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Across America by Bicycle: Alice and Bobbi's Summer on Wheels [Kindle Edition]

Alice Honeywell , Bobbi Montgomery
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Biking from Oregon to Maine is no small feat, especially for two newly retired women who carry everything they need for three months, powered only by the strength of their legs and a desire for adventure. Alice Honeywell and Bobbi Montgomery invite readers to follow their ride by bicycle across the United States, as they face scorching sun, driving rain, buffeting winds, equipment failures, killer hills, wild fires, and even a plague of grasshoppers.
    As Alice and Bobbi pedal along  their 3,600-mile journey, they test and deepen their friendship, defy their aches and pains, experience the vast and varied beauties of their country, and discover the challenges and satisfaction of a scaled-down lifestyle. And, they encounter unfailing generosity from people they meet—from the prayers of a North Dakota woman for their safekeeping, to the offer of a house in Michigan, to invitations for dinner and a place to sleep at stops all along the way. And there are incidents to laugh over, too, such as the bewildered woman who asked them, “Well, but where do you pack your dresses?”
    Ride along with Alice and Bobbi as they embrace retirement with gusto and live their dream.

Winner (Gold Medalist), Travel Essays, Foreword Magazine’s Books of the Year

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

How can you not like this book? Its authors, a couple of retirement-age women who went on bike trips together, decided to take a few months and cycle from Astoria, Oregon, to Bar Harbor, Maine, a distance of more than 3,500 miles. Carrying everything they need strapped to their bikes, sleeping in motels and campgrounds, occasionally hitching a ride with some friendly vehicular travelers, they make their way from one side of the country to the other. This is a comfortable book: pleasantly written, similar in theme and structure to other cross-country cycling books, a story about two friends who had an adventure, saw some cool things, and met some interesting people. Alice and Bobbi are immensely likable people; their cheerfulness and determination bring a smile to your face. When you finish the book, you might think: well, that was a lot of fun; maybe I ought to do something similar. --David Pitt


“A heartfelt account of crossing America on two wheels from a pair of gutsy women. Alice and Bobbi prove it’s never too late to put a dream into high gear, to let the road reveal a country and the true meaning of friendship.”—Joe Kurmaskie, author of Metal Cowboy, Momentum Is Your Friend and Mud, Sweat, and Gears

"Told with panache and a wholesome, modest sensibility, Honeywell and Montgomery’s voyage became a supreme exercise in patience, determination, self-sufficiency and unwavering friendship. And the daring duo isn’t finished—a north-south, border-to-border trip is in the works. Exhilarating fun and good motivation for armchair adventurers."—Kirkus Reviews

"How can you not like this book? . . . Alice and Bobbi are immensely likable people; their cheerfulness and determination bring a smile to your face. When you finish the book, you might think: well, that was a lot of fun; maybe I ought to do something similar."—Booklist

"[The authors] explore what it means to live the pared-down existence of loaded touring as they pedal slowly enough to enjoy the beauty of the country. Honeywell and Montgomery also discuss their equipment, time management, and the ever-important aspect of all cycling journeys—locating and consuming lots of food. . . . Readers will find this an easy and inspiring read."—Library Journal

Product Details

  • File Size: 3257 KB
  • Print Length: 300 pages
  • Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press; 1 edition (October 12, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00416C9YO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #500,022 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Road Less Traveled October 4, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Who hasn't fantasized about escaping the exhausting pace of modern life, of simplifying, slowing down, being untethered, doing something completely unexpected and different, of challenging and stretching oneself even if for just a little while? Having just finished reading this excellent book, I am in awe at Bobbi and Alice, two women my own age, who made this scenario a reality with a post-retirement, 3 month, 3600 mile cross country bicycle trip. I went right along with them in my imagination, swept up by the audacity of their adventure. Equal parts travelogue, introspective journal, cycle enthusiast information, and slice of life vignettes of ordinary people along a route less traveled, this book will keep you turning the pages for more. I cringed at the terrifying tunnel passage in Oregon, felt the extreme 100+ degree heat in Idaho, admired the Yogo sapphires in Montana, relished the camaraderie at the Tumbleweed Cafe in North Dakota, toured Dave's lakeside memorial garden to his beloved wife in Ohio, fought the eighteen wheelers for road space in New York, groaned at yet another mountain to scale in Maine, and shared their final triumphant glass of champagne at the 2 Cats Diner at the end of their journey. If, like me, your extreme adventures are mostly virtual and vicarious, I highly recommend picking up this book and letting Bobbi and Alice do all the work while you enjoy a very, very good read.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring Book November 1, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Both Alice and Bobbie do a great job writing about their adventure across the country. Both of them are down to earth individuals and their writing skills are excellent. Just a great book and to appreciate their ambiance on their travels
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An inspiring read!! November 20, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the inspiring account of two newly-retired women who, after much forethought and planning, leave their very supportive spouses and children to ride across the USA by bicycle. The tour was planned to take 90 days and to go from Portland, Oregon to Bar Harbor, Maine. Up and down mountains, through heat, rainstorms, highway construction, and family crises they persevered and finished their journey on time!

Alice and Bobbi are also "people persons" and they take time along the way to talk with people and hear their stories, just like Charles Kuralt of CBS did almost 40 years ago. The strangers whom they meet are eager to help them with information about where to eat, stay, and local routes to take. Teenagers, young adults, shop owners, waitresses, mechanics, and retirees will find their conversations recounted in this book. The encounters are 98% good and only 2% bad.

This is not just a book for bicyclists, although there is a wealth of information for them. This is also a book for people who will take comfort in the reaffirmation that Americans, for all their regional differences, still care about each other. Americans still love to share their local knowledge and help the strangers who fleetingly pass through their lives. Charles Kuralt toured America in a bus, had technical support, and had a cameraman. Alice and Bobbi toured America on their bicycles at an average speed of 10 mph and saw America, its farms, cities, and suburbs from the shoulders of its roads. You will climb mountains and hills with them and rejoice in the long stretches in between. You will find that this inspiring book is not just about an incredible trip taken by two perceptive bicyclists; it is also a book about America.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable read May 4, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you are looking for a nice read to curl up with, this is the book for you. There is no sex or violence, just a well written story about 2 woman pursuing their dream. Even if you are not a cyclist, it is quite captivating to join Bobbi and Alice as they ride mile by mile across the country.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kindred Spirits January 28, 2011
I just finished reading Across America By Bicycle and found it to be absolutely delightful. These ladies know how to tell a tale in a way that invites the reader in; it feels as if you're traveling with Alice and Bobbi as they pedal across the country. I found the most heartening aspect of their story to be the many, many cases of the "angels" who came to their assistance. Who says there aren't any more good Samaritans in America?

The book is also very well written. You can almost smell the sticky buns at the Wild West Diner. I got a big kick out of the descriptions of food; it seems as if they ate their way across the continent.

Their journey is also a testament to friendship. In spite of wind, heat, forest fires, flat tires, and a host of other inconveniences, these two women remained stalwart friends throughout their adventure.

If you like upbeat travel sagas, you'll love this book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Inspiration for cross country bicycle travel October 25, 2011
I came across this book while searching out information for self-supported bicycle travel.

I enjoyed the book and the adventures of Alice and Bobbi, although I agree with one reviewer to a certain extent that it was the "equivalent of a metronome ticking monotonously" and that there are more interesting cross country cycling journals on line, such as crazyguyonbike.

I did think that Alice and Bobbi could have engaged in better planning in advance of their trip for their accomodations and food by researching the areas they planned to stop in ahead of time, as numerous times they encountered dumps, closed camp grounds they had to overnight at or unappetizing food and identified bicycle shops in the areas they would pass through for repair issues that could not be addressed on the road.

Nevertheless, their story was somewhat enjoyable and did detail what one may encounter on such an undertaking.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Across America by Bicycle - a great bicycle travel adventure story!
I loved this book. I read it for the Facebook group, Women's Adventure Travel. This is probably my favorite type of book - adventure travel. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Sandra K. Heinzman
1.0 out of 5 stars It's like a bad 50's movie
Have you ever found yourself flipping TV channels and end up on some old 50’s Science Fiction movie, which after a minute or two is so bad you just have to sit and watch it,... Read more
Published 5 months ago by CityBoy58
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm glad that I read about their trip cross the USA.
I read this book to see if I could bike across the country. After reading this book, I have decided to do something else. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Elizabeth Needleman
4.0 out of 5 stars Pedaling repeatedly
A straightforward account of what it took to bike across the US, with lots of details about what they ate. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Alan Saul
5.0 out of 5 stars Looks like a bike trip, gives a lot more
Here we have two middle class women, who each raised a family, had a career, and then retired in their mid fifties. Sort of. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Rolf Stengl
5.0 out of 5 stars A Perfect Adventure
Across America by Bicycle: Alice and Bobbi's Summer on Wheels

As someone who has sailed around the world, I can attest that this is a story of a perfect adventure. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Jeffrey Morrow Miller
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written and enjoyable
I was looking for a book on vacationing by bicycle and this book was pretty close to what I was looking for. Read more
Published 12 months ago by L. Romme
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book
I loved reading about all the good & bad things that could happen if I do this... it was great. I've read a few more books since this, but i think this book is the best AND she... Read more
Published 14 months ago by michelle wersching
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
As a budding cyclist myself, this was a wonderful read. Very well written with humor and information. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Calvin L. Nagel
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read
Two middle-aged women ride across America. They encounter problems and deal with them. How could that not be interesting?And it is!
Published 18 months ago by grayghost
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