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Old 08-20-2009, 12:22 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
7 posts, read 7,485 times
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Default Epic bicycle journey from Aurora to Austin

I had been thinking very seriously of moving to Austin a year ago when I had a job and place to stay but I didn't think I was ready yet. Well now I'm unemployed and will be homeless in under a week so I decided that now's the time. I plan on riding my bike from Aurora, CO which is about 890 miles. I'll be taking the clothes I can fit in my backpack and I have about $125. Any advice?
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Old 08-20-2009, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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You wont need much in the way of clothes by the time you get here, unless it really cools off in a hurry.
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Old 08-20-2009, 01:44 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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This is the hottest time of year to be trying that. You will need lots of water, salt tablets, sunscreen, lots of water, a wide brimmed hat, lots of water, a long sleeved shirt and lots of water.

Seriously you should wait until Sept. to make that ride, it will be much cooler. The lowest the temperature here last night was 79 degrees, most of the night it was in the 80's, a little hot for sleeping outdoors.

My advice if you must move now, sell the bicycle in denver and buy a used one after you get here, get a ticket on Greyhound for $112.20, the trip will take a little over 24 hours. You will still have some money left over when you get to Austin to try and make a new start. You don't need to pack many clothes, you can get cheap ones at Goodwill after you get here. Check out the Austin Homeless Shelter for assistance when you get here City of Austin - Austin City Connection

Last edited by CptnRn; 08-20-2009 at 02:10 PM..
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Old 08-20-2009, 02:16 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
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I was actually considering the greyhound instead and if you buy tickets 21 days in advance they're only $66. If I ride I think I can make it in about ten days. I have a camelback that holds 2 liters and a nalgene that holds 1 liter, I checked the route and it looks like I'd never be more than a hundred miles between places I could fill up at. I checked out this website for couch surfing to maybe a place to sleep a night but most of the trip goes through small towns in order to be able to bike so that doesn't really help.

Although you're right, It may be a bit warm to try this now but warmer climate is part of my reason for moving. By mid September here we're likely to have our first freeze and it always snows before halloween so if I'm going to be without a roof for sometime I think I'd rather be too hot than too cold. While I hope to try and get back in a place a soon as possible through working even if all I can find is day labor or fast food and selling my plasma it could be a couple months, I'm not sure.
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Old 08-20-2009, 02:30 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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Quote:
I have a camelback that holds 2 liters and a nalgene that holds 1 liter
You will need more water than that if doing 90 miles a day. My wife goes through that much on a 60 mile ride in the mornings. Don't know what route you are taking, but there are some LOONG stretches out there in NW Texas.......
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Old 08-20-2009, 02:50 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
7 posts, read 7,485 times
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I just went to google maps and chose walking directions that basically just avoids major highways and it looks like the worst stretch of no civilization is from Pueblo to Branson in southern CO at 116 miles. Maybe 3 liters of water isn't enough for that distance.
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Old 08-20-2009, 02:57 PM
 
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I wouldn't suggest it and I am an a bike rider. You need a way to get help if needed. What happenns if you have a mechanical issue in West Texas? You will die. Please don't do it. Cell phone coverage isn't good, no water, no food. Please don't do it.
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Old 08-20-2009, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
102 posts, read 161,658 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_buddy008 View Post
Well now I'm unemployed and will be homeless
While i wish you good luck on whichever way you choose to arrive here-i do want to want warn unless you have some good skills jobwise it is very difficult to find work here now-ive spoken to several people who have recently moved here from Kansas, Iowa, etc and they are having a difficult locating any kind of work.
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Old 08-20-2009, 04:56 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
14,075 posts, read 18,477,856 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_buddy008 View Post
I just went to google maps and chose walking directions that basically just avoids major highways and it looks like the worst stretch of no civilization is from Pueblo to Branson in southern CO at 116 miles. Maybe 3 liters of water isn't enough for that distance.
OMG you seriously need to reconsider the route you are planning. Branson, Colorado (6800') is at a higher elevation then Denver (5200'), why do you want to peddle uphill for miles when you can head SE and accomplish your trip easier?

Back in 1969 I hitchhiked around the US with nothing more then what I could carry in my back pack, and I enjoyed backpacking into remote primitive areas as a hobby, so I understand how to live light. But I will admit I had more cash when I traveled cross country then what you are starting with. Even today I'm not sure I would trade hitchhiking for a bicycle. Its probably lots harder to get a ride today, but when you do its traveling at 60 mph instead of ? 15mph? you do cover a lot of ground.

Ok assuming you are set on doing this trip by bicycle...

Traveling South early in your trip puts you into the hottest and driest parts of Texas early in the trip, if you survive the uphill grade to get there. Plan your trip to go downhill as much as possible. Definitely do NOT plan on traveling through West Texas we are in the second year of one of the worst droughts we have seen with record high temperatures. If you are set on doing this via bicycle, try and get your "Easting" in early.

If you go to Pueblo (4800') and then head East, following Hwy 50, which parallels the Arkansas River. The highway is almost always a mile or so from the river, with several reservoirs and parks along the way, offering camping, bathing opportunities, if they are not dried up. This area is full of small farms, settlements, where you might be able get your water bags refilled. I recommend carrying a water filter such as this Katadyn Hiker PRO Water Filter at REI.com
in case you need to replenish your drinking water from raw water sources. Unfortunately the price of this $79 device starts making the Greyhound bus ticket look like a bargain.

You need to consider what is the best route to get through the hard hit areas in this drought map. US Drought Monitor

You might want to consider following the Arkansas River downstream to Dodge City, KS (elevation 2600'') before you head south to Austin. I would suggest following Hwy 281 for most of the downhill trip into Austin.

Best Wishes... R
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Old 08-20-2009, 05:10 PM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 3,385,102 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_buddy008 View Post
I had been thinking very seriously of moving to Austin a year ago when I had a job and place to stay but I didn't think I was ready yet. Well now I'm unemployed and will be homeless in under a week so I decided that now's the time. I plan on riding my bike from Aurora, CO which is about 890 miles. I'll be taking the clothes I can fit in my backpack and I have about $125. Any advice?
How about Hitchhiking? Actually less risky in the long run than bike riding..hazards of bike riding include getting hit by vehicles, getting assualted, finding a place to stay, food to eat, etc.....Also, where will you stay if you know not a soul in Austin? A homeless shelter? They do have them, but you risk getting assaulted there as well, not to mention living/dealing with many folks who are borderline psychotics......
I would not hang my hat on even making it to Austin by bike in one piece, let alone survivng/thriving when you get there....
Lastly I take it you have no friends or family in Denver willing/able to help.....honestly, sounds like you have more troubles than just lacking a job.....if you are not making this up, God bless you and hope you make it/thrive on your journey and in Austin..if you ARE making it up its just a shame to post something like this.....
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