The Ride

27 days, no rest days, starting on September 8 in San Diego, CA, and arriving Tybee Island near Savannah, GA on October 4. It was an organized tour, operated by PACTOUR (Pacific Atlantic Cycle Tours). There were about 20 riders accompanied by a hugely experienced and supportive “crew” who make it possible to “just ride” while they organize all the logistics and support along the way.

We crossed 9 states: California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia.

As we rode, I made Climate Breadcrumb posts about the climate crisis in each region we rolled through, blogged about the experience, and captured animations of the ride.

Here’s a fun comparison of this ride with the Tour de France:

PACTOURTour de France
Distance (miles)2,9082,122
Riding Days2721
Rest Days02
Miles per day (avg)108101
Elevation Gain (feet)112,000 180,000 (approx)
Longest Day (miles)157155
Average Speed (mph)16 (goal)24.1-25.6


Day 1: San Diego to Julian

Check out this animated version (it’s pretty cool!) of our ride Wednesday from San Diego, up and through the Laguna Mountains, to Julian CA. The shortest mileage of the…

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Day 2 – Julian to El Centro

Today’s ride went from from Julian CA in the mountains to El Centro CA in the desert plains. Still a relatively short day (about 85 miles) but seriously hot…

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Day 3 – El Centro to Blythe

Our first 100-mile day; many more to come, Still extremely hot (110F approx. Some help from a tail-wind through the afternoon–and ice collars! The Relive map again shows the…

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Day 4 – Blythe to Wickenberg

113 miles of barren, and still very hot, desert, riding from Blythe CA, to Wickenberg AZ, crossing the Colorado River as we did so. Climate breadcrumb in the works…

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Day 5 – Wickenburg to Cottonwood

Into the Arizona mountains, 103 miles, from Wickenburg to Cottonwood Arizona, including Mingus Mountain, topping out at about 7,000 feet. A long slow slog to the top. Fun descent.…

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Day 6 – Cottonwood to Winslow

In the Arizona mountains, specifically Coconino National Forest, riding 118 miles from Cottonwood to Winslow. Up high, we see the first bit of abundant natural greenery, and even standing…

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Day 7 – Winslow to Springerville

Just past the one-fourth mark, with about 725 miles covered through the vast expanses of Southern California and Arizona. The going has got tougher in the past couple of…

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Day 8 – Springerville to Socorro

The longest day of the tour; 154 miles from Springerville, Arizona, to Socorro, New Mexico. Now in the mountains and high plains; excessive heat is past, but it is…

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Day 9 – Socorro to Ruidoso

Day 9 of “A Climate Ride to Remember,” riding within New Mexico from Socorro to Ruidoso which sits at an elevation of about 7,000 feet. Today’s journey was about…

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Day 11 – Roswell to Clovis

110 miles. The first picture tells the story of the day. On the shoulder of US-70. Almost flat; almost straight; almost (apparently) unused land. Just visible, with magnification, a…

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Day 12 – Clovis to Amarillo

Crossing the (for Texas modest) State Line from New Mexico to Texas. On our way to Amarillo, where things are often far from modest in scale! The terrain is…

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Day 13 – Amarillo to Shamrock

Our only full day in Texas, the Panhandle in the north-west of the state. A 94-mile ride from Amarillo to Shamrock. Cross-winds slowed progress. Along the way, reminders of…

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Day 26 – Cordele to Metter

Through rural Georgia…cotton, and other crops. Lots of trees. Just one more day till we arrive at the Atlantic, Tybee Island, near Savannah, Georgia. It all seems quite a…

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