CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 31 min 58 sec ago

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 5:26pm
mrjemm wrote:I've ridden both my vayas with 'full' load (camping but no catering) on tours, and on the original there was maybe a little flex, but it was great for the purposes generally, while the Travel has been better, being perhaps a tad stiffer. I'd have no hesitation touring fully loaded on either type again in the blink of an eye. Dream of it in fact.

I like using front panniers. The problem with the Vaya in this regard is that the fork ends are a pain the bum for fitting one- needs more spacing than I like, so ended up getting extra mounts brazed on... The Salsa Downunder racks (which fit fine) got worn thin, so moved to Tubus, but the mounts I had fitted are in iffy position for these.

Currently rarely ride anything but my VT, for everything, and 2 large panniers full of shopping is normal, and fine'n dandy (Tubus fly).

FWIW the rack eyelets on the Surly DT front fork aren't any different than the Vaya's

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 4:37pm
I've ridden both my vayas with 'full' load (camping but no catering) on tours, and on the original there was maybe a little flex, but it was great for the purposes generally, while the Travel has been better, being perhaps a tad stiffer. I'd have no hesitation touring fully loaded on either type again in the blink of an eye. Dream of it in fact.

I like using front panniers. The problem with the Vaya in this regard is that the fork ends are a pain the bum for fitting one- needs more spacing than I like, so ended up getting extra mounts brazed on... The Salsa Downunder racks (which fit fine) got worn thin, so moved to Tubus, but the mounts I had fitted are in iffy position for these.

Currently rarely ride anything but my VT, for everything, and 2 large panniers full of shopping is normal, and fine'n dandy (Tubus fly).

Re: Jan to May Riding?

18 December 2014 - 4:26pm
Southern Spain and northern Morocco, the climate can be very wet and none too hot in January; Marrakech will be very pleasant – shirt-sleeve weather, need a fleece in the evening.
Marrakech is delightful; Rabat’s OK, Casablanca’s nothing like the movie, Tangier’s a bit of a toilet (YMMV, of course).
The ferry from Spain’s about £50 each way, man & bike (2011 prices). And the road from Malaga’s horrid.
Hotels can be very cheap - very very cheap if you don’t mind slumming it; outside of cities, they can be few and far between. Campsites were atrocious.
I never found a bike shop in Marrakech, but had a fascinating couple of days in the souk tracking down large cardboard boxes (there’s a recycled-cardboard-box-shop somewhere behind Café Argana IIRC), parcel tape and such.
Most roads were fine for road wheels (better than Leeds, mostly!), but one or two were utterly appalling.
Interesting country, and one of the last Islamic lands it’s still safe to visit. And a great place to practise your French, since most people speak it, as a second language, rather slowly.

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 3:17pm
I have a Salsa Vaya 3..(As well as the Disc Trucker)...Its a lovely bike to ride and i would have no reservations about riding it fully loaded..

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:58pm
al_yrpal wrote:The Salsa Vaya is ok with a credit card load touring load on the back, but I am going to have to fit front panniers (which I hate) to carrying a camping load. I suspect that the 26" wheeled SDT would cope with everything on the back although I cant prove it. My standard Vaya 3 isnt particularly light - 13.5kg with mudguards bottle cages and a rack. Its a nice bike though and you can throw it about a bit.

Al
TBH I think it all depends on how much weight you carry and where you put it,if there's a large weight on the back on a flexible rack,with a tent on top the tail will definitely wag the dog to a greater or lesser extent.
I suspect that could be partly if not all of you're problems with the Vaya,though I haven't ridden a Vaya loaded many have,who testify to it being a capable loaded tourer.
Credit card touring isn't carrying a load anywhere near what the Vaya is capable of IMO.

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:56pm
I have to say, if I was going to replace my Vantage with any bike, it would be an LHT.
I like the simplicity of it and the endless favourable reviews and stories of them coping with just about anything make it all the more appealing.
My one gripe is that Surly don't do a 700c wheeled version in leprechaun size so I'd have to get new wheels, tyres, tubes and mudguards. Everything else on my bike would just swap straight over.
Given that the Vantage is a harsh bugger due to that stupid big thick aero down tube which leaves problems fitting down tube shifters and all sorts of other stupidity from Dawes, the LHT is on my wish list

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:44pm
The Salsa Vaya is ok with a credit card load touring load on the back, but I am going to have to fit front panniers (which I hate) to carrying a camping load. I suspect that the 26" wheeled SDT would cope with everything on the back although I cant prove it. My standard Vaya 3 isnt particularly light - 13.5kg with mudguards bottle cages and a rack. Its a nice bike though and you can throw it about a bit.

Al

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

18 December 2014 - 2:32pm
The first part of the route's not too bad (basically NCN33 to Backwell), but the B3133 is a pretty nasty rat-run to the airport, isn't it? Unless feeling reasonably quick and brave, I'd turn right into Stowey Park before the B3133, then third left into Well Lane, nearly straight over into Church Road, and left at the end onto Chescombe Road, turning left onto NCN 26 at its end.

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:19pm
foxyrider wrote:No gripe, i just prefer something that is lighter and i can chuck around on the trails a bit.

A tourer doesn't have to be built like a tank, if thats what you like, fair enough but its not for me

Tell us more,what would be a better tourer IYO

FWIW my default tourer would be what I already have (Salsa Vaya) which can be chucked around a bit,and also can carry a load,it has pluses the LHT/DT doesn't which is personal preference.
But generally for load lugging you'd struggle to find a tourer weighing less then say 12kg that would be as durable and carry heavy,four pannier loads.
I realise that some people are capable of touring with extremely light loads,if that's your thing then a lighter bike will fit the bill but I think bikes like the LH/DT are what's termed as 'expedition' tourers.

There's a difference between default tourer and personal choice,but perhaps we can look at what challenges the LHT/DT bike's enviable reputation.

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:11pm
DaleFTW wrote:mrjemm wrote:So many headset spacers being needed to raise the bars to a useable level. Everything starts to look silly after a while, whereas a sloping toptube design could've been so much neater.

Oh aye, cos a 3 foot long headtube would look so much better...

Having a shorter headtube and more spacers = more flexibility to get a bike that fits. I have 10mm under my stem and I've left 30mm on top. With a longer headtube, I couldn't get that fit.
There is the problem that many manufacturers/shops decide to cut steerers short rather than have a large stack of spacers and that then limits people to the length of steerer supplied.

We could do a count of forum threads along the lines of "I can't get my bars low enough" versus "I can't get my bars high enough".

Pools panel says away win

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 2:03pm
No gripe, i just prefer something that is lighter and i can chuck around on the trails a bit.

A tourer doesn't have to be built like a tank, if thats what you like, fair enough but its not for me

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

18 December 2014 - 1:15pm
I often do a loop from Brsitol to Cheddar and back and this passes through Webbington, a couple of hundred metres from Loxton on the other side of the M5. I'll try to describe a route from Temple Meads Station.
From the station follow the Chocolate Way out to and through Aston Court. Through Long Ashton and down Old Weston Rd past Flax Burton Coroners Court. Follow the bike path to end then right (Backwell Bow) and immediately left Backwell Common. At the end of the lane left and after 300 m right onto the A370 at Backwell/West Town.After ~1km right onto Chelveney Rd and then first left Chelvney Lane. Through Claverham and left onto B3133 then right back onto A370 for 200m until left at Congresbury onto B3133. Right onto Brinsea Batch to Churchill where right and at end of lane left to A368. Cross A368 and go thorough Sandford then right onto The Lynch, left Church Rd, immediately right Barton Road. At the end of the lane right and 400m to Loxton.

Not sure if you can follow this but using Goggle maps you can pick out all the road names and get and idea of the route.

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 1:04pm
foxyrider wrote:reohn2 wrote:Takes some beating,when you never hear or read a bad word about them.....

They are c*&p!

There you go, a bad word about them
Some people's opinions are worth more than others

tbh no real opinion on them, i'm not gonna buy one but if your creed is lugging around a heavy monster who am i to nay say?
Creed?
I didn't realise they were a religion
Heavy monster?
About the same weight as most tourers,I'd say.
If you want a beast of burden they seem to fit the bill very well,by all accounts reliable,good wheelset,drivetrain and cycleparts,proven track record.
What's yer gripe?

I'm on the outside looking in,having never owned or ridden an LHT or DT(though I have a front fork on my Kona DewDrop),perhaps you have and know something the rest of us don't
Care to share?

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 11:50am
reohn2 wrote:Takes some beating,when you never hear or read a bad word about them.....

They are c*&p!

There you go, a bad word about them

tbh no real opinion on them, i'm not gonna buy one but if your creed is lugging around a heavy monster who am i to nay say?

Re: Default tourer?

18 December 2014 - 11:27am
Favourable, considered review of a more modern disc trucker here.

http://tomsbiketrip.com/surly-disc-truc ... ew-photos/

Re: Cycling to Axbridge from Bristol

18 December 2014 - 10:28am
Thanks for the replies.

I did look at Bath, but the extra distance (10 miles or so - 3x miles not 2x miles) was slightly more than I am comfortable with in half a day since my train will get in late morning and I have a do in the evening.

The Strawberry Line or alternative route looks good.

Ferdinand

Re: Jan to May Riding?

18 December 2014 - 10:08am
Hi,

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

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