CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

Syndicate content
Discussion boards hosted by CTC, the national cycling charity
Updated: 39 min 59 sec ago

Re: Touring Iceland

1 September 2014 - 7:47am
heatonrider wrote:Hi - 4 of us toured Iceland last year and can offer some pretty comprehensive and up to date info:

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



Brilliant! Thanks for the link.

Re: Touring bike alternatives?

1 September 2014 - 5:27am
Neil C wrote:I was too tight to pay the extra for the Armadillos but not regretting it yet!
I find 'dillos overrated; they are heavy, have a harsh ride and the last one I used got a flat in under 200 miles. I've been using Panasonic Ribmos lately and like 'em; they are light, stick to the road and wear well my back one has about 6000 on it, with 2 flats since new (one I think was a bad tube)

If you're still thinking of bikes, there's a disc version of the Trek 520 out now, looks sweet,I've got 45,000 on mine and love it. The original Vee brakes were crap and I replaced the front one with a Single Digit Ultimate which is much better (and much more expensive), the original SD-5 is adequate for the back.

I once met a man in Virginia who had rode a Schwinn that he had found in a ditch from Los Angeles a distance of about 2500 miles, his bike was utter rubbish but it goes to show you can tour on about anything.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

1 September 2014 - 12:43am
OnYourRight wrote:PH: you say 30 litres, but the Ortlieb website says the Front-Roller Classic panniers have a capacity of 25 litres per pair. Are yours a little bigger?

What saddlebag do you use? I’m interested in this idea – small front panniers at the back combined (only when needed) with my Carradice Lowsaddle Longflap saddlebag – but I wonder how they’d work together. I’d probably favour the Front-Roller City panniers, since they’re cheaper and simpler, but I’m wondering if 25 litres is really enough. It seems to me like it would be, but nearly everyone uses something bigger.

25 - 30 litres, you could be right, though it varies depending how tight you roll down the top.
I use the panniers
Nelson Longflap, only needing the extra flap if I've overdone the shopping
8L Vaude barbag
Tent is outside the bags

That's plenty for me, though I don't do much cooking and wear clothes on the bike that I'm also comfy in off. I'm a 3 season camper, I'd want a lot of extra kit for winters.

Re: Lon Las Cymru on starting on Sat 6.9.14, campsite sugges

1 September 2014 - 12:37am
Just got back from Carmarthen to Holyhead ride. We followed Lon Las a bit but were BCQing so did a lot of meandering. This did however mean we saw some great sights you'll miss, such as Parys Mountain which was astonishing.

We didn't camp every night but in Barmouth we stayed at http://www.hendremynach.co.uk/ which had good facilities and is right by the sea. Very windy at Barmouth but the field is set back enough. Min Y Mor hotel is alright for food and beer halfway to town.

In Caernarfon try James01 recommendation as we meant to stay there but ended up at Coed Helen up on the hill which was awful and ridiculously priced.

The campsite at Pencelli is a bit steep, we prefer http://www.talybontfarmcamping.co.uk/ as it's a)cheaper and b) smaller and c) 2 minutes walk from tent to bar at http://www.starinntalybont.co.uk/ which is one of the best pubs in Wales.

In Cardiff there is a council run campsite 10 minutes walk from the city centre. Haven't stayed there but it's on my way into town, reviews on ukcampsite don't look great but looks alright from what I've seen, and you can't beat the location. http://www.ukcampsite.co.uk/sites/revie ... revid=4154.

I can post you our stop off points if you like and see if the stop overs tie up. We did it over 12 nights so did a lot more stops than you're doing.


Oh and James01, where was the good curry in Llanidloes? Ours was rubbish....

Re: Touring Iceland

1 September 2014 - 12:32am
We have done three tours in Iceland, an absolutely amazing place to tour. Can concur with heatonrider that the ring road is best avoided particularly in the south and south west as it is very busy in the summer.
The cycling in the interior is amazing for the scenery but can be hard work on some of the gravel roads due to the washboard surface that can be created by the 4x4's.

To help you here is perhaps our top places that we enjoyed and worth visiting in no particular order.

Myvatn - lovely lake in the north with hot springs, the Krafla eruption lava fields, Dimmuborqir, psuedocraters at Skútusaðir and the Hverfjall volcanic crater.

Jökulsárion - Glacial lake with icebergs floating in it.

Látraburg - sea cliff with Puffins & Kittiwakes.

þingvellir - a rift valley and Iceland's parliament.

Geysir and Gulfoss

Western fjords

Langmannalaugar - hot spring area and wonderful scenery

Kerlingarfjöll - hot spring area and wonderful mountain scenery.

Snaefellnes peninsular - south side beautiful and serene area with wonderful bird life.

Some of these are in the interior and would require going on the gravel roads. You can see more details and information on Iceland here and from our travelogues.

Remember you can use buses to get you to places as they will all take bikes. There is even a bus that goes up and down the 35 on the Kjölur route and in to Langmannalaugar.

There are some routes that you can take to avoid parts of the ring road. To avoid the Keflavik to Reykjavik and Hveragerði you can go via Grunavik. It was gravel road when we did it 2008 but it is now tarmac.

The Reykjavik to Baula bit can be busy and you can't go under the tunnel at the Hvalfjordur fjord so you have to go all the way around the fjord so you could instead go up to þingvellir and then take the 550 over the Kaldidalur route to Husafell and then on to Baula. It is a rough gravel road but there are no rivers to fjord and it is very scenic.

Hope that helps.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

31 August 2014 - 11:26pm
PH: you say 30 litres, but the Ortlieb website says the Front-Roller Classic panniers have a capacity of 25 litres per pair. Are yours a little bigger?

What saddlebag do you use? I’m interested in this idea – small front panniers at the back combined (only when needed) with my Carradice Lowsaddle Longflap saddlebag – but I wonder how they’d work together. I’d probably favour the Front-Roller City panniers, since they’re cheaper and simpler, but I’m wondering if 25 litres is really enough. It seems to me like it would be, but nearly everyone uses something bigger.

Re: New European Cycling Website

31 August 2014 - 11:23pm
Btw, Steven's book on his bike travels round Europe - No Place Like Home Thank God! Is brilliant. The link is on the website.

Re: Best Ortlieb Rear Panniers for touring?

31 August 2014 - 11:02pm
I like the classic rollers, though nobody could say which was best, only best for them.
I use a front pair on the back, I prefer the narrower 30L size, I also use a saddlebag and barbag for everything that I might need between one campsite and the next, because of this I don't miss the panniers having no outer pockets.

Inverness to Kilmarnock 5 day tour

31 August 2014 - 9:38pm
Hi

Have some free time and have a hankering for a short Scottish tour travelling light. My plan is to take the sleeper up to Inverness on the Sunday night and go back down from Glasgow the Friday after. Initial thoughts are

Day 1 Inverness -> Kyle of Lochalsh 80 miles
Day 2 A loop round Skye - 80 miles
Armadale -> Mallaig ferry
Day 3 Mallaig -> Oban 86 miles (YHS or B&B)
Day 4 = Oban -> Tarbert -> Claonaig -> (ferry) Lochranza (stay in YHS) 65 miles
Day 5 - Lochranza -> Brodick -> (ferry) Ardrossan -> Kilmarnock 50 miles (visit my Mum before heading up to Glasgow for the sleeper)

Definitely want to stay in Oban and Lochranza but unsure about overnights around Skye? Would appreciate advice on good places to stay and a good loop around Skye.

Planning to travel light with Carradice Barley saddlebag on the back and Carradice zipped roll up front on lightweight road bike, am thinking

# wearing
Bib Shorts
Vest
s/s jersey
socks
gloves
helmet
shoes

# front zipped roll bag
arm warmers
leg warmers
Overshoes
cap
iphone,
garmin,
charger,
wallet,
glasses

# barley saddlebag - this will be a squeeze
underwear
spare socks
lightweight trousers (unzip to shorts)
long sleeve thin thermal vest
lightweight fleece jacket
waterproof jacket
waterproof trousers

Suggestions welcomed

Many thanks

Simon

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 9:20pm
mercalia wrote: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

Spanners in my spokes Mercalia! I wish, but I can't have everything. I've got to say I did an 11 mile "coffee and cake" run to another village in the Sun today and I softened towards keeping my Specialized Globe City 3.1 as a "spare". I was looking at the hub gears and dynamo lighting while cleaning it this evening and marveling at the build quality and usefulness. It's on eBay and that is that. I am driven. I am tight. I don't have the space. I would birch myself for having two bikes. AND I might just need another shed!........hhc

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 9:13pm
HowardW wrote: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)
http://10mileseachway.blogspot.co.uk/

(somewhere on there anyway)

Cracking blog Howard! I pleased to see long hair and a beard. I am with brethren. Heh heh. My 12 year old daughter has stopped coming out on rides with me but my 4 year old happily perches on the back for fair distances but isn't quite up to 10 miles yet. Good on your daughter. That's hard on little legs. The sailing looks good. I used to coach Level 5 RYA in a past life.

As for the colour? I'm keen on the green Disc Trucker being a gardener. Almost everything I own is green including my pick-up truck. Sad I am................hc

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 9:06pm
phil parker wrote: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!

Cheers Phil. No questions yet, but you'll regret giving me a comfy chair coz they will come! Listen out because what I have realised is that some of the bike tech has changed so much since I was really serious about biking that I am really feeling old. Thankfully with age comes a tiny bit more disposable cash that I didn't have when I was commuting to my £45.00 a day landscaoing job in my 20s.........hc

Re: Ditching my Hybrid for a full Spec Tourer

31 August 2014 - 9:00pm
MartinBrice wrote: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.
YMMV

Thanks Martin. I have a friend who has made blood brothers with his Thorn and rode round Oz so obviously tried to sell me down this route. I just don't have the budget. Surly is an option so far.......hc

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)
http://10mileseachway.blogspot.co.uk/

(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

Archive

  • 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