A few last minute additions to our bikes before we drive to the start of our trip in Vancouver. For the most part we are ready to go. I was not able to train much at all during these last months. I was recovering from my knee surgery and then I had a skiing accident that kept me off of the bike. I will get in shape while I ride.
Another aspect of the ride that is just as important as physical fitness is mental fitness. We will be riding from 5 – 7 hours a day and we will need to watch for cars and traffic, watch our for pot holes, watch our pace, and of course watch the beautiful coast. With all that time on our bikes your mind can drift off. It takes mental toughness to focus on the presence. If I am not present I find that I will end my day tired from all of the unnecessary thinking. I will use all of my skills to focus on the present and fully enjoy the trip. As a take off on Chirrut’s Imwe mantra in Rogue One, I am one with the Force, the Force is with me, I have a new mantra, I am one with the road, the road is with me!
Bike Fit – Erika and I traded bikes. WHY? Erika has the Salsa Fargo II which has a carbon fork and I like the way it rides with the carbon fork so she agreed to switch. The carbon fork absorbs more of the road and is stiffer than the chromoly fork on the Salsa Fargo III. Though we have the same sized bikes, I went to Tour of Nevada City Bike Shop and Duane Strawser made some fine tune adjustments on the bike. He lowered the seat, adjusted the handle bars, and adjusted the brake levers. The bike fits perfect and I’m ready for 2.5 months in the saddle.
Click Stand – Our friend Sue Joerger introduced us to Click stand. It’s a bike stand for fully loaded bikes. On the Great Divide trip we were able to lay our bikes down in the dirt. There were few cars so we did not need to worry about car traffic so we did not need it. The Pacific Coast Bike Route is on the road so we will need to be mindful where we rest our bikes.
Handlebar Bag – Our road bike rig will now include a handlebar bag to carry our lunch, snacks, clothing, and phone. We found this Ortleib 6 Plus on Craigslist for a very good price. We are picking up Erika’s handlebar bag at Bike Tires for less in Portland on the way to Vancouver. The most convient feature of the handlebar bag is the weather proof map case. We have loaded the digital maps of the ride and are using Gaia GPS map for navigation. We can easily refer to it as we ride.
You’ll notice that one of the pictures of the handlebar bag shows the bike in snow. We are prepping for our bike ride at our cabin in Soda Springs and this season the amount of snow we have received is in record setting territory. I tried to ride the bike in snow but it was tricky. Going down hill was took a lot of balance and it was impossible to ride up hill.
Fenders – We expect to run into April showers during our trip and decided to install fenders to try and keep as clean and dry from the road grime as we can. Installing fenders was a chore that would drive anyone to drinking. I’m serious about this! Erika is an engineer and had trouble installing these. The directions were terrible and we had to refer to an installation video on Youtube. Even with the videos it took us several hours to install just the rear fender. The fenders are SKS Commuter 2. These are German but without the German engineering.
The front fender will not work on our bike. We have disc brakes and the hangar on the disc brake side makes it difficult to install. When we get back on our trip Erika will find a way to make it work.