Cyclist ready for 50-day US trip

21:47, Jun 05 2014
timaru cyclist Phill Clapham
BACK ON: Phill Clapham is setting off on a bike journey across the United States next week which will take him 50 days.

Next week a Timaru man starts his journey across the United States on his bike.

Phill Clapham has been riding bikes for 10 years and had planned to do this trip last year but had to delay it due to a serious fall from his bike 20 months ago.

He was badly injured, including sustaining a severe concussion. Me and Kieran Read, we both have concussions. I keep whacking my head on the ground.

"I have knocked myself out twice," he said.

He is still dealing with the repercussions of the November 2012 incident.

"I'm getting better but there are still moments," he said.


He sets off on his American jaunt next Friday, and because he is flying across time zones, he spends two Friday the 13th's flying.

"I thought the airfares were quite cheap. Might just be me and the pilot [on the plane]," he joked.

The trip sees Clapham and the group he is riding with setting off from Astoria, a town just outside Portland, Oregon.

The 50-day trip will take them across the northern states, including Wyoming, Minnesota, Wisconsin, New York and into Ontario in Canada.

"The worst part of the trip will be having to share a room. What if I get someone who is messy, or snores?" he asked.

His wife, Amanda, is staying behind and looking after their commercial goat-milking operation. Letting him go has earned her thousands of brownie points, he said.

Clapham is cautious about American cuisine, as he does not believe it is healthy.

"I don't know whether I will lose weight or put it on while I am there," he quipped.

The Timaru Herald