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Thread: bike train?

  1. #1
    traderbri
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    bike train?

    Has anyone heard of a bike train being organized for us east coasters? It would be nice to ride the train, with my bike safely tied down, for at least part of the trip. This would cut down what otherwise might be a 2 week trip into something more time-affordable.

  2. #2
    Chromehead bobs98's Avatar
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    Rev Willie?

    Calling previous conductor with experience....

  3. #3
    Once there was a Tavern PAULBACH's Avatar
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    Sounds like a great idea.

    East Coast to Denver?

  4. #4
    RK Ryder
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    When my wife and I were touring Europe in '71, a couple of times we just walked into a train station and bought two passenger tickets and paid freight for the bikes, which rode in the freight car behind us. Of course after thinking about this, I don't think our N Am. passenger trains have a freight car attached. Call the railroads and see what they have to say. It sure came in handy for us when the Pyrenees mountain passes that we had recently rode were impassable with snow on our return trip.
    Paul
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
    Treasurer of the Forest City Motorrad Club #159
    Knights of the Roundel #333

  5. #5
    sled guy
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    Lightbulb I like the idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by PAULBACH View Post
    Sounds like a great idea.

    East Coast to Denver?
    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.
    Bob

  6. #6
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    Amtrak did this several years ago for East Coast and Midwest bikers wanting to go to Sturgis. But, since Amtrak made a decision to get out of the "freight" business, I don't believe they have the equipment to run this operation today.

  7. #7
    Registered User widebmw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rpstk53 View Post
    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.
    Bob
    Read this old thread
    http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthre...ghlight=amtrak

    If you do not have the time to ride your bike you may want to ship it by truck.

  8. #8
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    huh?

    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.



    Forgive please, but Rochester to Gillette, is around 1672 miles, a 26 hour ride. 2 days each way. A day and a half if your hard core. Why do you feel the need to "train/ship" your bike?
    max

  9. #9
    sled guy
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by maxscycle View Post
    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.



    Forgive please, but Rochester to Gillette, is around 1672 miles, a 26 hour ride. 2 days each way. A day and a half if your hard core. Why do you feel the need to "train/ship" your bike?
    max
    Maybe I'm a softie, I usually ride 350 miles per day and then look to get off the road, I like a casual pace with a few stops to make it fun.
    Maybe I will try a few long distance runs this fall to see if I can do 800 miles a day but I don't usually enjoy driving a car that far, I want to have fun, not just put miles on the odometer, I guess you can count me out of the Iron Butt rally .
    Bob

  10. #10
    grossjohann
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    Quote Originally Posted by traderbri View Post
    Has anyone heard of a bike train being organized for us east coasters? It would be nice to ride the train, with my bike safely tied down, for at least part of the trip. This would cut down what otherwise might be a 2 week trip into something more time-affordable.
    Have you looked into the AutoTrain?

    This will only take you from DC to Orlando, but it could be a fun way to break up the trip? I was considering taking it with my wife so that she... well, so that she would come along.

    Auto Train Route Map

    Aside from price, the only issue is that you're stuck on the train for 17.5 hours, but it beats I-95!!!

  11. #11
    brez DMR's Avatar
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    not many

    Quote Originally Posted by maxscycle View Post
    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.



    Forgive please, but Rochester to Gillette, is around 1672 miles, a 26 hour ride. 2 days each way. A day and a half if your hard core. Why do you feel the need to "train/ship" your bike?
    max
    According to my math, that's averaging 64 mph for the distance. Not many can do that, even if the conditions are ideal. I figure if I average 50 mph I'm making good time. Maybe once I averaged 60 on a sprint from CO to IL for 900 mi, but I cheated with the time zone change. Then, again, I'm not much of a distance rider.

  12. #12
    BMW_Rogue
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    Huh??? 64 MPH for 48 hours?

    Gotta agree with dmr on this one ... that's a pretty stiff regimen. I just ... well, a week or so ago ... did a 1,200 mile trip from Fort Wayne Indiana in two-and-a-half days of pretty intense riding to stay ahead of a storm front and to get my new/used R1200C home to the mid-coast of Maine and, while I had a good inaugural ride to get accustomed to the bike, I really didn't get to do much sightseeing. Except for some secondary roads for 3 hours the beginning evening, it was all turnpike/freeway driving at 70+ MPH with a layover both nights for some rest and you can trust me on this, you're gonna be more than a wee bit tired at the end of 1,700 miles in three days.

    And shipping will be expensive and may not meet your time schedule. The bids I got ranged from $660 to $1,100 (my trip only cost me bit over $300 and that included air, rental car, gas, food and lodging) with delivery schedules of 10 to 14 days depending on availability of a truck going in that direction (some shorter but they were on open auto-carriers) door to door ...

    So, good luck with your trip ... if it's an event you are going to, you may be able to find someone hauling bikes there with room for another. There's a fella up here that goes to Florida a couple of times a year and out to Sturgis with a trailer load of bikes and says he generally has room for more ... and the charge is only $500 ...

  13. #13
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Cool Hard Core?

    Quote Originally Posted by maxscycle View Post
    I want to go to Wyoming but I cannot do 2 weeks, if this can be made to happen in a 1 week time frame count me in.



    Forgive please, but Rochester to Gillette, is around 1672 miles, a 26 hour ride. 2 days each way. A day and a half if your hard core. Why do you feel the need to "train/ship" your bike?
    max
    I too agree with dmr and others - both I and AAA find the "50 miles covered for every hour on the road over the course of a day" to be a pretty accurate formula. This has nothing to do with my speed, which I shamefully admit is almost always 5 MPH over posted limits. It embraces rest stops, pit stops, lunch, fuel, detours, weather, etc.

    But then 1,672 miles would come out to about 33+ hours in the saddle - 3 days of 11+ hours of riding per day, which is a fair challenge for most of us, especially when you consider our demographics. So, that's 3 long days there and 3 long days back - 1 day left to take in the entire rally?! Hardly seems worth it, if a week is all you have to work with. Ten days would be more like it, with three spent at the rally.

    My son and I recently covered 7 midwestern states in a single day (August 31st), traveling 754 miles in 17 hours, and collecting a dated gas receipt from each state. Though proud of our accomplishment (and truly tired by day's end), that still computes to only 44 miles covered per hour of traveling.

    So, my point is this - the 'bike train' is a neat idea for east coast riders with limited time. Sounds to me from other contributions to this thread that it probably won't happen though, which is too bad. Hope other 'solutions' for those with time constraints are found, i.e. truck shipping, trailering, etc.

    I realize rallies cannot always be centrally located (too many neat locations out west and in the southeast to ignore), but I sympathize with riders bordering the Atlantic - Gillette is a LONG haul!

    Good Luck, and Ride Alert!
    Last edited by Greenwald; 09-26-2007 at 11:48 AM.

  14. #14
    Chromehead bobs98's Avatar
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    It's not just about saving time, but also about sharing the experience enjoying the travel and potentially relaxing along the way.

    A quick check of Amtrak routes shows Washington DC to Denver thru Chicago as two trains, the Capitol Limited and California Zephyr. Departs DC at 4:05 pm, arriving Chicago at 8:40 am the next day. 5 hours in Chicago, departing at 2:00 pm and arriving Denver at 7:35 the next morning. 1800 train miles, 35 hours train time and 39 hours elapsed time. Then it is 350 miles up I-25 and WY 59 to Gilette.

    Total approximately 48 hours to get there from DC and 2 nights on the train. Coach cost is $154 one way. This obviously does not include bike shipping.

    I could ride the 1865 miles from home in three days and would enjoy it immensely, but prefer the non-slab route which could take longer. The train would be an attractive alternative if it was available.

  15. #15
    CO_G30
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    I'll never use Amtrak again....

    Quote Originally Posted by swall View Post
    Amtrak did this several years ago for East Coast and Midwest bikers wanting to go to Sturgis. But, since Amtrak made a decision to get out of the "freight" business, I don't believe they have the equipment to run this operation today.
    IMHO, they also got out of the "good customer service" business too. The family and I thought it'd be fun to take the train from Denver to Oakland, CA instead of the usual flight to see my folks.

    24hrs later, after many many stops for no apparent reason, surly/nasty service in the diner, lousy food and did I mention surly service from diner personnel; my family and I ditched the return trip tickets and flew home after seeing my folks. That's how bad the train trip was. Really sad part was I paid for sleeper accomodations, can't imagine the conditions in the cheap seats!

    I miss the days of great train service when stationed in Germany back in the 80s with the Army. I would not recommend Amtrak to anyone, much less let them touch my motorcycle.

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