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Photo by Adam Coppola
Time is money. Which is a good thing, because I have a whole lot more time than the green stuff. Carrying a tent has always been the great bicycle journey budget stretcher. The cost of hotels can be pricey. On a three month trip, that cost can be devastating. Especially if you are traveling in a part of the world where lodging is expensive.
I know that nutritionists will cringe, but as a touring cyclist I consider ice cream as the Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner of Champions. It should have its own food group category. Ice cream companies should set aside a day each year to celebrate and thank touring cyclists. We are a ravenous revenue source!
Last week, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) announced the approval of two new U.S. Bike Routes: USBR 45 in Minnesota and USBR 35 in Michigan.
Whenever I'm putting together a pack list for a tour, before I even start thinking about what I might need, I always grab the pack list from my previous tour to use as an outline. Since all tours are different, there are things that need to be tweaked here and there. For instance, fenders and warm clothes can stay at home on a tour through Baja, Mexico, while they will be a necessity for touring in Alaska.
Let's start this blog talking about money and connections. Meet Jean Francois Pronovost, standing here with his daughters after a weekend ride on the route network he was instrumental in creating, La Route Verte.
Bicycle touring is a good time, but it also takes up a good amount of time. While we often fill in the time between tours by heading out on day rides, or weekend overnights, there are a lot of other fun things to do on a bike. Here are some of the activities I've enjoyed over the years to fill in the spaces and stay in shape from one tour to another.
BikeToursDirect, a gold-level member, is one of our newer corporate members. Jim Johnson, owner, took time to answer some of our questions and tell us more about his company.
10 easy steps to creating a bike tour blog.
I've just finished Edward P. Jones' extraordinary book, The Known World. Published in 2003, the novel explores the painful relationships wrought by slavery, weaving in a little know historical fact that there were freed blacks who owned slaves.
We know what you're thinking -- how can you NOT be healthy on a bike tour? Read on!
Looking at the faces of bicycle tourists, it seems like it's about a 50/50 split between those who shave and those who don't. For myself, beard growing season happens as soon as the daytime mercury drops below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, which means I'm shaving on long summer tours. Over the years, I more or less had to make due with soap and water when it came to shaving, since I wasn't about to deal with heavy gel aerosol cans. It was never super comfortable, and I nicked myself a lot, but it was better than itchy stubble.
In honor of National Park Week, April 21-29, all 396 U.S. National Parks are offering free entrance admission. Maybe it's time you checked biking to and through a National Park off your bucket list.
We get a lot of questions about what kind of training is needed for a bicycle tour, which is a super broad question. How you train for a tour depends on the difficulty and length of the tour, your experience as a rider, your body type, and health conditions to name just a few factors. Regardless, here's some general advice that can be applied to almost any training regiment.
Last week we heard about a fantastic development via the Virginia Bicycling Federation about the Virginia State Park System. They announced a new policy that ensures long distance touring cyclists will always have a spot to pitch a tent in their parks, even when designated spots are filled.
As touring season ramps up and you’re getting your things together, you may be weighing what you do and do not need to bring, or what you need to make room for as your storage space fills up. Here's how to pare down!
The Escape Bivvy from Adventure Medical Kits is new for 2012, and it is looking to be a beefed up version of their popular Emergency Bivvy. Intended to provide additional warmth when the unexpected occurs, this bivvy reflects body heat back inwards, but also manages to breath out moisture to cut down on condensation buildup.
Spring, a time for training and planning summer bike trips. This year, all my time and energy is devoted to the bike trip of a lifetime — for my youngest son, Mac.
In the 2011 Oct/Nov issue of Adventure Cyclist I wrote a column titled The Decision. It got a lot of responses. I recently read the column on Weekday, a show on public radio station KUOW in Seattle.
The cherry blossoms were in full bloom and I thoroughly enjoyed the spring (or summer) weather while I attended the 2012 National Bike Summit at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. last week.
It never fails, no matter how iron clad your pack list is, there will always be something you realize you missed, in addition to lot of things you realize you don't really need. For the extra items, you can always ship those back home when you reach a post office, and with the items you forgot, you can usually pick them along they way. One fun thing about touring is that when I say pick thing up along the way, I really mean along the way. Over the years, I've found a lot of odd items laying on or next to the road while riding that I have found useful.
In this video produced by America ByCycle about Adventure Cycling, America ByCycle heads to the Adventure Cycling Association headquarters in Missoula, Montana to meet the people behind the maps. There they finally get to weigh their fully-loaded bikes, meet Greg Siple, one of the founders of Bikecentennial and Adventure Cycling Association, and get their portraits taken.
In 1996, I was eleven years old. I will never forget the classes' reaction to finding out our classmate, Jared, was born on February 29.