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Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 9:14am
shane wrote:ukdodger wrote:
Where was all that?

Trip 1, 3 weeks in Lapland
Trip 2, The trans labrador highway in Canada

You're a better man than me Gunga Din. I'm shivering now. Great pics and nice story though. Thanks.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 9:12am
eileithyia wrote:PS Leg covering; usually normal winter cycling longs, thicker pair of socks, normal shoes, I have toyed with over shoes but never really found them very satisfactory, but always always have spare dry socks with me.

I've tried everything to keep my feet and legs dry but nothing does. So I gave up trying.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 9:10am
eileithyia wrote:ukdodger wrote:eileithyia wrote:Many a time; from winter weekends, the Christmas New Year hostel trip. What started to restrict such activities was RAH (rent a hostel), open hostels for just a handful (or 1-2 riders) became fewer further between, without renting the whole hostel for the weekend
Yes I've been wet through, coped with snow, wind and glorious crisp sunny days.

Here's a medal! how many days were those rides and out of interest what did you use for leg and feet covering? If any

Not sure a medal is needed, as said elsewhere, no different to being out on the winter clubrun only with the addition of staying away from home and repeating the following day.
Touring could be anything from 1 night away (usually Saturday), 2 nights (fri and Sat) to about 10 days when I hostelled solo across to South Wales to stop with relatives for a few days then hostelled back again.

I have had great fun negotiating my way in the dark; to obscure tiny hostels in Shropshire, I had memorised the last 2-3 junctions to the hostel from the main road and when we turned into this tiny lane... had to deal with the doubting Thomas's within the club .. stopping to re-check the map (yes I was sure I was sure the hostel should be a few 100yds on on the left) to riding up the Gospel Pass (again in the dark) to the hostel, finding the bike shed (opp side of the road to the hostel) and carting my bags up the track. Whenever I go over the Pass these days I wonder how on earth I managed it in the dark and never realised how narrow it was!!!

At one stage I reckon we had a YHA weekend at least once a month thru the winter months..... it was when most of the club were around to participate in such weekends; the summer months being full of activites; longer touring trips for everyone, juggling family holidays, rally weekends, and (for me) racing.

Going off for the weekend was nothing unusual in the winter and battling the elements did not seem unusual just part of what winter is about and probably no more than extension of daily winter commutes or club runs.

I think the worst bit is wet shoes, I hate putting cold wet shoes back on the following day..... as the hostel drying room was usually not up to the job, it was always important for me to have warm dry socks to at least buffer that moment when the damp started to seep in towards my feet.... plastic shopping bags also helped as a buffer.

I confess I miss those dark evenings of self reliance and the challenge of finding the obscure YH after dark, of being out and using all my senses to find my way and enjoy my surroundings. Though often solo non calendar audax rides through the night does employ all that self reliance.

Frankly I wouldnt (up until now) even consider cycling in those conditions and certainly not every month. I hate wet feet (and wet legs) but have learned to live with them. But you could at least have chosen small hotels where drying stuff is much easier. Hostels arent user friendly I find. You'll forgive me if I suggest there's a hint of masochism in this thread.

Re: How to carry a guitar on your bicycle

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 9:05am
When I was in high school, I carried a cello a few times. I had shoulder straps to carry it on my back. It was a school cello. I wouldn't have carried my own that way.

Now, I use a trailer, but I don't tour with it. I just use the bike to get to go places where I will play the cello.

And then there's

http://www.cellojoe.com/p/videos_22.html

and

http://bicyclemusicfestival.com/about_bmf/

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 9:01am
shane wrote:Many good tips already, but here goes

(in my opinion!!)

5 degree's to -5 : usually wet and miserable......and quite a pain to keep your gear dry and warm. Long live hostels and B+B's to dry out as most campsites are closed.
-5 degrees to -20 (do it..): With the right gear and know how its lovely. Wild camping camping in snow that is no deeper than 50cm is a joy, spike tyres rock, don't forget your bread will be frozen (as will just about every thing else)
IMG_0182 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

P1010341 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

-20 to -35 : also do-able with the right gear and experience but now you have lost your margin for error, a flat tyre is almost impossible to fix, your hands are painful after being exposed to the air for 1 minute. Any plastic bits on your panniers or gear are so brittle they WILL break. You're now running in expedition mode rather than chilling with that extra cup of tea in the morning. You have the constant struggle between being too hot or too cold, your hands and feet being numb, cold or painful. And of course constantly steamed up goggles mean you can't even enjoy the view. Campfires though pretty are more effort than they're worth. Worst of all, you have to sleep in a plastic bag to keep your down dry. Moisture(sweat) management is your main concern.

campfire by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

Winterproof Shane by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

-35 below : Welcome to a cold kind of hell, this is the bit when you often can't even light your stove to melt snow for your drinking water because the fuel doesn't evaporate because its so cold. The sweat in the foam of your goggles freezes to your face and any tea you spill out of your flask instantly freezes to anything it falls on because you;re too damn clumsy with your thick gloves And your biggest worry of the day is how you're going to remove and install all those layers while having a crap without getting frostbite Any blunders now are life threatening . . . . . . . . . .

Trans lab (18) by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

And thats that

Further reading here >>>> http://www.shanecycles.com/category/win ... e-touring/

And for the record, the long dark nights are great, eat at 6, chill for an hour, sleep for 12 hours, spend 3 hours getting ready (everything takes for ever in the morning anyway when its so cold), on the road just before first light

Plus points, beautiful scenery, awesome wild camping. silence

P1010713 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

Haven't decided if Im going to Scotland, The Lakes or Spain for my trip this winter....Im done with that really cold stuff, its too much like hard work Luckily Helen loves it and will paint a totally different picture


Hang on I'm gobsmacked. Where was all that?

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 8:57am
Flinders wrote:I don't tour, but prefer cycling in the winter. It's cooler (I run hot) the hedgerows are leafless so I see more, and there's much less traffic.
Though I am a wuss about ice.

You dont tour??

Re: Clipping and running

CTC Forum - On the road - 14 October 2014 - 8:52am
Phil Fouracre wrote:Interesting comments! Think it must show the differing expectations between 'serious' cyclists and 'leisure' ones. People jumped in and blamed the front cyclist, which might be expected if you ride in a group. In 'normal' one to one interaction on the road, surely the 'vehicle' behind has to give way, and anticipate the actions of those in front?
+1, and illustrative of why I hate riding in groups. I expect any overtaking vehicle to give me room to avoid potholes, leaf litter etc (and have been known to enforce tis agaisnt motor vehicles). Whilst I realise this looks like a club run, comparisons with motorway lanes is IMO excessive (which means it's probably a good thing I would never ride with a club); they are not in lanes and the camera does not show why he neds to turn (he may be avoiding an incident ahead)..

Re: Venice to Lecce - and how to get there (and back)

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 8:05am
thebedfordfox wrote:I would like to cycle down Italy's Adriatic coast, from Venice to Lecce - a journey of about 600 miles, along cycle routes.


Also, what is the best way of getting there and back, with your bike? I'd be confident enough of doing the bike journey in 7-8 days, but wonder how long it would take 'all in'.

TIA,

David

I have flown into Venice airport (using a disposable cardboard box from a bike shop to transport the bike) and while it is a little tricky for the first mile or so leaving the airport, getting onto to quiet roads heading west and then south should be perfectly feasible. I was heading north to the Dolomites. Venice airport is nowhere near the city so its relatively easy to leave the built up areas which surround most airports.
It might be possible to leave a proper bike box at an airport hotel if you stay overnight before and after. Alternatively, there is a Decathlon not far from the airport where you should be able to get a box for the return trip.

Re: Learning to ride yet again.

CTC Forum - On the road - 14 October 2014 - 7:33am
Upright or recumbent the tadpole configuration seems more intuitive for people to just mount and ride. The recumbent is easier again due to the low c of g. As an upright tricyclist of 45 years experience it amazes me that bicyclist will tell me that "I have to steer the wrong way " or "I have to lean the wrong way" even when They have been following me for a while. It is nice to see their faces when I accelerate into that tight bend and go round in a whoosh of tyres with my backside dragging on the tyre.

To parallel meic's experience; I seldom bother my bicycles since I much prefer the tricycles, but last Sunday I ventured out on 2 wheels. I settled down quickly and all was fine. However, if there is a problem then my first reaction is the tricyclist one which is invariably wrong for a bicycle and only makes matters worse. It takes only a fraction of a second for the brain to recalibrate and rescue the situation so is usually ok. This time I was a bit incautious approaching a longitudinal crack in the road.

Like meic I take an opportunity to ride something different and have owned or tried most things. I look forward to seeing a wanted advertisement from him to expand his cycling experience.

Re: Learning to ride yet again.

CTC Forum - On the road - 14 October 2014 - 6:44am
meic wrote:Yesterday, some nice guy let me have a ride of his upright tricycle. I half knew what was coming from when I rode motorcycle-sidecar units but it still took a few goes before I could make myself steer it (at all) rather than my subconscious taking over to stop me from crashing (which is what that sort of steering would do on my usual steeds). Though I used to be able to ride one when I was four!
About eight years ago, I went through the experience of learning to ride a recumbent. Then it is just the starting that gets you as you must apply weight the opposite way to normal when you react to the force that you apply on the pedals. The recumbent trike wasnt a problem at all, I havent quite figured out why I didnt have the steering issues on that.

It is nice when you have been around for a long time to get to try something new and different.

I failed on the Penny Farthing but I had had a few to drink and it was full size and the ground was rough gravel (excuses, excuses). I did only slightly better on the reverse steering bike.

I can not even get on to a unicycle.
Was the recumbent trike delta or tadpole? I have not tried a delta trike but I used to own a tadpole and they are the easiest things in the world to ride. The only things you have to learn is how to get in, how to get out and how fast you can go into a corner before the inside front wheel starts lifting. I often wish I still had mine.

Re: Have you been knocked OFF in a collision while cycling?

CTC Forum - On the road - 14 October 2014 - 6:37am
In the forty plus years since I learned to ride I have come off the bike on a number of occasions for various reasons. Losing control while braking or going round a corner, not looking where I was going and piling into the back of a parked car (in mitigation the girl on the pavement was very pretty), left hooked a couple of times, loss of control after being cut up by a motorist, and pushed by pedestrians - this was when I was cycling home from school and was done by the school bullies causing a broken wrist. I have also had some incidents of being abused for being a cyclist daring to use the road, with threats of violence and death. numerous close passes some of which had to be deliberate punishment passes. I have dished out a fair amount of verbal abuse under provocation on occasion but have also managed to stay calm at other times and sometimes had the opportunity to speak to the driver politely explaining the situation - with mixed reactions. I imagine this all sounds pretty typical to most people on here.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 6:35am
PS Leg covering; usually normal winter cycling longs, thicker pair of socks, normal shoes, I have toyed with over shoes but never really found them very satisfactory, but always always have spare dry socks with me.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 6:33am
ukdodger wrote:eileithyia wrote:Many a time; from winter weekends, the Christmas New Year hostel trip. What started to restrict such activities was RAH (rent a hostel), open hostels for just a handful (or 1-2 riders) became fewer further between, without renting the whole hostel for the weekend
Yes I've been wet through, coped with snow, wind and glorious crisp sunny days.

Here's a medal! how many days were those rides and out of interest what did you use for leg and feet covering? If any

Not sure a medal is needed, as said elsewhere, no different to being out on the winter clubrun only with the addition of staying away from home and repeating the following day.
Touring could be anything from 1 night away (usually Saturday), 2 nights (fri and Sat) to about 10 days when I hostelled solo across to South Wales to stop with relatives for a few days then hostelled back again.

I have had great fun negotiating my way in the dark; to obscure tiny hostels in Shropshire, I had memorised the last 2-3 junctions to the hostel from the main road and when we turned into this tiny lane... had to deal with the doubting Thomas's within the club .. stopping to re-check the map (yes I was sure I was sure the hostel should be a few 100yds on on the left) to riding up the Gospel Pass (again in the dark) to the hostel, finding the bike shed (opp side of the road to the hostel) and carting my bags up the track. Whenever I go over the Pass these days I wonder how on earth I managed it in the dark and never realised how narrow it was!!!

At one stage I reckon we had a YHA weekend at least once a month thru the winter months..... it was when most of the club were around to participate in such weekends; the summer months being full of activites; longer touring trips for everyone, juggling family holidays, rally weekends, and (for me) racing.

Going off for the weekend was nothing unusual in the winter and battling the elements did not seem unusual just part of what winter is about and probably no more than extension of daily winter commutes or club runs.

I think the worst bit is wet shoes, I hate putting cold wet shoes back on the following day..... as the hostel drying room was usually not up to the job, it was always important for me to have warm dry socks to at least buffer that moment when the damp started to seep in towards my feet.... plastic shopping bags also helped as a buffer.

I confess I miss those dark evenings of self reliance and the challenge of finding the obscure YH after dark, of being out and using all my senses to find my way and enjoy my surroundings. Though often solo non calendar audax rides through the night does employ all that self reliance.

Re: Vaude or carradice cape?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 14 October 2014 - 5:38am
No personal experience of either but Vaude are reduced here, should you decide on one - http://www.bike-discount.de/en/praesenz ... ude+poncho

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 13 October 2014 - 11:17pm
Many good tips already, but here goes

(in my opinion!!)

5 degree's to -5 : usually wet and miserable......and quite a pain to keep your gear dry and warm. Long live hostels and B+B's to dry out as most campsites are closed.
-5 degrees to -20 (do it..): With the right gear and know how its lovely. Wild camping camping in snow that is no deeper than 50cm is a joy, spike tyres rock, don't forget your bread will be frozen (as will just about every thing else)
IMG_0182 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

P1010341 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

-20 to -35 : also do-able with the right gear and experience but now you have lost your margin for error, a flat tyre is almost impossible to fix, your hands are painful after being exposed to the air for 1 minute. Any plastic bits on your panniers or gear are so brittle they WILL break. You're now running in expedition mode rather than chilling with that extra cup of tea in the morning. You have the constant struggle between being too hot or too cold, your hands and feet being numb, cold or painful. And of course constantly steamed up goggles mean you can't even enjoy the view. Campfires though pretty are more effort than they're worth. Worst of all, you have to sleep in a plastic bag to keep your down dry. Moisture(sweat) management is your main concern.

campfire by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

Winterproof Shane by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

-35 below : Welcome to a cold kind of hell, this is the bit when you often can't even light your stove to melt snow for your drinking water because the fuel doesn't evaporate because its so cold. The sweat in the foam of your goggles freezes to your face and any tea you spill out of your flask instantly freezes to anything it falls on because you;re too damn clumsy with your thick gloves And your biggest worry of the day is how you're going to remove and install all those layers while having a crap without getting frostbite Any blunders now are life threatening . . . . . . . . . .

Trans lab (18) by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

And thats that

Further reading here >>>> http://www.shanecycles.com/category/win ... e-touring/

And for the record, the long dark nights are great, eat at 6, chill for an hour, sleep for 12 hours, spend 3 hours getting ready (everything takes for ever in the morning anyway when its so cold), on the road just before first light

Plus points, beautiful scenery, awesome wild camping. silence

P1010713 by shanecycles.com, on Flickr

Haven't decided if Im going to Scotland, The Lakes or Spain for my trip this winter....Im done with that really cold stuff, its too much like hard work Luckily Helen loves it and will paint a totally different picture

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 13 October 2014 - 10:28pm
I don't tour, but prefer cycling in the winter. It's cooler (I run hot) the hedgerows are leafless so I see more, and there's much less traffic.
Though I am a wuss about ice.

Re: Lights: flashing, bright: article in Cycle

CTC Forum - On the road - 13 October 2014 - 10:24pm
Lance Dopestrong wrote:De Sisti wrote:Lance Dopestrong wrote:You will care that you dazzle others when they can't judge your speed and have you off.

Where's the evidence? Has it happened to you?
Suzuki did much research into this in the 1980s. The human brain calculates an oncoming objects speed by the rate at which it grows against the background. They discovered over bright lights concealed the outline and made it difficult to judge an incoming motorbikes speed, making a T bone scenario more rather than less likely.

I use a bright but sensible light and aim it at the road surface ahead of my bike, not into the faces of incoming road users, so it's never happened to me.

Interesting, and, knowing what I do about visual things, entirely believable.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 13 October 2014 - 10:04pm
horizon wrote:The "touring" bit isn't the problem, lots of people cycle in winter conditions. The problem is the long dark evening. Of course you can spend it in the pub, but then you might as well spend the rest of the night there too...

Maybe technology is the answer - a tablet to while away the time.

I cycle to the shops and back and maybe to friends but touring is something else. Have to say I'm tempted now.

Re: Has anyone ever toured in the winter?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 13 October 2014 - 9:59pm
The "touring" bit isn't the problem, lots of people cycle in winter conditions. The problem is the long dark evening. Of course you can spend it in the pub, but then you might as well spend the rest of the night there too...

Maybe technology is the answer - a tablet to while away the time.
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