Cycling from Reno to BRC: questions!

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Cycling from Reno to BRC: questions!

Postby wildilocks » Sat May 13, 2006 2:42 am

Okay, so I have a probable support vehicle [RV] manned by friends from Perth going from SF to BRC, which may or may not have enough seats to drive all of us down there, depending on who ends up going. I may even be able to go from SF to Reno with them, as one of their core party members is going to Worldcon and will probably be flying in to meet them in Reno, and taking my seat.

So I'm looking at different [and preferably sustainable] ways of getting to BRC from either SF or Reno, and am interested specifically in cycling from Reno to BRC. For anyone who has cycled from Reno to BRC: How long did it take, how easy/hard was it, what is the traffic like, what kind of rig did you have, did you take all your own gear or have a support vehicle: I've read a few other threads and seems its' easy enough to buy a bike in Reno, I'm curious about bike trailers, panniers, other stuff. Ideally I'd be buying a bike in Reno and most stuff as late as possible, carrying a couple of days water & food but having rest brought in with support crew.

Alternatively, is there anyone flying into Reno who is interested in cycling from Reno to BRC in a similar fashion?
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Postby phil » Wed Jun 14, 2006 11:10 am

This is an article on what it's like cycling from Winnemucca to Gerlach:
http://www.bikereader.com/contributors/Brick/blackrock.html

If you have a support vehicle, it will be better.
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Postby Tiara » Wed Jun 14, 2006 10:50 pm

I would be very cautious/concerned about safety on the highway portions of the ride. Much of the ride would be in places where there is no shoulder or bike lane. And if you are traveling right before the event, there will be heavy traffic, including lots of trailers, RVs, and other wide load vehicles on those same stretches of road.

Also, be aware that bicycles are not allowed on most portions of the interstate freeway system (ie I-80 out of Reno), so you'll need to do route research. You won't just be able to bicycle the same route that your vehicle-riding friends would normally take.
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Postby Tiara » Wed Jun 14, 2006 10:55 pm

Wildilocks,

Re-reading what I wrote, it sounds really negative. I'm not trying to discourage you. Just want to make sure you think through all the major issues that will affect your safety if you choose to make this ride.

I'm an experienced bike tourer (a few years ago I bicycled the Pacific coast of Australia in several stages). And this is a route that I would avoid during the traffic to and from the event. I'd also be very cautious about issues related to heat stroke, because it can be very hot out there.
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Postby spectabillis » Thu Jun 15, 2006 3:58 am

Tiara wrote:Wildilocks, Re-reading what I wrote, it sounds really negative. I'm not trying to discourage you. Just want to make sure you think through all the major issues that will affect your safety if you choose to make this ride.


dont think thats much of a problem around here, although its sometimes hard to tell when people are just joking around its the normal mode of conversation.
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Postby phil » Thu Jun 15, 2006 10:20 am

I see people on their bikes on the road between Nixon and the Burn, with a load on their bike carrier. As Tiara writes, I'd be concerned about causing an accident as overloaded RVs and people not used to pulling a trailer try to pass, especially if the original poster has an RV support vehicle traveling on the two-lane blacktop at bicycle speed.
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Postby LeChatNoir » Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:23 pm

It's true... its a busy road during that time. And most of the folks traveling it are considerate and thoughtful. There are, however, a handful that seem to think that they must be first in line and pass everything they can with or without thought to anyone else.

Whatever you do (ride or bike) please just be careful.
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route suggestions

Postby insane » Thu Jun 15, 2006 11:39 pm

you can avoid I80 by taking Pyramid Lake HWY 446. it actually goes thru Sparks and straight up to Pyramid Lake. There it comes to a "t".

Option1- asphalt all the way-
go right and then about 15 miles, it will come to a "t" at HWY 447. turn left and go about 50 miles to Empire (Store and Gas) and another 7 or so mile to Gerlach (gas , restaraunt and bars).

Option2- aspalt and dirt-
go left( toward Sutcliff). asphalt for about 10 or so more miles then dirt/gravel road for about 50 or so miles then a "t" at HWY 447 (asphalt) turn right. go for about 8 miles to Gerlach. or about 7 mile to jct with HWY 34 and go left to BurningMan entrance (about 3 more miles).
Side note: if you turn left at the asphalt (from the dirt road) and ride 2 or 3 more miles you can take a nice swim at sqaw resavoir (on the left)

I take the dirt road all the time on my BMW dual sport motorcycle. A mountan bike could easily handle it. Its a pretty good road. the scenery around the lake is awesome, as well as the rest of the way up. an Rv or or other chase vehicle can make it as well. plus, there are a lots of places to stop and camp for free all along the dirt road. you'll see an occasional camper here and there along the way. you will also get to see the Smoke Creek desert. its playa like the black rock. Remember tho...once you are thru Sutcliff there are no towns the rest of the way until you get to gerlach.. only a ranch about every 10 or 15 miles. I also believe its not as "hilly" as goin the other way.
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