Archive for the 'finances' Category

Six Months of Touring: Impressions

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

Six months into our first ever bicycle tour! Here are our impressions: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Favorite Things about Bicycle Touring

  1. Watching the landscape change as we cycle into a new region. Seeing the terrain and vegetation change slowly as you pedal along is awesome. Then there’s the drama of crossing a border into a new country on your bike. The language, culture, and people change instantly right before your eyes.
  2. The simple joy of pedaling. Riding along, chatting, singing, enjoying being outdoors and together. Stopping whenever we want to admire the view. Cruising along silently listening to the birds sing and the cows chew their cud. Being so happy we are not on public transportation. Intensifies greatly the day after a bus ride!
  3. All the attention we get from locals when we are on our bicycles away from tourist centers. The smiles, the waves, the conversations. Feeling like you are in a parade as you pass through a small village. Realizing how different most of the country is from the popular tourist destinations.

Least Favorite Things about Bicycle Touring

Sarah: The feeling of being exhausted and run-down along with the pressure of having to ride again the next day. I also hate being overheated and constantly sweating.

James: Those little moments where it suddenly hits me that I’m 27 years old, have no job and no income, and just spent $25,000 in six months.

Biggest Surprises

  1. The disparity in our physical ability and having to figure out how to deal with it. This is something we never talked about before we left, but it turned out to be a big issue because we are confronted by it almost every day.
  2. How routine it can feel some days. Get up, eat, ride, eat some more, sleep. Repeat. I keep telling Sarah we are going to have the following conversation when we get back.

“Wow, that sounds like an amazing trip. You guys must have some amazing stories!”

“Not really, it was pretty mundane.”

Cue the world’s longest uncomfortable silence.

Hardest Parts

  1. Far and away, the hardest part about this trip was making the decision to go. After that, everything was easy. Figure out where you want to go, buy some bikes, point yourselves in the right direction and start pedaling.
  2. The only real hardship we’ve experience on this trip itself is the heat in Southeast Asia. I don’t think either of us could really envision what it would be like to cycle day after day in 40 degree heat with 95% humidity. Putting it simply, it sucks.

Scariest Moments

  1. Almost being attacked by monkeys attack in Prachuap Khiri Khan. I can still hear that low guttural growling that seemed to come in waves from the treetops.
  2. Sarah’s expanding eyeball in Ranong. When I look back, it doesn’t seem like it should have been that scary, but I literally had to sit down for a while to calm down when this happened. I think it was the combination of being new to Thailand and worried about all the bad things that could happen along with the tone of Sarah’s voice as she said “uh-oh” from the bathroom.


  1. The one thing we really wish we had was an altimeter so we’d have a record of what climbing gods we’ve become. On the other hand, we considered not brining a laptop but we’re really glad we did. It’s great for our pictures, working on our site, tracking our finances, and entertaining us with movies and music on those lonely nights on the road. Its one of the things we use almost every day.
  2. As for clothes, we’re still learning what we need and what we don’t. I had to buy some padded mountain-bike shorts in NZ because my new Brooks saddle was too uncomfortable. We are both carrying heavy hiking boots that we never use but we are afraid to get rid of them, “just in case.” Sarah’s two cotton t-shirts don’t dry fast enough, get soaked in sweat, and look dirty quickly, but the capilene Patagonia t-shirts I have are great. Sarah also hates all the pants and shorts she has for hot weather riding – she says they are ugly and uncomfortable.

Best Fights

These are the most memorable fights we have had so far. Don’t worry, we laugh about them now and there have been no threats of divorce.

How Low Can You Go?

He Said: I would rather live simply and really experience a new country than have the comforts of home like expensive cookies on a regular basis. We skipped some things I regret (like a tour of Milford Sound) in New Zealand but blew a lot of money on junk food that we could be sitting on our couch in Seattle eating. Sarah on the other hand refuses to give up her precious TimTams.

She Said: I want to treat myself to luxury items like beer, coffee, and cookies occasionally on this trip. During a physically demanding trip like this food becomes an obsession and after a hard day of climbing it is not a sin to want to buy some cookies or a pint of cold beer. I want to enjoy every single day and sometimes spending a little extra money to go out for a treat enhances the trip – eating gruel and going to bed right afterwards isn’t what I came here to do! This particular fight erupted after I claimed I’d rather eat TimTams every single night and go home early than deny myself of them for even one night. This is a little extreme and not my true opinion, but it was fun to throw in Jamie’s face at the time.

What Inferiority Complex?

He Said: Sometimes I feel like we are not cycling enough on this trip. Usually on a day we only rode for a couple of hours, when we’re sitting in a hotel room with nothing to do I wonder why we just didn’t keep riding. The more we ride, the more we can see, and the more we’ll get out of this trip, right? Not according to Sarah!

She Said: I don’t want to measure myself against other cycle tourists. Each trip and each person has different things they enjoy and thus different goals for their trip. Comparing ourselves to other cycle tourists and then feeling bad about what we’re doing is ridiculous. Instead we should focus on what we want to do and measure ourselves against our own priorities and objectives.

Lose the ‘tude!

He Said: Ask anyone what their response was when we told them about this trip. “Sarah? … Really?!” It was my response too and one of my biggest concerns about this trip was that Sarah wasn’t going to like it. I was afraid she was going to want to quit after two weeks when she realized she didn’t really like cycling that much. Because of that, I’m hypersensitive to the complaining she does when riding. There are two main scenarios when Sarah complains: when it is hot or when we are climbing in the mountains. If you combine those two, there is a 95% chance that she will suggest we think about taking a bus. That never fails to annoy me because that is usually when I am having the most fun!

She Said: One of the surprises for me on this trip is how physically difficult it is for me. I thought that after six months of touring I’d be almost as strong as James during our daily rides. In reality he’s still much stronger than me which means that things that are very difficult for me are typically fairly easy for him. When we ride a really long day, do big climb, or face extreme heat I eventually I have to admit that I’m exhausted, feel crappy, and don’t want to push myself much further. Jamie accuses me of complaining at the first twinge of discomfort and says really infuriating things like “I told you this trip would be difficult for you! I was worried this would happen! You have to keep going even if it is uncomfortable! You are giving up too easily!” I respond by saying that I have been feeling “uncomfortable” for quite some time and I am now approaching my limits. After all this I then get pissed off that he’s not being supportive and saying things like “We only have 20km more to go, you can make it. We can stop and rest every 5km if we need to, but we will make it.” Instead he says things like “You HAVE to make it because there are no other options.” This irritates me to no end. At the end of the fight Jamie is also irritated because he thinks I have a bad attitude and call it quits too soon.

Little Miss Ignorance vs. Mr. Doomsday

He Said: There have been half a dozen occurrences on this trip where Sarah has ignored some aspect of planning or preparation and it has screwed us. I should have taken it as a sign on the first day when we showed up at our flight from LA to New Zealand and the woman at the ticket counter asked us why we didn’t have visas for our stopover in Australia. After about the fourth time, I realized I shouldn’t rely on Sarah much for conscientious planing. In fact, it has proved fruitful to actually do the opposite of what she says! (Much like when she attempts to give directions.)

She Said: First of all, I am not at all ignorant. That was just a catchy fight-title. I am a planner and an organizer. I do not ignore impending tragedy and simply hope things will all work out or go away. Instead I assess a situation, brainstorm the possible actions to solving a problem, and then pick the best possible course of action (with a backup plan if necessary). Once I have determined by course of action, or the research I need to complete to make this decision, I promptly stop worrying about the problem. On the other hand, Jamie likes to lay awake for hours, tossing and turning, all the while dreading the possible horrible outcomes. He gets very upset with me when I don’t join in on the ulcer-inducing fretting and instead fall asleep promptly.

Six Months of Touring: The Hard Facts

Sunday, July 1st, 2007

Today is the six month anniversary of our bicycle tour. We rode out of Auckland on January 1st and since then it has been 181 days overseas, down the road, on this crazy global cycling honeymoon.

Cycling Statistics

Cycling Days 79
Kilometers 5,013
Hours 307:40:11
Kilometers per Cycling Day 63.45
Hours per Cycling Day 3:53:40

I think the biggest surprise about these cycling stats for us is how slowly we are actually traveling. If you do the math, we are only moving at a rate of about 30 kilometers per day. Moving that slowly really is the perfect way to travel, but it also means you need a lot of time to see a country. We spent two months cycling in New Zealand and felt like an adequate amount of time would have been six months. Our big breaks do skew that travel rate a little bit; our longest ones so far have been 22 days between New Zealand and Southeast Asia (planned), 21 days in Bangkok while waiting for visas (unplanned), and now currently 12 days and counting back in Bangkok waiting for Sarah’s arm to heal.


Preparation $9075.55
Airfare $4369.82
United States $2399.52
New Zealand $4012.54
Singapore $610.38
Thailand $2154.02
Cambodia $857.72
Vietnam $771.39
Laos $793.99

Yes, we’ve broken the $25,000 barrier only six months into our trip! After getting over the initial shock of seeing that number staring back at me in Excel, I realized it isn’t that big of a surprise. We pulled the original number of $25,000 out of our ass because it was an easy number for us to stomach. During our travels though, we are averaging about $55 per day or $20,000 for a year on the road, which seems reasonable given what we’ve read about other bicycle tourists doing similar trips. In the end, we don’t expect to be 100% over-budget; Preparation and Airfare still account for over 50% of our total costs. If we keep spending at the current rate, the cost for one year will be $34,000 plus the remaining airfare.

I’ve updated the Finances page with this information along with more details. If you’re the rare individual who has read this far and is actually interested in this stuff, tell us what you want to know. Many people have told us they are interested in the financial aspect of doing a trip like this, but we’ve been struggling to decide what we should publish and what is useless trivia. Leave a comment or send us an email at jamesandsarah at erck dot org.

Gear Failures

Flat Tires 9
Failed Tires 3
Earliest Tire Death (km) 30
Time Wasted Cursing Tires 4:12:47

Other than those pathetic Panaracer tires that we swapped for Schwalbe Marathons, our Gear has been pretty good. Other items that broke are the following:

Giro Atmos Helmet: The thin piece of the plastic support system broke on the plane ride to New Zealand.

SKS Front Fender: Also on the first plane ride, my front fender cracked where it attaches to the fork. This was annoying at first and then got dangerous when tar-covered rocks would get lodged between the tire and fender and stop me immediately. I eventually removed the fenders completely and am now ridin’ dirty.

Topeak Modula XL Bottle Cage: The rubber strap on this bottle cage broke in half after about 1000 kilometers. We replaced it with one of Sarah’s discarded toe-clip straps which works great.

Cat-Eye Mity 8 Computer: In Cambodia, my cycle computer started to randomly stop recording while I was riding. Strangely, it started working again as soon as we crossed into Vietnam but then fell of my bike shortly afterwards. An unsolved mystery.

Other Maintenance: My front brake cable started sticking at 3250 kilometers and we swapped it out for a new one. Sarah’s rear cable then started sticking at 5000 kilometers and was replaced too. Must have something to do with the tropical conditions of Southeast Asia!

Bad Stuff

Crashes 8
Bouts of Severe Diarrhea 4
Dog Attacks 0
Monkey Attacks 0.5

Sarah continues to lead in the walking (pedaling?) disaster category, capturing an impressive 5 crashes, 3 bouts of severe diarrhea, and almost managing to provoke a large scale monkey attack. Here’s a list of the crashes:

  1. In New Zealand a wild goat jumped out of the forest and startled Sarah. She didn’t fall off immediately but continued to ride along gawking at the goat until she actually rode right off the road. She couldn’t get her feet out of the toe clips in time and fell down. I am not making this up.
  2. Sarah was attempting to eat a banana while riding in Thailand. She veered off the road onto the sandy shoulder and lost control of her bike. I remember hearing her feeble, wavering cry, “Jamie!” as she began to panic that I didn’t know she fell and was going to ride off and leave her lying there tangled up with her bike in the dirt.
  3. Sarah was drafting behind me in Laos, clipped my rear tire with her front, and went down. Probably the least eventful of her crashes.
  4. While climbing a steep road in Vietnam I looked back to see where Sarah was. As I turned my head I also turned my bike and ended up executing a 90 degree right hand turn and riding slow motion off the road and directly into the ditch. Luckily there were no steep cliffs around and I wasn’t hurt.
  5. The infamous Laos crash that brought us back to Bangkok. While descending on a wet mountain road, Sarah locked up her brakes and hit the tarmac, cracking her radius in the process. I was right behind her and flipped over the top of her, cracking my helmet in the process.
  6. Same day in Laos, Sarah locked up her tires and went down again on the slippery roads. I heard her fall, tried to stop suddenly, and locked up my brakes and hit the deck too!

Stayed tuned tomorrow for our impressions of the first six months!

The First Nine Days in Thailand

Sunday, March 25th, 2007

Phuket Airport to Andaman Peace Resort at Laem Son National Park
9 days, 7 days cycling
367.24km (52.46km / cycling day)
21 hours, 47 minutes, 40 seconds in the saddle (3:06:49 / cycling day)

Lodging has been a little more sparse than we expected here in Thailand. A couple of times we decided we wanted to stop for the day in a decent sized town and looked around for a guesthouse but could not find one (or any other type of accommodation either). We made a big mistake in buying the Rough Guide to Southeast Asia instead of a specific guide book for each country. The Rough Guide focuses on the tourist resorts in each region of the country and nothing else, so most of the time we have had no idea of what is ahead in terms of lodging. For food it hasn’t matter so much, since there are restaurants and food stands literally everywhere so we never have to go hungry or thirsty. We will definitely be investing in more guide books once we reach Bangkok.

Lodging has also been a little more expensive than we expected. The least we have paid is 250B(~US$7.23) for a room in a guesthouse with a squat toilet, AC, and TV. The most we paid was 800B(~US$23.14) for a bungalow on the beach with a fan, flush toilet, and power only in the evening. We’ve learned that the price varies more with location than with the quality of the accommodation. We haven’t been bargaining for our accommodation either because we haven’t been sure whether or not it is customary here.

Lodging per Day US$10.56
Food per Day US$18.80
Miscellaneous per Day US$0.19
Total per Day US$29.55

Total Cost US$389.54

In terms of cost, we are spending less and we have increased our quality of life as compared to New Zealand. We sleep in hotels instead of our tent and we eat every single meal at a restaurant. (We actually sent our stove and cooking equipment back to the US to save on weight.) We usually have a couple of beers with dinner too. Did I mention we get to eat delicious Thai food for every meal instead of subsisting on peanut butter and honey sandwiches? The downside is the bicycling is not as beautiful (so far), and we get chased by dogs a lot more. The dogs are all over the place and love to roam the roads in the morning. (We saw one get killed yesterday.) Our current strategy is to try to outrun them, but we are also considering yelling, getting of the bike and standing our ground, and defending ourselves with bamboo sticks. The roads themselves here are very nice with wide shoulders that are shared by bicycles and motorbikes and the drivers are leagues beyond those in New Zealand. We get polite honks and people slow down and pass in the opposite lane here which is much more pleasant than getting blown off the road by a sheep truck passing too close at 120km/hr.

Today was spent resting on the beach at the Andaman Peace Resort near Laem Son National Park. Sarah has come down with her worst case of diarrhea of the trip so far. She accidentally rinsed her mouth out with tap water last night after brushing her teeth and woke up in the middle of the night with horrible stomach cramps. She has spent most of the day stinking up our room and guzzling bottled water to try to stay hydrated. If she feels better by tomorrow, we will cycle to Ranong. From there, we may take a boat out to the island of Ko Phayam off the coast for a couple days of island life before continuing on towards Bangkok.

New Zealand Finances

Thursday, March 15th, 2007

I have updated the Finances page with the cost of our time in New Zealand. We ended up at $57.34 per day for a total cost of $4013.78. The total cost of our trip is now up to $18,902.29.

Two Tears in a Bucket. Phuket.

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

Sarah and I are resting today and we have spent most of the day preparing for our trip to Asia. We have decided to skip Australia because of time, money, and weather so we are going to fly directly from Auckland, NZ to Singapore on March 8th and begin bicycling through southeast Asia. We would like to avoid as much of the rainy season as possible in Asia and spending any time in Australia would guarantee that we completely miss the dry season there. Using the information on southeast Asia’s weather, we have decided our rough itinerary will be Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and then North Vietnam.

We have been trying to figure out which countries we need visas for and when/how/where to get them. The fact that we have to pay for internet access and that the embassy websites have limited information makes this a lot more difficult that it needs to be, so we have resorted to purchasing a calling card and phoning the US embassy in the countries directly. Getting our visas taken care of in the US may have been more convenient, but most visas are only valid for one to three months, so that was not an option for us. We’ll let you know how acquiring the visas this way turns out.

We have also been researching safety. The US State Department website does not recommend traveling in Malaysia or southern Thailand at this time due to various security issues. We have heard of and met several bicyclists who have traveled through these areas, so we called the respective embassies and their response was that the information on the website was up-to-date and official and that they could offer no other opinions. The official at the Thai embassy said that he was not allowed to give an opinion, but that we would be “taking a definite risk” by traveling through southern Thailand. The Malaysian official had the same stance on giving an opinion, but was a little more upbeat in characterizing it as “the same as traveling through Canada.”

So, we are considering flying directly from Singapore to Phuket to bypass the dangerous areas. A quick search on showed that there are tickets available for as little as $US50. Not a bad price for a little peace of mind! We are going to do a little more research and then make a final decision.

Break On Through To The Other Side

Monday, February 5th, 2007

Hello from the other side of Haast Pass! Sarah and I safely and successfully crossed the Southern Alps today and we are now in a new region of the country: Otago. This region is known as one of the most beautiful areas of New Zealand with majestic mountains and glacially carved lakes and during our short time here it has lived up to its reputation!

Weather and sightseeing slowed us down a bit last week, so at the end of the week, we cycled like lunatics to get to Haast and in doing so we did our first metric century and bested our previous longest day by 50%! On Saturday the 3rd we cycled 126.08km in 6 hours, 55 minutes, and 45 seconds. It was definitely a grueling day and we were wiped out afterwards so we spent Sunday the 4th resting in Haast. After the ride, we were discussing whether or not cycling 100km on these loaded touring bikes is as difficult as riding 100 miles on a racing bike. We think it is.

The epic ride started inland as we left the glaciers. Here is Sarah cycling through some dense rainforest.

As we neared the coast, things started to open up a bit with nice rivers, plains, and hills.

As we were nearing the end of the ride, we touched the coast and had to climb and descend three 200 meter hills in a row. It was painful, but the views from the top were worth it.

We spent the next day relaxing in Haast and cycled about 5km down to the beach. Sarah did a little beachcombing, hoping she would find an ancient mere, but she didn’t have any luck. We did spot a couple of dolphins in the surf though.

Today we were feeling pretty well recovered so we decided to tackle Haast Pass. Here I am getting my daily upper body workout by using our handpump to inflate our tires to 95psi.

The ride started out pretty flat; we cycled along a plain for about 50km with views of the mountains we were trying to get across.

Check out all the waterfalls coming down this one.

Sarah’s shadow was so clear in the morning sun, it looked like she was riding on top of a mirror.

We stopped for a lunch break at Pleasant Flat and were thankful we didn’t have to cross the glacier covered peaks we could see in the distance.

As we approached the Gates of Haast, the road became steep and our pace slowed to 5km/hr. We knew the pass was about 10km, so we got a little worried wondering if it was really going to take us two hours to get across?! When we arrived at the Gates of Haast, we really started to panic. We could see the road became even steeper ahead and we didn’t know whether or not we could make it. Was it really that steep all the way up? Sarah was feeling very tired, so we decided to take some action. We took her dry bag and put it on my bike, creating our first double-decker load.

We then started up; the falls at the Gates were beautiful.

As we started climbing, we realized this wasn’t a road we were on, it was a paved wall! I was out of the saddle, grinding my way up the hill. I could feel the burn of the midday sun on my back and I was instantly so drenched in sweat I could barely keep a grip on my handlebars. I looked back, worried about Sarah but she was already out of site. So I decided to leave her. If she was really this weak, I didn’t bloody want her anyway.

Just kidding people! I knew if I stopped I would never be able to start up again, so I continued on to scout out how long the steepness lasted. Luckily, the gradients eased after about two kilometers and I was able to pull off the road to catch my breath. After a few minutes, Sarah rounded a bend and wove her way up the road toward our resting spot.

When she arrived, she told me she had to climb so slowly that she wasn’t able to keep her bike upright and she fell off. When she started again, she learned that at speeds below 3.8km per hour her speedometer gives up and tells her she’s not moving anymore!

Thankfully, that hellish stretch was the worst of the pass and the remainder was actually very gradual. Haast Pass is actually the lowest of the passes in New Zealand at only 564 meters.

We spent the afternoon descending gradually and admiring the new dry landscape.

You may have heard some military types bragging about the in-air refueling of their fighter jets? Well, they’ve got nothing on us. We’ve also perfected in-flight refueling with our Hydrapaks. Here is Sarah hydrating in style.

On our way down, we stopped to visit the Blue Pools. It was a short trail off the road including a swinging bridge crossing and the water was amazingly clear and beautiful.

At the end of the day, we set up camp at a DoC site right on the shore of Lake Wanaka. We gaze out the front door of our tent and pretend we are in our million dollar lake home. Tomorrow we head toward Wanaka and Queenstown.

Stats from Week 5 (1.29.2007 – 2.04.2007):
Greymouth -> Haast
5 days cycling, 2 days resting

347.78km (69.56km / cycling day)
20 hours, 27 minutes, 42 seconds in the saddle

NZ$265.09 (NZ$37.87 / day)

By the Numbers

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

Stats for the 3rd Week (1.15.2006 – 1.21.2006):
Aussie Bay -> Motueka

5 days cycling with 1 easy/rest day
2 days tramping

219.29km (43.86km / cycling day)
NZ$459.22 (NZ$65.60 / day)
14 hours, 9 minutes, 1 second in the saddle

42km of tramping in ~12 hours

We have been pretty consistent in our daily spending at around NZ$65 per day which is approximately US$46. That comes in right under our budget of US$50, but when you add in the gear we have purchased here, transportation costs, and other miscellaneous expenses we are up at US$65 per day. Whoa nellie! We may need to curb our ice cream habit. In addition to costing us money, its getting a little embarassing as tonight Sarah beat a group of children in a sprint to the ice cream truck as it passed through the holiday park. We did get to try a Mr. Whippy though. Sort of like Dairy Queen but a little creamier.

Money, Money, Money, … Moonaay!

Saturday, December 16th, 2006

Cue the Apprentice theme song, I updated the Finances page with the details from our United States road trip. Check them out.


Monday, November 13th, 2006

Bicycles – $5000
Airfare to New Zealand – $2500
Seeing Mordor for yourself – Priceless

It’s time to start taking bets on how much this trip is going to cost. Today Sarah and I did a little tallying and realized we have now spent over $10,000 on this trip and we haven’t left Seattle yet. That magic moment was followed by a couple “What are we doing?”s, “Are you really sure about this?”, and some gutteral moaning on my part. Since neither of us likes to spend money, its hard to swallow the lump sum of money required to prepare for a trip like this, but we both agree it will be well worth it. Check out my accounting skills on our newly updated Finances page.

Keep on Truckin’

Sunday, October 29th, 2006

I got my Surly Long Haul Trucker this week! Adam and Peter at Counterbalance Bicycles built it up for me and did a great job. The bike is a 60cm, steel frame and fork made of 100% Surly 4130 cro-moly steel. I gave some general guidelines to Adam and he built the bike up to be as simple and reliable as possible for our trip. The wheels are hand-built with Mavic’s heavy duty A719 rims and Shimano Deore XT hubs. The tires are Panaracer T-Servs, which are a little different than the Panaracer Pasela TGs that Sarah has on her bike. We’ve heard varying opinions from the touring community on tires. Some people swear by the Schwalbe Marathons or the Continental Top Touring tires. Those tires seem to be preferred by people who value puncture resistance over comfort. The Panaracers are supposed to be very comfortable tires that also have decent puncture resistance. We are going to ride them for a while before we had overseas to see if they are going to suit our needs. The drivetrain is XT in the rear with Sugino cranks up front and I got a silver Chris King headset for some sex appeal. Adam also put on the Surly Nice Rack on the rear for me. I was originally going to get a Tubus rack, but the Surly rack is amazingly overbuilt and the silver looks cool on my bike. I put on the Brooks Flyer Saddle (Ouch!), SKS Fenders, ESGE kickstand, Jandd Handlebar & Frame Bags, and Ortlieb Bike-Packer Plus rear panniers that we got as wedding gifts (Thanks everyone!), so after I get the front rack and panniers I will be ready to go! I am going to start commuting on the bike to get used to it and make any needed adjustments before we leave. Right now, I’ve got a decent drop between my saddle and my bars and I’m pretty sure I’m going to need to raise my bars up. The total cost for the bike so far is $1764.96 which brings the total for the trip up to a whopping $6602.94.