CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 27 min 2 sec ago

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 3:50pm
Baggy jeans and I never use cleats. Cotton shirts too. I blame joining the CTC in 1976. However I don't carry a flask of tea.

Re: Spain North to South

4 July 2014 - 3:25pm
As "ernybc" said, horses for courses, it's only IMO. I'd so looked forward to it but found it monotonous, boring, not much visual delight, the experience has put me off cycling the canal du midi. However, I'd also say the same for the interior on the N-630 but the difference was that I was able to make better progress and visit many more bars. Again, it's only IMO, but "real" Spain can be so quiet it can drive you crackers, I've visited many villages where I have not seen a single living creature never mind found a shop or, more importantly, a bar open.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 3:10pm
DaleFTW wrote:LollyKat wrote: However I wonder if your jeans are part of the problem. If they don't have any stretch in them they may be adding pressure on the kneecap which can cause pain over time. You can get stretch jeans which look just like ordinary ones but would be much kinder to your knees, and probably more comfortable generally for cycling.

No.
No what? I get sore knees if I wear non-stretch trousers for cycling. That may not be the reason for the OP's problems but it is one more thing to consider. I myself wouldn't use jeans for touring, but I do sometimes for local rides. If you are going to wear them, stretch ones are IME more comfortable than non-stretch.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 2:55pm
andy_scot_uk wrote:cheers everyone. Was looking for someone with the same issue and to hear how they dealt with it. Think the saddle height is an issue - bike was in for a service a few months ago and doesn't seem right. Also lack of stretching - never had to do it previously but time to start. And maybe being a little less ambitious when I've not been on the bike for a while.


Does it hurt walking down the stairs?

I don't think that stretching will do ANY good...

If it hurts walking down the stairs then it's probably a touch of chondormalacia patellae.
To treat that, no big gears and stand while climbing.. no cleats.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 2:16pm
cheers everyone. Was looking for someone with the same issue and to hear how they dealt with it. Think the saddle height is an issue - bike was in for a service a few months ago and doesn't seem right. Also lack of stretching - never had to do it previously but time to start. And maybe being a little less ambitious when I've not been on the bike for a while.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 2:11pm
LollyKat wrote: However I wonder if your jeans are part of the problem. If they don't have any stretch in them they may be adding pressure on the kneecap which can cause pain over time. You can get stretch jeans which look just like ordinary ones but would be much kinder to your knees, and probably more comfortable generally for cycling.

No.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 2:07pm
Andy It is possible you were tryiing a bit harder than usual and pushing a gear that is slightly too high. If you drop down a gear or two it might relieve the stress.

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 1:23pm
Lots of tips out there on stretches and knee-balancing exercises, which are worth doing. However I wonder if your jeans are part of the problem. If they don't have any stretch in them they may be adding pressure on the kneecap which can cause pain over time. You can get stretch jeans which look just like ordinary ones but would be much kinder to your knees, and probably more comfortable generally for cycling.

Re: Spain North to South

4 July 2014 - 11:17am
Thanks for the tips about Gredos/Bejar region south of Avila


Hi MarkF

on this trip i'm planning to go a bit slower and really see "real Spain" and include some nice small villages in the mix.

your comment about the VDP bring boring . i can understand if there is just a need to get somewhere but i'm wondering why you thought it boring ?

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 10:51am
andy_scot_uk wrote:... considering going for a bike fit. But that appears to be for guys with cleats and who do lots of cycling. It's also expensive.
Or see a physio. Around where I live most charge between £30-£40 for a private consultation and at least then they should be able to tell you what the problem is and what to do about it (though most probably can't tell you about your bike fit, saddle height, etc.).

Ian

Re: knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 10:43am
Might just be one of those one off things or it might be a bike fit issue. Saddle a touch too high/low maybe?

Re: Dealing with mosquitos

4 July 2014 - 9:52am
randomblue wrote:Update on the deet! I got a 40% spray as it was the strongest I found. Yesterday was stopped by two touring cyclists going the other way in the middle of a forested track which prompted me to respray myself as I had bare arms. Despite this one of them got me right on the tip of my elbow which is going to drive me crazy for the next 2 days -.- in addition to that they got me three more time THROUGH MY CLOTHES!!! I get thespray all exposed skin but what am I meant to do bathe in the stuff??? I already feel like I'm going through the bottle pretty fast and relative to my tour budget it wasn't cheap! Especially if it's not actually going to keep them off me!

I'm not sure the 40% version is good enough Where are you? Can you get something like http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pyramid-Insect- ... B000R2DPYY ? Maybe at an outfitter? Or have it sent ahead to where you will be?

However, I recommend that you spray your clothes throughly, also. This may be easier to do when you aren't wearing them. I don't know if the DEET will affect synthetic clothes. I haven't ever had any problems, but most of the clothes I've put DEET on are some kind of blend. It might be worth trying it on a small spot, first.

Re: Dealing with mosquitos

4 July 2014 - 9:46am
[quote="randomblue"... in addition to that they got me three more time THROUGH MY CLOTHES!!![/quote]
Some hiking clothing comes pre-impregnated with insect repellant (though normally with a permethrin repellant (not good for cats!!).

Ian

knee pain and touring

4 July 2014 - 8:02am
Been tour cycling 40 years and and planning doing Hadrians wall cycleway Thursday next week. Building up my training runs but yesterday suffered bad knee pain after a hilly ride. It's a hybrid bike and I wear jeans not lycra. Never had issues like this before and had my bike for 12 years. Desperate not to miss the trip. Plenty of advice on the internet http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/article/take-care-of-your-knees-part-2-17445/ and considering going for a bike fit. But that appears to be for guys with cleats and who do lots of cycling. It's also expensive.

My thought is that after a days rest go for easy flat runs. I realise I need to pay more attention to my body now. Advice welcome.

Re: One night in the Welsh Hills

4 July 2014 - 8:00am
alans wrote:I enjoyed reading that particularly as I have ridden around the Llanreader y Mochrant area &stayed in the village a few times in the past
Thanks for posting
Thank you so much Alans, I'm delighted you enjoyed the story. I enjoyed Wales and look forward to another visit. I write with all my senses and tell it how it is. I'm off to Holland in a couple of weeks time, with my bike of course.

Re: Dealing with mosquitos

4 July 2014 - 7:54am
Update on the deet! I got a 40% spray as it was the strongest I found. Yesterday was stopped by two touring cyclists going the other way in the middle of a forested track which prompted me to respray myself as I had bare arms. Despite this one of them got me right on the tip of my elbow which is going to drive me crazy for the next 2 days -.- in addition to that they got me three more time THROUGH MY CLOTHES!!! I get thespray all exposed skin but what am I meant to do bathe in the stuff??? I already feel like I'm going through the bottle pretty fast and relative to my tour budget it wasn't cheap! Especially if it's not actually going to keep them off me!

Re: Stefan Abrutat's Tour Travel Blog

3 July 2014 - 10:45pm
Thanks man!

Currently in North Wales, though the blog is still in the middle of Scotland. I'm a writer for a living, so blogging unfortunately has to play second fiddle to my paying work.

So far the BOB knockoff trailer has been working great. The improvised rear skewer you came up with has been trouble free. I chucked the bag that came with it and went with a 65l waterproof Gelert Expedition http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gelert-Expedition-Cargo-Bag-Black/dp/B002BO0XV4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1404423006&sr=8-1&keywords=gelert+expedition+65l+cargo+bag and a set of RCP rear waterproof panniers http://www.amazon.co.uk/RCP-WP100-carrier-bags-Colour/dp/B002RLFCEY/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1404423148&sr=8-3&keywords=red+waterproof+panniers. More than enough space for everything I want. The trailer bag is a little too long to fit in the trailer, but I keep my sleeping bag and roll mat underneath it at the back of the trailer so the bag sits at a slight forward sloping angle, lending the rig a wolfish, aerodynamic appearance belying the goofball riding it.

I'll post a pic when I get one online.

Cheers

Stef

Re: Cycle Touring in the Outer Hebrides - Questions

3 July 2014 - 10:35pm
Call in for cake and coffee, first house on the left in Maraig.

Touring holiday in Brittany

3 July 2014 - 10:14pm
We’ve just come home from a brilliant couple of weeks touring in Brittany with Breton Bikes. We went to Gouarec in, as near as I can tell, the absolute middle of Brittany and left our camper as a base on the local campsite.

Breton Bikes provide bikes made to their own spec by Orbit, complete with all of the kit you are likely to need and they maintain them to a good standard, then they provide their clients with a personalised tour to suit your own requirements. There were families with children due to go out on tag-alongs as well as seasoned tourers covering 80 miles per day, yet they appear to manage to keep everyone happy.

We took tents and headed off to the north coast, spending some time on the Isle de Brehat, quiet enough to bring us right down to earth. Then we headed by a roundabout route back to Gouarec for a day off and then off again, this time going south, with the beautiful Pont Aven in our sights. This week was rather harder work, with the Montaignes Noirs in the middle.

In the past we have done our own thing: LEJoG and Montpelier to Calais in the last two years. It made rather a nice change to have something organised for us this year and have no worries where we were to pitch our tents each day.

A word to the wise if anyone decides to tour with Breton Bikes: we came unstuck twice, both times when we thought we could do better and went off piste. The tours are well researched and you might as well get your money’s worth! See http://www.bretonbikes.com for details. There is also a useful forum about everything you can think of to do with touring! As long as we are not out to do long distances, we are very likely to come back to Breton Bikes. They have some lovely countryside in the area and seem extremely competent at arranging routes and accommodation to suit. They even managed to get the weather spot on for us!

Re: Cycle Touring in the Outer Hebrides - Questions

3 July 2014 - 9:16pm
If any assistance is required between Skye and Oban, I've recently moved to Fort William and have a bike rack.....

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