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All the Lower 48 14ers in one summer by bike and foot

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All the Lower 48 14ers in one summer by bike and foot

Postby Dougald5 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:23 pm

Josh Holley from Fort Collins, CO, plans to try this next summer, starting June 1 on Longs Peak. He's going to ride between each peak, solo and completely self-supported. When he's done with Colorado, he plans to ride to California for the 14ers there, and then up to Washington for Rainier.

What do you think? Can it be done?

More details here: http://tinyurl.com/ya6rf8f
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Postby Dougald5 » Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:54 pm

1000Pks: That's funny, the Highway 395 hazard is exactly what a friend of mine from CA cited today when I told him about this idea. Serious objective dangers....
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Postby Day Hiker » Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:12 am

1000Pks wrote:No doubt many motorists will be honking at you, you are a hazard to them and yourself.


Maybe you didn't mean it that way, but the second half of that sentence makes it sound as if bicycles have no place on roadways. Let it be known to all that have any doubt: Bicycles have AT LEAST as much right as cars to EVERY roadway, except limited-access highways that have other options in the form of parallel roadways.

It may be risky; I'm not arguing about that. A lot of things are risky. But it is perfectly legitimate for a bicyclist to use a roadway, regardless of how many assholes in cars THINK they're being inconvenienced.
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Postby Greg Enright » Fri Dec 18, 2009 12:56 am

Sounds like a great trip. Baggin' peaks and seeing the countryside.

I used to bicycle commute on 395. The traffic is not bad at all. Nice wide shoulders too. There is always a headwind though. No matter which way you are going, there is always a headwind.
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Postby Damien Gildea » Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:03 am

Part of me thinks this is good because:

1. Some young person is undertaking a hard project, and actually looks like doing it.
2. If oil $ goes through the roof it will spell an end to jetting around to climbing destinations and we'll have to find less fossil-fuelled ways of getting our fix, closer to home, so ..
3. It makes an environmental statement with regard to behaviour that we can all actually change in real life, rather than a grand statement about global humanity etc etc ...

but another part of me is tired of people constantly 'increasing' challengs in a pointless fashion because it's supposed to be 'better' to constantly go one-up. But is it really 'up'?

"We are not interested in alpine-style ascents for their own sake. There is no point in handicapping yourself just to prove superiority."
- (Alpine Journal #97 "We Failed On Ultar" by Victor Saunders)

D
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Postby mconnell » Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:55 am

Cool idea. Personally, I would start well before June1. As has been said, heading across NV in late July/early August (about the time I would expect him to be heading that way) would be WAY hot.

Also, make sure that he knows that Culebra requires you to deal with the owners. I don't know the details so check out the Culebra page on SP for details.
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Postby Day Hiker » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:04 am

I will be riding a loaded-down bike with front and rear panniers, probably carrying around 60 pounds. Tent. Ice axe. Crampons. Food. The bike is a touring frame that I am building up—I need very specific things on this bike as far as gear ratios and frame geometry, so building it was the only comfortable option for me.

There are obviously going to be gravel roads involved in reaching trailheads. What type of tires would one use for this? I thought road bikes all have skinny 25 or 23mm tires. My road bike has those 23mm tires on it, and there is no way those things would handle any distance on a gravel road.

The 20-year-old doing this trip probably weighs half what I weigh, but the 60 pounds of luggage on the bike is going to make it a heavy ride anyway.

Mt. Williamson will also be a problem, seeing as it is closed most of the year due to mountain goat protection, so any ascent on this mountain would be illegal.

All that matters is that you make it there before 15 July. Correct?

And the last problem will be Rainier. I am confident in my abilities on Rainier and will be attempting a solo ascent up either the Disappointment Cleaver or preferably the Emmons Glacier route. The only way to do a solo on Mt. Rainier is to have a meeting with the superintendent of the park and receive the OK. So that meeting will be inevitable, but I am hoping by the time I have made it that far they will at least give me a shot at Rainier.

Wouldn't it make more sense to get this worked out ahead of time? Imagine doing 67 out of the target 68, just because you got turned around at Rainier. Don't just show up and hope for the best!

. . . a lot of these areas have quota systems and permits are hard to obtain, especially in the Mt. Whitney area. I’ll hang around as long as necessary to get the Whitney permit.

Haha! Even worse than being turned back at Rainier, imagine having plans fouled because of that stupid F-ing quota system that supposedly protects that "wilderness area" around the Whitney trail! :lol:

If you use the February lottery to apply for mid-week dates, I think you have a reasonably good chance of getting them. If you list several alternate dates that are also during the week, getting the permit shouldn't be a problem, I think. Then you can schedule the Whitney part of the trip ahead of time, instead of going there and wasting mornings at the permit office, waiting for an opening.
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Postby brandon » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:32 am

I might be mistaken, but I believe all lower 48 14'ers in one year, self propelled was done long ago. Father and son(s)? team. 1970's? I'll see if I can track it down again.

Etiher way, this is an awesome challenge. Ride at night across Utah and Nevada I assume. Probably mtn bike, change between slicks and knobbies, trailer. Sounds fun
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Postby robot one » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:50 am

With good planning and some luck with the weather, this is totally doable. I know this because this year, starting in May, I rode and climbed 14 in CA, Hood, Rainer, Granite, Gannet, 25 in CO and made it down into central America. Six months total. Some young guy could smoke those fourteeners.

What kind of bike is he using?
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Postby robot one » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:53 am

Oh yeah, I didn't solo all of those. And you pretty much have to find a partner for Rainer!
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Postby coldfoot » Fri Dec 18, 2009 3:59 am

There are plenty of tires fatter than 25mm for touring bikes. Gravel roads are the least of the issues.

I think it's interesting to attempt all the peaks self-propelled, but the requirement to do it all solo as well is arbitrary. It would be unfortunate if he pushes the limits of good judgment on some peak in an attempt to tick off everything on a tick list in a single climbing season. These challenges that are derived from a list - all the 14ers but nothing that is a few feet shorter - are all somewhat artificial. Which is what it is, as long as you don't allow the arbitrary rules you're playing by to cloud your judgment.
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