Friday, April 6, 2012

Ready? Not yet.

I commence my adjusted lifestyle today working four day weeks allowing alternate four day weekends. The idea is to schedule long rides and overnights during the long weekends as part of being ready for August. Cedar Key (50+ miles), Steinhatchee (60+) and, eventually, St. Augustine (100 or so) are suitable destinations. Other parts of the plan are successive 50 mile loops and state park camping.

I purchased he Safari in April of last year and have accumulate 4800+ miles. I am more satisfied with the bike now than ever, in part because of additions and adjustments; tires, stem, pedals, fenders, saddle and so on. The Travoy has made my carless lifestyle more successful adding capacity over that available with panniers and making grocery shopping painless. Brooks doesn't need my praise, but I am one of those who has found their saddle to be ideal. Break-in was painless (literally and figuratively) but did require that I understand a B-17 was not going to behave like a gel filled pad. Maintaining good posture is a significant part of the Brooks' comfort, too, meaning I can ride more comfortably and (I hope) longer.

The value of Schwalbe tires has already been documented. Like Brooks, Schwalbe's have detracters, but for reasons irrelevant to me. Heavy? So am I. Hard to mount? I had no problem. Ultimately, they work well for me and I doubt I will ever choose anything else.

The biggest question remains whether I can handle the demand of 1000+ miles. Camping? Motel? Weather? Traffic? Secondly, if I handle all the physical and mental issues can I (do I want to) challenge myself with a do-it-yourself trip to the Skyline Drive? Doubt is generated more by the route after leaving the mountains. Do I traverse North Carolina and head for the South Carolina coast? Do I add the Blue Ridge Parkway and then cycle Georgia from north to south?

While I cannot plan for everything if I prepare myself well I suspect I will be able to handle whatever comes along.

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