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Updated: 54 min 25 sec ago

Re: New Zealand Tour

25 October 2015 - 10:20am
Generally you should be able to ride most gravel roads (except perhaps after they've been graded) with that set up but Marathon Supreme sidewalls can be a bit fragile so maybe think about a tougher tyre.
Yes most NZ main roads have a good shoulder that you can ride on but it often means that traffic won't move over at all to pass you, so keep well to the left if its busy, also the shoulders disappear at bridges.
Only restricted roads are the motorways, of which there are only two or three short ones in the whole country close to the main cities, and there are plenty alternatives.
I can't comment on mobile internet as its seven years since I was last in NZ, but why not get Viewranger or something on your phone, they have the whole of the South Island at 1:50,000 topographical mapping for £15, or whole of NZ for £22 https://shop.viewranger.com/products.php?category_id=33

Re: New Zealand Tour

25 October 2015 - 9:43am
Thanks for all the replies so far. I googled the holidays and the schools go back the first week of Feb, which is when I'll be starting so all good there. Yes, a return flight is currently £1089, but I may have to pay an excess baggage charge on top as it's a 30kg allowance. I'll let you know assuming Singapore airlines ever answer my email to them on the subject....

When touring I like to aim for a minimum of 100k a day and set a target about that distance away and then just see how it goes. Sometimes 65 miles is plenty and sometimes I'm having so much fun I just carry on to 80, 100, 120 depending on the terrain and weather and availability of camping. I have to confess it's all about the cycling for me, with the location just being a bonus. I'm mad I know but there a sense of achievement and thrill I get from powering an 80lb bicycle for 200k that no view or historic landmark can ever top.

I've seen that there are a lot of dedicated cycle trails on South Island which from the pictures appear to be gravel tracks. Although it's a road bike I'm riding, it's got Deore hubs, A719 rims and 35mm Marathon Supreme tyres. It can comfortably cope with canal towpaths and the like so does anyone have an informed opinion as to whether it'll be up to these New Zealand tracks and the gravel roads out there?

Also, I can see from Google that the main roads connecting the towns seem to be good single carriageways with a strip of tarmac to cycle on beyond the white lines in many places. Are there any roads with cycling restrictions and if so, will I be able to find alternative, parallel roads that I can ride on?

Finally, can anyone give me an idea what the mobile internet is like on the island as I usually navigate by Google maps and Garmin? Should I be buying a road atlas?

Thanks in advance!

Re: Tour video of London (Outskirts) to Paris - Avenue Verte

25 October 2015 - 9:15am
I am going to do this next year.

Re: Do you know how much weight you are carting about?

24 October 2015 - 5:08pm
Shopping, I use an 8-Freight, so no stability/handling issues with the weight low and in front of the rear wheel.

Touring is on a Streetmachine recumbent so I can get the heavy stuff under the seat and between the wheels where the only affect on handling is to glue you to the road a bit better.

Both will take stupid loads without complaint.


Re: 2 weeks cycling hollidays with 4 kids in Europe

24 October 2015 - 2:41pm
+1 for Holland.
In August of this year we did a circuit starting at Hook of Holland, taking in Rotterdam, Amsterdam, and the Hague.
Lots of things to see and do including beaches, woods, zoo, citys, museums, windmills and best of all a theme park.
Accomodation was at the stayokay hostels which were reasonable price and offered a good standard of rooms suitable for families.
We took our 12 year old daughter and she managed the cycling fine and loved the whole experience.

lots of varied cycling but all on good cycling paths separated from the car traffic.

This was our first family cycling holiday and we were all a bit nervous about it, but it was much better than we all expected.

Re: Do you know how much weight you are carting about?

24 October 2015 - 1:59pm
Use a trailer.
No weight on the bike, so your bike still feels like your bike.

Re: Do you know how much weight you are carting about?

24 October 2015 - 12:26pm
My touring weight with camping is about 17kg. Steel tourers are built to carry weight, and provided the weight is evenly distributed it shouldn't cause a problem. My bike actually feels more stable when fully loaded.

Re: Do you know how much weight you are carting about?

24 October 2015 - 9:43am
My loads are about 9 kg cc touring, and 16 kg camping. On day rides I just take the bar bag, about 2kg.

I dislike front panniers and heavy bar bags. My Salsa Vaya 3 gets a bit lively when I add camping stuff on the top of the rear rack, to the point of instability.

A little project for the winter is to make myself a decent light fitted frame bag so that I can concentrate a lot of weighty things within the frame triangle. I think I will only have one bottle cage on tbe downtube to maximise storage, and I may go for a velcro on bag over the top too. I am hoping that will cure the metranome effect.


Re: Do you know how much weight you are carting about?

24 October 2015 - 8:49am
I recently weighed the saddlebag I normally have permanently attached as I seemed a bit heavy when I took it off during maintenance. Nearly 5 kilos tho' the bag itself ( a 40 year old carradice ) is pretty heavy. The rest is tools plus assorted bits which have somehow accumulated. Severe pruning brought this down but still more than I would have liked still "essential".

Re: 4 or 5 day LEJOG

23 October 2015 - 9:12pm
The thing that actually concerns me most are the British hills, these are much more sapping that mountains because they are too short to get in a rythm, they're steeper than abroad (where they use switch backs more) and you can't recover your speed on the downhills because they are too short and bendy. I think it would have to be the flattist route possible

I don't mind busy, fast roads but would want to avoid traffic as it slows you down..more time in the saddle

The weather is the weather. I can't control that. I've done LEJOG in non stop rain. It was unfortunate but I did it. Is there a particular challenge that the weather could bring on a 5 day route I'm overlooking? Would a headwind make it impossible?

I've got 9 months to get my distances up, although I guess I could only really start doing the longer distances when the days get longer again - maybe push the trip back to end of August to allow for more training?

Mick - is it doable?

Re: 4 or 5 day LEJOG

23 October 2015 - 8:40pm
You'd best ask your question in here viewforum.php?f=22
Perhaps a Mod could move it for you.

Re: 4 or 5 day LEJOG

23 October 2015 - 8:35pm
First, you need to be able to ride 200miles+ a day for four or five days.
Secondly, you need to know that you're going to have to ride on MAIN roads.
Thirdly, you need to know that each day will see you in the saddle from six in the morning until late in the evening or even midnight.
Fourthly, you need to know that it's dammed hard work.
Fifthly, you need good weather.

And lastly, you need a route ..........................

LE to Bristol on the A30 to Exeter, then A38.
Second day A38 and A49 via Worcester to Warrington or Preston.
Third day up the A49 and A6 and Old A74/A7 to the Scottish Borders or even Edinburgh.
Fourth day over the Forth Bridge and A9 to JOG.

You could halve that 4th day and stop off at Kingussie or Aviemore before heading for JOG.

Four days is complete madness. Five days is semi-madness.
Believe me, I drove the support vehicle for six riders doing it in five days.
06:00 starts, midnight finishes.

4 or 5 day LEJOG

23 October 2015 - 8:04pm
I've just had a message in my inbox from a friend asking if I would be interested in doing an LEJOG

I said thanks for thinking of me, but I'd already scratched that itch, and asked which route he was planning to take and over how many days

4 or 5 days was the reply

I'm now very tempted, but haven't done anything like that before

I've just last week returned from America where I did 2300 miles in 26 days mostly unsupported. I've done around a dozen 1000 mile rides, but usually stick to around 100 miles per day which I find comfortable. My fastest century in America was a little over 4 hours on a touring bike with panniers but it was pan flat and we had no wind. I've done countless century's, but usually not further than 130, with one ride of 180 miles.

The ride would be next July

Is a 4 or 5 day LEJOG possible for me?

I'm thinking it would have to be supported

What do I need to know?

Re: bike hire Charleroi Belgium?

23 October 2015 - 8:00pm
You could take a ride on the RaVEL bike path (following the old Canal du Centre). It's a bit boring though, rather industrial and the scenery doesn't vary very much.... IMO head towards Tournai rather than Namur.




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