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Updated: 1 hour 16 min ago

Re: Best bicycle SatNav

29 May 2015 - 11:01am
My preference for onvthe bike navigation is a waterproof android mobile. Others will be along shortly to condem me as a heretic and explain that an etrex is the only path to righteousness

I agree with you, the only true path is an Etrex.

Smart phones gobble up battery life at an unbelievable rate. If you can feed their thirst and give them a good waterproof and safe environment, then they are probably more user friendly than the Etrex. They are also available around £40 and with free mapping and software!

The Etrex on the other hand is expensive, waterproof, rugged and very frugal with batteries.

If you are older you may have a preference for buttons and joysticks like on the Etrex compared to Android touch screens, I certainly do!

I did notice that you have a waterproof model at what start price do they appear?

Re: Touring in Norway

29 May 2015 - 10:53am
I'm about to head over to Trondheim and was looking for an route suggestions that anyone may have I've got about 3 weeks free until I need to be back there, and was looking to go south of trondheim as I'm planning on heading north a afterwards, I don't mind getting a train back to Trondheim if needed.

I was initially thinking of roughly following the eurovelo 1 from Trondheim to Bergen and then linking it to EV12 to Oslo and then possibly getting the train north again depending on distance/ time. Although I'm open to any suggestions, route wise I quite like long alpine climbs and good scenery but have a strong dislike for spending endless hours cycling through forests so any routes would be greatly appreciated.


Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 10:40am
It's a good question.

Think the arguments pro / con re flat / drop bars have been set out. I prefer the range of options that drop bars offer, but matter of personal preference and which feels most comfortable for a long day. I used 25 mm front and 28 mm rear on recent long ride (in the ETE section, thread 'double ender'), couldn't get a 28 mm in the front, and this worked fine, albeit with rather less luggage. I went on Sustrans route from York to Doncaster, some rough surfaces, alongside canals and across fields, etc, and later went along the Cromford Canal, the cycle path alongside the A9, etc, some equally rough surfaces, and these tyres worked fine, but most of my ride was on roads - some of which have appalling road surfaces!

A road bike generally will be quicker and lighter which, on a long ride or at the end of a long day, you may appreciate, especially if you're having to pick the bike up to get up and down stairs, over obstacles, etc.

The suggestion to try both options first is a sensible one.

Have a good trip!

Re: Best bicycle SatNav

29 May 2015 - 10:39am
My (fairly limited) experience with a Garmin 510 touring is always carry a paper map for when it fails in some way.

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 9:57am
quilkin wrote:One of the online cycle route planners (I forget which, sorry) has links to photos of some parts of these trails so you may be able to have a look before you go.

It's Cycle.travel. Left-click on the map to add a point, left-click again on that point and an option 'find photos' should come up.

Re: Plans for a summer tour

29 May 2015 - 9:02am
How about dipping down through the New Forest, hopping on a ferry and seeing the Isle of Wight. Not sure what it is, but doing a ferry crossing makes it feel like a proper adventure [emoji573]

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 8:28am
If the mountain bike doesn't have them, it may be worth fitting some bar ends for more hand positions. I have them on my MTB.

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 8:15am
I think it depends on the distance. Mtb bars are uncomfortable for some people over long distances because you're locked into having your wrists in one position. On short trips of course it doesn't matter.

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 7:16am
That's good advice Vorpal, I am biased towards MTB style tourers sometimes but it's important to decide what suits the OP best, not just me and his/her knees will I am sure be a lot better than mine

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

29 May 2015 - 6:52am
700 X 23 tyres on a loaded bike may not survive Sustrans trails, unless you are absolutely meticulous about keeping the air pressure up. My first tourer when I was younger was my road bike, and it was fine, but the first thing I learned was to fit fatter tyres, because I kept getting punctures.

So, I would fit the fattest tyres (25s? or maybe 28s?) that the road bike can take, then do what beardy suggested and see how you get on with each bike. To Merry_Wanderer's point, include a decent hill in both trips.

With no chance to do shake down trips, I would take the MTB over the road bike.

Enjoy your cycling, whatever you decide!

Re: London to Paris - Dieppe camping

29 May 2015 - 12:13am
Ps. This may not be relevant I'd you are doing 3 days as you'll probably want to go further but this place was a fantastic stop after the days riding off the ferry. http://www.chambres-abbaye.com

Re: London to Paris - Dieppe camping

29 May 2015 - 12:06am
I did the 4am arrival last July. The sleep on the ferry is limited but was still quite fun to be up and in the way that early. Lights definitely needed. The first few miles out of Dieppe are street lit but as soon as you turn off onto AV proper it's pretty dark until the sun comes up. I did have lights but still ended up stopping a few miles along purely as I wanted to see the countryside!

Re: Best bicycle SatNav

29 May 2015 - 12:04am
They don't exist. Best option is one that follows a gpx. Then use a pc to create your route and upload to your sat nav. My preference for onvthe bike navigation is a waterproof android mobile. Others will be along shortly to condem me as a heretic and explain that an etrex is the only path to righteousness

Re: Road bike or mountain bike?

28 May 2015 - 11:53pm
I would have a think about gearing on the two bikes as well as comfort and the type of tour you intend doing. Will it be a hilly area? My first 3 x 3 day tours were all in hilly areas and my MTB alu framed hardtail was my choice over my alu framed road bike because of the much lower gearing (and easier riding whilst loaded) of the MTB
The MTB had 44/32/22 and 11-32 8 speed whereas the road bike had a compact double. 50/34 and 11-28 IIRC. I fitted 26 x 1.5 semi slicks to the MTB and quite happily averaged only 1 mph less on the MTB than the loaded road bike over 50 miles. Can you lock out the front suspension on the MTB too?

Re: Plans for a summer tour

28 May 2015 - 11:25pm
From Bishops Stortford you can get to London along the (Lee and) Stort canal path - a very nice ride ( also joins with the Lee from Hertford also a nice ride. This ends up more or less at Victoria Park almost central London ( South Hackney). There is a YHA along the route. To Aldershot on the south side of London also a couple of canals that take u there ( Basingstoke Canal ) or to Guilford ( Wey Navigation ) both from Weybridge. On the Basingstoke canal I have only been as far as Aldershot but I assume it goes to ... Basing stoke? That is a nice ride.

Best bicycle SatNav

28 May 2015 - 11:18pm

I am looking for an easy to use cycle computer where I can type in a route and receive turn by turn instructions, like a car sat nav.

The easier to use the better.

Must be able to use in Europe, too.

Thanks in advance.

Re: Altura Ultralight Panniers

28 May 2015 - 10:44pm
I bought some from wiggle, and sent them back without using them.

The first pannier fits securely, but the 2nd one clips into the first, and doesn't seem secure. The first is strapped to the rack. Neither is locked to the side of the pannier, there is just a small hook for the bottom. I didn't like the fitting

It had no pockets, so no quick and easy access to camera, phone, waterproof or wallet

I didn't use them to comment on whether they are waterproof or robust

In the end I decided to stick with what I have, the extra features are worth a bit of weight

Re: Plans for a summer tour

28 May 2015 - 10:36pm
About 10 years ago I cycled along the towpath from west London to Birmingham. Very variable surface as you would expect from a towpath: lumpy grass, compact earth, hard surface. Apart from one section that was very muddy (sorry, can't remember exactly where, but it was towards the Birmingham end of the ride) it was OK on a mountain bike with front suspension. I used a publication from Wilde's Leisure Guides "Cycling & Walking Guide: Grand Union, Oxford and Kennet & Avon Canals" which included maps and information on tunnels etc. It also suggests road alternatives for some sections. If possible avoid weekends for the urban sections - it gets busy with walkers and anglers.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_nos ... rand+union

Re: People who have cycled the Pamir Highway...

28 May 2015 - 9:10pm
Kieran2663 wrote:Hi there,

Nothing that is isn't common sense really,

- ideally camp where you are out of sight (for piece of mind and to stop folks turning up)
- near a water supply
- covered from the elements
- ask local land owners if it is okay to pitch if on someone's land (this would possibly happen on the first bit of the M41 between Kalaikhum and Khorog and the Wakhan, as they are fairly populated in places, and it shouldn't be an issue)
- try to camp lower at attitudes, where possible. Climb High Sleep Low mantra - a general rule of thumb would be to try and only ascend 500m in altitude per day to be on the safe side, this is not always possible and practical, but the lower you sleep the better chance you have of not becoming effected by AMS and altitude related issues, and you will get a better nights sleep certainly as it shouldn't be as cold or exposed to as much of the weather elements.
- try to bury human waste
- leave nothing but foot prints.

Overall The Pamir provides a wealth of amazing secluded & isolated camping opportunities.


Hi Kieran,

thanks for your reply, especially the trick of camping at lower altitude. Should I bring with me a like the following: http://www.mosquitohammock.com/images/p ... adNet1.jpg?

Re: Brittany - Voies Vertes

28 May 2015 - 6:58pm
I have only used the St Malo to Dinard path in Brittany which was very good. However, I have used the Voies Vertes extensively in neighbouring Normandy and written up some of my experiences here if you're interested: https://roundthebendpart1.wordpress.com ... june-2011/

As you'll see my conclusion is similar to others; whilst well surfaced and very good to cycle on they can often miss interesting places, don't go by shops etc for food and, being old railway tracks the sides can often lined with trees that obscure attractive scenery. The solution is to use them in combination with smaller roads - I use the Michelin 1: 150,000 (yellow) maps which also clearly show the voises vertes.


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