Packing a bicycle for airplane travel?

I am interested in hearing from other people who have taken their bicycles on an airplane. How have you managed it? We are older people, and I am worried about hauling a bike plus a large backpack through the airport. How much does the airline charge? Do you have a special suitcase for it? How do you get from the airport to your hotel? Are taxi drivers willing to put bikes in the trunk of a taxi? I am particularly interested in  hearing from people who have traveled with a folding bicycle such as a Dahon.

We have found that renting bikes abroad is not always easy. It can be expensive, and it is sometimes hard to find a bike that fits me; I am short. Also rental bikes often are just not very good bikes. They have not been maintained as well as they should be, and sometimes the rental people are indifferent about a person’s concerns.

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A Ride from Pleasanton to Livermore and Back

Today we did a ride of  between 10 and 11 miles starting at Sutter Gate Park in Pleasanton, where we parked the car on a suburban street. This part of the ride was very pretty with the first segment of the path on a neighborhood trail.

Then we got on a temporary section of Iron Horse trail, which also made for a pleasant ride. These are flat trails away from traffic,  and though one must cross some busy streets, the streets all have signals.

We followed this trail until we crossed Stanley Blvd. and turned left on to the trail that runs along Stanley Blvd. to Livermore. This path is separate from traffic, but the surface is rough in spots, and the scenery is less than appealing. However, it is flat, and one can pedal along at a steady pace. And it was free from dog walkers, strollers, and tricycles. We only saw other cyclists. The Stanley Blvd. part of this ride is one that we will probably not do again, but the Livermore-Pleasanton area is a pretty one with lots of bicycling possibilities. And the Stanley Blvd. path does hook into the Isabel Ave. path in Livermore, which in turn leads in one direction to the lovely Arroyo Mocho Trail and in the other direction to Sycamore Grove Park.

After our ride, we drove into downtown Pleasanton and lunched at the Blue Agave Mexican restaurant. The weather was mild enough to eat outside and to watch the passing scene. Pleasanton now has a display of some interesting artwork: figures of people, some of which are quite lifelike.

The prettiest part of Iron Horse Trail

My husband and  I rode the trail today from downtown Walnut Creek to Alamo. After all the rain that we have had it was nice to have a sunny sky although the temperature was not terribly warm. The wisteria is blooming in many yards along the trail, and the trees are leafing out making a show of many shades of green. As we rode back to Walnut Creek, we were treated to the sight of a man leading a pretty pony and another man on horseback accompanying him. One always popular attraction on this stretch of the path is the horse pasture located close to Hillgrade  Ave., where people love to watch the horses and offer them treats, perhaps not something favored by the horses’ owners.This trip is about ten easy miles with an option of stopping at  Yellow Wood in Alamo, an attractive coffee shop with a good choice of many types of sandwiches and other snacks.