Guide Coast to Coast on the TransAmerica Bicycle Trail

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Cycling Across the US, Coast to Coast

  1. Top stories in Outdoors
  2. Ray-Way Products
  3. An Initiation to the TransAmerica Bike Route
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  5. TransAmerica Bicycle Trail

Don't miss the pies at Cooky's in Golden City, Missouri! The flat-as-a-pool-table terrain of the Great Plains will change quickly into the roller-coaster riding of Missouri. The route crosses the Mississippi River at Chester, Illinois, and heads into Carbondale, another fun college town.

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A ferry takes you across the Ohio River into Kentucky, where you'll enjoy the evening fireflies at your campsites. Kentucky offers rolling white-fenced farms and woodlands until reaching Berea, the gateway to the Appalachian Mountains.

Coast To Coast Bike Tour 2017

A loop south of the route will take you to see Mammoth Cave National Park, the longest cave system in the world. Past Berea, you'll spend some time ascending and descending the mountains of the Appalachians, and riding part of the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia.

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The mountains turn to rolling hills and then flat riding through lush plantations and farmlands. The last stretch of the route is rich in the history of the American Revolution, with Colonial Williamsburg as the highlight. Yorktown, situated on the Chesapeake Bay, is the route's end. Some stretches of the western portion of the route follow large river valleys and can be generally flat, but expect some climbing almost every day between Astoria, Oregon, and Pueblo, Colorado.

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The passes throughout the Rocky Mountains are generally long but not terribly steep. The descents from these passes are, of course, a blast.

Day 1, Oregon

Most of Kansas is beautifully flat. Missouri through the Ozarks and eastern Kentucky through the Appalachians offers short, steep climbs. You might even have to walk up some hills.

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The Virginia portion of the route, surprisingly, has more total elevation gain than any other state. This route can be ridden from May through September. Note that snow can occur at any time in the Rocky Mountains, and the highest pass on the route is over 11, feet in Colorado. Although the prevailing weather patterns are from west to east, local wind patterns are more dependent on the passing pressure systems and local terrain, so you can expect your fair share of tailwinds and headwinds regardless of which direction you ride the route.

Camping choices will vary across the country between small private campgrounds, city parks, state and national parks, national forests, and the occasional back yard. The northern Oregon coast is a heavily traveled tourist route and is flush with camping and service opportunities.

An Initiation to the TransAmerica Bike Route

From Oregon eastward through Kansas, you'll find services limited mainly to the towns along the route. Carrying extra water in the west is a good plan. Camping options improve once you're in the Rockies, but you should still expect some long stretches between accommodations and services. Kansas is legendary for its hospitality. Camping in city parks is the norm through Kansas and Missouri. Food, water, and overnight accommodations are abundant from Missouri to Virginia.

The maps list churches that have opened their doors to cyclists, but they aren't all that closely spaced. If you're friendly and ask around, you can often get yourself invited to camp in a yard.

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In national forests you are allowed to camp anywhere on national forest land as long as you "pack it in, pack it out. You may also wish to sign up with Warmshowers , a reciprocal hospitality site for bicycle travelers, for other overnight options. Maximum: 11, ft. Maximum: ft. Maximum: 5, ft.

TransAmerica Bicycle Trail

Maximum: 7, ft. Maximum: 9, ft. Maximum: 4, ft. If you can swing even a few weeks or months off from work, you can likely take a stab at all or at least a large part of a bike ride across America. Because we know that if you can measure just how long the cross country bike ride will likely take, then you can start to make real plans that make the time commitment and adventure more feasible. Some cyclists prefer riding in the hills and mountains for a more scenic view and more exertion on their body, while others can reach some pretty high speeds while cruising through the Great Plains.

Of course, average bike speed may vary depending on physical prowess and weight of the bike but it presents some real numbers. As far as daily rides, most people shoot to cycle about hours per day and cover about 70 miles per day. By dividing the length of your entire route by 13 mph plus the amount of time you plan to bike each day, you can map out your overall trip duration and then make your daily plans. Keep reading to see how we can put what you just read to practical use for determining how long a bike ride across America would take.

We would estimate that a bike ride across America that covered 4, total miles would take an average rider at least 61 days to complete. Our self-contained bike ride across America took 80 days, and we covered about 4, miles total. Start with a smaller adventure if required, one in which you can still get into that adventure travel mindset and experience. Choose your desired length of the trip by selecting a route in line with your intended time frame. There are approximately 30 routes mapped out just on the Adventure Cycling Route Network, some less than a week under miles and others across the entire Atlantic Coast mi.

I can make it in 30 days or less if I was given the chance 60 days no way. But still 30 days or less seems really easy. I can run for an hour straight going 7 mph a bike would be a breeze. No doubt, Joel. Not an easy feat at all. On my bike ride across America , I never broke a century and there were still mental troughs to slog through.

My brother did it in less than a month. He actually just wrote a book about it called Resilience and is working on getting it published. Well, at 54 I set out to cycle around the world. First time cycle touring and not a regular cyclist. More like 8 mph for me, but it will likely improve.

My bike and kit weigh quite a bit.