We know people always have questions because it is human nature to be curious! We were unable to find a comprehensive set of general questions about the simple aspects of riding a bike cross country so instead, here are some we anticipate you have for us:
7,700 miles is a lot…How many miles do you plan to cover each day?
We plan on averaging anywhere between 45-75 miles a day, taking into consideration the elevation gains in states like Colorado and Montana, along with many miles of flat roads in Minnesota and Illinois.
How are you going to fit your bed on your bikes?
Each night we plan on sleeping in our tent. There are many designated places in cities that allow cyclists to camp out each night. There is also a website called Warmshowers, that allows people to host cyclists in their home.
You won’t have the luxury of a kitchen on those bike contraptions. What in the world will you eat?
After speaking to many people, on an average day of riding you burn upwards of 7,000 calories, so basically we are going to eat whatever we want. Whether it be, a full pizza, copious amounts of energy bars or gallons on gallons of chocolate milk. Depending on our funds, we hope to experience authentic cuisines in all parts of the U.S. as well.
How are you going to fit everything on those bikes?
So let us break it down for you (in case you don’t already know), usually have a front rack and a back rack. On both sides of both racks, you have a panniers. With 4 panniers in total, each one will hold various essentials ranging from clothes, to a small camping stove to a first aid kit. It’s easy livin; on the road so we are preparing to not bring many articles of clothes so that we can lighten the load 🙂
How long does it take to bike 7,700 miles?
7,700 miles is a lot. It’s a little more than twice the distance from New York to Paris. We both graduate college in May and have not committed to anything afterwards in order to keep this trip open-ended. If all goes as planned we will be back in Phoenix, Arizona within 4 months. But do things really ever go as planned…?
Why bike across the country?
Every night we think about that question. And honestly we haven’t come up with a good, definitive answer, but we can tell you that we have both done an immense amount of international travel and neither of us have really ever spent enough time getting to know our own backyard. What better way to see it than on two wheels? We feel thankful for all the support we have in helping us make this opportunity possible. We’re excited to be raising money for underprivileged youth to experience the outdoors, and we hope it will give others a glimpse of what great opportunities the great outdoors has to offer.
Your route extends through several states. What major cities will you hit?
We plan to stick to the Northern Tier route from the Adventure Cycling Association’s map, which takes us from Acadia National Park to Seattle, Washington and then from there we head home to Phoenix through Oregon, California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, finishing through the Grand Canyon. Along the way we will be passing through cities like Minneapolis, Jackson Hole, Portland, Salt Lake City along with National parks like Glacier and so on.
How will you spread the message? Are you going to attach signs to your bikes that say “visit thebendableroad.com”?
Our main form of spreading the message will be via contacting non-profits, outdoor ed companies, summer camps, and youth organizations beforehand to make plans to meet up with them. Additionally, our partners will be working with us to contact local news agencies to spread our messages. While on the road, we will spread our message with all those who we encounter. We love talking with people! For both of us, meeting new people brings us an immense amount of joy and thrill. We hope to reach as many people as possible through these outlets. Oh! We forgot to mention- we hope you’ll share our blog and follow us on social media (Instagram @thebendableroad).
Those bikes surely can’t have showers or washers or dryers. You two are going to stink.
We realize that this lifestyle will definitely not be the most glamorous and we are completely fine with that. With that, showering might be a rare commodity, but lucky for us, most of our route is along a river so we will be able to wash up in the fresh water, thanks to Mother Nature. As for laundry, we plan on washing most of our clothes at laundry mats in the major cities, or in the sink /bathtub the rare times we have to sleep at a motel.
Are you two avid cyclists? Why not drive?
Ask us that half way through and we may wish we had rented a car… JUST KIDDING. But in all seriousness, we enjoy nothing more than spending time on our bikes. It’s liberating, it’s easy and it’s environmentally friendly. We try our hardest to reduce our carbon footprint as much as possible, by riding our bikes whenever we can. Climate change is real, and a major contributing factor is the emissions that we expel from our cars, so by using our bikes, we are being environmentally conscious along with conquering our mission. It’s also much more of a challenge. It’s easy to drive a car and always have a roof over your head. On our bikes, if it starts to rain, we bear down and keep riding. This will be one of the hardest challenges either of us has accepted.