Day 10: Billings-Miles City

I will never again complain about the quality of our Dutch cycle paths. Today I encountered a (fortunately  short) piece of road that was so bad that if I would have had fillings they would spontaneously jump out. And the cattle guard is a bit bigger than back home. The gaps are so big a small child could fall through. Just like the rumble strips, quite dangerous.

Some things still amazes me regarding their size. Big trucks, RV's that are towing a car behind them, trains more than 2 kilometers long and very big sprinkler systems that seem to be hundreds of meters long.


Day 9: Harlowton-Billings

Today was going to be a easy day. Mostly down hill and with only a distance of around 150 kilometers. The tiredness from yesterday is gone after a somewhat longer night (I got to sleep in until 6 AM). The first hour of biking went very well with a average of 37+ km/h. The route was easy to. Just go straight for 75 kilometers, take a right and go another 75 kilometers. Now that we have the Rocky Mountains behind us the roads will only get flatter and more straight.


Day 8: Helena-Harlowton

Yesterday I was to tired to write a long post. So I'll give a brief summary about what happened that day. First of all the mouse had moved from Josef's bike to mine. When I opened the lid I first saw that my paper bag which had my food had been opened from the side. He tried to hide under my seat and I tried to grab my camera. But unfortunately he ran away. He did however stole my Clif Gel, because the day before I bought two of them at REI.


Day 6: Missoula

Today was a rest day so that meant sleeping in. Well, if you are used to getting up around 5 AM every morning you wake up at that time even when you get to sleep in, and so did I. Luckily I could get back to sleep. Breakfast was made by Winda (stir fried eggs). And I did some writing / responding on my blog. Then it was time for a massage. The students from the massage school came by to give us a massage for free. The ladies knew what they were doing. The pinched, squeezed and massaged everything back in place.


Day 5: Three Rivers Resort-Missoula

Today we had a almost 200 kilometer long trip ahead of us with a big climb over Lobo Pass, about 1600 meters high. The peak was around 100 kilometers away and was a bit steeper then yesterday, but still manageable.


Day 1: Portland-Cascade Locks

Today we first went to downtown Portland to be sent off at the fountain. Today would be officially declared Velomobile day by the guy from the department of transportation of Portland. The fountain was large and beautiful, squirted all kinds of patterns and smelled like chlorine. It was a hot day so I decided to ride a few laps around the edge of the fountain to cool down. The guy from the press agency (don't know the exact name) asked if he could take some pictures and write down my name. Could be that you'll a picture of me and my bike in a (local) news paper or so.


Final setup day

Today was the last change to prepare yourself and your bike for the big tour. For personal care I bought some powdered Gatorade which you can mix with water. Besides that some bananas and fruity nuts. Also the bike has been tweaked a bit. The chain has been cleaned, some stickers have been applied (ROAM, DHL, Clif Bar, Schalbe, Sinner Bikes and my own number, 25) and I did some experimenting with the placement of the Contour+ camera. I was planning to record the entire coast-to-coast ride and make a time-lapse. So the camera has to be as vibration free as possible (see pictures below).


Visited TerraCycle

Yesterday I woke up at 4:30 AM (probably because of the jetlag), but today I got to sleep in till 8:30 AM. After another American breakfast we headed to TerraCycle around noon. During the Cycle Vision weekend at Biddinhuizen I met Pat Franz (the owner) and we talked about visiting his little factory. TerraCycle makes all kinds of different recumbent parts. The one you might know is the idler.


Arrived in Portland

What a journey! We arrived sound and well in the Days Inn North in Portland (OR). The adventure began on Saturday afternoon with a three hour train ride to Naarden. Sunday morning the alarm clock went of at 5 AM and after a quick breakfast Bram S. and myself put on our backpacks and headed for Schiphol by train. When we arrived Marcel B. was already waiting for us and not much later Johann S. and Bert van V. arrived. We had checked in the day before via the internet, so now it was only a matter of handing of luggage and going though customs and gate checkup.


ROAM preparations (part 3)

A last update before I head to Naarden tomorrow afternoon where I'm staying at fellow ROAM rider Bram S. for the night so we can arrive at 7 AM at Schiphol. Two weeks ago I ordered a new MacBook Pro, because my old one died a few weeks before. It was tight, but a day before leaving it arrived. After installing all the necessary software I gathered all my stuff for the backpack. You know what's annoying... the feeling you get that you've forgotten something. Once on my way I know the feeling will disappear, but I don't like it.

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