I am getting prematurely excited. It is only the 23rd of January 2016 and I am planning my 2017 summer holiday – jut a little bike ride – I’ve not done a big bike tour for a few years now.
I am playing dot-the-dots across America with Google Maps – West to East.
I currently have 9 dots on the map, including my start and end points. Google Maps tell me that my current route is 4170 miles long and I can cycle it in 366 hours!
My route will be longer than what they say – there will be many more dots to be added, route variations to avoid busy roads, diversions to find campsites and other places to stay and not to mention back tracking when I get lost.
As to Googles suggested time – 366 hours (15.25 days) – this would take nothing but a major miracle – it can be done in under 9 days but this is for seriously fast endurance riders and that aint me. Google Maps obviously do not take the following into consideration – pee stops, food stops, sleep stops, I’m lost can you help me stops, I’m knackered and I need to stop stop or my bike is knackered and it needs to stop stop or any other kind of stop, including I would like to enjoy my bike ride and take in the places that I am visiting kind of stop.
The miles could be reduced if I did the shortest route across America and I wanted to play with the traffic but I don’t want to do either of these things. I want to avoid as much traffic as possible and I want to start at one of the most Westerly Points and finish my journey at one of the most Easterly – both points to have a Lighthouse.
So here are my “dots” so far –
- Cape Blanco Lighthouse, Port Oxford, Oregon
- Heceta Head Lighthouse, Florence, Oregon
- Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
- Crazy Horse Memorial, South Dakota
- Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota
- Oz Museum, Kansas
- Mark Twain boyhood Home and Museum, Missouri
- New York (City), New York
- West Quoddy Head Lighthouse, Maine
My plan is to take 3 months off work – 3 months as I need to put some kind of time limit on it, because I will need to return to work and earn some money and because 3 months is the maximum time you can get on a regular holiday visa.
The “plan” is still in the very early stages but I am not planning on heading off until the 2nd or 3rd week in July 2017 so I have about 16 months to get things organised and save some money.
The plan also includes running (walking, hobbling and / or crawling) the Maine Marathon before completing my journey.