WHAT ABOUT THIS (2021) YEAR?:
OK, let's try this again....
As if I don't have enough going on in my life, I decided to move to Northern Colorodo. As a result, I neither have the time nor need to do a long ride. On the other hand, I will only be living a couple of days ride from the "Great Divide Road Bike Route" that was a likely destination for this summer. So, I may settle for doing part(s) of that route over the summer. And, given the weather being really nice in the summer, and harsh in the winter, as opposed to the opposite in Phoenix, the bottom of the world in winter becomes a consideration. Either way, I'll leave this section as-is until more is known.
I have now done most of the long ACA routes in the US that appeal to me, at least at this time.
There is however, one non-ACA US route I am intereseted in.
I picked up the book "Great Divide Road Bike Route" by David Plaskett & Barbara Breuning. It describes a fully on road route from Mexico to Canado along the Continental Divide.
While I don't think I want to tackle ACA's Mountain Bike version, the road version does have some appeal.
This is probably a 6 week or so trip.
While a significant portion of the route uses ACA routes I have riden (Trans Am, Northern Tier, Lewis and Clarke), and thus means a repeat, those sections were ones I liked.
I also am interested in several of the EuroVelo routes.
Numbers 6 and 15 have been recomended by one of the people I rode with in 2018 who lives in England.
Another possiblity is to do the classic "LEJOG" (Lands End to John O'Goat) ride that covers the main British Isle from South to North (or vise-versa).
So Europe seems a good oportunity to do something different.
However, the current COVID situation doesn't look like it will be settled until the fall.
Therefore, international travel in general, and European touring specifically, will likely need to wait until 2022.
I am also finding that shorter tours might better suit my interests, and that as I get older indoor accomodations (i.e. Credit Card touring) are nicer as well.
That is, unless I can count on good camping spots...
While the Great Divide Road Bike Route would mean mostly camping, it is shorter (1 1/2 months instead of 3) and the camping would mostly be good, so it fits.
I used a Bike Friday on my 2019 Canada to Mexico ride, and found that while the bike wasn't without it's quirks, it was a workable alternate to a "big wheeled" bike.
This would make it significantly easier to travel with, and thus a better choice for shorter trips.
If I switch to doing Credit Card Touring, I can simplify baggage by taking the Friday, and using only a front rack, and 2 small panniers.
This means I could get away with taking my Bike Friday in a box, and my gear in a carry on size bag.
That would really simplify the logistics for shorter and/or international trips.
But again, international travel is probably next year.
This year, the "Great Divide Road Bike Route" is looking more and more likely.
So there you have it.
I'm writing updating this in October of 2020, shortly after retunring from my 2020 trip, January of 2021 so my thoughts and feelings are (still) subject to change.
None the less, if you have any suggestions, I'd like to hear them. So
Send ideas to me at rick at cactus rider dot com.