Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

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Simon_100
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Simon_100 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 6:21 am

Hi Jenny,

Wow, thanks for that amazing reply! It's very reassuring to know that Sam rides the trails to keep them up to date and I can certainly appreciate the amount of work that goes into this kind of thing having done the donkeywork for my two HISS off road event locations - and now doing the same for the 2016 HUMM! (thumbs)

One reason I was asking is that I've often thought about doing something similar here in Spain - or rather in Iberia as I would include Portugal too - but as my accountant says, 'At the end of the day you have to make a profit' - actually what he really says is "At the end of the year I have to take my fees!" :whistle: - but there is also the time aspect, I only have certain 'windows' of time to do reconnaissance trips and a Trans-Iberian would have to be done in one go!

Anyway, that's my stuff. Back on topic:
JMoandpiglet wrote:Food wise, there are any number of cafes and diners en route to set you up for the day with a decent breakfast for around $10-12 USD (remember in the US you typically tip 15-20% for food service), and you can always save a bit if you've strayed off the main route to a larger town that has a McDonalds or similar - although you'll soon get sick of that, and I'd say it's not really in the spirt of things... certainly one of the best places to people-watch and get a real insight into local life is a breakfast diner in small-town USA.
I'm de Rodriguez at the moment and watching far too much daytime TV (work avoidance tactic of choice), which means the Energy and Discovery chanels, so I see an awful lot of 'awesome' food!!! But I'm 99.999999% sure* that I've never had a McDonalds :whistle:

But I like the idea of eating in small town diners; one of my favourite books, actually a series of books, is Lake Wobegone Days by Garrison Kiellor and in fact one of my objectives for doing the trip is to try to capture the 'dream' of America that I suppose a lot of kids in my generation, i.e. 'seventies teenagers and young adults, had back then ...

Since then my views about the USA have changed considerably - but then so have my views about just about everything! - but I always like to challenge my views, that's what keeps you young! Your amazing trip report has played a significant part in my starting this process. (thumbs)

Regs

Simon

* well there was a night in Amsterdam in about 1982/3 when I vaguely remember eating something horrible and burger shaped from a dispensing machine at about three or four in the morning. But that memory was vague for fairly obvious reasons and I suppose I could plea temporary insanity ...

** OK yes, Vietnam, but the US withdrawal had begun by the time I turned 15 and my world view began to broaden to include Rock music, motorcycles, Levi's - especially if someone pretty was inside! and film, obviously including Apocalypse Now ...
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by SteveW » Sat Nov 28, 2015 2:21 pm

Sam is a good guy.
He's just started issuing the revised mapping for sections of the western TAT (The route Jenny did) mine arrived last week.
He'll be finishing the revised Tennessee section early in the new year and he's sending me that as soon as it's ready.
It seems he never stops checking and advising on the route and he's more than pleased to answer any questions.

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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Simon_100 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 6:22 pm

That's just the kind of thing I like to hear - he sounds like the sort of bloke I should emulate then Steve! (thumbs)

So, when is your trip happening, next May/June?

Regs

Simon
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by SteveW » Sat Nov 28, 2015 6:31 pm

I land NYC 21st May.
The new routes out West avoid some of the higher passes, so the TAT is do-able for a longer period of the year.
When do you hope to do it?

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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Simon_100 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 6:36 pm

When I've paid for me pension matey :(

Si
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by JMoandpiglet » Sat Nov 28, 2015 10:30 pm

SteveW wrote:I land NYC 21st May.
The new routes out West avoid some of the higher passes, so the TAT is do-able for a longer period of the year.
When do you hope to do it?
Hi Steve - yes, the new route crosses the Continental Divide via Marshall Pass (10,842ft) which is more likely to be open earlier in the year, but that is primarily because Hancock and Tomichi are no longer country maintained (i.e cleared of snow and/or other debris that has accumulated over the winter) rather than simply elevation...

You ought to be able to get through Cinnamon Pass (12,640ft) in June as that tends to be ploughed as soon as possible since it forms part of the Alpine Loop (along with Engineer Pass) which is popular with 4x4s - although there is a chance they will still be closed if it's been a heavy winter... I came through there towards the end of June, and while Cinnamon was open:

Image

The following California Pass on the TAT route was most definitely closed:

Image
photo. Looking west up the valley from Animas Forks towards California Pass - you can just see where the snow plough gave up!

Fortunately there are alternatives, such as going south via Silverton and rejoining the TAT route west of hwy 550 - although again, Ophir Pass had only recently opened, having been comprehensively closed just a couple of weeks before...

Image

I wouldn't rush through the first half of the TAT - take time to ride Deals Gap and visit the Jack Daniel's distillery and Memphis for example (if you wish of course, all recommended!) - to give yourself as much time as possible for the Colorado passes to be open... If you do decide to take the EXC, then if the snow is gone, it's certainly worth spending an extra day or two in Salida and riding Tomichi, Hancock, Tincup etc. too - but still it would be touch and go if they are open mid June.

Whatever happens, I guarantee you are going to love it!

Jx
"Where we're going, we don't need roads..."

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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Simon_100 » Sun Nov 29, 2015 7:21 am

The Spanish Biker wrote:When I've paid for me pension matey :(

Si
Monin' Steve,

That was a gruff reply - bit of a raw nerve ...

Well plan a) was to go with Spud for his 60th, which would be in 2018 I think.

Plan b) would be to go once we stop letting out our holiday cottage and have had some building work done there. That would have made it 2019 but after this year's expenses - all for the greater good I should add - that may slip until the following year ...

Plan c) would be once I've paid the extra five years NI contributions that kind Mr Osborne has dumped on us all - especially for Polly who, along with millions of other women, now has to wait and extra six years before becoming an pensioner as well as having to cough up the extra five ... and that would make it about 2020

Plan c) would be to wait until I actually get my hands on the dosh, so that makes it 2023 - and I guess I'll be pretty doddery by then!

But if Id been the type of person who could just be a time server - doing the job your lad does I think but well burned out with it at age 40 - I'd have been collecting a pretty huge bundle for the last three years.

So now you see why it's a raw nerve ... :whistle:

Back to business - you've had me reflecting on all those iconic films, music, etc. of the '70s that IMHO once Made America Great. American Graffiti, Vanishing Point, are films I'll have to revisit as well as The BOSS before he became The Boss, i.e. The Wild the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, Manassas, by Crosby Stills and Nash, Harvest, by Neil Young (they were better apart IMHO) to name but a few.

But perhaps one we should dedicate to Jenny and her report from the Noab: (thumbs)



So, the first thing is for me to make more money, ride to Merzouga with Spud next autumn, get to Asia Minor one summer ...

Regs

Simon
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by SteveW » Sun Nov 29, 2015 10:05 am

If you have a bike already that you are happy to do the TAT on and pretty much all the associated kit I don't really think it' needs to be a massively expensive trip.
OK, there's a couple of grand to get your bike there and back.
About £150 for fuel
Based on a fair bit of camping, the use of "Tent Space" a service and tyre change. Being sensible with the food and drink. Taking a realistic 28 days.
I reckon you could do the whole thing including shipping for around £4000-4500.
If you're doing it with a buddy, camping and share hotel rooms may be less.
I know that's not insignificant, but it's probably less than most people would think.

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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Simon_100 » Sun Nov 29, 2015 10:15 am

Hmm, that's interesting Steve - maybe I'll have to speak to spud again soon :whistle:

Regs

Simon
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Re: Trans-Am 500 - the seven year itch

Post by Redmurty » Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:50 am

LISTENING!!!!!!!!! (thumbs)


Cheers Spud ;)
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You don't waste time... you waste yourself

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