CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

Syndicate content
Discussion boards hosted by CTC, the national cycling charity
Updated: 38 min 31 sec ago

Re: Jan to May Riding?

18 December 2014 - 10:08am

Thanks for all the responses and apologises for the lack of activity in response. I have had a slight change of plan (new job has reduced the 6 month tour down to a single month before I start the new job):

I've now got the middle of January to the middle of February to 'play with.' So I am leaning towards Morocco as it seems to be fairly cheap, good weather for the time of year and a culture I've yet to explore.

Have any of the community toured Morocco previously? And if so, it would be amazing if they could help answer a few questions I have with regards to the trip:

1. Getting there? I'm thinking a flight straight into Tangier or Marrakech (depending on route) from London and boxing my bike up to re assemble on the other side. It would be great to here if anyone has done this, and if so, did they manage to locate a bike shop to nab a box from when needing to box the bike back up to go home? Ferry over to Spain, then train down south, then ferry over to Morocco is also an option, but looking to be a bit more expensive!?

2. Route? This is where the community could be a massive help. Any suggested circular routes for up to a couple of weeks would be ideal. I ride a standard Reynold 531 touring bike with no suspension and road wheels, so ideally the route would ride on roads and be committed to around 50-90 miles a day.

3. Any other tips you can offer?

As, always, thanking you all advance for your help.

Happy Riding!

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

18 December 2014 - 8:22am
What redvee said, then ride west out of Axbridge to Cross and through small places to Loxton. It's slightly shorter if you head west from the sports fields in Winscombe but then you don't see Axbridge centre and it's worth seeing. NCN 33 Festival Way is mostly tarmac roads and paths with one section of gravel greenway, 26 Strawberry Line is limestone porridge which is OK on a hybrid but might be worth using nearby roads between Nye Road and Winscombe if the weather is poor.

Much as I love the coastal places, it's still a rather lumpy route and the A370 is the cyclable crossing of the Yeo nearest the coast (the M5 is more direct but we're not allowed on it) and it's a fairly horrible ride.

Re: TOURING 2015

18 December 2014 - 7:38am
mnichols wrote:honesty wrote:I'm looking at doing the route from Bangor to Chepstow and then carrying on to home in Taunton. 5 days B&Bing is the plan...
Is there a recommended route from Bangor to Chepstow?
I'm planning to do a lap of Wales on the May Bank Holiday, so this would help the route planning

The LLC has a branch that goes through Hay on Wye and on to Chepstow rather than going down to Cardiff

Re: TOURING 2015

18 December 2014 - 7:25am
Hi all, when I get back, I'm looking to possibly cycle the circumference of Britain then do a LEJOG & back JOGLE to finish.

Be interested to hear from anyone else who's done the entire coast, also looking at possibly adding Ireland, IOW, IOM, Gurnsey and Jersey.


Re: 1980s Raleigh Esprit for tour of Italy?

18 December 2014 - 6:10am
Hobbs1951 wrote:Not sure what an ordinary cyclist is

Re: 1980s Raleigh Esprit for tour of Italy?

18 December 2014 - 1:06am
I had an Esprit and quite enjoyed it for runs around the local area, but when I decided to venture into touring the frame flexed worryingly under a very modest load.

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

17 December 2014 - 11:49pm
Get to Temple Meads then ride to Festival way, along the river. Ride Festival Way to Nailsea then pick up the Srawberry Line in Yatton to Axbridge and onwards.

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 11:14pm
psmiffy wrote:mnichols wrote:mercalia wrote:
At the moment the worse we could do is through jam sandwiches at one another

Im not sure that the muzzle velocity of a jam sandwich is high enough for a throw and through

eh? I didnt write that?

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 9:47pm
mnichols wrote:
At the moment the worse we could do is through jam sandwiches at one another

Im not sure that the muzzle velocity of a jam sandwich is high enough for a throw and through

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

17 December 2014 - 9:41pm
Bristol has two train stations. Cycling out of either of them may not be great initially. Have you considered Bath, Bradford on Avon, Castle Cary or maybe Weymouth?

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 9:25pm
mercalia wrote: I still think learn to fire a pistol and pack one preferably "make my day" type?

After our last trip together which was only 1 week and we had our own rooms, I'm not sure with us living in each others pockets for a month it's a good idea if any of us are armed!

At the moment the worse we could do is through jam sandwiches at one another

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 8:38pm
Worth a read is Leo Woodlands blog of this route.


Quality writing. He is a published author on cycling going back decades pre internet.

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 8:25pm
Sounds fabulous. Still much thinking but e to west say may, June, July might work well. If I get the timing right Mrhj could bring the kids out for a fortnight at the end ( by which time hopefully we'd be done) which would coincide with the start of the school hols. Thank you for the information. Lots of route reviewing to do in the next couple of years!

Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

17 December 2014 - 5:59pm
I may have a weekend in Loxton near Axbridge in Somerset in the New Year.

I usually get the train to somewhere up to half a day away and cycle the last 10 to 30 miles.

In this case I'm looking at getting the train to Bristol, and the appropriate route too Axbridge seems to be NCN 26 and 33, or along the coastal route.

Does anyone have any advice on this area?

I will be riding a hybrid with panniers etc, so trails are fine but not too much single track.



Re: LLC and Wales Questions

17 December 2014 - 5:01pm
The link works fine. Thats a nice little climb right there.

So - right now planning for worst case scenario for my trip (which is probably what will happen). AKA my mate in Esher isn't around to join me on the tour.

I am hoping to use a CTC-Bag for the bike so that when I arrive in Heathrow, I can literally assemble the bike and load the panniers on straight in the airport. Now the question is how to get to Chester...whats the policy with fully loaded bikes on the underground etc?

Alternatively, I am looking at flying into Manchester instead and probably riding from the Airport down to Chester and spending the night in Chester. I would take a train from Cardiff to Manchester Airport. That seems like the much easier way to do it.

Re: Touring in remote locations - advice please

17 December 2014 - 4:15pm
MrsHJ wrote: The Great Allegheny Passage combined with the C & O canal would be a nice easterly section and picking up the Lincoln Highway for small town America sounds very nice . No one seems to enjoy the rolling hills in the east as much as I thought they would! I've also fancied the western express ( partly because I've already travelled most of the route of the Pueblo to Washington coast section) and because it sounds incredible. I do find the desert cycling a bit thought provoking though. Have you doen a blog or got a map,of your trip irp? ....From memory there were some sections of 100 miles on the western express without services - maybe it does fit into this thread then. I'd be interested to know what the optimal timing is for this route.

I'd suggest April to June west to east is too early. Three or four days east of San Francisco the Carson Pass over the Sierras is around 8'500 feet. It sometimes closes for short periods in April due to snow. Adventure Cycling suggest mid May to October for the Western Express which sounds about right. Looking at the weather at Ely Nevada the end of May looks fine. Average highs around 23C which is pleasant in the dry heat there.

https://weatherspark.com/averages/30175 ... ted-States

Of course starting in Mid May gets you to the east coast in mid July. You will get hot and humid conditions. But I think bad weather is easier to cope with in the east because facilities are more frequent so heat can be coped with by early starts and getting off the road for a few hours mid day if you need to. You can get water several times a day if you need to.

https://weatherspark.com/averages/31267 ... ted-States

Further west he longest dry stretch in Utah with no water or anything else was 81 miles from Blanding to Lake Powell. The shop at lake Powell has limited opening hours. Other than that it's 125 miles from Blanding to Hanksville with no water other than Lake Powell. The water in it is slightly orange in colour from sediment. Usable if treated but not ideal.

I did my DC -San Francisco mid July - mid Sept. I got a heat wave with 100f temps in the first 2 weeks or so. Thereafter perfect shorts and T shirt weather almost every day. Going E-W has the advantage that other than rolling hills across Missouri it's flat until the Rockies so your tour fit doing the mountains. E-W your climbing to 8500 feet on day 3 or 4. Going E-W saves the most dramatic scenery for the 2nd half as well.

A mid May to mid July E-W would work as well. If Nevada was uncomfortably hot then riding early would avoid the worst of it. And late May is probably better than July in the east.

Re: TOURING 2015

17 December 2014 - 2:01pm
Last June we (me and Mrs Whoof) rode from Toulouse to Nice taking in Taracon, Avignon and Mount Ventoux. We camped and the weather was brillant no rain, hot and sunny every day.
In August rode from Bristol to Holyhead and stayed in B and Bs. There was a headwind all the way including the tail end of a hurricane. Still loved every minute of it.

This year we are riding Strasbourg to Geneva again camping. The straight line distance is not very far but we are taking two weeks are going a winding route taking in some nice climbs.

Haven't decided on a week in August yet.

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

17 December 2014 - 12:55pm
My Annapurna Part 2 blog has just been posted.

This one takes place from the day the snowstorm, which killed over 40 people, hit the mountains of Nepal.

I hope you enjoy reading it.

Into Annapurna - Part 2 - https://wordpress.com/post/41247589/994/

Re: Default tourer?

17 December 2014 - 10:08am
The aesthetics issues are personal choice,one man's meat,etc,and as such only detract from the bike for that reason alone.As PH says the LHT is well established and as the benchmark tourer it seems will take some shifting from it's perch.
I think I may have been riding one myself if it weren't for the gappy looks and horizontal toptube but that's personal preference.
There's no denying,the LHT and DT bikes not just the frameset is/are one heckova no nonsense package,that delivers for a hard working everyday/touring bike,the only reservations seem to be the canti brake set which could be sorted by Surly at source with V's,giving more power into the bargain at no extra cost.
Takes some beating,when you never hear or read a bad word about them.....

Re: TOURING 2015

17 December 2014 - 5:31am
Ray wrote:geocycle wrote:France for me, something loosely based on France en velo route time permitting. Btw if anyone has this route on gpx I'd be grateful. The guide is beautiful and ideal for wet Sunday reading in December. Looks like the route will be St Malo South to Cevennes then head east via Arles to Nice.

I've seen the book in the shops, but never examined it, assuming it was 'just another book about cycling in France'. Just had a quick google, and it looks good - I've put it on my late Xmas presents list!

Maybe some or all of it in 2015?

I'm flying to Nice at the end of July and cycling back to UK. Also interested if anyone has the gpx route. If not I will make one myself sometime


  • Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
  • President: Jon Snow
  • Chief Executive: Paul Tuohy
  • Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC): A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no.25185. Registered as a charity in England and Wales No 1147607 and in Scotland No SC042541


Terms and Conditions