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Road bike or mountain bike?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 May 2015 - 7:55am
Hi,

I am planning a short solo tour (up to a week) somewhere in the UK this summer and an overnight trip before that to test things out. As this is my first experience of touring I don't want to get a new bike at this stage, so I have the choice of the bikes I have already.

Which of these would be a better choice for use in the uk mostly on road, but with some use of Sustrans bike trails?

Road bike (Forme Longcliffe 2): Aluminum frame, 700x23 tyres
Mountain bike: Aluminium frame, hard tail, front suspension fork, 26x1.5 tyres (hybrid tyres that I added for commuting before I had the road bike)

I will be camping, but travelling as light as I can (probably about 12kg of stuff) with rear rack and panniers and handlebar bag.

Thanks for you help,

Tim

Re: LLC and Wales Questions

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 10:37pm
On foot, I have often been one of the last passengers to arrive at the airport. With a bike, I try to be one of the first. I aim for 4 hours before flight departure regardless of regulations, it just eases my nerves. You never know what could go wrong with the bike packing and checking in routine. I've flown with a bike 9 times. Maybe when I've flown 90 times I'll start taking more chances.

Re: Ian Austin MP - Couldn't make it up

CTC Forum - On the road - 27 May 2015 - 10:26pm
Ppl need to get real. Man drives from one town to London and decides to sit in car during a protest that blocks roads for 2.5 hours rather than park up. Wow! Lock the guy up, castigate him on Twitter and forums. Give the guy a break.
So while sat in a car he's to Google carpark near his location then drive to it when the roads are in gridlock due to protest. Yes a load of car parks nearby, but if he didn't know where they were or get there then not helpful after the fact.
He cycles in London and elsewhere so I'm guessing he commutes that way when staying in London. Parking out of London then riding in sounds good but do you know what he was carrying? Could have boxes of paperwork, clothes for several weeks or other stuff that would not fit on a folding bike. Easy to suggest the folding bike without those facts about what he needed and was carrying in the car.

All this story seems to me as a good reason for MPs to not use Twitter. You post something as a lighthearted banter and because you are not face to face with the reader to clarify any offence or misunderstanding it triggers a backlash. I bet he wishes he'd not posted it. That was his only "crime" as far as I'm concerned. The backlash is just ridiculous MP bashing.

Re: LLC and Wales Questions

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 10:22pm
I am flying United and they simply say that 'some' overseas airports request 3-hrs prior to departure.

My flight is on a Wednesday, which I don't think is a particular busy day for airports (generally). I always like to be early and was planning on 2hours before hand, but I will see what the Taxi people say too.

Re: Touring in Norway

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 10:19pm
I've been busy doing GCSEs lately so haven't been able to do much planning for my Norway trip but with just over one month before i leave i need to get a few things sorted.

I've had a new idea for my route through the south of norway. I thought instead of doing the Rallarsvegen east to west on the way to Bergen i could go on the section of the rallarsvegen from Voss to Flam after Bergen and go further south on the way to bergen. I thought i could do this by mainly following the E134 and going on smaller nearby roads when they are there. Looking at a map it looks like there are roads to go round all the tunnels that are forbidden for cyclists along the route but please let me know if that isn't true. I then though I could go north along the shore of Sorfjorden (I'm not sure whether to go on route 13 on east side or 550 on the west). I'd then follow Hardiangerfjorden till Norheimsund and then go along the smaller roads into Bergen.
Coming back out of Bergen looking at the tunnel map i can't avoid the tunnels on the E16 to Voss so i'd have to go south via Norheimsund. Maybe on the way to bergen i'd go on the south side of Hardangerfjorden so on the way to voss i'm not going down the same roads. I'd then follow the Rallarsvegen to Flam and then i'd like to go over the small mountain pass road to Laerdalsoyri. It looks like a hell of a climb but from google maps it looks absolutely incredible and so much fun so i really want to do it. I'm then not sure what to do when I get to Laerdalsoyri. Is there a ferry taht goes across to Kaupanger or anywhere nearby? My plan would then be to go up Sognefjellet road and beyond.

Could you let me know if there is anything with this route that wouldn't work or you think would be better done differently. This seems to be the most complicated part of the trip so i'm planning most of it now whereas the rest i'm pretty much leaving to decide when i get there. What i plan on doing is marking on tunnels that are forbidden for cyclists with no alternate route on my map in the areas im fairly sure i'll be going through.

Any further advice would be most welcome.

Re: Ian Austin MP - Couldn't make it up

CTC Forum - On the road - 27 May 2015 - 10:16pm
old_windbag wrote:On a side note to do with the distance, I think it was nicholas crane on his maps programme who pointed out to underground passengers how short the distance was between particular stations. It was just that people viewed the underground map ( as it has no defined linear scale ) and went station to station.

I find this London Tube map with the walking times between stations on it useful. After walking one or two you can recalibrate the times to your own walking speed.
http://www.tubehotels.com/blog/wp-conte ... k-map1.jpg

Re: LLC and Wales Questions

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 10:01pm
I have been quoted 3h check in for flights to US from Manchester. It can get very busy and I often find I need most of 2h even when travelling light. Given your luggage situation I would get there as early as possible.

Re: Lightweight packable trousers - recommendations please

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 9:42pm
mnichols wrote:thirdcrank wrote:If you do make it to TKmaxx, keep your mind firmly on what you went in for. You may otherwise come out with all sorts you didn't know you needed till you saw it in there at a bargain price. (I have a pair of Ventile trousers original price £300, to me £10.)

Wow, that's a real bargain. Seems more like a treasure hunt than a jumble sale at those prices
It's a bit of both. They don't do organisation well; you need twice as long to shop there as other places. If it was ever sorted by more than trousers, shirts, etc. the organisations was destroyed by the first two year old let loose in there. Which means if you want a pair of trousers, you practically have to examine every pair of trousers that looks vaguely as if it might be the right type and size. So, the bargains come at the price of a bit of time.

That said, I used to buy all of my socks for long distance walking there. I would pay £2 or 3 for the same socks that were £10 in Blacks or someplace like that.

Re: Lightweight packable trousers - recommendations please

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 9:34pm
Get a pair of golfing or walking ones from TK Maxx or one of the warehouse type outdoor places; whatever happens to be on sale.

Re: Handlebar bag as security risk

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 9:32pm
LollyKat wrote:climo wrote:I asked recently about a soft bag, the kind you would normally carry over your shoulder, with a barbag fixing. It could have a supporting basket like frame which stayed on the bike. Much more comfortable to carry & less like carrying a hat box. Sadly no one knew of any.
I guess a very large barbag / shopping basket with a soft bag in it would work but not as neat. Gap in the market as it would sell to urban short distance cyclists IMO.

What about this Handbag Hugger? It wouldn't fit all handlebars but could well suit urban utility bikes.
Hmmm.. not quite what I had in mind. It looks pretty industrial. Sort of in that direction though, well sort of

Re: Lightweight packable trousers - recommendations please

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 9:15pm
TrevA wrote:You can get Craghoppers for £15-£20 a pair in TKMax. The RRP is £40. Other places like Yeomans do them for £20-£25 and sometimes cheaper if you buy 2 pairs.
+1

I live in the Craghopper Stretch Pro when touring

They have enough stretch and comfort to be worn with a padded cycle "insert" and also wear in the evening... and if you want there is both a full and 3/4 length in green or black

... ans (sacrilegious though this may be) are far more suitable to cycling then Rohan

Re: Lightweight packable trousers - recommendations please

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 9:01pm
thirdcrank wrote:If you do make it to TKmaxx, keep your mind firmly on what you went in for. You may otherwise come out with all sorts you didn't know you needed till you saw it in there at a bargain price. (I have a pair of Ventile trousers original price £300, to me £10.)

Wow, that's a real bargain. Seems more like a treasure hunt than a jumble sale at those prices

Re: Ian Austin MP - Couldn't make it up

CTC Forum - On the road - 27 May 2015 - 9:01pm
Wouldn't the council or whomever have been forewarned that there was going to be a protest taking place. Surly he would of checked his journey before hand ?

Bike protest and the likes get publicized so i am sure the taxi one would have as well

Re: Crossing the river Rance St Malo

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 8:52pm
When I used it a few years ago they seemed very used to loaded bikes. I wasn't the only one and it was very little hassle.

Re: London to Paris - Dieppe camping

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 8:49pm
I camped in Dieppe a couple of years ago. The town is in a big dip so the site I stayed at felt like a bit of a hard fought treck (it was a lovely small site, but I can't remember the name) and I wouldn't fancy it at that time. I'd go with the hostel/hotel option and start afresh the next day. There are plenty of places for a good breakfast.

Re: LLC and Wales Questions

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 8:40pm
mcallaghan wrote:Also - trying to figure out when to book a taxi to the Manchester Airport. Everything I am reading suggests getting there 3-hours before your flight for an international flight? That seems an awful long time to me, especially given how in the US with our security they only request 2-hours before your flight. So should I am to get their for 8AM for an 11AM departure?
Where are you reading 3 hours? I would have said that 2 hours is probably enough. Manchester isn't a huge airport, but I also haven't flown through there in some years. What does the information from you airline suggest? Check in time is 2 hours ahead?

Security can be slow at British airports. They make frequent changes to the requirements and equipment, and if a couple of people call in sick or something it can mean long queues (lines).

When I fly out of airports that I'm not familiar with, I tend to be rather cautious. I'd rather sit around an airport needlessly than miss a plane because I was stood in a queue.

Re: Ian Austin MP - Couldn't make it up

CTC Forum - On the road - 27 May 2015 - 8:33pm
His Twitter strap line or whatever it's called reads ' MP for Dudley, the greatest place in the world. Cyclist and Villa fan.
At work or on my bike'

There's a couple things wrong there, description of Dudley and the at work. Is a job where all you really have to do is turn up when the whips tell you and vote how they say really work as it's generally understood. Oh and I guess most true Dudley folk will support the Baggies.

Re: London to Paris - Dieppe camping

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 27 May 2015 - 8:18pm
Late arrival in france is not a problem i have arrived at campsites at two in the morning , There is always a way in for cyclists , Receptions are closed and you can pay the the next morning . I have arrived in Le Havre at four in the morning . once your out on the road and in the fresh air tiredness is of no concern . You could aim to spend the first night on the somme see some history on your trip .

Re: Police Had Pulled Over a Driver

CTC Forum - On the road - 27 May 2015 - 8:17pm
I now have this recollection, back when I was a kid (early 1960s I think it was) of us being pulled over by the cops whilst on a camping holiday in Italy. They had staked out a position just past a bend, with a solid white centre line, pulled us over, and accused my father of having crossed the line. Now, it's quite normal to let a couple of wheels stray over the line on a left-hand bend (in drive-on-the-right countries that is), so as to take the curve more smoothly. But the policeman kept on shouting "tutta la macchina" implying that the whole car was over the line. My father vehemently denied this (in his broken Italian) and challenged them to prove it. They were demanding an on-the-spot fine of something like 6,000 lire (about £3 back then - but that would be £60-£70 in today's money). My father stood his ground (he was quite an argumentative sort of bloke) and at length they backed off and let him go. Afterwards my father, recalling the incident, used to say he was sure they were running a scam*, picking on cars with foreign number plates and pocketing the fines.

I think I'd have caved in and paid the money, if it was me....

*I don't think my father would have used the word "scam" though - did it exist back in the 1960s?
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