Update 11: Trans-Europe 2015 – FINAL UPDATE

Europe map

Update 11: Trans-Europe 2015 – FINAL UPDATE

Europe map

Trip by dots

I can’t believe it has come down to days and not weeks before my departure to Europe. I am both excited and nervous. Yes nervous. So many things to do so little time. I spent the entire last week saying good-bye to all my family and friends. Honestly, it hasn’t hit me yet that come Tuesday, I will be thousands of miles apart outside the comfort of a familiar environment. I will only have 1 person I will know and get to know a lot more for 3 months. Boy is this going to be outside of my comfort zone.


I also spent a few days trying to pack my bike and gear. I say trying because my first attempt was a failure. The box I created was 26″ x 26″ x 8″ was too small to fit my bike. It was jammed packed with only 1/2 a bike left.

I then decided to get another bike box and tried a different custom box design where the depth can be adjusted. It’s essentially 2 x 26″ top and bottom covers with a 10″ cardboard to fill the middle. It worked very well except that I can only fit 11″ of the bike. The airline company limits the size to be 158cm when you add all 3 dimensions. That comes out to be 62 inches total. I am 1 inch or approximately 2cm over. The charge for this is $100. The good news is the bike only weighs 36 lbs which is under the 50 lbs limit or 23 kg. Since this is a second baggage, I maybe accessed another $50 for extra baggage. I am hoping they overlook the size issue and just charge me the $50 for the extra baggage. It would really suck if I had to fork over $150. Can’t worry about it until it happens.

Packed up bike

My gear on the other hand is stuffed to the brim. The weight topped off at 40 lbs and I used the smaller bike box to place everything in it. I haven’t sealed that yet as I need to get some last-minute items. I am also bringing 1 big pannier filled with my electronics, books, iPad for the flight. This thing weighs 13 lbs.

Check out what I am bringing here.

New Purchases

I also made some last-minute purchases for the trip that I think will help.

  1. Jetboil frying pan with stove stabilizer – I think we’ll be cooking more than we initially thought. This should come in handy.
  2. Bamboo utensils – Gifted to me by a MeetUp member. Thanks Judy!
  3. A brand new shirt for riding – My white Bicycle Touring Network is starting to look really beat up as it is getting dirty from coffee and sweat stains. I figure I need something less offensive.
  4. Emergency Freeze Dried Meal – I needed to spend my REI dividend one way or another.

Flight Plan

I will be staying at Harry’s place Monday night and we have the evening to plan and coordinate our travel itinerary on Tuesday. Our flight leaves at 4:30PM PST but we’ll be at the airport by 1PM. It is approximately 12 hour flight from LAX to Moscow. Then we lay over for almost 4 hours until we board the connector from Moscow to Madrid. We won’t get into Madrid until 10:30PM their time and won’t be at our AirBNB until close to midnight from our estimates. Hopefully the car rental is open at the time.

The idea was to spend Wednesday sightseeing Madrid and getting supplies for our trip such as fuel for our stoves. We will have to make our way up north. At this point we don’t know where. We do know that the car needs to be turned into San Sebastian by April 10th. That’s when we either stay in town or decide to start our journey.

Day By Day

Here is our rough day-by-day in case you’re curious. We will try to follow this itinerary but anything can happen. It’s part of the adventure, right?

  • 4/8/2015: Madrid to Madrid
  • 4/9/2015: Madrid to Logrono
  • 4/10/2015: Logrono to Logrono
  • 4/11/2015: Logrono to San Sebastian
  • 4/12/2015: San Sebastian to Biarritz
  • 4/13/2015: Biarritz to TBD
  • 4/14/2015: TBD to Bordeaux
  • 4/15/2015: Bordeaux to Bordeaux
  • 4/16/2015: Bordeaux to
  • 4/17/2015: TBD
  • 4/18/2015: TBD
  • 4/19/2015: TBD
  • 4/20/2015: TBD to Amboise
  • 4/21/2015: Amboise to Blois
  • 4/22/2015: Blois to Orleans
  • 4/23/2015: Orleans to Gien
  • 4/24/2015: Gien to St Satur
  • 4/25/2015: St Satur to St Satur (REST DAY)
  • 4/26/2015: St Satur to Nevers
  • 4/27/2015: Nevers to Diou
  • 4/28/2015: Diou to Palinges
  • 4/29/2015: Palinges to Chalon-Sur-Saone
  • 4/30/2015: Chalon-Sur-Saone to Dole
  • 5/1/2015: Dole to Besancon
  • 5/2/2015: Besancon to Besancon (REST DAY)
  • 5/3/2015: Besancon to L’Isle-sur-le-Doubs
  • 5/4/2015: L’Isle-sur-le-Doubs to Mulhouse
  • 5/5/2015: Mulhouse to Mohlin, Switzerland
  • 5/6/2015: Mohlin to Flaach
  • 5/7/2015: Flaach to Markelfingen, Germany
  • 5/8/2015: Markelfingen to Donaueschingen
  • 5/9/2015: Donaueschingen to Donaueschingen (REST DAY)
  • 5/10/2015: Donaueschingen to Sigmaringen
  • 5/11/2015: Sigmaringen to Ehingen
  • 5/12/2015: Ehingen to Gunzburg
  • 5/13/2015: Gunzburg to Konigsbrunn
  • 5/14/2015: Konigsbrunn to Munich
  • 5/15/2015: Munich to Munich (REST DAY)
  • 5/16/2015: Munich to Haselfurth
  • 5/17/2015: Haselfurth to Regensburg
  • 5/18/2015: Regensburg to Deggendorf
  • 5/19/2015: Deggendorf to Hutt-Siedlung, Austria
  • 5/20/2015: Hutt-Siedlung, Austria to Ottensheim
  • 5/21/2015: Ottensheim to Ottensheim (REST DAY)
  • 5/22/2015: Ottensheim to Grein
  • 5/23/2015: Grein to Krems an der Donau
  • 5/24/2015: Krems an der Donau to Klosterneuberg
  • 5/25/2015: Klosterneuberg to Bratislava, Slovakia
  • 5/26/2015: Bratislava, Slovakia to Gyor, Hungary
  • 5/27/2015: Gyor, Hungary to Esztergom
  • 5/28/2015: Esztergom to Budapest
  • 5/29/2015: Budapest to Budapest (REST DAY)
  • 5/30/2015: Budapest to Dunafoldvar
  • 5/31/2015: Dunafoldvar to Baja
  • 6/1/2015: Baja to Kopacevo, Croatia
  • 6/2/2015: Kopacevo, Croatia to Backa Palanka, Serbia
  • 6/3/2015: Backa Palanka, Serbia to Cortanovci
  • 6/4/2015: Cortanovci to Belgrade
  • 6/5/2015: Belgrade to Belgrade (REST DAY)
  • 6/6/2015: Belgrade to Kovin
  • 6/7/2015: Kovin to Brnjica
  • 6/8/2015: Brnjica to Golubinje
  • 6/9/2015: Golubinje to Drobeta-Turnu Severin, Romania
  • 6/10/2015: Drobeta-Turnu Severin, Romania to Calafat
  • 6/11/2015: Calafat to Ostroveni
  • 6/12/2015: Ostroveni to Ostroveni (REST DAY)
  • 6/13/2015: Ostroveni to Corabia
  • 6/14/2015: Corabia to Zimnicea
  • 6/15/2015: Zimnicea to Giurgiu
  • 6/16/2015: Giurgiu to Tutrakan, Bulgaria
  • 6/17/2015: Tutrakan, Bulgaria to Silistra
  • 6/18/2015: Silistra to Constanta
  • 6/19/2015: Constanta to Bucharest
  • 6/20/2015: Bucharest to Bucharest (REST DAY)
  • 6/21/2015: Bucharest to Madrid (FLIGHT)
  • 6/22/2015: Madrid to Madrid (FLIGHT HOME)

I grouped the cities for each country by color. Most of our time will be spent in France. Croatia & Slovakia isn’t getting much love as we’ll just be there for 1 day each. We actually have 5 days of buffer as we’ll need to fly out of Bucharest on June 27th to make it to Madrid on time for our June 29th departure home.

I also noticed that we will be traveling through 11 countries and biking through 10 countries. That’s crazy, right?

What is Left?

With only a few days left, here are a few things I need to do before leaving.

  • Schedule bills for the next 3 months. This is all automated, I just need to make sure I transfer money from my savings account accordingly to cover the expenses.
  • Rearrange the garage so I can fit my car with my stuff.
  • File important documents away.
  • Schedule all my blog posts for the next 3 months. Hope you enjoy those.
  • Check my Charles Schwab ATM to see if it works and let them know I’ll be out of the country.
  • Photocopy my passport and debit card.
  • Do all my laundry.
  • Clean up my desk and have my computer systems back up to the cloud while I am gone.

This is it! The home stretch. Wish me luck and I will see you at the other side of the world.

No Comments
  • Jude
    Posted at 19:35h, 06 April

    Hey Johnny and Harry. All the best! The 2 Salsa Vayas are looking good. I am sure you will be fine with you slightly large box of bike, Johnny. By the way, have you read “Catfish and Mandala” by Andrew Pham??