Have vaccine, will travel - Two Far 2021 - Sooo... Far - CycleBlaze

March 10, 2021

Have vaccine, will travel

After a winter at home in Florida, we're ready to get back on the road and explore the country again.  We've had our vaccines and are ready to roll!

We'll be traveling on our Seavo, or as we call it now, our "RV", with the same equipment we've been using for the last two years.

Our RV
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We're calling this year's tour "Sooo...Far" because it is far, and it's our longest tour, so far.  By the time we finish, we expect to have ridden about 6,000 miles.  We're leaving April 9th  and returning about September 15th.  This is the planned route:

 

Heart 5 Comment 2
Jeffrey WaldoHello Jeanne & Kerry,
This looks like a seriously fun trip. I look forward to your journal postings. Drilling down in RWGPS I see where you have done very detailed route planning. My wife and I found that travel around Sidney, MT, Williston, ND, and U.S. 2 is impacted by oil field truck activity. Riding a lot of U.S. 2 in 2019, we only felt unsafe between the MT-ND state line and Williston ( a route you are not taking), and only there because of the incline of the shoulder, rumble strip which occupies a significant percentage of the shoulder, and cross winds which can take you by surprise in the bottom of the coulees and draws. It is also the only portion of U.S. 2 that is not four-lane. Going north out of Williston was noisy from the trucks but with plenty of shoulder room.

Crossing the Bluewater Bridge west-to-east at Port Huron, MI to Sarnia, ON was easier than expected though we had to call the day before to alert them we were coming. But it did involve unloading our bicycles and putting everything in the back of a bridge administration pickup to cross.

Our journal, "East Saint Mary to Eastern Maine" is on Cycle Blaze if you want additional details.

Good luck on the ride.
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4 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Jeffrey WaldoThanks for sharing information about the route. We really appreciate hearing from people who have been there. We still have some concerns about the Bluewater Bridge. We ride a 9+ foot long recumbent tandem and have had problems with various bridge transport folks having a big enough truck. We always call ahead and let them know the size of our bike, but that hasn't kept us from having a short bed pick up show up to get us. A couple of times it was great - they let us ride across the bridge in question and followed behind in the truck as a safety escort. We'll find out what the Bluewater Bridge has to offer.
I started reading your journal. It's fun to follow your trip. I have to say, though, as Floridians, we have a different opinion on what temperature is too cold to ride. I hope Montana and North Dakota are much warmer in late June that in early May!
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4 months ago

We have some crossings into Canada, but if the border remains closed, we'll stay in the US.  We have friends we'd like to visit in Ontario and, since we were so close, we thought it would be fun  to say we biked in Saskatchewan and Manitoba as well.

It's 30 days until we go and we're resisting the temptation to pack up everything NOW.  Waiting is not our best thing, but we're trying to be patient.  We'll be on the road soon.

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Comment on this entry Comment 18
Scott AndersonAmbitious! Good luck!
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4 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithThanks, Scott. We've enjoyed following your Winterlude and are itching to get back on the road. A healthy winter in the Florida sunshine is absolutely nothing to complain about, but it's time to travel again!
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4 months ago
Francie GassWow! Seeing it in print makes it real and very impressive. Glad we are catching you just before you leave! We will see you, right?
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4 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Francie GassAbsolutely you will see us. We will meet you in High Springs and ride the last two days with you, then stay two nights in St. Augustine. Starting our trip by riding with you is one of the reasons we are looking forward to getting on the road so much!
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4 months ago
Paul KriegHey Guys: Just a comment on parts of your route thru Oklahoma....take 183 north out of TX. Follow the CR north out of Electra and zig-zag over to 183 on paved county roads. On 183, there is a nice wide shoulder and about the same traffic as you would have on SH5 going thru Altus and parts north. I have driven and pedaled that route. Went that way in 2015 on my long bike trip north. About 10 miles north of Clinton, OK, take state road 33 across to SH 34......very little traffic on 33. The traffic on 183 is about the same as Hwy 5 thru Altus, except 5 is chip-seal and has no shoulder at all........unless you consider the fog line a shoulder. I have driven both routes in my car, and as a bike tourist, 183 would be my pick. Also, I would stay off 183 going into Woodward, OK from the east side.....way too much traffic and not much of a shoulder. You can get to Woodward on any of the county roads to the west of 34, and all the ones I saw leading into Woodward are paved. Pedaled that way on my 2015 tour. Stay off the main drag in Woodward until you are on the far west side of town.
No shoulder and too much traffic. Once you are on the west side of Woodward, the shoulder on 183 is nice and wide except in passing lanes, where it is about four feet if I recall correctly. North out of Fort Supply, it is a 2 lane road with no shoulder, but the traffic falls off to a trickle at that point.
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4 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Paul KriegHey Paul,

Thanks for the info - local knowledge is always appreciated. Plans are to be in Montezuma from May 26-28. Hope to see you!!

Kerry
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4 months ago
Paul KriegTo Jeanna & Kerry SmithAnother thing, when you are northbound on K-23 coming towards Montezuma, don't go all the way up to Hwy 56. Turn left on County Road "C-C", which is about 3 miles south of 56. It is gravel, but not heavily traveled. It is generally in good shape, with washboard only near the intersection with K-23. I can check on it for you closer to your arrival date and let you know the conditions at that time. Also, C-C road turns into "Geronimo" at the city limits.

Too many "bull haulers", grain trucks and regular semi's on Hwy 56. That time of year, the wind is typically out of the south, you will be on the north side of the road with a 2 foot wide shoulder and the turbulence from the trucks traveling in both directions will have you feeling beaten by the time you pedal the 5 miles to Montezuma from K-23. When I started my trip in 2019, I left home early on a Sunday morning just to avoid the semi's between here and Ensign where the shoulder on 56 widens from 2 to 8 feet. Also, there is a newly re-paved (last summer) County Road you can take from Montezuma north to Ingalls where you catch Hwy 50 to get to Garden City, which will save you some back-tracking.
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4 months ago
Keith A. SpanglerGuys, have a great, great adventure! So, cool to have my new journal right next to my friends.....
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4 months ago
Alain AbbateWow, 140 thousand feet of climbing and plenty of wind out in the great plains. You have your work cut out for you! I love the route and look forward to hearing about your adventures.
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3 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithWe look forward to having the adventures!
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3 months ago
JP CharronHello Jeanna and Kerry
Nice to know that you are leaving for an other challenging trip !
At time, we will follow you on your journal adventure.
Be safe and good luck 😉
Pierre & Sylvie xox
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3 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithThanks Sylvie and Pierre. We appreciate the good wishes.
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3 months ago
Robert FlynnTo Jeanna & Kerry SmithGood luck and safe travels . Looking forward to your journal as you will be passing through my area of Michigan .
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3 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithThanks. Where are you in Michigan?
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3 months ago
Jacques CharronHi Kerry and Jenna,
We wish you all the best for this 6000 miles bike adventure across the country! You are always the greatest biking inspiration for us!
Always most interesting to follow you in your descriptive and colourful journal.
Enjoy every day of you ride one at a time!
Cheers!
Jacques et Lise
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3 months ago
Robert FlynnTo Jeanna & Kerry SmithI live in between Flint and Lansing in the town of Owosso which is the very central part of Michigan . Just a little info there are ton of rail-trails where it looks like you are going to ride through the state . www.mitrails.org is a great resource for these trails .
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3 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Jacques CharronThanks, Jacques and Lise. You have hit on the key to happy bike touring - one day at a time. That's what we tell people who ask how we do such long tours. It's like old saying "How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." We find most of our bites to be quite delicious.
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3 months ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithTo Robert FlynnWe've been to Owosso. We rode the trail from Ionia a few years ago. Michigan does have a terrific network of paved (our favorite kind!) trails and I think we have ridden most of them since we started bike touring in 2013.
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3 months ago