Pre Ride CNC 2007

What did I do to prepare for the ride?

West Jefferson, Ash County High School

The pre ride is where you are getting it all together for the week long bike ride. Below I have listed some
items to be considered, a list of suggested packing items and a list of safety concerns.

This year the ride was from West Jefferson, N. C. to Currituck, N. C.

September 29, 2007 - 3:20 P.M. - left Morganton by pickup for Ash County High School in West Jefferson.
It's a one hour and 30 minute drive to the destination in Ash County. A beautiful ride as we rode through
the mountains of Burke, Watauga and Ash Counties. We are lucky and blessed to live in this part
of North Carolina and the United States.

I set-up my tent with all my belongings that I had brought with me for the 460 plus miles seven day journey.

We had a meeting at 7:00 P.M. for all the full week drivers. It was mainly an introduction of the rules,
regulations, markings, etc. The meeting was pretty simple, but we did receive a T-shirt from the
American Cancer Society and a promotional bag from Currituck County.

The CNC 2007 team let us know that there were over 1,000 riders with an average age of 53. The oldest,
I think was in their eighty's and the youngest was two and was pulled by her father in a trailer behind his bike.

Meeting was over, it was across the the road to get a Subway for dinner and settling in for a good night's sleep.

Excited about the ride and ready to start out in the morning bright and early. Nothing could have prepared
me for the conditions and temperature we would have the next morning. So here we go!

Dewey Fox, Age 65 Rider

Preparing for Bicycle Trip

First of all, you should make a list of all the items you plan to take with you. You may want
to start this list weeks or even months before your trip. A suggested packing list is below.
Each day as you think about the list, you will probably think of items that you will want to take
with you. We all have different needs and lifestyles so each of us will have a different list,
especially of personal items. 

Another item of interest and of importance is safety. Be sure, your life may depend on it.
Most of the safety tips are common sense while riding a bicycle. Some bicycle safety tips
are listed below.

Prepare, Prepare, Prepare, since you never know what the weather may be, especially if
you are going on a trip for a week or more. Also you will be in different areas of the state
or country. Think to yourself the "what if." What if it rains, what if it is hot, what if it turns cold,
what if the wind blows. There are a lot of ifs', so prepare.

Plastic Bags; I can't stress enough the use of putting all your items in plastic bags. These bags
will keep your items clean and DRY. You may also want to take extra plastic bags with
you. If you have items that get wet, they will need to be put in plastic so they won't get mixed with
the dry clothes or items that are not wet. If you ever experience this one time you will understand.
Plastic bags come in all sizes, up to large enough for a bushel basket in size. The zip locks are nice.

Tents; don't buy just any tent. You will need one that will keep you dry if it rains hard or the
dew is heavy. You may want to try it out before taking it on an overnighter. If you and all your
belongings are in the tent and it rains cats and dogs as we say down here in North Carolina,
and the tent leaks, you will be miserable and will not enjoy your trip.

Pillows; due to room, you may want to purchase a small camping pillow. This is a comfort issue.

Sleeping Bags; take the bag with you that is warm enough for the winter cold and cool enough for
the summer heat. Due to limited space, you may be able to carry only one.

Ground Cover for Tent; the ground cover under you tent is important. It will keep the tent floor dry
and moisture will not come up through the floor. Be sure to choose one that is waterproof. It should
be a little smaller than the floor of your tent. If it is larger than floor, then when it rains the water will
roll under your tent on top of the ground cover and not underneath it.   

Suggested Packing List

Bicycling Safety Tips

                                              * taken from Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, "Pedal Power - Your Guide to Cycling Safety."     


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