Jason’s Wrap Up

Jason: Well after 12 days and over 450 miles covered the biking has officially concluded in LA. We could have pushed on through the city to complete an 80 mile day yesterday and then really pushed it today to make up the 150 we lacked to the border (HA!) but this felt like a good time to finish. The rest of the coast would have been endless city biking, which as you all know generally only affords us significant problems. In short, city biking (with a loading down bike at least) is miserable. So we coasted the final 30 miles into Santa Monica yesterday to Eliz’s place and felt good about how far we had come. The song of the day was “Xxplosive” by Dr. Dre, in light of rollin down the PCH through LA. Veronica, you might have to explain to the others about Dre’s hood!

We just dropped our bikes off at REI to be shipped back to the east coast and Ben will be leaving tomorrow to go to burning man. Now we can relax a little and think back on the whole trip. A few things that I will take away from it.

You let go of the little things that usually drive you crazy. For one, I currently have a beard. A really nappy one with a half grown mustache. Gross, but I decided to just see how long I could stand it.

I have come to realize that getting lost is inevitable so you can either let it annoy you or just make the best of things. Often you will find a cool restaurant, shop, or bum to talk to.

When you travel on a bike (or travel in an uncommon way, removing most of the luxuries) you meet a much more diverse array of people. “Pretty cool, and a little crazy” is the easiest way to put it. That’s the kind of people we met. People in cars thought we were nuts, grown men who had done our trip before practically shed a tear sharing the experience with us, and the bums that we often camped with usually had good advice for us. A very real perspective that common travelers didn’t have. We met very few people our same age, as we figured that most either were now at work, looking for work, or back at school. We were fortunate enough to be at option D. None of the above.

I appreciate all of you taking an interest in our little adventure, your thoughts and prayers got us through some sketchy times. Thanks mom and dad for understanding, even though you probably though it was crazy to do this. In 5 years maybe we can get a group to do the east coast tour!?!? To close, as Confucius say, “Man who bike in front of car may get tired, but man who bike behind car get exhausted.”

-Ben’s wrap up to come…

Last Campfire



Last Campfire

Originally uploaded by hannaimage


Last campfire. Hotdogs for dinner, and the day on the beach. We are in Los angeles county, and will get to santa monica tomorrow.

And again with the flat tires



And again with the flat tires

Originally uploaded by hannaimage


This time I had two spares, but they were short stem, and I need long stem.. When I bought them, I told the guy I needed long stem, and he gave me one long stem and one short stem. I didn’t even think to check that both boxes were the same. We are in a city though, and there is a bike shop a mile back that Jason has gone off to get two more spare tubes…

Retro Song-of-the-day

Posted by mobile phone:
Jason: its day, I don’t know but we have been at this for awhile. The past few days have been trying and slow goin due to unexpected issues. Today we will finally be putting in a full day’s ride of 50 miles. I know I haven’t been keeping up with the song of the day very well so I’m gonna retro song of the day things, if that even makes sense. In honor of two days ago, so now in memory of, when we were cruising through middle of nowhere towns with Spanish names, I was humming “Hotel California,” not the original though, the version from The Big Lebowski.

The song for yesterday would have been “New Shoes” by Paolo Nutini, inlight of Ben’s bike being fixed and us getting back on the road (although this song could have been for the numerous times we came across problems and then got back on track). I whole-heartedly regret not having a song in mind to honor Fred, our shorter friend of yesterday who was awesome. I also regret not getting a picture taken with him so you all could believe how unbelievable he was.

For today I’m breakin the rules again and making the whole Bob Marley “Legends” album the song(s) for today because we will be cruisin through beach town after beach town now and its just swell.

Santa Barbara and on

Posted by mobile phone:
This morning we woke up at 5:30 am and high tailed it out of our campsite. We made it to the bus with about 5 min to spare and were able to put our bikes on the bottom of the bus.

An hour later we were in Santa Barbara. It was beautiful. While we were stopped outside of a bike shop, which didn’t open for another two hours, we saw the crazyest thing yet. I heard Jason say “Look at this guy…oh no… Oh no, he saw us” then from across the intersection “HEY! HEY! WHERE ARE YOU GUYS COMING FROM?” I turned and saw a midget with a huge pot belly wearing only tiny, tiny bike shorts on a midget sized bike pulling a child trailer with nothing in it. He pulled up to us, and we realized he was missing all eight front teeth. He was nice, and when he found out we were from the south, we had a new best friend. He was originaly from New Orleans and that made us practically kin. Well we struck it up with Fred, and he ended up taking us on a tour of the city. He knew every bum, and many of the attractive women as well. Everyone knew, and liked him too. He works in a bike shop, and his side business is called “Leprakon Bike Shine.” I don’t know if that is how it is spelled, but that is how he spelled it. He let us know that we could get a free meal at the homeless shelter at 11:30 because we kind of look -well- homeless…

Side note: We saw Faye Dunaway… She knew Fred. I had no idea who she was.

Anyway, got the bike fixed for $150 and three hours of work and we were on the way out of Santa Barbara. We got to Carpinteria and spent the afternoon on the beach and doing laundry at the laundry mat.

Tomorrow we ride for 40 miles, then get to LA and santa monica to stay with Eliz until saturday when we will head back to san fran.

Jason says he will post later, he is about to shower.

Thanks for the comments!

Posted by mobile phone:
Hey everyone, thanks for the comments you have made so far! We love hearing from you while we are on the road. If you want to comment, chime in, or just say hello – just register with your email and leave a note. We get every comment right to my phone!

On the bus



On the bus

Originally uploaded by hannaimage


It is not really cheating when wildfires close down the roads you are supposed to take… At least that is what we are telling ourselves. We are not to happy about being on the bus from Lompoc to Santa Barbara, but we don’t really have a choice. My bike won’t shift, and we need o keep moving down to a city with a shop big enough to fix it.

Leaving Lompoc

Posted by mobile phone:
If this post sounds pessimistic, it is because we are at our lowest of the low. We are in Lompoc, CA. And we are on the first bus out of here. This place is miserable. Riding down main street, a kid on a mountain bike jumped the curb and ran into my front tire, laying us both out in the middle of the road. I lost some skin on my elbow, got a rasberry on my hip and broke the hell out of my gear shift. I am stuck in one gear unless I manualy pull on the derailer cord. The kid was an idiot, because he claimed he didn’t see me, but he had been riding next to us (we were in the road, he was on he sidewalk) for at least half a mile. I let him know he was an idiot and spared no words, while bleeding from the elbow, and shaken from having traffic screech to a halt around us. Jason thought our trip was going to end because I was going to jail for assulting a minor, but I kept it verbal. The kid jumped back on his bike and sped off.

Anyway, because I can’t very well cross hills right now, and the forest fires have closed the highway we are supposed to take, pushing us to an additional 50 mile route, we are taking a bus to Santa Barbara where we will find out if this accident was a trip ender or if it can be fixed.