CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 1 hour 53 min ago

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

31 August 2014 - 8:44pm
I've done maybe 50 tours with my 18 years old Backroller Classics. Have yet to replace a part. Still watertight.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

31 August 2014 - 8:31pm
Sweep wrote:Interesting thread as I'm thinking of getting some Back Rollers - already have Bike Packers - very neat but the lack of flexibility in stuffing in that bit extra at the top can be a problem.....

I would be the opposite here...had the Classics for around 15 well used years (now relegated to occasional use around town) and back-packer pluses [BPP] for over a year with around 2000 odd miles on tour comfort camping so far.

Despite Ortlieb specs there is considerably much room inside the BPP than the rollers if you choose to use it and IMO BPP are a lot more flexible in that you have the choice of using the considerable space under the lid but not actually inside the bag if the top drawstrings are pulled.

I use the lid space to pop in daily purchases, coats etc and keep them separate from the main compartments. If its looking showery at the start of a day I load my waterproofs under one lid for quick withdrawal and return. Perfect for when they may be damp when put away....

In my view Rollers for simplicity and BPP's for versatility - either way both are superb in strength and design.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

31 August 2014 - 6:00pm
Interesting thread as I'm thinking of getting some Back Rollers - already have Bike Packers - very neat but the lack of flexibility in stuffing in that bit extra at the top can be a problem.

On a sort of related point before I go ahead and buy, what colour would folk suggest for visibility/safety?

Red seems to be the natural choice, but others may have different opinions ....

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 4:49pm
If i had the space and money I would keep both - you dont want to use the "nice" bike for runs to the shops etc

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 2:50pm
It's not a proper mid life crisis until it involves a Rohloff Speedhub....

I agree on the trucker mines a disc trucker the colour is lovely.

Here's mine! (trucker not mid life crisis honest)

(somewhere on there anyway)

Re: Thames path

31 August 2014 - 10:15am
makes u wonder how on earth the Thames comes from that!

Re: Satmap Protective Case anyone?

31 August 2014 - 9:53am
I use one has been water tight so far, got it for the extra protection .does make using the buttons a bit of a fiddle On satmap 10 taking off the protective lens to add the cover generally means
if you us the waterproof cover you have to leave the other protector home

Satmap Protective Case anyone?

31 August 2014 - 8:59am
I have just bought one of these
https://satmap.com/accessories/proshiel ... black.html

This thing is for use with the bike mount
The bike mount back for the Active 10/12 is still employed with this case
So the attachment sticks through a large slit in the back of the case

Waterproof? - I think not
However The rubber of the case does seem to press against the back of the device when on the mount so it may be a bit more waterproof than it looks.

Anyone know for sure if the slit in the back lets in water while employed

Re: Thames path

31 August 2014 - 7:05am
Here is a photo of the stone marking the source of the River Thames. It's in a a remote Gloucestershire meadow full of grazing dairy cows.rsz_img_1352.jpg

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 12:15am
I'm fortunate enough to own a few bikes, all to my specification, without being unsensibly restricted by budget. These include a Thorn Exp (expedition standard bike); a Genesis Croix de Fer, in touring spec for medium weight touring, and a Roberts Compact Sportive that I have over-abused for cycle-camping, and it has coped admirably, but is not really robust enough for the state of the roads today when loaded with 15 kgs of tent & luggage.

They all have their strengths and weaknesses for touring, but if you plan to go touring, which I assume you do, then you are right to specify a touring bike for your very needs. The Surley Long a Haul Trucker would, of course, be an excellent choice (for any tourer) -so perhaps you could narrow down or specify your question for a touring bike? What type of touring are you planning to do? How long, how often etc.?

Otherwise, if you are looking for support - then you've come to the right place - I would certainly agree with your decision. I would disagree that it is a mid-life crisis at 40, you've got another 10 or 15 years to go for a real mid-life crisis!

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

30 August 2014 - 9:37pm
The choice pf which bike to buy is very easy.
European tarmac? Dawes Galaxy with Marathon tyres or Panaracer Pasela Tourguard tyres. Perhaps a Thorn Sherpa.
Cross Africa, Patagonia, crap roads? Perhaps a Thorn Raven. Nomad, 26 inch wheels so you can buy tyres anywhere. Surly also good. Strong frame.
Or maybe go for a lighter frame, handmade specially for you? Roberts of Croydon.
Short of money? Go to halfords.
In China? Buy a £25 bike.
Which only goes to show that you can ride almost anything to almost amywhere. If you have a decent local bike shop, ask them or ring Thorn, which is what I did.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

30 August 2014 - 9:06pm
+1 For Classics. I use mine to transport chicken food, cider, you name it...hc

Re: New Route Planner

30 August 2014 - 9:03pm
A fantastic site that I have used to plan a pannier full of short, local training (alright pub) routes. Thanks Richard...hc

Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

30 August 2014 - 8:35pm
At 40 I am being accused by those nearest and dearest to me of having a mid-life crisis. I call it just knowing how to have fun. I am ditching my hybrid (Specialized Globe City 3.1) for a full spec tourer (I'm soft on a Surly Disc Trucker) The sale of my hybrid will help me a little towards this goal I hope! It's on eBay which is new territory for me. Yikes.

I'm learning loads on here so thank you all for the knowledge although I am lurking and avoiding adding my 10 cents or bombarding the wise with inane questions. A bit about me as an intro: I am a gardener in Somerset and I lean towards organic methods as I have a very strong affinity with Britain's flora and fauna. At the moment I own a decent hybrid which handles light touring without complaint but as I said I'm on the hunt for a proper tourer to match my beard and long hair. I also have 2 sheds, 2 greenhouses, a spaniel, 2 daughters, some chickens and a tortoise. All of which are about as useful as a chocolate tea pot.............hc

Re: First EVER Tour! (and I'm going RTW)

30 August 2014 - 3:46pm
freerider wrote:Jamesjohnson wrote:Now I jut need to work out what's causing the twinges in my knees :/

Hey buddy - I suffer from twinges in my knee - I was touring with a friend who did sports science and he told me to get some bandages to wrap around my knee keeping it open on the patella itself - this did the job - I went from being in agony on each pedal stroke to fluid and painless. (apparently the bandages stop the patella from moving around which stops the tendon flaring up).

Hope this works for you and good luck for the rest of your tour!!!


Thanks Freerider,

I'm happy to say that after a few weeks on the road and a few adjustments to my cycling style and cleat position, the knee pain had stopped. My brother uses bandages as he has more severe knee problems, sometimes the knee cap moves a few inches to one side.

Today I have publised the second of a two part post about being rejected by Iran and changing course and going to Georgia. This led me to cycle The 'Road'. A mountain road with a surprise 2025m pass and a road surface that better resembled an elongated pile of rocks.

Part 1 is here - http://jamesvsworld.com/2014/08/25/the-road-part-1/

Part 2 is here - http://jamesvsworld.com/2014/08/30/the-road-part-2/

Thanks for reading, please comment and share

Re: Touring Iceland

30 August 2014 - 2:37pm
megilleland wrote:If you wanted to find out anything about Iceland then Dick Phillips was your man. In the early seventies I bought all my Icelandic maps and his guidebook through him.
The important word in that sentence is "was"!
I toured Iceland in 1999 and by that time his advice was hopelessly out of date and downright misleading. Unless it has been thoroughly updated since then, best avoided.

Re: OpenFietsMap Europa (=OpenCycleMap Europe)

30 August 2014 - 9:19am
The Dutch Wizard appears to have done an update, early June.

Only about 6 months after the last one I think.


Scroll down this page below and you'll see that there appear to have been changes to the routing options you should choose on the Garmin (I use an Etrex 20) and Basecamp.


If you search elsewhere in the updates notifications it also appears that you can get now get offline Garmin map images onto an Android tablet or smartphone and read them (but not route) using the free Orux maps update.

Apologies if this is old news.

A happy sweep.

Re: Touring Iceland

30 August 2014 - 8:57am
Oh yes forgot about the winds, they can spring up from nowhere and be extremely strong, or can turn from tailwind to headwind in an instant. One the sprang up on one of our days caused us to change plans, go a different way, use a hostel and some buses, but we saw some of the waterfalls that were not originally in the plan.
But it is a sensational country when the weather is good.

Re: Touring Iceland

29 August 2014 - 10:38pm
Hi - 4 of us toured Iceland last year and can offer some pretty comprehensive and up to date info:

Western Fjords - brilliant place to go and would recommend.
Snæfell - again lovely and would heartily recommend
Hveragerði - really nice small town with a hospital (private) that does accommodation cheaply - again we were in bad weather so ended up staying the night at the hospital - meals included. Included access to swimming pools.
Ring road - not nice for cycling - lots of people seemed to ride it but did 10K on it and it was busy - there are no other roads for trucks and the tons of RVs so they are all on there.
Arriving - we stayed at the Alex hotel the first and last nights - will let you store bike boxes and have space for you to assemble bikes (no camping however)
Campsites - we camped wild some of the time as there were no sites on the route plus we had some weather which drove us to need to dry out
Food - good supermarkets but generally sparse so we had to carry extra with us when we found it
Road surfaces - generally excellent and far better than anything in the UK - we were on one stretch that was compacted shale type .. in the wet ...
Buses - you can get bikes on buses easily but you might need to book - buses from go from Harpa centre - we booked a bus to the fjords before we left UK and only just managed to squeeze on - they had to get an extra bus and trailer. We rang a bus from a campsite and booked ourselves on for the next day, all worked perfectly!
Costs - it was expensive, we did not eat out except a few hot chocolates and a couple of meals.
Weather - it was challenging (and we are hardy outdoor types ...)
Camping Kit - our mates a Hilleberg GT Nallo and we had a Terra Nova Solar2 ... as a result of the trip we bought a Nallo! They fared much better in the 50mph winds!
Bike shops - only saw anything decent in Reykjavik, rest of the time were not in any big towns (but then they aren't any!)
Photos - if you want to see the slide show of our trip here is the link - there are some maps of where we went included (I did it for my cycling club)
https://picasaweb.google.com/1171190117 ... 6_LS7bzXAQ

Lastly - it is a truly wondrous place and i would not hesitate to go back! They are very family friendly folk and it would be an amazing trip ... just hope you get the weather! If you want to know anything specific just let me know. Enjoy the planning!

Re: Lon Las Cymru to Taunton

29 August 2014 - 10:15pm
Personally I would not miss out Ynys Mon (Anglesey) but you might want to make some diversions to the coast which is the best bit. There are little bits of cycle track all over N. Wales so they some times come up without knowing about them:o) e.g. Llanwnda to Trevor on the Llyn
There are so many variations as you go south, it depends on how careful you want to be to have done the route. I like following my nose! Some of the route e.g. from Porthmadog to Barmouth does seem to twist around a bit to keep off the main road, but it is well worth while following exactly as you get fantastic views (goes right passed my house as well ) ) It is all very hilly though! But luckily the Brewit bridge should be back in operation by next year, saving 9 miles.
Hope you enjoy it all its a great area.


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