This website shares the joy, the wonder, the excitement, the beauty, the love, and the adventure, of our Trans-America crossing in the summer of 2004. We are Brian and Karen Managan, Maps Director and Membership Chair (respectively) of the Rochester Bicycling Club (RBC) in Rochester New York.
Karen and I met early in 1992, started riding my Fisher Mountain Bike tandem together in the spring, and were married in June of 1994. We celebrated our wedding with Karen's family, our wonderful neighbors, and many friends in the RBC, and spent our honeymoon by bike-touring the perimeter of the Finger Lakes Region of upstate New York on our new custom built Sterling tandem. (Frame by Steve Bilenky, components and assembly by Tandems East)
Even then, Karen and I realized we shared a common dream ... of someday crossing the country by bike ... and by the spring of 1999, we committed to celebrating our tenth anniversary on the road. We almost postponed the trip because of aging pets, but as luck would have it (for better AND worse), our beloved pets, Frosty and Velcro, both passed away within the year before the summer of the trip. We were free to go.
Although the Sterling is our favorite of the three tandems we own, we bought a Rans Screamer recumbent tandem years ahead of this trip, knowing that although it's not the fastest tandem in town, it would be the most comfortable way to cross the country, alone and unsupported. This is our vacation, and speed was not a concern. Combined with a "Bob" trailer loaned to us from our friend Hank who took the trailer on it's FIRST Trans-Am years ago, we were as prepared as anyone could be for hauling food, water, and all our gear across the mountains, deserts, plains, farmlands and forests that make up our beautiful country.
Our plan was to start in San Francisco at the Golden Gate Bridge, and cross the states of California, Nevada, Utah, and Colorado via the "Western Express" route that was mapped out by Adventure Cycling. Once in Pueblo, we would join the original 1976 Trans-America Trail and follow it to Yorktown Virginia.
With many friends and co-workers "watching the fort" while we were gone, with the assistance of friends on both ends of the trip (Georgena Terry and Bob and Liz Litwiller) getting us started and getting us back home, and with all the help and encouragement of many new friends made along the way, we were able to make the dream come true! We did the pedalling, but it was truely a group effort in making this trip happen. Our heartfelt thanks to everyone who was part of the team. You were all terrific!
Feel free to enjoy the record of our trip via the archived weblog and included comments and after-thoughts,.
Brian and Karen