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Updated: 2 hours 7 min ago

Re: Fountains in Italy

28 October 2014 - 3:33pm
Wow, nice one. I am italian so it will be very useful to me. Is there anything similar for other european countries?

Re: Insurance

28 October 2014 - 3:32pm
Contact the age-specialist insurerers? RIAS, Saga and this Ageas deal: http://www.ageuk.org.uk/products/insura ... insurance/

Re: France - channel to the Med (or vice-versa)

28 October 2014 - 3:11pm
South to North for me - riding homewards. A couple of years ago, in early June I took the bike bus to Perpignan than rode north via Carcassone, Lot - Tarn and Dordogne valleys, well inland of Bordeaux towards Poitiers. There my plans differed from the OP, I turned east to Burgundy before going home. I had no problems with persistent winds, although that year was very wet down south and bone dry in the Vendee. From Poitiers area it is easy to pass west of Paris and then up to the northern channel ports. Indeed I did pretty much that (in reverse i.e. N-S) last year.


28 October 2014 - 2:13pm
I wish to take out insurance for next years cycle tour in Europe, I rang the company suggested by CTC on the website, they inform me as i will be 66 next year I cant have cover for 4 months , there is a 100 day max up to 65 years old,then 50 days after 65.
Ive rung other companies and they tell me about the same, has anyone any suggestions please, apart from going uninsured.

Re: France - channel to the Med (or vice-versa)

28 October 2014 - 2:05pm
+1 on North to South, whatever route you take. In the normal scheme of things, the worst winds you get will be south-westerlies. If you go S->N via the Rhône valley you'll likely have the Mistral in the chops, and if you aim NW through the Corbières the headwinds can quite casually reach 90 kph (BTDT).

Re: Bikes on a plane - box or bag?

28 October 2014 - 1:02pm
I've always used a cardboard box from a bike shop on the way out with another box for the panniers and tent for two people. I pack it up in advance and drive to (near) the airport, park at a local farm that does parking and we are taken to the airport. I have a small car but can fit both bikes on a roof rack.

Returning, only once has there been a bike shop close enough to carry it to the airport. It was Toulous (Blagnac) we were staying in the Formule 1 hotel and there is a Decathlon nearby. I have alway gone to a DIY shop or large supermarket and bought a cheap tarpaulin. For some extra padding I've also bought a length of pipe lagging and even a 2 euro yoga mat to wrap around the tubes. Have done in excess of 30 flights each with two bikes and never suffered any damage.

Re: France - channel to the Med (or vice-versa)

28 October 2014 - 12:39pm
I did Dunkerque - Perpignan last year in late June and was very glad I did it that way round - riding towards (hopefully) better weather but mainly because the scenery became better and better as the ride went on - I did some longish (100) mile days early on and then reduced to around 75 to 80 for the Massif Central etc - I loved it!!
Had a lovely last meal in France in Perpignan and then caught the bike bus back - fabulous.

Re: France - channel to the Med (or vice-versa)

28 October 2014 - 12:27pm
Alternatively book the bike bus... http://www.bike-express.co.uk


France - channel to the Med (or vice-versa)

28 October 2014 - 12:14pm
May next year I plan to cycle through France and I am considering going from the Med (either from Montpellier or from Perpignan) to the Channel. The reason for going south to north rather than the more popular north to south, is that it should be easier logistically. I can fly to 'M' or 'P', discard the bike box which will be a cardboard box obtained from a local bike shop where I live. Then I can take as long as I wish to cycle to a channel port and simply buy a ticket at the ferry point back to England. Apart from the likely change in climate and weather what other disadvantage(s) will there be going from south to north. Can anyone assist?

Fountains in Italy

28 October 2014 - 11:46am
Aint the internet wonderful, despite its problems?

I cycle a fair bit in Sardinia and have always been impressed by the number of fountains of one sort or another (and the vast majority work!) - I;m more likely to die of thirst pedalling along the Thames than through the heart of a Mediterranean summer.#

But how to find them?

Some are on the GPS and others I can find by horse sense, but I've often mused that a techno-list would be handy.

And now some wonderful person has produced this rather smooth Android app

https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... mdc.nasoni

I've tested it out and it seems excellent -it has some obscure Sardinian fountains that even many locals won't know about.

It includes one of my favourites where folk turn up in cars to cart away loads of jerry cans of their favourite acqua tipple - this sort of thing is quite common for the admirably grounded Sards.

Might be useful for folks forsaking pricey Italian campsites for a bit of free camping.

PS: I note that some of you to cycle in Italy. Please feel free to add fountains of your own to it using the built in tool.

Re: St Malo to Narbonne

28 October 2014 - 9:59am
anniesboy wrote:Hi Linda,

My wife and I are planing to ride from Narbonne to home in Oxfordshire on our tandem, so we just might meet en route.

We have done it before and went via Mazamet this time we are looking at a flatter route, we will after all have a combined age of 143.
We are doing this to "celebrate" our golden wedding anniversary.

Our plans are only outline at present as we have to be fit/well enough to do this.

Sounds fantastic - can't wait to hear how you get on!

Re: bike back from LA

28 October 2014 - 9:22am
If the son purchases a bike in the USA, how does he do the rest of the trip before that section?

Why not get him to purchase his own bike for the whole trip. Then he can do what he wants with it, I would not be happy with our son if he planned to leave my bike somewhere and not get it back to me.
So much so I would just tell him to walk instead.

Re: bike back from LA

28 October 2014 - 9:17am
Probably cheaper to fly out there, collect it and bring it back - seriously. Personally I'd go with the suggestion he buys one out there and sells it when he's finished. It'll cost a lot less.

Re: bike back from LA

28 October 2014 - 8:54am
Shiping costs can be high, but new bikes in the US are much cheaper than in the UK. It may be cheaper for him to buy new out there and then sell. He'll put a fair amount of wear on a bike if he is riding the whole way.

I remember something like this being asked a while ago, I suggested stripping it right down and posting, there were other suggestions as well. Try searching.

Edit in, here is the posthttp://forum.ctc.org.uk/viewtopic.p ... ng#p527769

Re: Anyone recommend any good books?

28 October 2014 - 7:26am
You may enjoy "Sticky Buns Across America", which you can find on the interweb.

Re: bike back from LA

28 October 2014 - 7:24am
Have you considered putting him in an orphanage and hanging on to your bike?

Re: Bikes on a plane - box or bag?

28 October 2014 - 6:32am
My friends parcel tape their panniers together to make them into one piece of luggage for the flight. They're still pretty small compared to a suitcase. I have a lightweight pack a bag thing that holds four fullish panniers and assorted other bits of the bike and folds in on itself ( then becomes a tiny pillow for the camping section).

We use the CTC or decathlon bags. The CTC bags whilst good are quite chunky to lug around ( not heavy, I try to fold them into a rectangle and sort of line the bottom of a pannier with it). We don't do circular routes usually. If forced to we would otherwise do the local bike shop thing to find a box I guess. Some years ago I cut a tour short in Madrid, turned up at the airport there and grabbed a seat on the next BA flight. I started to sort the bike out and the woman I'd bought the ticket from said you've no time for that so I gave the bike intact to the baggage people and was told to run for my flight. Arrived fine back in Blighty.

We don't use a trolley. Put the bike back together in the Baggage reclaim hall, stick panniers on, walk out through customs and (hopefully) find a nice quiet road or cycle track away from the airport.

Re: Bikes on a plane - box or bag?

27 October 2014 - 9:00pm
Barrenfluffit wrote:You need an airport trolley to carry everything so make it a top priority on arrival.

Some trolleys require a one/two pound/euro coin to be 'unlocked' from the trolley stack - so have some coins handy.

As for 4 panniers etc., Mrs B4t made me a nylon zipped bag to hold my two panniers plus tent to make one piece of hold baggage. The nylon bag had other uses during the trip such as something to sit on.

Re: Extra stuff inside bike bag with Easyjet

27 October 2014 - 8:52pm
Flown Easyjet a few times with a bikebox. Extra items in box included helmet & shoes + all parts appertaining to bike such as tools/pump/saddlebag etc.
I have had companions who took just a "cabin bag" and put other clothes and items in their boxes with no problems.
The only time Easyjet has come into contact with the bike is at the checking in desk when they weigh the bike etc.
After that the boxes/bikes usually go through an Xray machine but it's not Easyjet personnel who carry this out.
Upto now the only issue has been CO2 cylinders that have shown up on Xray and been confiscated.
If you are using a "see through" bag then you may have problems at the check-in desk?

My bike & box + bits usually weighs about 24 kgs.

Re: bike back from LA

27 October 2014 - 6:24pm
andrew_s wrote:Tell him that if he wants to leave the bike, he can leave his own bike, then wait to see what he does.
i agree. you have a very strange son.


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