Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Pre-Trip Planning

I've been itching to return to Italy since my first trip in 2007. Although I didn't need anymore motivation to go, the experience and time I've spent sharing pizza from my wood-fired oven, has added fuel to the fire. As such, I'm returning to Italy with some specific objectives related to pizza and wood-fired ovens but also to have another trip of a lifetime. Over this summer, the anticipation has been building and I've been preparing my wallet, body, and mind for the trip.

First off, there are a lot of logistics to consider. I am traveling by what is called "self-sustained credit-card style." Basically, I carry only what I need to get from one town to the next + a change of clothes + my wallet. I stay in hostels or small hotels and I don't have to lug around any camping equipment. This allows me to cover a lot of distance and also have a warm bed and hot shower where I end my day. My full itinerary with my daily biking distance, route, night accommodations, and daily highlights are posted at my Italy 2010 webpage.

I did a two day training ride to the Grand Canyon over my birthday
Traveling credit-card style is a little more expensive than camping so that is a consideration I had to take into account when planning the extent of the trip as well as my ability to save up for the trip.
Finally, I'll be biking about 2000 miles over the course of the trip. My longest day will be 120 miles. That's a lot of miles so I needed to prepare my body for this too. Over this summer, I've been doing a lot of riding. I had an overnight trip to the canyon from my house in Flagstaff (160 miles round trip) and the Mormon Lake Loop south of Flagstaff has been a weekly ritual for me. With all the riding, my body feels ready!

I spend about 2 hours carefully packing my bike. Its ready to go!
With one week away from my departure, I've started the packing. I have a really great bike suitcase made by Bike Pro USA out of Phoenix. When packed correctly, it protects my bike during the inevitable banging it will take during the flight. I learned this the hard way. I was short on time packing the bike on my return flight in 2007 and my bike had a couple nicks.

1 comment:

  1. Good luck on your amazing journey to come Caleb! Best of travels, Lisa & Tom