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Re: Geraint Thomas E3 Harelbeke win

CTC Forum - Racing - 29 March 2015 - 12:10am
Yes, great stuff by 'G'. First cycling I've watched on TV this year (forgot about MSR) and really looking forward to the Spring classics!

Re: Carrying currency on a tour in Europe

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 9:26pm
Maybe I've been lucky, but never had any issues of losing money abroad, and a card is as susceptible as cash to being stolen. It is a long time since I paid for accommodation in holland and Germany etc., but certainly used cash as usually just arrived on spec anyway. When I first toured abroad I took travellers cheques but got annoyed at the cost, buying them in the first place, exchanging them then converting the cash back to sterling. Viva the euro and simplicity.

Only items I have had stolen was saddle; Copenhagen yh, and a map I had left under map clip when tandem was left in German hotel dining room.

Re: Newcastle port to central station - route wanted

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 9:13pm
you might have to wait a while.. few pics from my last vist





Re: Trangia in USA

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 9:06pm
Thanks for that Des. Yes, we've got similar warnings from Canadian Affair about having clean components. Makes you laugh really when you think of all that duty-free alcohol sitting just above you in the overhead lockers.

Re: Geraint Thomas E3 Harelbeke win

CTC Forum - Racing - 28 March 2015 - 8:08pm
+1
Absolute corker! Well done Geraint.

Gluten Free

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 7:03pm
I'm doing the Coast & Castles south in September but I've recently found out I have to follow a gluten free diet. Is there anyone out there who is also gluten free that may have done the route and found some good places to eat?

Re: Carrying currency on a tour in Europe

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 6:42pm
bainbridge wrote:This means you'll be paying a charge (in some way) on every purchase doesn't it?

You're paying a charge in some way or another anyway. For example the places that offer 0% commission on the transaction seem to have dreadful exchange rates compared to those that charge per transaction. On my debit card, the exchange rate is pretty close to spot but I pay a transaction fee. e.g. today the Visa Exchange Rate for Euro to Pounds is 0.738. The spot rate according to xe.com is 0.732. The Post Office rate is 0.758 with no commission. That means £2 less changing €100 into sterling.

The thing to beware is those chip and pin readers that offer you the option to pay in sterling. The exchange rates they offer are usually abysmal so always select the local currency and let your card company do the conversion.

Re: D&G circular

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 6:37pm
Looks perfectly OK for a touring bike to me.

To check these routes out, go to http://cycle.travel/map , set up a route that goes up the track you are interested in (drag the route onto the track if the suggested route doesn't take it), then click on the route and select "find photos" to get a selection of photos from geograph.org, among which there will generally be several showing what the track is like. The photos are closest to the click first.
For example:
http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/2758115
http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/2136145
http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/2136029
http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/3346944

There's always the possibility that the Forestry Commission will have decided to chop some tree down and churn up the track, but you'll just have to chance that.
http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/3345793

Re: Should I just stick with 26" wheels?

CTC Forum - MTB - 28 March 2015 - 5:25pm
Regurgatron wrote:
The 29ers are significantly faster up and down the mountain compared to my old 26" bikes,

B******s.

The good news for the 26" dinosaurs is that they can now pick up loads of high-end 26" kit cheap as chips as the serious riders move to 27.5 and 29.

Pretty please with sugar on top, explain to us 'non-serious' types what a serious rider is. I await with baited breath.

Re: Taking a bike on a train

CTC Forum - On the road - 28 March 2015 - 4:46pm
Does anyone have any experience of taking cycles on South Eastern Trains? Unlike Southern they don't seem to have doors marked for wheelchair and cycle users.

Re: Newcastle port to central station - route wanted

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 4:32pm
loafer wrote:
just use the Shields ferry instead

Nah I want to do the tunnels

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

CTC Forum - On the road - 28 March 2015 - 4:15pm
The Mechanic wrote:IHowever, I would like to point out that I am a cyclist, have 5 bikes and also drive a 4x4, and it is a BMW! What does that make me? A murdering mania one minute and a complaining cyclist the next?

Yep Especially if you ask the cyclopath lobby !

More seriously, I think this may have di to with the extra width of an SUV and people who drive them only part time, and something narrower at other times.

Even a big Merc S Class is a good foot narrower than a Range Rover, so if the driver places themselves in the same position on the road you can see the problem.

My most expensive road accident was when I pulled out of a space concentrating on the traffic, not the Saab parked in front, in a Fiat Multipla immediately after having driven a small hatchback. The overlap was about 9 inches and it cost about 7k. Never again.

Ferdinand

Re: Newcastle port to central station - route wanted

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 3:54pm
wirral_cyclist wrote:Chiz wrote:The Tyne Pedestrian and Cyclist Tunnel is still closed unfortunately. The firm that was carrying out the work has gone bust, speaking to the tunnel operator (TT2 Limited), they reckon another twelve months based on getting another firm in straight away but that's not likely as the local authority have ran out of money for the refurb.

It's been an absolute farce since the start.


Oh I'm so glad you posted this!
I was planning a mini tour to include the tunnels this summer, it means I can concentrate on some of the other stuff on the 'must do' list instead.

just use the Shields ferry instead

Re: D&G circular

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 3:52pm
I'm not sure exactly which off road route you are intending to use near Newton Stewart but last year I rode the CTC "Big Country" ride which loops around Newton Stewart and Glentrool. It's a circular ride of 58k and is well worth riding but I would recommend not using a road or touring bike. When I rode it last year there were quite a few sections where the FC had laid down hardcore and anything other than an mtb would struggle. There are also plenty of sections of rough fire road so I would suggest that yoiu have a look at the 7 Stanes website for Glentrool and clarify if your proposed route uses the "Big Country" loop

Re: Beware Gatwick / Norwegian airline & unpacked bikes

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 2:53pm
Hi,
Slightly off topic but has anyone tried to fly Norwegian with a packed bike as hold luggage? Mine comes in at 19.5kg in a BikeBoxAlan which meets the dimensions requirements for hold luggage. However I don't know whether to book it as a bike as I don't want to get stung at the airport. Any advice appreciated?

Cheers
Simon

Re: Carrying currency on a tour in Europe

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 2:40pm
bainbridge wrote:Vorpal wrote:I use my debit card, as well. I only carry enough cash for a taxi in an emergency, or to pick up a few things at a rural stop, if I can.

I think cash is riskier than a card. If you don't want to use your normal debit card, get a prepaid one.

This means you'll be paying a charge (in some way) on every purchase doesn't it?

I use my debit card & ATM's on tours, I pay about 3% on my Euro tours, this is not a significant cost to me and well worth paying for the convenience, not having to worry about and carry cash.

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

CTC Forum - On the road - 28 March 2015 - 2:40pm
stewartpratt wrote:I can't confidently say I notice a strong trend for any vehicle type. Confirmation bias is a very easy trap to fall into.

Me neither (after 20 years of cycle commuting)... except perhaps white vans.

Re: D&G circular

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 28 March 2015 - 1:35pm
Unless they have spent loads of money (which I doubt) take as durable and comfortable tyre as you can manage, as when I was there two years ago even some of the main A roads (classed as Trunk roads) were like ploughed fields, many minor roads were almost unridable on a road bike. I contacted the council upon my return, and was told thay had had a hard winter - but this was August, so plenty of time to fix the issues if they had a mind to.

Re: Should I just stick with 26" wheels?

CTC Forum - MTB - 28 March 2015 - 1:29pm
I've got 2 29ers - a long travel full sus and a rigid singlespeed.

The 29ers are significantly faster up and down the mountain compared to my old 26" bikes, and the idea they are somehow less 'agile' or 'nimble' is just plain nonsense. I would not contemplate going back to a 26" wheeled bike.

The good news for the 26" dinosaurs is that they can now pick up loads of high-end 26" kit cheap as chips as the serious riders move to 27.5 and 29.
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