Yes, another movie reference. I’m a cinemaddict, so to speak…
So as it goes, touring from west to east on the North American continent is preferable for a variety reasons: winds typically blow west to east (thus, hoping for a tailwind), the plains have a slight slope to them, rolling down from the Rocky’s to the Ohio River Valley, and — to me — it’s a great feeling to ride right up into your own driveway at the end of a long trip.
So this leaves me in a predicament: getting out west. I originally had a brilliant plan, and that plan involved someone else covering the cost of this travel. But like many brilliant plans, it was foiled again by those meddling kids…No really, I can’t get into it, but that’s exactly what happened!
I considered renting a car and driving out there, but can’t find anyone heading west as well, and doing that solo is really not what I’m looking for right now… I considered flying, but the cost is astronomical, especially with a bicycle. Shipping a bike FedEx is just not an option for me, my Raleigh Sojourn is like a first born-child to me – plus I paid more for it than for my first car! I’ve seen how shipping companies (and airline luggage handlers, for that matter) toss boxes around. It seems that once again, Amtrak is the best option. About the same price as a plane ticket, BUT my bike costs $5, and it’s possible to even load the bike on the train as is, with no dis-assembly, which is a huge plus.
So right now I’m about 75% likely to take that 2 day train ride. But who knows, I might change my mind any minute, much like the lovely Montana weather. If only John Candy were around to give me some great advice. (RIP).