From here you can see a map of our route as a whole, and a breakdown of the individual sections. As we research the individual towns and cities we hope to visit, those will also be posted under each section. And once we’re on the go, an interactive map will track our progress so you can see exactly where we’re up to!
Leg 2 – Vancouver to San Francisco
Leg 3 – To be determined!
Track our progress here!
Planning our Adventure
When researching our route and undertaking some of our initial ‘practice runs’, we decided on a few key principles to bear in mind when we came to do the final draft- and the adventure itself!
1.) Flexibility - Due to the very nature of travelling by push bike and, indeed, travelling with children in general, it’s important to remain flexible with the route. What we’ve decided is therefore a general idea of our route, but we’ll be continuing to adapt as we go according to any situations that may chance to arise- for example, if the weather conditions deem some roads too dangerous, or if local advice or tips from our hosts advise alternatives.
2.) Slow and steady – travelling with the 2 bikes laden with gear, toddler in tow, is a huge undertaking and a great deal of weight. We can’t afford to be overly ambitious about the distance we aim to cover daily and will need to take regular breaks and stops in order to ensure Theo has a chance to play and stretch his legs, as well as having plenty of ‘rest days’ so that Mummy and Daddy can do the same! We hope that this philosophy will enable us to appreciate the sights and scenery more fully also, and give us the chance to do some sightseeing and ‘tourist-y’ things in some of the more major towns and cities we visit. It has to be about the journey, not the destination. We’ll be able to determine our own rhythm and pace once we get going, but as a rough guide we’d hope to have a ‘rest day’ every 3 days or so, and on a day-to-day basis, hope to do around 2hrs cycling in the morning, enjoy a long lunch and do something with Theo, and then another 2-3 hours cycling in the afternoon (light-permitting!) while Theo enjoys his nap.
3.) We don’t have anything to prove - perhaps this one sounds a little odd, but we’re conscious that by chosing to undertake our travels via the somewhat unconventional means of bike, we’re placing ourselves under a lot of mental pressure to do just that. However, it’s important for us to remember that we haven’t undertaken anything of this size before, and will be placing a great deal of pressure on ourselves and our bodies- both physically and mentally!- and as such, we need to know when to slow down, seek help or admit when we’re in over our heads if things aren’t working out. I don’t mean this in terms of coming home, which neither of us want!- but we are more than prepared to opt for undertaking certain sections by Amtrak or bus if we feel we’re struggling or falling too far behind on our itinerary.
4.) We are a family, a democracy – whilst we will be encouraging and supporting each other through the tougher days and aiming to keep one another motivated, we have to remember that we are doing this as a family, not as individuals. Therefore, if one person feels they’re struggling, we will slow down or stop. And Theo remains our no.1 priority- if we feel at any point that he isn’t adapting well or enjoying our adventure, we will stop, re-evaluate and devise ways to ensure everyone is as happy as possible. Matt and I are generally quite fit and well, but naturally we have different levels of fitness, and we are pulling different sized loads. Our speeds and endurance will therefore vary significantly- so we need to find a pace that compromises between the two of us, and remain together on the road.
5.) Remember why we’re doing this - After long days of climbing hills, or bad weather, lack of hot showers or Theo fussing, it can be easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. We need to remember and remind ourselves that this is a dream we’ve held for years- and a once in a lifetime opportunity! And again, if we need a few days to gain some perspective, then that’s what we’ll take. We’re not in a rush.