Pre-trip - Northern Indiana on the Open Road - CycleBlaze


'Northern Indiana' being the direction I'm heading.

'Open Road' being the model of my bike, a Montgomery-Ward Open Road.

This will be my first fall (well, late summer) trip. Sunsets will come earlier, and I'll be in the Eastern Time Zone some of the time - both have me wondering how that will work out.

Another change for me is that this will be my first time (attempt) trying to update while on the road, sending emails to the journal while traveling.

The bike is ready: new tires (Continental City Ride 26 x 1.75 Inch), new heavy-duty tubes (Innova Thorn Resistant 26" Tube), replacement seat from ebay (the original broke on last year's trip), replacement pedals (from a friend of Jim's) and a new battery for the lights (a Christmas present).

I had one pre-trip ride, thanks to a visitor at work from Turkey who wanted to go bicycle riding. We hit the Rock Island Trail on Saturday, August 20.

friend Ibrahim from Turkey ready to ride the Rock Island Trail - August 20, 2011
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I'm relying heavily on Google Maps this year for route planning. Illinois bicycle maps are helpful, and I printed out the counties I'll be going through. Couldn't find any detailed Indiana maps, so I cut up a DeLorme Indiana Atlas & Gazetteer, taking the pages I'll need.

cutting out pages for the trip
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I'm not quite ready yet as far as planning and packing, but we'll get there (my wife Tahdra is helping me get out the door). The next report should be from the road.



After-trip update:

I've added extra pictures to the report after returning home from this trip. Those pictures are bracketed with +plus signs+. Also, here's information I see I should have added to this first page before I left, for those who haven't read my earlier trip reports:

Jim is a friend of mine from church who is very interested in my trips, but doesn't have a computer to receive email messages. I'd phone him from time-to-time so he could follow my progress using his atlas. Jim was also interested in how the used pedals his friend Mike gave me were working, since Jim knows about my past issues with pedals.

For each trip I go on, my friend George loans me his BlackBerry smartphone, which his wife Kris loads with useful 'apps'. This BlackBerry allowed me to update my journal report during the trip, and also, later into the trip, for Kris to be my day-by-day navigator. George is the only person I know who can live without his cell phone for weeks on end!

Since I referred to it later on in the journal, I'm including this picture I took of Ibrahim after our twenty miles on the Rock Island Trail (during my 'prep-ride').

+ Ibrahim taking a break in Wyoming, IL - August 20, 2011 +
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