|2018: May 24 to June 13
|Per Person: $6,495.00
Sgl Upgrade: $1,300.00
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Middle America Tour
Albuquerque, NM to Champaign, IL 1,370 Miles
Enjoy the relaxing pace of tour life as you ride from the Southwestern U.S. to the Heartland of America where old-fashion diners and homesteads allow you to experience the gracious hospitality of the Midwest.
Each day will bring a new adventure and spectacular scenery as we cross the mountains in New Mexico, and the prairies in Kansas on our way to the Yellow Brick Road, the Lewis and Clark Trail, and the Mighty Mississippi. Our route meanders past small town cafes on Historic Rt. 66 where freshly baked pastries and stories of the Mother Road will tempt you to linger and enjoy the relaxed pace of touring. This route is the ideal setting for a bicycle tour as we rediscover the beauty of the United States and celebrate the spirit of hometown America.
*Our Middle America tour is the second leg of our Cross Country tour from Los Angeles to Boston. If you would like to join us at any other point along our route see Choose a Segment or call for details.
|Day||Destination||Miles||Points of Interest|
|1||Albuquerque, NM||0||Arrival, First Group Dinner|
|2||Santa Fe, NM||66||Santa Fe Plaza, Historic Mining Town of Madrid, Highest “Sleeping Elevation”: 7,260’, State Capital|
|3||Santa Fe, NM||0||Rest Day|
|4||Las Vegas, NM||72||Highest Point on Tour: Glorieta Pass at 7570’, Pecos Indian Ruins|
|5||Tucumcari, NM||108||First Century, Historic Route 66 Motels, Canadian Escarpment|
|6||Dalhart, TX||96||First State Line, Texas Feed Lots, Central Time Zone|
|7||Guymon, OK||72||Second State Line, Oklahoma Panhandle, Dust Bowl Museum|
|8||Liberal, KS||39||Third State Line, Liberal Air Museum, Pancake Blvd, Yellow Brick Rd, Dorothy’s House|
|9||Dodge City, KS||82||Dalton Gang Hideout, Boot Hill Museum with Can Can Show and Gun Fight|
|10||Great Bend, KS||84||Santa Fe Trail’s Historic Pawnee Rock, WWII B-29 Training Facility, Arkansas River Bend|
|11||McPherson, KS||63||Santa Fe Trail, McPherson’s Historic Opera House|
|12||Abilene, KS||62||Eisenhower Library and Boyhood Home, Greyhound Racing Hall of Fame, Old Town Abilene|
|13||Abilene, KS||0||Rest Day|
|14||Topeka, KS||105||Second Century, State Capitol|
|15||St. Joseph, MO||84||Fourth State Line, Pony Express Museum, Lewis and Clark Trail|
|16||Chillicothe, MO||86||1,000 Miles, Home of Sliced Bread and Long Distance Cycling, Dekalb Historical Museum|
|17||Kirksville, MO||76||Thousand Hills State Park, 148 “Roller Coaster” Hills|
|18||Quincy, IL||74||Fifth State Line, Mississippi River Crossing, Historic Quincy Museum and Mansions|
|19||Springfield, IL||107||Third Century, Lincoln’s Boyhood Home, State Capital|
|20||Champaign, IL||87||Last Day of Riding, Home of Speed Skater Bonnie Blair|
Cyclists and Groups
Average age: 62
Typical age range: 35 to 70
Group size: 20 to 25 (Includes Cross Country riders)
Typical male/female ratio: 60/40
Leaders per tour: 5 to 7
Support vehicles per tour: 3
Total number of days: 21
Rest days: 2
Riding days: 17
Orientation day: 1
Departure day: 1
Weeks: 3 Miles: 1,370
State lines: 6
Miles per day: 80 (Avg.)
Longest day: To Tucumcari, NM – 108 Miles
Shortest day: To Liberal, KS – 39 Miles
Most gain: To Topeka, KS – 5,690’ of climbing
Least gain: To Guymon, OK – 495’ of climbing
Highest point on tour: Glorieta Pass, NM – 7,570’ above sea level
Lowest point on tour: Springfield, IL – 558’ above sea level
|Mileage (Rest day to rest day)||Riding Days||Miles|
|Albuquerque, NM to Abilene, KS||10||753|
|Abilene, KS to Champaign, IL||7||617|
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!