September 12th – 18th Preparing For Our Cross Country Bike Trip

Date: September 12th

Time Pedaling: 2 hrs. 56 min.
Miles: 30.75
Avg. Speed: 10.4 mph
Max Speed: 20.7 mph
Trip Odometer: 30.75
Weather: sunny, warm, wind approximately 16 mph
Time of Departure: 3:30
Arrival Time Back Home: 9:00
Repairs: Lukes’ pedals on Burley needed to be tightened several times. There was a plumbing outfit just off of the bike trail, that supplied us with much needed clamps.

Awesome day for our family. We did an interview with our local paper The Times (NWI). We met 2 wonderful folks from the paper Chelsea Schneider (reporter) and John Luke (photographer). They were encouraging and warm. Chelsea has a contagious laugh and isn’t shy in using it. John has a quiet wisdom about himself that is comforting to be around.

The other great news is that we had our longest ride to date! Drum roll please…30.5 miles. We did a round trip from Hammond (IN) to Crown Point (IN). We had a few malfunctions with our pedal modification (on the Burley tandem), but still pushed on. We were all quite pleased with the distance. We hope to be furthering it soon as we will be leaving in approximately three weeks and need to be ready (or, we will be made ready on the road).

One other thing. We stopped at a neat little hot dog/ice cream shop on the bike trail in Griffith (IN). We highly recommend the food and company. We met the owner who hopes to be making a similar journey to ours a year from now.
Sweets & Suds, 2235 South Broad Street, Griffith, Indiana 46319While there, we had a most enjoyable conversation with a man named Sid. Afterwards, he offered a gift towards our journey (thanks Sid!). He also wants to shear us before we set out so we can look good while pedaling.

I am convinced that Sid is just another cog in the wheel of our wonderful humanity.
-Rob

My favorite part of actually riding 30+ miles today was the Starbucks at the turnaround point!

Starbucks on Main Street in Crown Point, Indiana

Now if I could just figure out a way to dip my coffee in dark chocolate…..
-Gail

Date: September 13th

Taking a day off from riding, relaxing our muscles, getting some much needed work done. The end of the month is going to be here before we know it.
-Gail

Date: September 14th

Another day of no riding, but, for a good reason. Today we had another piece of the puzzle put in place. We sold our RV! It had been sitting dormant in our driveway for too long. We definitely needed the money for our epic bike ride. The couple that bought it are from Ohio and are planning to take it up to North Dakota with them. They were a very nice couple and we hope things work out well for them.

Our RV

With a portion of these funds we will be picking up some much needed equipment. Selling our RV is part of our new-found philosophy of trading things for experiences. We plan on this being just the beginning of our trading.
-Rob

Date: September 15th

Time Pedaling: 2 hrs. 37 min.
Miles: 30.995
Avg. Speed: 11.8 mph
Max Speed: 21.8 mph
Trip Odometer: 61.745
Weather: sunny, warm, wind approximately 4 mph
Time of Departure: 5:00
Arrival Time Back Home: 9:45
Repairs: 
None

We hit a few awesome NWI garage sales today and picked up two helmets, a spare set of brake lines, a spare pedal, a water bottle, a great pair of ladies Nike’s (almost new) for myself, a cool little Tommy Hilfiger bag that straps onto the handle bars, a large Adidas sports bag that fits nicely in our trailer. Also I just couldn’t pass up this army bag that I will attach to my bike rack (somehow). Rob and I also were able to pick up some brand new socks.

Garage Sale Finds

Garage Sale Finds

As it happened, The NWI Times ran a story about us in today’s paper. Several people recognized us from the article and were very encouraging. Thanks, we appreciate it!

Biking Again…

After two days without riding our bikes, we got back on our horse(s). The winds were not a factor, which made our training a bit easier. We were able to once again break our previous record, albeit by only 2/10th’s of a mile. We are looking forward to those 50 mile days and counting on it not hurting as much :).
-Gail

Date: September 16th

No pedaling today! Another day off – man are we slackers or what! lol

Date: September 17th

Time Pedaling: 2 hrs. 7 min.
Miles: 22.85
Avg. Speed: 10.7 mph
Max Speed: 22.1 mph
Trip Odometer: 84.60
Weather: started out cloudy, warm, mild wind, turned into rain, some strong winds periodically and a bit chilly.
Time of Departure: 4:30
Arrival Time Back Home: 8:30
Repairs: one of Luke’s pedals

Didn’t get that many miles in today. Bad weather coupled with a pedal that keeps slipping off of the rear of the tandem slowed us a bit. I will be buying better clamps tomorrow which will alleviate that issue altogether. Still got in over twenty which isn’t too shabby.

Have I mentioned that the NWI community has been wonderful? Not just our awesome neighbors, but the encouraging folks we meet on the bike trail.

We hope to be picking up the remainder of our gear in the next couple of days so we can train fully loaded. If anyone out there has camping or bike gear they think we may be able to use…please let us know.

Current Equipment Needs:
1-rear rack (check)
2-sets of rear panniers (We have one set)
1-set of front panniers
1-5 person tent (check)
small alcohol or butane type burner to cook on (We found one that we’ll try out before we buy the more expensive one.)

Of course we can use almost any type of gift card, but especially Walmart, as they are everywhere.

As we fill our needs we will take them off the list or update it.
-Rob

P.S. We saw a couple of bucks within 5 feet of the bike trail after it got dark. Fortunately, we were riding through Wicker Park at the time and they were on the other side of the fence.

Date: September 18th

We spent the day working on the site, taking care of some business and further preparing ourselves for the trip. We shot some videos and set up a YouTube account called The Four The Road Family. Stop on over and check it out. We will be adding more videos on a regular basis.
-Gail

Thank you for bookmarking and going through our Amazon link. You can find it on any page of our site. Just look for the Amazon Search box on the right side of the screen.

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2 thoughts on “September 12th – 18th Preparing For Our Cross Country Bike Trip

    • Hey Jane (Mom/Grandma),

      Thanks for the encouragement! We all love you lots too!

      We’ll be hitting the road Thursday morning. Jacksonville here we come!

      May the winds always be gentle, unless they’re pushing you forward!

      The Four The Road Family,
      Rob, Gail, Dakota and Luke

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