PAC Tour Northern Transcontinental, 2013

A great way to bicycle across the country

PAC Tour (Pacific Atlantic Cycling Tour) was started in 1985 by cross country record holders Susan Notorangelo and Lon Haldeman. PAC Tour specializes in fast bicycle trips across the country. This trip had almost 40 cyclists including crew members. Crew members generally rode their bikes every other day. Most people did the entire trip, but others did segments. PAC Tour had two large vans with trailers and a minivan. PAC Tour provided most breakfasts and all lunches. We ate dinners in local restaurants and stayed in hotels. During the trip, five riders crashed, but none of them had to go to the emergency room. Nobody gave up and went home. Several riders had done transcontinental trips with PAC Tour before. The youngest cyclist was 16 and the oldest cyclists were both 74. Most of the group were Americans, but the group included cyclists from Australia, Canada, Italy, and Puerto Rico.

Map with markers for each of the 32 days

Itinerary

The cross-country bike trip from Everett, Washington, to Williamsburg, Virginia, covered a little over 3,500 miles in 32 days. We had only one rest day when we sailed across Lake Michigan on the Badger ferry boat. Highlights of the trip included Washington’s North Cascade Highway and Grand Coulee Dam, the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming, and South Dakota’s Black Hills and Bad Lands National Park.

Day Date From To Miles Climbing Ft
1 7-Jul-13 Everett, WA Sedro Woolley, WA 98 5,960
2 8-Jul-13 Sedro Woolley, WA Winthrop, WA 128 4,500
3 9-Jul-13 Winthrop, WA Coulee Dam, WA 100 4,000
4 10-Jul-13 Coulee Dam, WA Spokane, WA 86 3,500
5 11-Jul-13 Spokane, WA Sand Point, ID 87 2,500
6 12-Jul-13 Sand Point, ID Thompson Falls, MT 86 2,500
7 13-Jul-13 Thompson Falls, MT Missoula, MT 136 3,520
8 14-Jul-13 Missoula, MT Butte, MT 134 4,850
9 15-Jul-13 Butte, MT Bozeman, MT 101 3,200
10 16-Jul-13 Bozeman, MT Columbus, MT 105 3,000
11 17-Jul-13 Columbus, MT Powell, WY 112 6,200
12 18-Jul-13 Powell, WY Sheridan, WY 123 7,300
13 19-Jul-13 Sheridan, WY Gillette, WY 112 4,400
14 20-Jul-13 Gillette, WY Custer, SD 121 4,000
15 21-Jul-13 Custer, SD Rapid City, SD 70 2,500
16 22-Jul-13 Rapid City, SD Murdo, SD 149 3,180
17 23-Jul-13 Murdo, SD Mitchell,SD 145 1,690
18 24-Jul-13 Mitchell,SD Worthington, MN 137 2,240
19 25-Jul-13 Worthington, MN Albert Lea, MN 148 1,500
20 26-Jul-13 Albert Lea, MN La Crosse, WI 128 3,200
21 27-Jul-13 La Crosse, WI Portage, WI 135 4,000
22 28-Jul-13 Portage, WI Manitowoc, WI 125 4,000
23 29-Jul-13 Manitowoc, WI Ludington, MI Ferry Boat
24 30-Jul-13 Ludington, MI Grand Rapids, MI 122 2,500
25 31-Jul-13 Grand Rapids, MI Coldwater, MI 118 3,000
26 1-Aug-13 Coldwater, MI Lima, OH 130 3,000
27 2-Aug-13 Lima, OH Circleville, OH 120 2,900
28 3-Aug-13 Circleville, OH Parkersburg, WV 103 6,600
29 4-Aug-13 Parkersburg, WV Elkins, WV 120 9,500
30 5-Aug-13 Elkins, WV Harrisonburg, VA 106 9,000
31 6-Aug-13 Harrisonburg, VA Ashland, VA 122 4,580
32 7-Aug-13 Ashland, VA Williamsburg, VA 91 1,660

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Washington State

  • George and Yvonne visited Yvonne’s brother’s in Seattle over the Fourth of July. George’s bike arrived a few days earlier via Fed Ex, and George assembled the bike on July 4th.
  • Neighbors gathered on the street to watch fireworks over Lake Union.
  • Susan and George in Everett on July 7th shorthly before the start of the bike trip
  • Deception Pass Bridge on Whidby Island, WA
  • The North Cascades Highway was beautifil, but had some big climbs.
  • Three riders approaching a rest stop on one of the big climbs on the North Cascades Highway.
  • Lon riding on the North
    Cascades Highway
  • Greg and son Zach on their tandem
  • Grand Coulee Dam on the Columbia River generates more electricity than any other dam in the United States.

Idaho and Montana

  • Welcome to Idaho
  • John and Bill checking the drive train at a rest stop
  • Welcome to Montana
  • Our lunch stop at the Bison Cafe had delicious huckleberry milkshakes!
  • Three riders along the Clark Fork river (named for explorer William Clark)
  • Gerry has ridden other PAC Tour transcontinental trips, Paris-Brest-Paris, and the Furnace Creek 508.

Bighorn Mountains, Wyoming

  • Wyoming had a great welcome sign
  • Background Info on Bighorn Mountains
  • Warning sign for long ten percent grades.
  • Mike at the top of the Bighorns
  • Cattle grazing at the top of the Bighorn Mountains without fences
  • Highway 14A in the Bighorn Mountains. I tried to keep my speed under 40 mph on the long descent.

South Dakota

  • Great places, great faces
  • One of several painted buffaloes in Custer, SD
  • A donkey on the road in Custer State Park
  • Buffaloes in Custer State Park. If the buffaloes are snorting you must not get too close. One of them came out on the road as we rode by!
  • Distant view of
    Mt. Rushmore
  • Susan and Barbara in the Bad Lands
  • Riding in Bad Lands National Park
  • Gerry riding in Bad Lands shortly after our lunch stop
  • George at the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD