|If you are considering doing the trip here are a few suggestions:
- Get both the book and the maps. They complement each other.
- The Adventure Cycling web site lists addendums to the maps. Write these on the maps to
ensure that the information is up to date.
- Although the book suggests that the route is best ridden with a BOB trailer, panniers
work fine. And they don't have the 18 lb deadweight of the BOB.
- If using panniers get steel as opposed to aluminium pannier racks. If they crack/break
you can forget about getting them welded since aluminium welders are extremely rare.
Adventure Cycling sell some specifically designed for mountain bikes. They
are bullet proof.
- Get the strongest wheels you can. They have double rimmed wheels which are very strong.
I didn't have a single broken spoke or problem with my wheels the entire trip whereas on a
previous trip on paved roads I had a regular wheel fail.
- Use either thorn resistant or slimed tubes. Punctures are a fact of life on the trip and
they will save you hassles.
- Know how to fix your bicycle. Bike shops are few and far between.
- Carry at least two spare tubes for the days when you blow both the front and rear tyres.
- Carry a spare tyre. Just in case.
- Take plastic cable ties to hold things together when they fail. Be sure to have heavy
- Carry spare brake pads. You will go probably go through at least one set.
- Have handlebar extenders. They really help on the steep hills.
- Have a very good set of cycling gloves. The trip is hard on the hands. I also suggest
soft foam handlebar grips. Anything to reduce the vibrations on your hands. I had gel
gloves and they were great.
- A cell phone is good insurance. We bought a Verizon pre-pay phone for $100 from Radio
Shack. They have the best coverage, which isn't saying too much ...
- Don't rely on using credit or debit cards. Places like Hachita only accept cash.
- Get your bike checked when you come across bike shops. Scott from Ultimate Cycles in
Salida Co. is a master mechanic.
Plan on meeting friendly and helpful people!