked me for just the other night. Why do I use those I like the different hand positions? I love having my hands. My thumbs in my fingers, moving forward rather than down towards the ground like this chance, it's more comfortable for me a question. Go ahead, is that why a lot of touring bikes have barcon Shifter's because then you have that section in the middle free for bags. Wow, what are you some kind of big brain over there? I, I think of the most ridiculous thing brain on wondering why. I want to do them ride, my bike is reach my hand, the end of a drop barter shift because touring guys, are, you know, they just don't spend money on stuff, and they still have friction Shifter's that so. But then, again, this is funny tour biking. You almost you very seldom do change ears, and you several people have told me that to break early like like single speed mentality. Twenty nine. Just like no just think just get them to come and go. We, we are we you get proud when you're, too or biking to see if you can go the whole day without pulling your brakes, because it's just just, just chucking right along very seldom along going time. Kermit the frog. You mentioned when we were talking the other day about handlebar stuff, you use some kind of padding on your bar that you get from, like Home Depot or somewhere. Yeah. It's called. Jerry, rigging one. Oh one. I just go get this pipe insulation you at any place. That's cut right down the middle. And I'll just cut like six inch sections and I'll tape it right on my handlebars, because I'm a Clydesdale rider. I mean, I've I have a large upper body in that when you're leaning forward in a good comfortable position. I'm the Lumina m- bike with no shock absorption. You're my name's handsome upper by they'll start to fall asleep. I wanted to take you to come up with that as an idea. Oh instant. He can bench four hundred pounds by the way. So, so it was Isreaeli. It was really helpful to do those things, and then the extra padding I take just put it right on my. I and between two top tube. And just if I need more his more their sleet at he doesn't doesn't weigh anything. Podcast. We're, we're gaining useful knowledge. What happened? We've almost wasted a whole half hour already incredible. See how much we learn. That's awesome. Hey again, just in case y'all didn't hear before Jeff is going to join us on June fifth at the store here in river west everyday cycles, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, locus street, pilot's going by, you know, bump and stereos and whatnot. But we're going to be in the shop talking about his basically his set up, and then ask him any questions you want, if he hasn't seen it, I would be real surprised. So. Yeah. Please join us make comment on the podcast at a time. So we can have sheet of questions. Ready questions from the public? Hey, speaking of the public, you have a Facebook page to for your organization that does this touring thing. I it slips my mind what it's called a c two c bike tours. Okay. Coast to coast. Gotcha. You will put some we'll put some of these links in the show notes there for you folks here. Well by cranky. I think we really did do a whole half hour already. So thanks everybody for listening. And thank you very much jeffer- coming in. And also joining us in a few weeks here to further the discussion in real time with real people in a real bike shop. Yeah. Stop in call in at seven one seven seven two seven two four five three. I guess we could open the phone lines at day to. It's not an actual podcast day, but whatever but can be probably should be doing this call in. Call in. Cast special podcast special on on demand. We'll just have. I'm neater action on Mike listening in all of all of the don't ever call avenue. Devesh called occasionally occasionally I'll have a Pearl of wisdom that Trump's out. I'm need to wretched Mike. I'm Mike directional on. This is what happens when you don't wear your helmet. Yeah. We didn't even get into helmets versus no helmets. Okay. All right, folks gets ever. Great night. Bye bye.