Preparations Part 1

Today was a busy day! Started out with a bike ride around town and out to the fields. Only did about 8 miles, but it was good to be out on the bike again and there was a lot to do today. I did get to take some time to admire the beauty of Lompoc, I’ll definitely miss this place. Rode through the fields, down H street, and around my neighborhood. Check out the photos:

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Next up was washing the car. No use for a car on a bike tour so I had to get it in tip top shape for posting to Craigslist. Hadn’t washed it in forever; it was amazing how many bugs were in the grill. I even found a dead bee in the engine! It was a nice way to keep cool in the heat of the day though. I love that in the middle of February we can have days in the 80’s. Oh California! Armed with some beautiful photos, a quote from Auto Trader and the Toyota dealership in town, I should be able to put together a good enough ad to get a decent price 🙂 Unfortunately I’ll probably still lose money on it, but that’s what I get for buying a newish car. Financially it would have made more sense to buy an older car for cash, but you live and you learn right? Now I know better for next time!

Cleaning my Corolla
Washing my Corolla
All Clean!
All Clean!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Packing

Lastly, I packed my bags to figure out what I was missing, and see how well it all packed up and fit on the bike. I thought it was going to be easy to pack since the conditions would dictate what was required, and for the most part that was the case. Cooking gear, sleeping gear, food, toiletries, tools, riding clothes – standard. But I decided to bring a set of casual clothes too for going out once in a while, and it was surprisingly difficult to pick just one outfit. I never appreciated the capacity of my closet until I realized I wasn’t going to have it anymore. I ended up packing two casual outfits after all, but it just reminded me of how much we accumulate in our lives thinking we need it. There’s so much stuff still in my room that I’ll have to store, sell, or donate!

Loading up the bike!

Altogether, I probably have about 50lbs of stuff right now. There’s still a few more items I’ll be needing though. Unfortunately, when I loaded up my bike to make sure I would be able to strap everything on, I realized (well, it was pointed out to me) that I need to find a way to distribute the load more. Carrying all that weight on the back would make riding interesting at best. I’ll definitely have to find some way to hook up a front rack. I’m sure there’s an internet solution for this, a challenge for this week! This was one reason why I was considering buying a touring bike to replace my road bike, they come standard with front brackets. I’ll find ways to do some weight cutting as well, there’s probably some things I just through in my bag just because I might possibly find some use for it and knowing I didn’t have anything yet I wanted a better feel for the weight I’d be carrying. Gonna have to go up to SLO this week to check out the Army surplus store I’ve heard so much about. And no, I will not go without my dance shoes!

What’s Next:

  • Set up front rack on bike (or buy touring bike)
  • Buy remaining gear
  • Pack stuff to store, and sell the rest (especially car)
  • Finish Taxes
  • Re-assess budget
  • Train
  • Full test ride

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