The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Canada to Mexico.

Welcome! This site documents a two month, solo, unsupported mountain bike tour of the The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route from Banff AB Canada to the US-Mexican border at Antelope Wells, NM. The trip began in late July and finished 25 SEP 2007. It took 61 days and encompassed 2842.32 miles.

My more detailed and informative site can be found at:

Please forward any questions/comments via email to:


View latests posts below: If you click on a "menu post," only that post will be shown. Click here to get back to main site.

31 July 2007

Day 5 Eureka, Montana, USA

"American greetings!"
-Maverick from Top Gun
Made the border today at around 12:45 and pushed into Eureka for a
refit before moving on to West of Whitefish Divide tomorrow.
Last couple days have been good, had beers last night at the Baynes
Lake, British ColOmbia RV park with a cool guy named Pierre.
All is well, I'm losing weight but feeling is good.
Canada was awesome, the people there were generous and not at all
standoffish. Great place!
Total miles to date: 264.66, some big days in there.
BTW, Joey... "I've always wanted to see Montana."- Sean Connery The
Hunt for Red October
Next contact 3-4 days out when I make Whitefish.

30 July 2007

Day 4 Fernie, British Colombia

Greetings all from Fernie! Anyone with a subscription to a Skiing magazine should know about Fernie. Anyway, just arrived in town around noon. Been an interesting last couple of days.

Started off three days ago riding from Canmore into Banff and from there to a campsite near the Lower Kananaskis Lakes. 75 miles the first day was not the plan but it became the plan when I realized how remote of country I was in. Bears, cougars, and all kinds of other wilderness terrorists running around out there. Ran into three folks touring the same route bound for Whitefish, I camped with them the first night and they left out earlier in the morning than I did. Great folks, Americans from Fernie/Bend Oregon...I think they are on the trail about 6-8 hours ahead of me.

Camped the second night after crossing over the first Divide Crossing at Elk Pass, which became real remote real fast, so I pushed it till just outside Elkford, British Colombia. I camped along the Elk River after yapping with some local fisherman that evening. Woke up to bear tracks in the dirt around my tent and more on the road up the way. Nice.

Got some good breakfast grub and talked to some bikers up from Sparwood about bears and the local scene in Elkford that morning. Ran into two road bikers heading up to the coal mine outside of Elkford and talked to them for awhile. They invited me to stay at their place in Fernie yesterday evening but I unfortunately didn't have the gas to push the headwind all the way into Fernie last night so I stayed in Sparwood. It was here I met the Worlds Largest Truck. Pictures to follow...I am having issues trying to get Picasa to upload from this borrowed computer.

Plan to push on from here to Elko tonight and the border tomorrow evening, stopping in Eureka, MT to prep for the first big Montana section.

All else is well, bike is good, I am healthy and happy. My MP3 player quit two days ago, so I guess I'll have to deal with my mind until I can try to revive it in Whitefish.

Thanks Meg, Ali, Tex, Jairo, and others for the encouranging emails. I will reply soon when I get to an evening stopping point. Happy Birthday (yesterday) to Dallas Dewayne.

Off for some grub.

25 July 2007

Canmore, AB, Canada

Greetings all, arrived by shuttle from Calgary Airport this afternoon.
No hassles in transport, the bike and gear made it okay. I need to
stop issuing myself a license to hunt paper tigers every time I decide
to step out of the mainstream.
Just took the bike out unloaded for a test spin and with some minor
tweaks it seems good to go.
The Canadian Rockies are very stunning and visually dramatic. Its
very green, lush and pleasant here. Was it worth it? Yep.
Been awhile since I've been in Canada, lots of "Royale with Cheese"
stuff going on around here.
Anyway, Canmore is nice and very beautiful, lots of folks looking
happy and heathy...walking and biking around everywhere. I found a
local bike shop just down the street and they seemed to have a good
handle on things.

Hsnging here till I can be sure the bike box ships okay, and then it's
southbound in the woodline.

Till next time.

24 July 2007

Leavin On a Jet Plane! D-9 hrs

"Nobody is ever met at the airport when beginning a new adventure. It’s just not done."

-Elizabeth Warnock Fernea. A View of the Nile

Boulder Colorado, late, the night before.

Finally time to go! I am as ready as I will ever be.

Bike will fly with me and is packed in a hard shell bike box that I borrowed from a very generous friend of the trail and fellow FROG named Mark C. He had an accident mountain biking in Moab earlier this year and is unable to bike or travel this season. Please send the positive energy his way as he recovers!

Thanks Mark! You will see your bike box return soon via FedEx, nice, empty and hopefully intact.

I'm the bike in the box! Some assembly required.

We will see it on the other side of the border!

One logistical lesson learned. Make sure if you have a big piece of luggage (see above) that the transportation from the airport (in this case the Banff Airporter, excellent customer service so far) can drop you off at a location at least near your hotel. Luckily, in this case, my place is only a mere 500 meters (metric, "when in Rome..") away from the designated shuttle drop, but I'm it sure would have been fun to have been that guy that was lugging his gear five kilometers down the Trans Canada Highway!

Might want to check out these details before hand when booking your hotel online...the mapping technology is out there and easy to access. In this case, I should have known better and just got lucky.

Anyway, thanks to all for the support and encouragement during the preparation for this. I will be posting as much as possible.

Next post will be in Canada! Woo Hoo!

Care Package Info

I welcome care packages if anyone wants to send them!

My wish list:

  • Energy bars, Cliff Bars, PowerBars, or the like. I like the chocolate ones but they melt in hot weather...if I need chocolate there is plenty to be had in the little towns. The healthier stuff is the harder thing to find. Keeping going between meals is key.
  • Energy Gels, these are also hard to find but not impossible.
  • NUUN tablets. These can be ordered from or from specialty running or cycling shops. They are excellent rehydration tablets.
  • Prepackaged dehydrated fruit.
  • I will post more data as I travel, since I don't know the craving scheme yet.
Homemade stuff is great but it could sit in a post office for up to 10 days and might go stale. I'd rather eat the homemade stuff at your home when I am telling you about the trip!

The best way to ship to a USPS location seems to be the flat rate regardless of weight boxes. They cost $8.95 to ship and post offices seem to like them.

Unfortunately, if you want to send a care package it will need to be coordinated with me as I could easily blow by a post office if I don't know the package is there. Ideally, the care packages need to be concurrent with bounce box drop locations...which I won't know until I see what my short term plans are. Post offices will hold the General Delivery Mail for only a 10 to 15 and sometimes up to 30 days.

To send a package, please get the PO location and ZipCode from me and address it as follows:

USPS General Delivery
ATTN: My Name
City, State, Zip Code

I will take all the support I can get, but emails are enough!

On Route Logistics Info

"Field experience is something you don't get until just after you need it."
-Murphy's Laws of Combat

While on the route, I planned in some limited resupply options. This will happen using post offices along the trail as resupply pickup points. I may reach bounce box resupply once a week or more (or less) depending on locations, time, and changes in riding pace. Initially, I set up four 'bounce boxes' using USPS Flat Rate ($8.95 per box regardless of weight Priority Mail) Boxes. See below:
The four boxes on top are the on route bounce boxes, the big Schwalbe box has dehydrated camping food (Mountain House, Backpackers Pantry, etc.) and a bag of clothes for my parents to bring down when they pick me up at the US-MEX border. My remote support crew (my sister and her family, thank you, thank you!) will send me the food as needed from Texas as I progress along the route.

The on route bounce boxes are set up by type:
-Initial dehydrated food resupply
-Bike parts and other specialty repair items/tools that would have to be shipped in otherwise.
-An extra tire and extra tubes
-Extra personal items, like a clean change of clothes (something to wear when I launder my other stuff) hygiene supplies, 110 chargers for electrics if I am hotelling it at the drop point, and some backup misc gear items.

The first drop has already been sent to Montana.

21 July 2007

Pre Trip Bike Configuration

After several trials and tests, I recently validated the final bike tour configuration. Changes based on the Breck ride validation include the downsizing of both the front and rear compression dry bags, downsizing of the cookware, new rear cassette, chain, rear derailleur, and f/r derailleur cables. The rear shock was rebuilt and tour-tweaked at PUSH, and tires were switched to the interesting looking/feeling/riding, reflector sidewalled and GDMBR recommended Schwalbe Marathon XRs.

As I leave in only a few short days, this is it. I hope two years of research and testing pays off downrange. It might be interesting to some to see how this setup evolves. See below for a captioned view of various items not 'organic' to the bike:

15 July 2007

On Route Communication

  • While on the route, I will be posting to this site as I find free Wi-Fi or an internet capable PC and checking email. I plan to GPS waypoint all free Wi-Fi hotspots that I find along the route for other GDMBR riders to reference in the future.
  • There could be 4-5 days or more between postings in remote areas but I will be calling in land line to either Sandy or my folks on a regular basis. Sandy may post some of my call in info on the site. When direct contact is not made, I will leave a voicemail with my current location, short term travel plans and an estimate of when I will call in or communicate next.
  • See the map data pages for more specific location info relative to posts.
  • Cell messages will be checked rarely as the majority of the route is very remote and does not have cell service.
  • Please communicate with me direct via email:

Enjoy the site and please feel free to email any questions or encouragement!

Site Purpose

The boundaryzerochris blogsite purpose:

  • To share trip experiences with friends, family and interested acquaintances.
  • Promote a culture of self reliance, independence, and goodwill to others.
  • Provide a resource for like minded ultralighters and adventure travel enthusiasts.
Outside of encouraging and expressing support for our brave and selfless military personnel, who at this very moment are actively engaged in combat operations worldwide; this site will not cover much chatter about anything not trip related.

The postings will be relatively brief on the route. The post trip plan is to migrate the content of this site to the website (not yet developed) and publish a detailed online journal with photos and detailed route data. More to come as the trip develops.

07 July 2007

GDMBR Electronic Devices

“I must create a System, or be enslaved by another Man’s.”
-William Blake

GDMBR Electronic Gadgets

Power Supplies- All GDMBR gadgets are powered by AA batteries or the Brunton Solaris 6 solar panel. I went to considerable effort to standardize batteries to all AAs and added the solar panel to remote charge internal battery devices. The solar chargeable devices all have different power-in adapters, which has proved to be a challenge.

Music and Entertainment – Creative Zen 30 GB multimedia player. Somewhat heavy, but I have over 20 GB of music, comedy, and audio books uploaded to it. The Zen also has a nice radio function and is set up to charge with the solar panel. Testing has proved the Zen to run for about 2 riding days on a full charge.

Data Entry and Communication – HP IPAQ WiFi enabled PDA. Small, light, and chargeable via solar panel. Ports in SD memory cards for video, data, and photo management. All email, journal, data, and blog postings will be managed via this device and I will be plotting free wi-fi hotspot locations along the route for future riders. Charges with the solar panel.

Camera – Panasonic Lumix DMC- LS70 7.2 MP Digital. Runs on AA batteries and stores data via SD and SDHC memory cards.

Cell Phone – This real world torture device is coming along for emergencies and call-ins in the 10-15% of the route that will have cell coverage. Charges with the solar panel.

Data Storage – I have several 2GB SD memory cards and one 4GB SDHC card for interchangeable data storage and transfer. The GPS has a 2 GB micro-SD card with full SD adaptor for tracklog storage and transfer. I am also bringing along an SD card reader that can plug into a USB port, which treats the SD card as a flash memory drive in any PC. As the opportunity presents itself, I will be using this at library computers along the route to upload photos and other data items to the blog.

Navigation- Garmin 60CSx handheld GPS. It has a huge memory capacity relative to these type of devices and I have all the route area topos and the actual route (except for Canada) uploaded to it. I will use this to keep track of mileage and moving times per day as well. The GPS runs on 2 AA batteries. It is really more of a data collection device as I will primarily rely on the well designed Adventure Cycling GDMBR maps for navigation. My trust level of the GPS is limited based on army experience. I have my orienteering compass plus a compass on the bike handlebars as backups.

Pre GDMBR Tour and Training Ride Video

This slideshow/video documents the tours and significant training rides in 2006 and 2007 leading up to the big trip.

Note that this has sound!

Big thanks to Sandy, Ralph from Carbondale, and Ron for their photo contributions!

03 July 2007

The More You Sweat in Training...

Posting remote from Breckenridge via wifi PDA. Took the CO trail from
Kenosha over Georgia Pass and down into Breck. Full tour setup on a
trail way more techie than the divide route.
Had some mechanicals due to design failure in rear OMM rack.
Casualties include:
rear derailluer
2 spokes
rear rim damage
bent skewer

Had to fish the rear d out of the spokes and convert the bike to a
single speed to ride it out.

Anyway, hanging in Breck for the 4th.


01 July 2007

PDA Posting

This is the first posting using a wifi enabled PDA. This is how I
will be posting on the trip.