CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 15 min 31 sec ago

Re: First bike tour with children

27 October 2014 - 8:50am
I would endorse the suggestions above especially Tissington and High Peak Trails

Looking at your criteria:

(a) we can get to the start and end points via public transport (b) the level of challenge is suitable for a fairly fit but novice 10-yr old on something like a hybrid bike

Suggestion 1) Catch the train at Nottingham to Market Harborough (journey 40 mins) and do the Brampton Valley Way http://www.sustrans.org.uk/ncn/map/rout ... valley-way 28 miles of traffic free cycling.

a really lovely route for a your child especially as there are two long tunnels to go through with beautiful countryside ---a really fantastic ride as I did it with a disabled person on 26th Oct. This is one of the longest paths in the region connecting Market Harborough with the outskirts of Northamptonshire and forming Route 6 on the National Cycling Network. Gentle railway gradients, no steep hills.

Suggestion 2) The Water Rail Way http://www.sustrans.org.uk/ncn/map/route/water-rail-way

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=wat ... ORM=HDRSC2

Catch the train to Lincoln and do the above route. this will give you a cycling round trip of 30 miles. The route is flat and almost entirely traffic free. The path features pen fenland landscapes with long views and expansive skies, another great route

Suggestion 3) if you cant get to Tissington let me know and we can give you a lift, were based in Nottingham

Just thought of this trail (Erewash Valley Trail) again which would be excellent for a child: http://www.broxtowe.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=7799

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=ere ... ORM=HDRSC2

Re: Schwalbe Big Apple or Marathon Supreme

26 October 2014 - 8:32pm
I've just done 8,000 miles on my 2.0 supremes before getting regular punctures and swapping over to the spares I've carried.

Ridden on bad roads and dirt tracks a lot.

Gary
www.longbikeride.co.uk

Advice for tyre size for touring - 32c OK for off-road?

26 October 2014 - 8:26pm
If it's not too wet and slippery, Schwalbe Marathon Supremes are excellent on the road. I just completed 8,000 miles on them before changing over to the new tyres I've been carrying all that way!

I travelled on dirt roads with them no problem.

I only got punctures at the end of their life which is what made me change to the new ones. The thorns here are evil!

Gary
http://www.longbikeride.co.uk

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 6:40pm
Another day trip - catch the train to Oakham, and cycle around the shore of Rutland Water (25 miles - mainly flat, mostly off road). You could camp overnight at Hambleton or catch the train back home from Oakham again.

Another day trip - follow the Grantham Canal from next to the Forest ground, all the way out to Grantham and catch the train back from there.

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 6:35pm
The Netherlands is reachable by public transport... Our kids' first tour on their own bikes was IJmuiden down to Den Haag (to see their cousins) and back. There are ups and downs in the dunes but not to worry about, the road danger is minimal, there's a fair few campsites and you get a ferry cruise thrown in.

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 6:34pm
I'd suggest doing some of the old railway paths in the Peak District. You can catch a train to Cromford, and from there easily get onto the High Peak Trail. Day 1 could be cycling up to Parsley Hay at the far end of the High Peak Trail. Day 2 - down the Tissington Trail
to Ashbourne. Day 3 back up the trail as far as Tissington, then pick your way through the lanes to Carsington Water and do the path around the Lake. Then you can rejoin the High Peak Trail at Middleton Top and descend back to Cromford to catch the train home.

Re: Advice for tyre size for touring - 32c OK for off-road?

26 October 2014 - 4:17pm
fatter tyres also mean taller tyres, so may not be as fat as you think. I think 1.75 better

Re: Advice for tyre size for touring - 32c OK for off-road?

26 October 2014 - 3:40pm
I'm no expert on these matters but semi by accident ended up with 37 or 38 contis on my hybrid which has been used as a part-time tourer.

And came to love them.

When it came time to buy a "proper" tourer I was mightily encouraged by the fact that the guy who put it together for me advised 37.

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 2:47pm
Depending how happy you are on roads, checkout the main camping and caravan clubs sites around your area.
Conkers is only around 30 miles SW from Nottingham.
Cycle there, spend a day at the waterside park if needed, cycle home.
And/or Conkers -> Cannock Chase -> Drayton Bassett -> Conkers for an extended trip.
All local enough so you can double check the routes beforehand by yourself.
Plus options for an easy bailout if needed.

Re: Advice for tyre size for touring - 32c OK for off-road?

26 October 2014 - 2:04pm
I would go for the widest possible tyre that wil fit our frame. Wider tyres are not slower on good roads, but faster on bad roads. They are also more comfortable, mitigate vibrations that wear you out, but also your bike, and you will have fewer punctures. Every tyre is a compromise (my normal choice are Panaracer Pasela's), but on a tour such as yours I would probably opt for the Schwalbe Marathon Racer (and take a folding spare). My real preference would be for a 26 inch tourer, however, for even wider tyres.

Re: Lighting a bike/high vis on tour

26 October 2014 - 1:54pm
+1 Fortunately my otherwise pretty disobedient children agree and will not ride their bikes without the lights turned on at night. I make sure those lights are good.

Re: St Malo to Narbonne

26 October 2014 - 11:39am
Hi, I am a newbie to CTC and to touring, and am planning trip from Calais to Narbonne next June. I can't get more than straight line routes from CTC website - anyone know why? Maybe I need to log in to more than just CTC website and forums.
Anyway maybe see you en route!

Re: Just like the UK!

26 October 2014 - 10:16am
http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/split- ... n-tickets/

Shows how to get the cheapest tickets using splits.

Al

Re: Just like the UK!

26 October 2014 - 10:04am
There used to be a guy in the Southampton Uni Travel Shop that had an encyclopaedic knowledge

He would manipulate the system

I remember going to Penzance one year and had a return to Salisbury, day return to Exeter, single to Plymouth and a Day return to Penzance

A combination of offers and "City Breaks" that more than 75% off the normal fare.

Unfortunately retired now, but I still use his trick of looking for cheap offers between cities and splitting a ticket into stages if it saves

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 10:00am
Funnily enough my first "tour" with the wife was the Bristol-Bath route

She lacked confidence and we decided that a 30 mile round trip fully loaded was the way to try out before going on a full tour

So we took the train to Bath, camped, loaded everything, cycled to Bristol for lunch, then back to bath for afternoon tea, extending the trip to Bathampton and back to the campsite

The fact that we had done more than we anticipated was a real boost and we successfully did the C2C later that year

Perhaps something similar?

A couple of local one or two night adventures to settle in and build her confidence before the big one?

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 9:54am
MrsHJ wrote:Those books, cycle tours, one day routes in "whichever county" by ordnance survey, are still around, second hand on Amazon and do quiet roads so I might start there and join some up for overnights. They are mostly gentle on inclines (check the route) and I guess at 10 she will be ok on quiet roads. My daughter is just 11 and did her bike ability course last week and got certified for on road but it did sound like she was the most competent of the group and they all passed I believe. She has an islabike.

A decent length of proper cycle track without loads of annoying half gates can be quite hard to find in this country but I had been mulling over the Avon and kennet canal for my kids. Instead we did the nantes brest canal as our first decent size trip. We are in the south west so not local to you but there is a 100 mile coast to coast of Devon route that the kids and I are hoping to do most of at the end of next week over about 4 days. This is featured on the devon county website so I guess other counties do the same thing ( and sustrans of course).

The Sustrans routes from Gloucester to London on the Thames and Severn riversalso use the canal and it is fine, but can be muddy if wet

The Devon Coast to Coast has the same issue, and some hills

Re: First bike tour with children

26 October 2014 - 8:40am
Those books, cycle tours, one day routes in "whichever county" by ordnance survey, are still around, second hand on Amazon and do quiet roads so I might start there and join some up for overnights. They are mostly gentle on inclines (check the route) and I guess at 10 she will be ok on quiet roads. My daughter is just 11 and did her bike ability course last week and got certified for on road but it did sound like she was the most competent of the group and they all passed I believe. She has an islabike.

A decent length of proper cycle track without loads of annoying half gates can be quite hard to find in this country but I had been mulling over the Avon and kennet canal for my kids. Instead we did the nantes brest canal as our first decent size trip. We are in the south west so not local to you but there is a 100 mile coast to coast of Devon route that the kids and I are hoping to do most of at the end of next week over about 4 days. This is featured on the devon county website so I guess other counties do the same thing ( and sustrans of course).

Re: Just like the UK!

26 October 2014 - 8:32am
All the above very interesting! When I went to my local station(and itsa city station),they said they knew nothing about booking continental travel(and basically,didnt want to know). The fragmented railway system means they only have direct knowledge of their own region,or railway company,not others. They directed me to London wherein(and I guess)to speak to a human yer on the phone at premium rates or...you journey down to London(by train!)to speak to some individual after more queues. My own thinking goes along these lines: transportation is not a public service,its there to make £££. If it makes money,it privatised. Making losses,the MPs make sure it goes bake to pay off the debts. If anyone is helpful to you...take it as a bonus

Re: Cycling the Portuguese coastline

25 October 2014 - 9:40pm
Thanks for your info.. Based on what I've read, the coastline looks like a bit of a no no. I'll reassess and perhaps look at going further inland in Portugal or else look at Spanish routes south instead. Thanks again.

First bike tour with children

25 October 2014 - 9:28pm
I have just done the C2C over three windy days and thoroughly enjoyed it. Absolutely stunning scenery, and a superbly signposted and maintained route. Hats off to Sustrans.
My 10-yr old daughter, who cycles locally quite a bit, is keen to do something similar - ie: a challenge ride, camping each night somewhere new. However, I don't think she's yet up to the hill climbs on the C2C. Can anyone recommend a good route for which (a) we can get to the start and end points via public transport (b) the level of challenge is suitable for a fairly fit but novice 10-yr old on something like a hybrid bike (she's on a mountain bike at present). I think she could happily do 30 miles each day, based upon recent rides we've done together. I want to make the most of her keenness but not put her off in the process. Any ideas welcome. We're based in Nottingham too - something that isn't a million miles to get to would be good.

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