It’s an interesting idea, and provided you mean what you say when you toss out a “sometime in the next 5 years” timeframe, I’d be willing to give it some more thought and discussion around route, logistics, etc. That said, it’s not something I’d see happening at least for me in the next year or two. And on the list of tours I’d like to do, I’m not yet sure WA is at the top. For example, if I was going to invest 10 days riding a particular US state, I think I’d like to Ride Around Hawaii (RAH!!!) more. Or west to east across the southern part of Utah. But I’ll keep an open mind…especially if wait until you have a driver’s license and can help out with the support chores :).
To your other questions…
How many miles per day is reasonabe? Disregard Evan’s LVA post. The uni tours have some strong collective wisdom on how much daily riding makes for a fun and interesting tour. While I could envision a day or two in the 70 mile range, that wouldn’t make for a fun tour. Anything over 50 in a day and it’s only about the ride, and not about the places you’re riding through. I’d rather shoot for an average of 40 and have some time to stop and pick the apples, smell the onions.
How many of you could/would go? As mentioned, I’ll discuss, but not sure if I’d prioritize WA as the state I’d invest 10 days in. Would have to be a pretty interesting route.
Is it reasonable? Totally…especially if you REALLY LIKE WA.
How many days is good for novice distance riders like most of us? If you’re serious about riding across the state, you will no longer be a novice distance rider by the time you’re ready to head off. I’d say 10 at least, but a lot would depend on the route. To me, it would be interesting to re-trace Lars Clausen’s route across the state, starting in Neah Bay, maybe timing the trip through Sultan to coincide with their uni jamboree, etc. In any case, if it’s going to be truly across the state, it will be minimum of 400 miles, likely more.
How many support cars do we need? One.
Would anybody here volunteer to be a support car? Something would work out…not sure that’s a detail to sweat yet.
Any other tips? Don’t obsess about this…set your sights on some interim steps instead to increase your distance. For example, what about riding the great experience. If that’s not your style, there are plenty of other events organized through WA biking organizations that you could participate in. The Chilly Hilly being just one example.