CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 1 hour 18 min ago

Re: Whats wrong with Portugal?

19 September 2014 - 5:11pm
ConRAD wrote:Try looking at my Portugal, if you need gpx tracks just let me know.
Don't know why I can't pm you. The only site that seems to be able to create tracks for Portugal is MyCycleTour[ Given up with Bikeroute toaster. Very frustrating to use now]. Funnily enough MCT seems to use Google mapping. However when you try to create a route on Google, choosing bike, it will not work.
I could do with looking at some tracks for Porto to Faro. Getting out of Porto looks fun. I created one track and when I put the little Google man on it, it showed it petering out into a dirt track. If you let it create tracks automatically it does this and also seems to favour busy roads. Don't know if that is to avoid hills or not.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 4:18pm
stewartpratt wrote:Depends what you actually want to do with the tablet — Check maps? Read books? Look at photos? Process photos? Use it outdoors in all weathers? — and what your reason for wanting one over a phone is — Dodgy eyes? Ease of typing? Screen size for maps?

Mainly for use in the evenings in campsite or hotels. Mainly for easier web browsing on a bigger screen, FB etc. Also for emails, blog etc. Also I have a cheap keyboard and case for a 7" tablet that works really well, plugs in to the micro USB. Find it easier for typing.

I have a Kindle as well which I prefer to read books on.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 4:14pm
al_yrpal wrote:Buy a Moto G 2nd generation smartphone. Does everthing a tablet does on a 5 inch screen. Only £155. Who needs a tablet?


I think it's actually 4.5". I've just got the S5 mini which is same size as Moto G, better spec.

South American Plan- companions sought

19 September 2014 - 1:51pm
I am in the very early stages of planning an end 2 end of South America(Late 2015 or 2016), details still to be planned. I would like to do this trip with others. Please contact if you think this is something you would enjoy planning and joining.
Previous long distance trip experience, coast to coast USA and Lejog.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 10:51am
+1 for the nexus 7.

The big advantage when touring is it has a built in GPS chip, so things like OSMAnd run fine without any internet connection. Dead handy for spot fixing when in a town and your map isn't quite detailed enough or if you're throwing your plans out the window and off exploring.
Mine is in a neoprene case also and is two years old now. Has been in my panniers commuting every work day and been away with me. No problems.
If I want internet on it, I can use my mobiles internet share facility if needed when wifi is not around.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 9:12am
If you happen to need a long battery life, the Lenovo Yoga 8 is particularly good. Whatever you decide, a neoprene sleeve is a good investment.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 8:09am
I've got a Nexus 7 2013 model 16 GB storage. It is light and thin, with excellent screen quality. I keep it in a padded neoprene case. Stuff it down the back side of my pannier.

I love it !!

Taken it on 2 long haul so far (SEAsia). It needs WiFi but works well for all internet stuff and apps. Internet cafes are becoming rarer and WiFi almost everywhere. I can do everything on it I used to do in the cafes.

Google maps are excellent, but you need to have opened the area in WiFi to allow you to see it in detail off line. GPS tells you exactly where you are. I wouldn't use it for full time navigating, but is useful if you are lost ; finding smaller roads than on paper map; or in big towns. If you wanted you could navigate but battery may be an issue if you can't charge each night.

Easier to see and type than smart phone. I don't use a phone when away so leave mine at home. My phone is too small (for me) for regular use, but I now find that I'm often using my tablet in preference to my PC.

Other cheaper tablets are available but I reckon the Nexus is worth the extra as it is so much better.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 7:34am
Depends what you actually want to do with the tablet — Check maps? Read books? Look at photos? Process photos? Use it outdoors in all weathers? — and what your reason for wanting one over a phone is — Dodgy eyes? Ease of typing? Screen size for maps?

Re: Trail A Bike For Tourer?

19 September 2014 - 6:15am
I would contact Burley. They are usually quite good about helping, even secondhand purchasers.

Good luck with it.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 4:28am
maybe a nexus? they are getting quite cheap now. in terms of weight though there not usually more than 50 grams in it.

Re: tablet for touring

19 September 2014 - 12:26am
Buy a Moto G 2nd generation smartphone. Does everthing a tablet does on a 5 inch screen. Only £155. Who needs a tablet?


Re: channel hopping

18 September 2014 - 11:59pm
Thanks to Wally one, andy D AND Colgren for their very helpful advice. we set off 8:30 Thursday 11th from Warsash for our first stop just west of Newhaven. Fairly uneventful ride in very pleasant weather. Terrain fairly flat an easterly breeze in face all day. Reminded how poor road surfaces for cyclists towards edge of road where often parts of red surfacing had lifted. Short stretch of new coastal path under ch on a number of timesalk cliffs easterly from Brighton well worth using. Poor signage when trying to keep to National Cycle Route 2 which lead us on a merry chase and "lost" us several times with no directions at some junctions. This increased our journey time and mileage. Set off in high hopes Friday to catch the 17;30 ferry from Dover to Calais. Underestimated the number of punchy climbs during the day in a wind that was getting brisker in our faces by the hour. Climb out of Seaford and Folkstone worthy of note especially after 70+ miles in them for the day!!!. Again the National Cycle Route 2 added to mileage and left us stranded scratching our heads at times. Missed the 17:30 but managed the 19:30 from Dover landing in Calais 22:00 French time to spend another 45 minutes looking for our hotel some 4 miles outside Calais (Quinell area)….somehow managed 89 miles start to finish.
Day 3 Calais to St Valery sur Somme…now wind behind us…hooray!!! enjoyable day, hills not too bad even the lumps for the first hour out of Calais. St Valery sur Somme very pretty as stated. Day 4 St Valery sur Somme to Fecamp along D940 which was very busy with long, fairly boring dead straight roads. Day 5 very long day in saddle due in part to trying to get on the very impressive Pont de Normandie at Le Havre when we could not join a two mile no cycling road straight to the bridge. Instead we were advised to go 10 miles or so out of our way to reach the estuary road which got us to the foot of the Pont de Normandie which was quickly despatched, using the walkers path up the bridge for safety and onto the cycle area down the bridge descent. Rested just over the bridge at charming and beautiful Honfleur. From Honfleur we then had a fairly gruelling lumpy in places to Caen. the messing about at Le Havre pushed mileage up to 89 when low 70's was anticipated.
23:00 ferry to Portsmouth….very uncomfortable reclining seats that do very little if no reclining…people were giving up and laying on floor.
Portsmouth arrival at 07:00 grey and damp for an easy, flat 15 mile journey home, sweet home. 430 miles 5 days…two unsupported pensioners who enjoyed the experience immensely and would recommend.

tablet for touring

18 September 2014 - 11:54pm
Can anyone recommend a good tablet to take touring? Not too heavy or expensive, can handle a few knocks. I looked at the Hudl but it's quite heavy and bulky.

Re: Trail A Bike For Tourer?

18 September 2014 - 9:10pm
Me again. Sorry.

Does anyone know what the width of the rack for the Burley Kazoo/Piccolo is? The tagalong I have bought comes without a rack and I am trying to work out if it will fit my current rack.

Incidentally: Although the word "PICCOLO" can be seen on the frame, it is single speed. I think Burley's now calls the single speed a Kazoo and the 6 speed a piccolo..hc

Re: Trail A Bike For Tourer?

18 September 2014 - 8:32pm
Thanks again all.

This is what I got today: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/201168493579

It is a Burley Piccolo albeit very old but at £31.00 I can mess about and replace any bits that I need to. Hopefully it will fit my rack! (I'm not too good at gambling so I hope I haven't chucked £31.00 down the drain)

Re: How to train for long distance cycle touring

18 September 2014 - 6:39pm
Just go. You'll get fitter day by day.

I went on a long trip - gave away all my 'stuff'. Practised living on my own in a small house first.


Re: A one day coast to coast

18 September 2014 - 4:38pm
Vantage wrote:Why on gods green earth would you wanna go through Blackburn of all places???
My thoughts too. But looking at the route, it doesn't actually doesn't go to Blackburn. The pub is at Balderstone some way outside of Blackburn.

My comment about the Western half of the route would be that it follows the very busy A59, A583 and A584, all of which are manageable at a push but far from ideal. It also goes through Preston which is not really necessary. This would be my preferred route between Skipton and Lytham: http://goo.gl/maps/7vXa2 It is not really any further and the roads are a lot quieter and nicer (though a bit twistier and lumpier). There is more navigation involved compared to just following the A59. It would mean a change of the last pub stop but there are a good few in the Clitheroe/Longridge/Ribble Valley area which are nice.

Re: Red Loon?!

18 September 2014 - 4:38pm
Not heard of them - most likely issue will be with attaching to your rack, cheap bags usually means low quality fittings, often difficult to fit with potential for failure and no chance of repair. Lots of pockets lots of wasted space and added weight.

Something like the Ortlieb back rollers and organised packing (there are various packing cell options available or make your own) will for most people work better than pockets if they try it. I have one 'cell' for toiletries, one for first aid, one for cooking kit etc. all inside, all easily identifiable. Better for security, finding stuff and keeping stuff dry - outer pockets on lower priced bags rarely offer that.

On my recent tour in Germany i think the ratio of bags used was something like 7 Ortlieb / 2 other rolltop bags / 1 cloth bags, rucksacks etc - most of the riders were not German but from across not just Europe but north america too. I had a day on the Danube when it tiddled down all day so waterproof is good whatever time of year you are riding!

Re: Hokkaido

18 September 2014 - 2:04pm
We have just spent 3 weeks touring around Hokkaido, beautiful very quiet island. We loved it http://www.cycling-nomads.com/hokkaido/

Re: A one day coast to coast

18 September 2014 - 12:23pm
Why groups of 3or 4?
I still recall the police making riders of the National 400 in Fife years ago insisting a group of 4 every couple of minutes. Imagine how frustrated drivers were with that by the time they tried to pass their twentieth group?


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