My Route, More or Less (Red line, but starting in NY)

My Route, More or Less (Red line, but starting in NY)

Make a Difference

I'm pedaling for many reasons, the most important of which is to raise awareness and funds for Pedals For Progress. P4P is a non-profit that collects used bicycles and sewing machines in the US and donates them to poor people overseas. P4P combines my love of bicycling with my growing concern for those deprived of life's most basic necessities - sparked by a visit to the slums of Kibera in June '09 (pictures). P4P improves mobility and economic options for destitute people, opening pathways to greater dignity and opportunity.

Please make a donation, if you can (please write "TSQ2USQ" in the '...honor of' field). Remember, a bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives roses. :)

My Game Plan

I'm following portions or all of three routes mapped out by the Adventure Cycling Association: the Atlantic, TransAm, & Western Express. I'll cycle through thirteen states: NY, NJ, PA, MD, VA, KY, IL, MO, KS, CO, UT, NV & CA! I'm leaving on 4/17/10, and expect to return to New Jersey by mid June - back to my family, friends, & neighbors. I plan on cycling 5 - 6 hours per day, 6 days/week, usually starting in the early AM. My laptop and phone will allow me to work remotely most days, but I won't pass up opportunities to smell the roses along the way!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Day 23

Today's Route: GPS Details. Eminence, MO --> Marshfield, MO. ~110 miles. Heat, hills & hobbled bike.

Started the day off in a mild panic, thinking I might be stuck in Eminence 'till Monday, the next earliest possible delivery date for a shifter cable via FedEx. Yesterday I thought I had a bandaid solution to my broken shifter cable, which had reduced the number of gears on my bike from 33 to 3. When I set out to implement this solution before my ride I quickly realized shortening my chain might not be a great idea. It would have taken me from 3 speeds down to a single speed, albeit an easy to pedal on hills single speed (fixed gear?). Desperately trying to find a way to get my chain in an easier gear w/o losing more gears, I started messing w/ my rear derauiller limit screws. Bingo! I moved the lower limit way up the cassette, and was able to maintain three (easier) speeds. This was enough to get me out of the Ozarks, though to generate sufficient forward momentum I had to stand and pedal on all but the smallest hills.

I met only a few people today, focused as I was on putting miles behind me. On my way out of town I did have a pleasant conversation w/ a Nat'l Park Ranger - an interpreter - at the coffee shop. I also met Nile, "like the river", who was traveling eastbound, solo. He'd just repaired a blown out rear tire w/ electric tape & a folded up dollar bill. Necessity is the mother of invention. Nile's only 17. I s/ have done this ride when I was his age...better late than never!

I stayed in a $35/night motel, the Plaza in Marshfield, MO. Perfect for this trip: clean (except the carpet) & cheap w/ a bed & a shower. With luck and grit, I clear the Ozark hills tomorrow! Kansas beckons! FLAT!

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