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Live Video Replay
Hey, I’m presenting at the National Bike Summit’s Active Transportation Leadership Retreat March 14th. National Bike Summit is the biggest collection of bike advocates and it happens in DC. This will be the first time I’m lawyering it up in the bike advocacy space, so it’s going to be fun.
Fellow Star Wars nerds! I have the Disney audio but need some time to distill it. Look for that in March.
The Kessel Run: A Central Florida Bike Tour Takeaways
2- Urban riding is great training for bicycle touring amongst motorized vehicles
3 – Disneyworld and Airports: not super bike friendly unless they are
4 – Ride With GPS is a fantastic tool for riding in “new to me” places, but spending some time with Google Streetview can demystify spots that look gnarly on a map
5 – I don’t think I’ll ever stick to one style of touring and Florida proves me why
6 – Four seasons FTW
7 – Ultralight does not mean ultrastupid – I got lucky with the way the rain went considering I forgot my rain pants. Double check and use a pack list, don’t just assume everything is in your bags like I did!
8 – Off-road opportunity in Florida appears to be abundant
9 – Bromptons are great, and require less maintenance but I got very lucky on the seat post (broken clamp before, itty bitty screw after)
10 – Yes, you can absolutely ride with a lightsaber on your rear rack.
Unveiling The Missing Link bike tour
I’ll be flying to southern California with my Brompton to ride the one piece of the California coast I missed in my 2014 tour and connect two dots between Anaheim and Oceanside that I bypassed by train. It’s a short link in an otherwise uninterrupted chain. It’s the missing link.
2014 ride was dominated by camping but towards the end there is a long stretch of southern CA with limited camping. Combine a dwindling budget with a reticence to deal with a question mark of Camp Pendleton access, I decided to bike inland for a cheaper hotel stay, add some miles through Los Angeles, and take the train past Camp Pendleton to get to the next campground.
Camp Pendleton access has been an issue since 9/11 and in 2014 the system was practically a day-to-day assessment I didn’t want to deal with.
Now, the system in place is arguably worse, but the way around the base is clearer – Interstate 5 is legally available for the 6 or so miles. Permits are available at the south gate, but I’ve decided to just go with the flow and ride 30 minutes rather than get a ride down to get the permit and go back north again. Arguably a minor challenge—the cycling should be easy, but the zooming cars are a concern— but with wide shoulders I feel comfortable with the choice.
On my train ride down in 2014 the views from the Surfliner made me regret the decision to be on a train. Now I get a chance to ride the coast along a truly iconic stretch of beaches in Orange County and south.
Will be riding the Brompton and forgoing camping again (there aren’t great options in this stretch).
Will tackle this in two days of about 50ish miles each. First stretch includes a lot of trail time along the Santa Ana River to the coast to rejoin the Pacific Coast route. Then I’ll be sticking on that for the ride south.
I plan to wrap up in San Diego but the link completes well north of there in Oceanside, which gives me an out via a fast forward if the need arises. Whether I wrap up in SD or Oceanside, I have a train to take me back up to Burbank to fly back, because LAX is apparently a disaster these days
I never considered my 2014 ride to be incomplete—ride your ride I always say. But I do look forward to completing the missing link.
Possible meetup opportunity in San Diego – it would be a Friday night 3/27 probably in the Gaslamp area. If you’re interested check out the details at pedalshift.net/sandiego and give me a heads up so I can be in touch. Not a late night because this guy has a stupid early train!
- You may have noticed the numbers of the show are getting tantalizingly close to 200.
- Episode 200 will be Part 1 of The Missing Link.
- Considering the earliest episodes of the show were preparation and execution of my 2014 ride, I can’t think of a better way to celebrate 200 episodes of the pod than this tour.
- Look for it in early April.
As always we like to close out the show with a special shoutout to the Pedalshift Society! Because of support from listeners like you, Pedalshift is a weekly bicycle touring podcast with a global community, expanding into live shows and covering new tours like The Kessel Run and The Missing Link bike tours! If you like what you hear, you can support the show for 5 bucks, 2 bucks or even a buck a month. And there’s one-shot and annual options if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it all out at pedalshift.net/society.
Mark Van Raam
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