After completing last year’s transcontinental bike ride, I was pretty burned out on cycling. I knew that I wanted to do some more epic rides, but not for a while. The three guys who were interested in doing another epic tour already had plans for 2018, so taking a long break sounded like a good idea. But in February of this year, I took an Adventure Cycling Bicycle Touring Leadership course. Big mistake! There, I met up with a couple of women who have ridden portions of the Pacific Coast Route. which more or less follows the Pacific Coast from Canada to Mexico. They enjoyed the riding, roads, and scenery and especially the comradery they enjoyed with other cyclists on the route. That got me thinking. Maybe, while the guys are out cycling and travelling with their wives and girlfriends, I should make my own plan for the ride and just do it. I set those thoughts aside and got back to living my normal old life.
But my normal old life is not very exciting, at times. About 3 months ago, I was in a lull and started thinking about doing the ride this year. And thinking turned into planning, and pretty soon, I had made the decision to ride from Vancouver, British Columbia to Tijuana Mexico, following crewing on the Races Across the West and America, as well as a couple of vacations I had planned during the summer. I began training and getting my gear ready. In July, I finalized my itinerary and made lodging reservations. During the days before and after an Alaskan cruise I took in August, I shook down my gear and readied my bike with a new chain, cassette, brake rotors, tires, handlebar tape, kickstand (that’s right) and front racks and panniers. I coordinated with a friend in Portland to get me and my bike up to Vancouver for the start of the ride, and with my brother-in-law Charlie Combs to pick me up in Tijuana and help get me and my bike back to Arizona. I would begin cycling on August 23rd and complete the ride in 34 days.
[To read the daily blow by blow of this adventure, use this link: 8/23/18 Canada to Mexico Solo Tour. To navigate to the next or previous blog post, look for the tiny “NEXT” and “PREVIOUS” links that follow the “Published by Eileen Hardy” paragraph at the bottom of each page.]