FAQ: Where are you guys??

A quick note to let all our faithful followers know that we did indeed make it to San Francisco, CA safely (and with big smiles on our faces) on Thursday, August 1st. Before we started the trip, we thought blogging would be as easy setting up a tent (or hammock) every night, but we soon learned about the limitations of 3G cell service, a buggy wordpress iphone app, and that our bodies were screaming “go to sleep!” for good reason. Therefore, we are a few days behind in posts but fear not! With handwritten journal entries, pictures and maps, I’m sure we will be able to give you an accurate account of the second half of our Pacific Coast trek.

And to answer your question, I am back in NYC and Jim’s in CT. Both with sore legs and wicked tan lines, but still smiling.


Day 1: Rookie mistake #1

1) Do not camp near a railroad track, especially near a railroad crossing.

I wish I had captured audio of what we heard at 3:30 am but it’s probably for the best since it might damage your ear drums. Jesus Christ, trains are so freakin loud. We thought that there wouldn’t be any other trains after the first and that we could go to bed…but no. Trains went by every half hour, for the next three hours. So much for a full night’s rest!

The picture below is taken from where the hammock stood. What were we thinking?? If Yoo Mi was with us, I guarantee this wouldn’t have happened!!!


FAQ: What bikes do you tour with?


2001 Jamis Aurora

Soo Mi has ridden across the continent TWICE with this bike. I have ridden across the continent ONCE and commute to work with this bike. The bike has never malfunctioned. In fact, it shifts more smoothly than my DuraAce and Ultegra gruppos. Two Thumbs WAY UP :) !!

FRAME Reynolds 520 double-butted chromoly main tubes, double tapered cromo stays, forged dropouts with double eyelets.

FORK Chromoly unicrown, low rider braze-ons, double eyelets. HEADSET VP sealed, lower race needle bearings, 1″.

WHEELSET Ritchey Rock Comp & OCR Comp, 700c (26″ front on 47cm), 36H, with Ritchey Comp QR front and Comp-Z QR rear hubs, 14g stainless steel spokes.

TIRES Ritchey Tom Slick, 700 x 30C

DERAILLEURS Shimano Sora GS rear, Sora 28.6mm band clamp front.

SHIFTERS Shimano Sora Dual Control STI, 24-speed


FREEWHEEL Shimano HG50, 8-speed, 12-25.

CRANKSET Cyclone, alloy/alloy/steel, 52/42/30, 165mm (47), 170mm (50-53), 175mm (55 – 62).

BOTTOM BRACKET Shimano BB-LP27, 68 x 113mm.

PEDALS Wellgo Road, alloy cage/resin body, with toe clips.

BRAKESET Tektro alloy cantilevers, Shimano Sora STI levers.

HANDLEBAR HL Modolo Road, 400mm (47-50), 420mm (53-57), 440mm (59-62).

STEM HL chromoly, (+10°), 90mm (47-53), 105mm (55), 120mm (57), 135mm (59-62). GRIPS Cork tape.

SEATPOST Alloy microadjust, 250mm x 27.2mm, with cromo seatpin.

SADDLE Soo Mi … Viscount Retro-T with SL top, steel rails, front and rear guards. Jim … Brooks B-17 Honey tone.

COLORS Satellite Blue (since bleached purple by sunlight :) )

WEIGHT 25.25 lbs

FAQ: How to get bike to the West Coast?

FAQ: How to get bike to the West Coast?

Airlines charge for oversized baggage. Man-handling bicycle boxes through the airport is a hassle.

I collect two empty bicycle boxes from my local bike shop. I wrap the frame tubes with Home Depot pipe insulation. I remove the front wheel/fender, pedals, handlebar, and seat. I coordinate with and ship the boxes to the hotel.

It’s most convenient :)

Go Fast … JIM

What to pack?

So, what do you actually bring on a self-supported bike tour? The short answer is…not much! But that’s the beauty in self-supported touring – you carry what you absolutely need. Below is our packing list for this trip. These items could sustain you for a five day tour to a five month tour. What would you add (or remove!) to the list?


  • 2 pairs cycling shorts
  • 2 bike shirts
  • 2 pairs socks
  • 1 t-shirt
  • 1 pair of convertible pants
  • 2 pairs underwear
  • 1 down jacket /fleece (doubles as a pillow)
  • 1 raincoat
  • 1 rain pants
  • 1 pair flip flops
  • 1 pair bike shoes

Biking related:

  • Bike (Jamais Aurora)
  • Helmet
  • 2 water bottles
  • 2 rear panniers
  • Tire levers (1 set)
  • Patch kit (2 sets)
  • Spare tube and tire
  • Mini-pump
  • Spoke wrench (1)
  • Allen wrenches (portable set)
  • Chain tool
  • Brake cable (1)
  • Derailleur cable (1)
  • Assorted plastic zip ties (about 15 each)
  • Small chain lube and rag (3-in-one oil)
  • Duct tape (1 small roll)
  • Adventure Cycling Maps
  • Handlebar bag
  • Bike Computer


  • 1 toothbrush/toothpaste
  • 1 bar of soap
  • 1 towel (super absorbent)
  • 1 bottle of 30 spf sunscreen
  • 1 nail clipper
  • 1 chapstick
  • 1 first-aid/med kit
  • Travel pack of baby wipes
  • Ibuprofen

Camping related:

  • Tent (Performance Lite series)
  • Sleeping bag (Slumberjack), in a compression sack
  • Emergency blanket (as tent ground cover)
  • Headlamp
  • Stove (Coleman Exponent)
  • Mess kit (cup, plate, bowl & pot)
  • Utensils (spoon, fork & knife; hook on to each other)
  • 1 pocket knife
  • 1 green scrubber for washing dishes
  • Measuring cups

Other Items:

  • Bungee cords
  • Whistle
  • Pulsar light
  • Water purifier tablets
  • Sunglasses
  • Watch


  • Journal and pen
  • Cell phone and charger
  • Solar powered battery
  • Extra iphone battery
  • Postcard stamps

Our Route

ACA Pacific Coast MapACA Pacific Coast Route Overview

Adventure Cycling Association (ACA) is an amazing non-profit organization that has mapped out bike-friendly routes across our great nation. We used their maps for our 2001 and 2006 trek across America (Anacortes, WA to Madison, CT), so it was a no-brainer that we would use their product again for this Pacific Coast Tour. They also have an active twitter handle (https://twitter.com/acaroutes) and you can follow other people who are traveling the same route via #acapacoast