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|2017: May 6 to June 24
2018: May 12 to June 30
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Cross Country Tour
Los Angeles to Boston 3,415 miles
Like many avid cyclists, you have asked yourself time and again if you have what it takes to ride across the country. You mentally rehearse riding through the desert, climbing the first mountain pass and catching your first glimpse of the Atlantic Ocean. Your images are so powerful yet you still wonder if you have what it takes.
When we meet in Los Angeles your journey will be commemorated with a wheel-dipping ceremony at the Pacific Ocean in California then, 3,415 miles later you will partake in your second celebration, this time at the Atlantic Ocean in Massachusetts making your journey a complete coast-to-coast event.
Our route takes us over the Continental Divide in New Mexico, along Historic Rt. 66 and to the Dalton Brother's Hideout in Kansas. Continuing east we will ride the Lewis and Clark Trail in Missouri, cross the Mighty Mississippi into Illinois, and pedal through historic Bennington, Vermont and Lexington, Massachusetts.
Study every photo and read every word on this web site as they tell the story of our support, before and during tour, then ask yourself again if you have what it takes; your answer will be YES!
*Our seven-week tour is an exciting, life affirming adventure! Ride the entire tour from coast to coast, split it into multiple segments over multiple years, or join us at any point along our route for any length of time. See Choose a Segment or call for details.
|Day||Destination||Miles||Points of Interest|
|1||Los Angeles, CA||0||Orientation, Route Rap, First Group Dinner!|
|2||Riverside, CA||78||Pacific Ocean Wheel Dip at Manhattan Beach Pier! First Day of Riding, Mother's Day!|
|3||Indio, CA||92||San Andreas Fault, Palm Springs, Lowest Point on Tour: Indio, CA – 14’ Below Sea Level, Windmill Farms|
|4||Blythe, CA||100||First Century! First Desert Crossing: The Mojave!|
|5||Wickenburg, AZ||116||First State Line Crossing! Second Century, Old Town Wickenburg, Dude Ranch Capital of the World|
|6||Prescott, AZ||59||First Mountain Pass: Yarnell at 4,868’ Above Sea Level! Ponderosa Pines, Historic Gurley St. in Old Town Prescott|
|7||Cottonwood, AZ||44||Mingus Mountain: 7023’ Above Sea Level, Historic Mining Town of Jerome, Yavapai Indian Ruins|
|8||Flagstaff, AZ||47||Red Rocks of Sedona, Oak Creek Canyon, Old Town Flagstaff|
|9||Flagstaff, AZ||0||First Rest Day|
|10||Holbrook, AZ||92||Historic Route 66 Wigwam Motel and Jack Rabbit Trading Post, Eagle’s Song Landmark “Standing on the Corner of Winslow, AZ…”|
|11||Gallup, NM||93||Second State Line, Painted Desert, Petrified Forest, Mtn. Time Zone|
|12||Grants, NM||65||Continental Divide: 7275’, Red Rock State Park, Historic Route 66 Cafés|
|13||Albuquerque, NM||76||Rio Grande Crossing, Old Town Albuquerque|
|14||Santa Fe, NM||66||Santa Fe Plaza, Historic Mining Town of Madrid, Highest “Sleeping Elevation”: 7,260’, State Capital|
|15||Santa Fe, NM||0||Second Rest Day|
|16||Las Vegas, NM||72||Highest Point on Tour: Glorieta Pass at 7570’, Pecos Indian Ruins|
|17||Tucumcari, NM||108||1,000 Miles! Third Century, Second Desert Crossing, Historic Route 66 Motels, Canadian Escarpment|
|18||Dalhart, TX||96||Third State Line, Texas Feed Lots, Central Time Zone|
|19||Guymon, OK||72||Fourth State Line, Oklahoma Panhandle, Dust Bowl Museum|
|20||Liberal, KS||39||Fifth State Line, Liberal Air Museum, Pancake Blvd, Yellow Brick Rd, Dorothy’s House|
|21||Dodge City, KS||82||Dalton Gang Hideout, Boot Hill Museum with Can Can Show and Gun Fight|
|22||Great Bend, KS||84||Santa Fe Trail’s Historic Pawnee Rock, WWII B-29 Training Facility, Arkansas River Bend|
|23||McPherson, KS||63||1,500 Miles! Santa Fe Trail, McPherson’s Historic Opera House|
|24||Abilene, KS||62||Eisenhower Library and Boyhood Home, Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame, Old Town Abilene|
|25||Abilene, KS||0||Third Rest Day|
|26||Topeka, KS||105||Half Way Point: 1,708 Miles! Fourth Century, State Capitol|
|27||St. Joseph, MO||84||Sixth State Line, Pony Express Museum, Lewis and Clark Trail|
|28||Chillicothe, MO||86||Home of Sliced Bread and Long Distance Cycling, Dekalb Historical Museum|
|29||Kirksville, MO||76||Thousand Hills State Park, 148 “Roller Coaster” Hills|
|30||Quincy, IL||74||2,000 Miles! Seventh State Line, Mississippi River Crossing, Historic Quincy Museum and Mansions|
|31||Springfield, IL||107||Fifth Century, Lincoln’s Boyhood Home, State Capital|
|32||Champaign, IL||87||One Month Tour Anniversary, Home of Speed Skater Bonnie Blair|
|33||Champaign, IL||0||Fourth Rest Day|
|34||Crawfordsville, IN||79||Eighth State Line, Eastern Time Zone, Home of Ben Hur author L. Wallace, Famous “Old Jail Museum”|
|35||Indianapolis, IN||59||Home of Zipp Wheels, Lots and Lots of Cornfields!|
|36||Richmond, IN||73||Famous “All American Rose Garden” (2,000 roses)|
|37||Marysville, OH||104||Ninth State Line, Sixth and Final Century, American Legion Park, Father's Day!|
|38||Wooster, OH||97||Home of Rubbermaid, Amish Homesteads, Historic Glacial Area|
|39||Niles, OH||91||Birthplace of President McKinley, Amish Bakeries and Farm Stands|
|40||Erie, PA||89||Tenth State Line, Presque Isle on Lake Erie, Famous “White Turkey Root Beer Stand”, Old Town Erie|
|41||Erie, PA||0||Fifth and Final Rest Day|
|42||Hamburg, NY||79||Eleventh State Line, Lake Erie Vineyards and Wineries, Nearby Niagara Falls|
|43||Canandaigua, NY||93||Finger Lake Beachfront Cafes and Attractions, Canandaigua Wine Trail|
|44||Syracuse, NY||68||3,000 Miles! Erie Canal State Park, Women’s Rights Hall of Fame, Birthplace of Memorial Day|
|45||Herkimer, NY||70||Mohawk River Valley, Fort Klock Homestead|
|46||Albany, NY||78||Erie Canal’s Lock #17, Shaker Furniture Museum|
|47||Brattleboro, VT||76||Twelfth State Line, Vermont’s Green Mountains, Two State Line Crossings! Bennington Battle Monument|
|47||(Ride through NH)||Thirteenth State Line, New Hampshire’s White Mountains, Mohawk Trail Museum|
|48||Burlington, MA||91||Fourteenth State Line Crossing into Fifteenth and Final State, Historic Concord and Lexington, Revolutionary War Monuments|
|49||Boston, MA||17||Final Ride to Revere Beach, Atlantic Wheel Dip, Celebration Banquet|
|50||Boston, MA||0||Departure – As a Cross Country Cyclist!|
Cyclists and Groups
Average age: 62
Oldest rider: 80
Youngest rider: 26
Typical age range: 35 to 70
Group size: 20 to 25
Typical male/female ratio: 60/40
Leaders per tour: 5 to 7
Support vehicles per tour: 3
Total number of days: 50
Rest days: 5
Riding days: 43
Orientation day: 1
Departure day: 1
State line crossings: 15
Miles per day: 79 (Avg.)
Rainy days: 3.2 (Avg.)
Longest day: To Wickenburg, AZ – 116
Miles Shortest day: To Liberal, KS – 40 Miles
Total elevation gain: 90,039’ of climbing
Most gain: To Prescott, AZ – 5,648’ of climbing
Least gain: To Guymon, OK – 480’ of climbing
Highest point on tour: Glorieta Pass, NM – 7,570’ above sea level
Lowest point on tour: Indio, CA – 14’ below sea level
0 Miles: Pacific Ocean – Los Angeles, CA
1,000 Miles: Tucumcari, NM
1,708 Miles: Topeka, KS – Halfway point
2,000 Miles: Quincy, IL
3,000 Miles: Syracuse, NY
3,415 Miles: Atlantic Ocean – Boston, MA
Commemorative Wheel Dips
Front wheel: Pacific Ocean at Manhattan Beach Pier (Los Angeles)
Back wheel: Atlantic Ocean at Revere Beach (Boston)
Santa Fe, NM
State Line Crossings
|Mileage (Rest day to rest day)||Riding Days||Miles|
|Los Angeles, CA to Flagstaff, AZ||7||538|
|Flagstaff, AZ to Santa Fe, NM||5||395|
|Santa Fe, NM to Abilene, KS||9||686|
|Abilene, KS to Champaign, IL||7||618|
|Champaign, IL to Erie, PA||7||596|
|Erie, PA to Boston, MA||8||582|
My First Cross Country Ride
On May 10, twenty strangers converged on a hotel in Los Angeles, CA. We were all cyclists soon to embark on a 3,400-mile journey from Los Angeles, CA to Boston, MA. Since this cross-country trip was my first bicycle tour, I did not know what to expect from the weeks to come. I found myself standing ankle deep in the Pacific Ocean with 20 people I didn’t know. Who were they? Where were they from? What kind of cyclists were they? I had a thousand questions about the strangers standing next to me and I was ready to find the answers.
As the first few days passed, I realized there was a great mix of people with very interesting and unique backgrounds. There were schoolteachers, dentists and retired Army Generals, yet the positions we held in society seemed unimportant as we all faced the same daily challenges and strove for the same big goal.
The early stages of the trip brought a wonderful exploration of new friendships as we pedaled through the desert and over the Southern Rockies. With each day’s shared experiences we became closer. The bonds we were forming were unlike anything I had experienced in the corporate world.
While riding through Texas and Oklahoma I felt a family coming to life. When I stood in the Pacific Ocean on the first day I believed it would be my own grit and determination that would carry me from one coast to the other. However, as time passed and we faced headwinds, rain and flat tires together I realized that my journey was actually about doing something epic with these people who shared my same goal. These riders I met only two weeks earlier had become an integral part of my Cross Country experience – something I never expected, but something that brought me great joy.
The Midwest was a time when our daily rituals and routines were cemented, like our search for the best pie in America, posing for pictures at each state sign and sharing a nightly glass of wine with dinner. It was not long before I felt like I was at adult summer camp without any responsibilities and nothing on my “To Do List” except ride, eat, sleep and play. The sense of freedom was intoxicating.
I did not want it to end. When we passed the halfway point of the trip I realized that my adventure was speeding toward Boston far too quickly and that I would eventually have to return to the “real world”. Despite this realization we continued to grow as a family, focused on the safe arrival of the entire group at the Atlantic Ocean.
As we entered Vermont I felt a profound sense of sadness and disbelief. I would soon be separated from the people I had come to love. I felt a sense of urgency to make every moment special and to enjoy each small, daily happening to the fullest. I found myself getting off my bike more often during those last few days. I learned from one of my buddies to talk to people along the way and listen to their stories. During my hectic life back home, I often put blinders on and did not take time to chat with the cashiers or flight attendants of America. My new friends reminded me that there are interesting people all over our country... all along our glorious route!
The last day was here, Massachusetts – 3,400 miles east of the Pacific Ocean and only 18 more to the Atlantic. Could it really be true that our journey across the states was almost finished? Our tour leader encouraged us to ride together to a location just 5 miles from the beach where we would be escorted two-by-two to our final destination. I knew that after 49 days together this was the only way to finish our epic adventure!
As the group gathered in front of the last hotel the excitement was obvious. We began the ride as a group with our navigator Ken at the helm. Whether or not it was a conscious decision on Ken’s part to keep the pace slow, I don’t know but I still thank him for allowing me to savor those last moments with my new cycling family.
A situation arose during our ride to the beach that exemplified the feelings of camaraderie within our group. Several riders had been left behind because of bike problems and traffic, and Ken unaware of the problem, continued to pedal toward the beach. Feeling sad about riding to the Atlantic with part of our group missing, I made my way to the front of the pack to ask Ken and the others if we could stop and wait. True to form, every person polled was not only happy to stop but thought it was important to stop and wait for the rest of our group. As Ken searched for a safe place to regroup I realized the profound nature of the commitment we held for each other. The rest of our group came rolling up and the parade continued to our final destination. It was a wonderful feeling to know that we were in this ride together, to the very end!!
Five miles to the Atlantic Ocean. We were quiet. Emotions were running high and tears were flowing. Our victory was bittersweet as we were about to reach our goal knowing it would be time to begin our farewells. How could this be? The people with whom I’d become so emotionally attached would soon be just a memory. It didn’t seem right. How could I return to life back home without my new playmates, my new brothers and sisters? The thought of this was too difficult for many of us so we started planning reunion rides and newsletters to keep the group in touch. To say goodbye in Boston would have been too devastating for most of us, I guess that’s why I didn’t say goodbye – only, until we meet again.
Tracy Leiner, Owner
CrossRoads Cycling Adventures
Written after my first Cross Country tour as a rider like you!
Yes, You Can!
You might be questioning your ability to complete a long distance tour or ride across the country on a bicycle. Our tours may seem daunting but it matters not your age or skill level, rather your attitude, courage and determination. It is the simple act of pedaling one day at a time, at your own pace, with the camaraderie that shines through every group that turns your dream into reality!
Theodore Roosevelt said it best, “Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much because they live in that gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat”!
Our promise to you is that we will work together before tour discussing your cycling history, fitness, equipment, goals and desires then develop a plan to help you prepare for the most extraordinary adventure of your life. This is what we have done with every one of our alumni and this is what we will do for YOU and with YOU!
Accept the challenge and become a member of the very elite group of cyclists who have pedaled their bicycles across the United States of America or completed an ultra-distance bicycle tour!
Please call so we can help you begin preparing for YOUR victory!