My 2008 Cross-Country Bicycle Trip
- In mid-January, I had my bicycle boxed at the Seattle REI and shipped to the San Diego REI for pickup.
- Starting on February 1, I followed the Adventure Cycling Association's
Tier route from San Diego CA to Saint Augustine FL. Notable cities
along the route included Phoenix AZ, El Paso TX, Austin TX, Baton Rouge
LA, and Tallahassee
FL. For the sake of reference, I took the Southern Tier's Salt
Mountain, Santa Rita, Austin, and Baton Rouge alternates, but skipped the
Anthony Gap and Mobile Bay alternates. Completed on April 18 after
riding 3332 miles.
- I then followed the ACA Atlantic
Coast route from Saint Augustine FL to the United
States Supreme Court Building in Washington DC. Notable cities along
the route include Richmond VA
(i.e. where Chief Justice John Marshall lived). For the sake of
reference, I skipped the Atlantic Coast's Jacksonville Airport, Savannah,
Charleston, and Outer Banks alternates. Completed on May 10 after
riding 1204 miles.
- Finally, I shipped my bicycle and cycling gear back to Seattle, and
completed my tour of American legal history, politics, education, and
culture by rail, mass transit, and foot. Key sites in Washington DC
included the Supreme
Court Building, the National
Archives Building, and Arlington
National Cemetery. Key sites in Philadelphia included Independence
Hall. Key sites in New York City included the Statue of
Liberty, the United Nations
Headquarters, the World Trade
Center site, and the Metropolitan
Museum of Art. Key sites in New Haven included Yale, and key sites in Boston
included Harvard, the
family crypt of John
Adams, and the Freedom Trail.
Completed on May 28.
I started law school at the University
of Washington in Fall 2008. My cross-country bicycle ride to the
United States Supreme Court Building and subsequent rail tour of the east
coast was intended to mark the life-altering nature of that choice.
Additional motivations included:
- The desire to experience a wider range of American life: in my case,
this meant the South, the East Coast, small towns, rural areas, and border
- The desire to gain a better understanding of contemporary border and
immigration issues, by spending time in communities where such issues are
part of everyday life.
- The desire to see key sites of American legal history and government
activity, so that both history and current legal news can more vividly
come to life as I read.
I also used my free time in the evenings to review the fundamentals of
American history and thought. To that end, the Sony Reader I took
with me was loaded with:
I posted comments and photographs to my blog throughout this trip: feel free to browse
Feel free to browse my complete inventory, if you're curious what
bicycling and camping equipment I used on this trip.