Betty Foy

Fall 2022 S24O

Copperhead Island at McDowell Nature Preserve on Lake Wylie.

Sept, 24, 2022

I used this trip as my shakedown ride for the Cycle NC Mountains to Coast ride since it was the preceding weekend. The weather was perfect. Not too hot and cool at night so I slept well. I always enjoy this trip to introduce people to bikecamping. It’s good to see that you can easily live off your bike. And you realize you really don’t need much to have a really good time. Photos: Eric Supil

The next trip will be Spring 2023. March 25, 2023. Mark your calendar and save the date. We leave Sat at 2 pm, bike out 19 miles then stop to buy food for dinner then set up camp, eat dinner and hang out til we burn all the wood. $20 per person or $15 with your Bike Benefits sticker. Email me with any answers or to reserve your spot.

L-R: Monica, Charlie, Paul, Pam, Tabia, Ehab.

Bikecamping Spring 2022

Although every year everyone is excited about the trip. We generally only have a handful of people. This trip we had eight riders to Copperhead Island at Lake Wylie, South Carolina. We rode about 20 miles with 25 mph gusts. It was windy and cold on the way out but had perfect weather at 61 degrees for the ride. We stopped at the Publix as usual and picked up dinner. Then got to camp. Set up our tents and ate dinner. There was a burn ban in effect till 8pm. Then we all sat around the campfire. It’s always a good time. Join us next time. Video and pictures by Cary Gavin.

10 years of beausage on my Betty Foy

May 2021

I can’t believe it’s been 10 years since I unboxed my Betty Foy from Rivendell. My Betty is my daily ride and was my only bike til recently. I have an old Schwinn Mesa Runner that I use when I’m out of town on the weekends. I set it up like my Betty and like that it basically the same and I can always pull the parts if I’m desperate.

I do ride my Betty daily – about 360 days/year. I use it for all my errands and wherever I want to go. I did travel by Amtrak pre-COVID. And I’ve flown it boxed on American since it’s only a normal bag fee (no oversize charge anymore). I’ve done S24O trips and am slowly using it more for longer trips. I’m up to 2 nights camping and would like to go for 3 or more soon. Maybe this year.

I’m not sorry about all the scratches and beausage.  I remember every one. Each time I locked at a bad bike rack or street sign and it shifted and scraped the paint off the top tube. When I was adjusting my seat and the hex wrench slipped. When I parked on some cart return because there’s no bike rack… I ride daily and I always lock up. I never leave it unlocked.

I keep track of the mileage for maintenance purposes and I like to try to get full utility out of all my components. I had been trying to get more chains per cassette but I’m so bad about it that I think I’ve given up and will just wear them out together. I think I’ll try to get 5,000 out of them. I’ll see how that goes. I’ve used Schwalbe Marathon Supremes and usually get about 12,000 miles without a flat. They have wear indicators now which are helpful.

Miles : 58,529
Highest annual mileage : 9,000
Most daily miles: 80

Riding in NC

  • Charlotte (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Raleigh (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Apex
  • Cary (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Durham (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Asheville 
  • Belmont
  • Pinnacle
  • Greensboro (Amtrak roll on service) to Apex
  • Newton to Lake James
  • Rocky Mount (Amtrak roll on service) to Elizabeth City
  • Cycle NC ride 2019 from Clayton (Amtrak roll on service) to Atlantic Beach
  • Rodanthe to Ocracoke

Outside of NC:

  • Philadelphia, PA (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Glacier National Park (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Portland, OR (checked in box on American)
  • Seattle, WA (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Washington, DC (Amtrak roll on service)
  • Orlando, FL (Amtrak roll on service)

Annual mileage

  • 2011 : 1,818* (May -Dec)
  • 2012 : 3,756
  • 2013 : 4,294
  • 2014 : 4,669
  • 2015 : 5,169
  • 2016 : 5,439
  • 2017 : 5,064
  • 2018 : 5,251
  • 2019 : 9,014
  • 2020 : 6,613
  • 2021 : 2,008* (Jan- Apr)
  • *partial year

Original equipment:

  • handlebars
  • stem
  • cranks
  • seatpost (weird size 26.6)
  • saddle
  • middle and small chain rings
  • brake levers
  • Shimano XT rapid rise rear derailleur
  • Nitto campee rear rack
  • headset
  • frame
  • fork
  • Brooks B68S
  • Middle and small chainrings
  • headset

My Betty and I have gone so many places together and made so many friends and have had so many good times.  And we’ll have many more miles and trips and meet so many people. Bikes are made for riding. Go ride!

p.s. I matched some nail polish to the paint but since it doesn’t have a UV coating, it fades out. So some of the touch ups look white. I’m switching to clear nail polish now.

p.p.s. Plan all routes with Ride With GPS, write route on a 3×5 index card. No cell phone.

S24O 4/20/19

The next bike overnight will be Easter weekend. Do you like biking? Do you like camping? This is both at the same time. We meet Sat at 2 at Common Market Plaza Midwood and bike about 20 miles out to Copperhead Island at McDowell Nature Preserve. We stop on the way at a grocery store to pick up dinner supplies. We set up camp, have dinner, build a campfire and then bike back the next morning. We’re home for lunch on Sunday.

If you’re planning a longer trip, this is a great way to test everything out. From your packing list, to your equipment, clothing, hydration and nutrition. It’s loads of fun! There’s still room.

$20 per person. $15 with your Bike Benefits sticker. Cash or Paypal

Here’s a link to our first one.


As edited by: Anna Benton
Photos: Carl Wilson


A few years ago, I read about the S24O (sub 24 hour overnight bike camping) on the Rivendell Bicycles website.   However, the opportunity to embark on such a trip within the Charlotte area involved some difficult metrics. The closest campground is the McDowell Nature Preserve, a short 18 mile journey; yet the only plausible route involves 10-12 miles on South Tryon. South Tryon is predominantly a four lane highway with a 45 mph limit until it crosses I-485, at which point it transitions to a 55 mph limit.  Equipped with the skills learned in Cycling Savvy, I felt prepared to ride South Tryon all the way out to camp with my seven trusty companions.

Start of our trip

We convened on the little sugar Creek greenway at 3pm on a sunny Saturday. The weather was perfect.  The high was mid 80’s and the low was about 58F.  It was an impressive crew of  bikes to behold as we saddled up alongside the glimmering silver ball that abuts the Charlotte skyscape.   The group consisted of Matt, riding his carbon road bike with full Campy group, with whom we met near Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. Next, was Carl riding his handmade steel frame fully loaded with a tent, stove and provisions. Then Geoff atop camp2a Lemond road bike with his tent and gear in a messenger bag on his back.  Paul rode a Surly Big Dummy cargo bike, pulling a Burley trailer with his 2 year old son behind him, and fully loaded with tent, gear and provisions.  Anna rode her Bruce Gordon touring bike loaded with ortlieb panniers for the family.  I (Pam) was on my Rivendell Betty Foy, equipped with an Eno hammock, bug net and chair in my Green Guru Freerider Pannier and a wicker basket pannier. Amanda was on her Schwinn Varsity (called Rosalita) with panniers loaded with a hammock, home made sleepsack and down comforter.  Our bikes streamed down Charlotte streets in colors of red, black, green and blue.


In spite of our heavy loads, we made great time on the ride out and had mostly nice encounters with motorists, with the exception of a few SC drivers (SC KUD 298?).  Sure, we got an occasional honk but most people politely flowed around us. Also, by taking the lane we certainly increased our field of sight and our visibility to the drivers around us. We all commented on our relative comfort along the route and enjoyed the overall smooth journey.


We stopped around mile 16 at the Publix in Steele Creek, 3 miles away from the camp site.  Everyone picked up something for dinner and we refilled our water bottles. After that it was a quick ride to camp with Carowinds towering tall in the distance and an oasis of trees waiting for us after our journey on the pavement.


camp13 camp12

We set up camp in three large camping sites with a good mix of hammocks and tents. After that, Andrew met us with his Hobie Mirage tandem kayak (pedal driven) and took everyone out on the lake.  It was a beautiful sunset over Lake Wylie followed by a cool evening by the fire.




Great weather, great company and all around a wonderful first S24O camping trip. Come join us next time. Until then, lets get out and ride!