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tall old member
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1,586 Posts
Going to ride the GAP (Great Alleghany Passage) next week. since I’m solo this time I signed on with a group called senior cycling. Full support van etc. I’ll take some photos and post them as I go.
You probably don’t really need the support van but you will enjoy the ride. I’ve done Pittsburgh to DC both directions. The first time I did it solo and ten years later did it with five other people from another bike forum. Riding with others in your group is fun. Most of the time the six of us didn’t ride as one big group but split up into mostly groups of two after we decided where we were going to camp the next night. We always camped together.
Have fun on your ride and make some new friends.
 

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Premium Member
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1,282 Posts
We’ll I’m in Pittsburgh, and just got out of Bicycle Heaven. If anyone is ever near here you owe it to yourself to stop in. it is without a doubt the most interesting bike store/museum I’ve ever seen. I’ll post a bunch of photos but this place is a must see for any cyclist.
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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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5,976 Posts
We’ll I’m in Pittsburgh, and just got out of Bicycle Heaven. If anyone is ever near here you owe it to yourself to stop in. it is without a doubt the most interesting bike store/museum I’ve ever seen. I’ll post a bunch of photos but this place is a must see for any cyclist. View attachment 55285
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What an establishment! Thank you for sharing the pics! They have inspired me to want to visit. Great find! Do you know if you'll have to chance to get any saddle time in while you're visiting?
 

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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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5,976 Posts
I will be visiting the FL panhandle in early October for a wedding. The present plan is that I will drive out and spend the night in the St. Louis area, some 12hrs from here. That's right about the drive's halfway point, and adjacent to Katy Trail. I hope to check things out and log some miles on the Katy. Potentially a day long excursion. That's less than I might like, but enough to let me know how much effort I want to put into riding the whole length of the trail.

As for FL, it'll be October and likely a bit more pleasant. The town I'll be visiting with Mrs. Newleaf, Seaside, is right on the Gulf and appears to have excellent cycling infrastructure. I hope to explore some of it, but because I'm choosing to drive, I'm also bringing our paddle boards with an eye toward spending time on the Gulf of Mexico. As much as I love cycling, I expect to lose mileage to the lure of time on the water. I still expect to log some saddle time.
 

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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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5,976 Posts
Oh I’ll be getting saddle time alright 36 miles today and 26 tomorrow with 3 more days of riding for a total of 150 on the GAP. Over 5 days with a group called senior cycling.
Oh, yes! I forgot you had announced that ride a while back. I'd love to do the C&O at some point. I hope your ride is wonderful and fulfilling. Any pics or descriptions you care to drop will be welcome. That said, no pressure. Enjoy that sweet ride! :love:
 

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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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5,976 Posts
Just made hotel reservations in St. Charles, MO for early October. The FL trip is on. I will spend 2 nights in St. Charles in order to have a day to explore the area by bike, specifically part of the Katy Trail. My hotel appears to be literally across the street from it, so I will be able to ride right from there without worrying about driving anywhere else. It's also situated right in the downtown area, so there appear to be plenty of food options within easy walking or cycling distance. I checked with the hotel to be sure bikes are welcome indoors there. No problem. Turns out, I'm not the first to notice the hotel's proximity to the Katy :D.

I tried this trick once before, on a trip to visit my brother and SIL a few years back. Then, forecast spring storms scuttled the idea at the last minute. Hopefully this time things will work out better. I realize a single day on the Katy Trail is not exactly the way it's meant to be ridden. Still, better a day than nothing at all. That will hopefully tell me where to place my 'ride the whole Katy Trail' desire relative to other potential touring options. It helps that for a car trip to FL from Denver, St Charles/St. Louis is right about at the halfway point. Hopefully an easy 12hr drive. A similar stretch will land me in the Sunshine State. With my touring bike.

I have logged some really happy miles on that bike in FL, but not as many as I would like, and far to the south in penninsular FL. This will be in the panhandle. The trip will also hopefully include some paddle boarding on the Gulf of Mexico. I expect I won't log many miles in FL, but I look forward to having the opportunity, and in a whole new-to-me place.
 

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Premium Member
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1,282 Posts
I’m back! Home that is. Rode the GAP with 12 other people in a group called senior cycling. Truly a lifetime experience. Met a bunch of awesome people who are already making plans for next year! Crossed the mason dixon line, and the eastern continental divide. Still trying to digest just exactly what happened to me, but the ride was extremely transformative. I highly recommend it and senior cycling if your over 50. The situation couldn’t have been better.
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Plant Infrastructure Road surface Tree Branch
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Plant Sky Natural landscape Cloud Plain
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Premium Member
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Alright, here’s the summary. Between bicycle heaven, Senior cycling, and the GAP This life event (I stopped calling it a vacation) Is firmly planted in the top 10 of my life. Met a bunch of awesome people. (When using the “would you ride 150 miles on your bike in a week “ as a filter, the people who are willing to do that are an interesting group) They came from all over Seattle, Montana, Boston, 2 people from Iowa (my newest buds) New Mexico, and even one goof ball from Buffalo! I’m pretty sure at this point I will be doing this again, maybe not the gap but one of the organized rides that are out there. Didn’t need the sag wagon but I did get 1 flat. (Had it repaired and on my way before the sweep arrived) but much more important to me was everything was prepared, lunch each day at a stop on the trail. Dinner places all picked out and paid for, along with awesome lodging. Took out all of the side hassles that can affect your ride and mood. Bottom line DO THIS you won’t regret it.

Two things about these photos:
First off that’s how much concentration it takes for an old guy to take a selfie! I never do that might have been the hardest thing I did all week!
And of course I was able to position myself to make it look like the fountain is shooting out of my head! Totally accidental
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