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  1. #1
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    The Bee goes on a Tour

    OK- So what in tarnation am I getting my self into? My friend has invited me to join her group on an adventure - December 26 for a few days to ride the Natchez Trace Parkway... Form one end (MS to TN). I guess I would have panniers (SP?) could I add them to my Specialized Dolce Elite bike?). I would need to carry my stuff - Oy Vey! Did I say that? But man wouldn't it be something. We'd camp out... eat what we bring (man I hope there's food I can go find - cause that's the part I am dreading... dried whatever... yowza!) I may bring a guy I am dating - who is really quite a biker - and can help me carry stuff - but not sure as we are just dating and I do not know if we will be serious then or not - but he too has been invited since he knows the group as well. I would be prepared to take 100% care of myself - but if he is along I am sure it makes life easier.and he is quite sweet.

    So ok - advice... thoughts...experiences....

    In October I am going on a 3 day camping and biking trip. Admittedly we stay put with the tent - so just set it up and forget it (i think) and I can ride free- w/o carrying anything since all rides are SAG supported... The Bee does a Century stay tuned. So I will see if even the camping thing is for me... Cause ya know the Bee does like a nice hotel! But alas - when in Rome...and ya know I would like to have a bit of an adventure.

    OK - have at it! (Private Messages are welcome...as are posts thoughts and grievances...)

  2. #2
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    I don't know if you can put panniers on a Dolce. The chain stays may be too short and your heels would hit. You may be able to use a trailer instead.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

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  3. #3
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    I'd definitepy suggest a trailer. I do trailer touring and it's the way to go. There are a couple of ways you can do it.......

    Cheap way: A used child trailer for your cargo. You can pick one up fpr $50-$75. ;0


    The best route, a Burley Nomad trailer, or a BOB Trailer.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

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  4. #4
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DieselDan View Post
    I don't know if you can put panniers on a Dolce. The chain stays may be too short and your heels would hit. You may be able to use a trailer instead.

    Ok - I am in no way a trailer type of gal. Jessh that seems like a lot of work. Now you will think me spoiled rotten - but I would rather buy a bike (Though - I wonder what that would cost!! ) that could include paniers then pull a trailer. Actually I am spoiled - though I would pay for this myself. But really I am lazy - and pulling a trailer sounds like more work then riding with panniers... But what in the Same Heck do I know??

    Yowza. But it would be my vacation and Xmas - and otherwise this is a low cost vacation... so maybe. The same woman who invited me is also planning a cross country ride in a few years - so I could use the bike then as well. And ofcourse there's BRAG...But I do not think I would need the panniers for that.
    Last edited by Missbumble; 09-07-08 at 07:44 PM.

  5. #5
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe View Post
    I'd definitepy suggest a trailer. I do trailer touring and it's the way to go. There are a couple of ways you can do it.......

    Cheap way: A used child trailer for your cargo. You can pick one up fpr $50-$75. ;0


    The best route, a Burley Nomad trailer, or a BOB Trailer.
    See my post abouot being lazy...but I looked up the Burly on line and well I already lug about 50 pounds extar weight and have been as much as a friggin hundred pounds overweight - so I already schlepp alot of weight....maybe I could pull a trailer...or I I did have the man come along - we could take turns pulling it and share the work... Ah so much to think about...

  6. #6
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Pulling a trailer is easier than panniers. The apparent load on your bike is 5-10 pounds and when you get it rolling, the only time you remember it's there is if you go up a hill and you realize it's heavier. On the flats, you don't even notice it. I've used a kid trailer for my last tours and it's excellent.



    I was touring VERY heavy for the first few days since I was traversing the Superior National Forest and had no services and even had to pack in water and food for a few days. I started with a 100 pound touring load, which shrank as I consumed. I also had to carry warm clothes, since the Upper Peninsula of Michigan can still get below freezing in June.









    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  7. #7
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Ok Tom - That definitely looks like fun. So lemme get this straight - a 100 pound load in the trailer feels like 5-10 pounds? If true - then man o shevitz I could pull that! And a lot cheaper than another bike!! I like it. And I have no idea what to eat - etc. Will go to REI and look - I also need a tent and sleeping bag... This is pretty wild to me. Ok the bee is all excited - think I will go read my Heft on Wheels book and then find a good touring book. Any good novels? (or just go read your posts!)

  8. #8
    Senior Member deraltekluge's Avatar
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    A 100 lb trailer is only maybe 10 lb downward load on the bike's wheels. The trailer's wheels support the rest of the load. On the flat, the extra effort required is whatever the drag (mechanical and aerodynamic) of the trailer happens to be. Going uphill, though, you still have to lift the whole thing.

    I presume that towing a trailer with a bike is like towing one with a car, where you want about 10% of the trailer's weight supported by the hitch...otherwise, it's unstable.

  9. #9
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    Don't listen to Tom! Get a LHT like us cool kids! You need a new bike!

    I'm a bit jealous of you Miss Bee, I've been preparing to go on my first tour in January. I am not making as many fat stacks (of cash) as I'd like (things are getting slow at work and no OT available atm), so I've been slowly purchasing my gear. My plan is to do a two week tour through Death Valley and the Mojave in late December/early January. I hope to have enough gear ready in the next week or two so that I can do a few weekend camping trips this month and next since things are slow at work anyway.

    I tell you what, getting started touring can be expensive though. I'm planning around 1000 USD for my trip, which includes all gear (except my bike), flight out there (will be riding out of Vegas), food, etc. So far I have purchased my tent... and that's it! I got a Big Agnes Seedhouse 1, it's nice and light... about 3.5 lbs. I have some cheap nashbar panniers and a cheap rear rack, so I will probably use those for now, and get the ones I really want later this fall. This week I will order my sleep bag and pad(Big Agnes Encampment +15*(3.25 lbs) and BA Insolated AirCore (1.5 lbs)), and I should be ready for some light camping.

    I am thinking about getting a dehydrator and doing my own meals. I am hoping to borrow one first so I can test this out, but it is my understanding that you can dry your food and put it in the zip lock bag, and then later add boiling water, and it will retain virtually all of it's nutrients and flavor. Otherwise, you can always cook simple meals involving rice or pasta if you don't want to do the mountain house/backpackers pantry/etc bagged meals.

    Anyway, if you stop by the touring forum, there are lots of friendly and knowledgeable people that will help you get what you need. BF member IntoThickAir (Jim Malusa is his real name) has written a book about touring, and has been very helpful in helping people plan tours. You might check that out.
    Last edited by mesasone; 09-07-08 at 09:02 PM.

  10. #10
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    I pull my 38 lb. 3 year old in a trailer several times a week. If you train with it for a few weeks you won't even remember it's back there (the trailer not the kid. He's a really good riding partner). Unless its windy........ Then they kinda suck.

  11. #11
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Yeep, you got it right. MIssB, if you're doing the Trace, you won't have to load anywhere near as heavily as I did for mine. There are lots of services along the way.

    Read this

    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?...c_id=1544&v=8G

    By the way, that's a BOB trailer you'll see in the cover pic. Determine if you are going to camp tour, or credit card tour as well. The gear load makes a big difference.

    Here's a bit of info on the trip, including a terrain profile, in PDF I just put together for you.

    http://www.badongo.com/file/11250200
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  12. #12
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by Missbumble View Post
    Ok Tom - That definitely looks like fun. So lemme get this straight - a 100 pound load in the trailer feels like 5-10 pounds? If true - then man o shevitz I could pull that! And a lot cheaper than another bike!! I like it. And I have no idea what to eat - etc. Will go to REI and look - I also need a tent and sleeping bag... This is pretty wild to me. Ok the bee is all excited - think I will go read my Heft on Wheels book and then find a good touring book. Any good novels? (or just go read your posts!)
    It's not just Tom's posts you should read, Ms. Bee.

    BTW, I doubt you will be pulling 100 pounds of gear. My Yakima Big Tow trailer weighs 12 pounds. Add six for the tent, five for the sleeping bag, 20 for clothes, tools, etc, and I'm still under 50 pounds for nine days of camping. And I'm still carrying too much stuff!

  13. #13
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mesasone View Post
    Don't listen to Tom! Get a LHT like us cool kids! You need a new bike!


    I am thinking about getting a dehydrator and doing my own meals. I am hoping to borrow one first so I can test this out, but it is my understanding that you can dry your food and put it in the zip lock bag, and then later add boiling water, and it will retain virtually all of its nutrients and flavor.
    My friend who wants me to join her on this trip ahs a dehydrator and loves it! Dehydrates spaghetti sauce with meat... I think that will be pretty cool. I wonder...

    OK - so don't be jealous. I have a decent job - but no family/kids...so I have the disposable cash to buy a bike (but should probably put the money on a down payment for a condo....! I am not sure the intelligence of buying a new bike - as I like the idea of touring a bi - but don't think it will be all that often -as I travel way too much at my job to travel a ton on weekends. Once I land back in Atlanta I sort of treasure my bed- so I may need to keep the equipment as light as possible... so if a trailer were to work I'd consider it. That said... pulling it up hill may be really hard...but maybe my pounds of fat will melt off in the processed could carry more stuff.

  14. #14
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DieselDan View Post
    I don't know if you can put panniers on a Dolce. The chain stays may be too short and your heels would hit. You may be able to use a trailer instead.

    Thanks Dan! I will check it out - may have to go trailer route...The plot thickens

  15. #15
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    It's not just Tom's posts you should read, Ms. Bee.

    BTW, I doubt you will be pulling 100 pounds of gear. My Yakima Big Tow trailer weighs 12 pounds. Add six for the tent, five for the sleeping bag, 20 for clothes, tools, etc, and I'm still under 50 pounds for nine days of camping. And I'm still carrying too much stuff!

    Hey Neil - I am definitely reading them all! Just read the CrazyguyonaBike story and will keep on reading. Just have been slow to respond to all the notes as I went to bed early last night. I appreciate everyones thoughts - and have even gone and dabled in the touring forum.

    I am still trying to figure out how much of this is for me. WIll need to speak to the travelling companions...cause one thing I ma hoping for is like the guys on the crazyguy tour - that they will seek out markets/bike shops restaurants too. Cause all packaged meals may drive the bee nuts!

  16. #16
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdiamond View Post
    I pull my 38 lb. 3 year old in a trailer several times a week. If you train with it for a few weeks you won't even remember it's back there (the trailer not the kid. He's a really good riding partner). Unless its windy........ Then they kinda suck.

    Good to know! Maybe I could put the cats back there and pull them on a trail to train? Seriously, this will be alot of work to get ready for - so it may be too soon in my biking career. We shall see.
    Last edited by Missbumble; 09-08-08 at 07:33 AM.

  17. #17
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deraltekluge View Post
    A 100 lb trailer is only maybe 10 lb downward load on the bike's wheels. The trailer's wheels support the rest of the load. On the flat, the extra effort required is whatever the drag (mechanical and aerodynamic) of the trailer happens to be. Going uphill, though, you still have to lift the whole thing.

    I presume that towing a trailer with a bike is like towing one with a car, where you want about 10% of the trailer's weight supported by the hitch...otherwise, it's unstable.

    Thanks Deraltekluge! Up hills gotta be tough like this!

  18. #18
    Lanterne Rouge
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    I've done tours with panniers, and they radically change the feel of the bike, and require a frame that can handle a lot more stress.

    That being said, I now have a bike that's purpose built for touring, and the next time I do it, I think I will get a BoB trailer. It seems so much easier to work with, and the fact that you can take the trailer off the moment you get to camp without any trouble is a big plus in my book.
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  19. #19
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    Not an expect by any means but I looked up your bike on Specialized site and the wheels have 28 spokes which is usually too few for carrying gear in panniers. You'll probably break at least one spoke and my experience is that once one spoke breaks more are to follow. I recommend using a trailer.

    Also, I think your bike might not have enough low gears for climbing hills while hauling your own gear. Even a small hill or climb will feel like a mountain at the end of a long day. Just my $.02.

    Mark

  20. #20
    I'm a Cyclist! Missbumble's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone - well so far - it looks like I won't be going on this tour just yet - so I am going to concentrate on road biking and either car camping or having BRAG or SGAs tote my stuff! I am fickle!!! Also the people I was going with decided that there were too many people on the trip - so I am going to let this one slide - and be a spoiled child relying on car camping, hotels, tents or SAG vehicles and not toting my own gear on trips for now.I will be doing a 3 day Car Camp and Bike with BRAG in october - but I will be driving to the site - and then set up camp and ride each day out of one site. So no touring per se!

    But lots of good advice and info from y'all! Thank you. I have learned a lot!!! And admire all of you that tour immensley - and ride - and lose weight - and just keep coming here supporting me and each other!

    The Bee...Keep on riding

  21. #21
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    I disagree - you will be touring but supported touring. My wife and I started out doing day long rides, then moved on to supported touring and finally I went out on a self-supported tour this summer. Touring is getting out on your bike and riding - doesn't matter what kind of support. Good luck.

    Mark

  22. #22
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigRock View Post
    I disagree - you will be touring but supported touring. My wife and I started out doing day long rides, then moved on to supported touring and finally I went out on a self-supported tour this summer. Touring is getting out on your bike and riding - doesn't matter what kind of support. Good luck.

    Mark
    I'll agree with Mark, your still touring, a tour is any time you ride two or more consecutive days, where your start point on the next day is your end point the day before. I have not toured, but plan to, next year, and have done a lot of research, this is what I have found. This is broken down into three types of tour, in descending order by cost...

    The credit card tour, you carry very little gear, maybe a couple of clothing changes, and some toiletries, and most important a credit card. You stay at Hotels, Motels, Inns, B&Bs, eat meals in restaurants and fast food places. The problem with it is, you better make sure you have a lot of credit room on the card, it gets kind of expensive, if your tour is more then a fewf days.

    The supported tour, is where you have a motor vehicle hauling gear from one point to the next, with larger groups this can be reasonably inexpensive, providing they have a good system for identifying gear. Most nights you camp, so you get there, grab your gear from the motor vehicle, then set up your camp. The same motor vehicle can often act as a SAG as well. I say motor vehicle because for small groups it could be a car, a little larger group might use a van, still larger might toss everything into a 3 or 5 ton (cube van). Other groups might use a charter bus....

    The self supported tour, all gear goes into a trailer or panniers, and you haul everything with pedal power, this has the advantage of, you can always change your route or stopping point, what can be a drag though is breakdowns, when you just know the nearest town is 20 miles away....

    It's best to know about some rudimentary field bike repair, and carry a few common parts like a folding tire, a couple of tubes, a brake and a dérailleur cable, a half dozen extra chain links, a couple of spare spokes or a couple of those temporary spokes, I forget the real name for those. This way if you breakdown on the road, you can effect enough of a field repair to get you to a large enough town with a bike shop. Don't forget the handyman's secret weapon, duct tape.

    If your tour is going to be more then 10 days, plan an off day, in a hotel/motel, this will let you unpack all your gear, resort it, effect any required repairs, resupply, clean everything, and repack. Things kinda get disorganized when camping. Especially if making or breaking camp in the rain. Make sure there is a laundromat nearby, so you can dry everything out.

    Just got an idea, before you start a tour, after planning your route, list all the towns, cities, villages your going through and near, and look up the bike shops online, Make a list of the shops include, name, address, telephone number, nearest major intersection, order the list by city. town or village name. If you taco a wheel just outside of Wazoo, and can straighten it enough to go a short way, knowing there is a bike shop at 235 Union Street near the corner of Union and Division Streets in Wazoo, can really be helpful.

  23. #23
    Not safe for work cyclokitty's Avatar
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    Now I'm all jealous cuz people are going on bike tours and I'm stuck at home. Not one of my friends or family likes: riding bikes, and definitely not camping, absolutely not both. Boo! Especially since I want a trailer and super lightweight camping gear, and a dehydrator (I loved those Ronco Dehydrator commercials!). Maybe I need new family and friends?


  24. #24
    Senior Member scrapmetal's Avatar
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    I too think, the trailer is the best way to go.
    Po všetkém hovno, enem po včelách med.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclokitty View Post
    Now I'm all jealous cuz people are going on bike tours and I'm stuck at home. Not one of my friends or family likes: riding bikes, and definitely not camping, absolutely not both. Boo! Especially since I want a trailer and super lightweight camping gear, and a dehydrator (I loved those Ronco Dehydrator commercials!). Maybe I need new family and friends?
    If you want to ride sometime.... PM me, always willing to help out another rider.....

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