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Thread: Cycling at Sea

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    Cycling at Sea

    Here it is the start of the most beautiful cycling weather in Maine and where will I be for the next month? On an extended voyage aboard the QM2, crossing the Atlantic to England then to the Mediterranean and back home to New York. Guess I better take along my training journal and plan on hitting the gym to do some spinning. Bad enough in a few short months I will be back on the porch on my trainer. How could I have known I would have such a passion for cycling a year ago when we booked this trip?
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    Badger Biker ctyler's Avatar
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    Bummer. I'm off to the Outerbanks for a week in October and am taking my bike. Too bad there's not a track you can ride around on the ship. ;-)
    It's a good day to ride.
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    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    When we had a cruise to Alaska, one of the options was a shore excursion bicycle ride, which we took. Not very long, but nice. Any chances for a bicycle shore excursion on your cruise.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

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    Senior Member seemunkee's Avatar
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    Maybe you can toss one of these over and try to keep up with the ship
    waterbike..jpg

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    cycling fanatic Ken Brown's Avatar
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    I love cycling but I would gladly trade a month of cycling at home for a month on the QM2. Enjoy the trip.

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    Ships not only have stationary bikes but spinning classes. Take advanatge of the classes, which are a hard workout, as well as training on the bikes. Find some training programs for stationaries and do them. You can easily find yourself in better shape when your return than riding at home.
    You're just trying to start an argument to show how smart you are.

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    Senior Member Garilia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seemunkee View Post
    Maybe you can toss one of these over and try to keep up with the ship
    waterbike..jpg
    too funny

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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
    When we had a cruise to Alaska, one of the options was a shore excursion bicycle ride, which we took. Not very long, but nice. Any chances for a bicycle shore excursion on your cruise.
    Just realized this was a question to which I had not responded. Unfortunately, one of the shortcomings of a cruise like this is that the ship normally only stops one day at each port. Also, my wife does not cycle anymore so that also is a limiting factor. Perhaps the best I can do is take some photos of cycling in the different countries as a sort of photo journalist effort and post a few here when I get back.
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    There is only one solution to your problem. Go immediately to the post office and mail the tickets to me and my bride.

    Since you're a fellow forum member we are willing to go on this extended excursion in your place which will enable you to spend a glorious Autumn cycling in Maine. We would not make such an extreme sacrifice for just anyone you know, but like I said...for a forum member....we'll suffer through it. Just be sure to post several reports with pictures for us to enjoy while we're trapped on board.

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    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sculptor7 View Post
    Unfortunately, one of the shortcomings of a cruise like this is that the ship normally only stops one day at each port. Also, my wife does not cycle anymore so that also is a limiting factor.
    Typical of most cruises - one day of planned - and paid for - activitiy at each port. On our Alaska cruise, in the first town (Ketchikan) we went on rubber rafts to an island and a hike through the rain forest, another (Juneau) we went to Mendenhall Glacier, and the third (Skagway) we bicycled through an old ghost town at the start of the Yulon Trail.

    However, since your wife no longer rides, it is academic.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

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    Pentapointed Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    I'm not a big fan of cruises but this sounds like a nice one.

    On the cruise I went on and in a lot of the hotels I've stayed in over the years there was a Lifecycle exercise machine. Except for the big old fat cruiser style bike seat I liked them. The ones I used allowed a programmed resistance course to be set and you could really get a nice workout in 30 to 40 minutes. Seems like a few I used had HR sensors, too.

    I also would use Concept2 rowing machines if they were available. 30 minutes on each machine was a great work out.

    Enjoy yourselves and send us a postcard!

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    Report from Mid-Atlantic Aboard the Queen Mary 2

    Did 11 miles this morning during a 45 min session on the trainer in the gym. Am going to increase my efforts gradually as this environment is new to me. Really miss the open road. Weather great so far.
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    cycling fanatic Ken Brown's Avatar
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    Sounds like fun. You are not allowed to include the progress of the ship in your mileage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Brown View Post
    Sounds like fun. You are not allowed to include the progress of the ship in your mileage.
    Did 14 miles this morning on the bike trainer. Probably 4000 on the ship since the 12th. There's only one machine I like best so I get up early (5:30) and this morning there were two ladies carrying on a conversation near me that made me a captive audience. Not that I don't really care about the general health of her husband but the one that looked like a woodpecker really had an annoying voice. For some reason the rather loud music normally played with the definite beat was absent and I had not realized how much it helps. Things could be worse. I could be back at work at a drawing board trying to make a deadline. Now in the Med approaching Barcelona the weather has really warmed up. In Southampton, England it was cold and windy. Photographed some bikes and the dominant type is the mountain bike at least in Portsmouth. Did see one road bike. Will post some pictures when I get back as my time on computer is limited and often very slow.
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    spinning my wheels

    Have managed to keep my weight in check by early morning hours on the bike machine in the gym. Did 17 miles this morning.

    Barcelona has added 170 k of bike lanes (think that was the number) and it was interesting to see people of all ages and attire pedalling along on their ways. Rome and Naples did not seem so bike oriented as I had expected. Monaco would be a bicylists nightmare unless he or she was a glutton for hills.
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    Senior Member xizangstan's Avatar
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    I've seen lots of bikes on yachts and larger sailboats, as they tie up in a marina. Lots of retired or wealthy folks who have taken up the liveaboard boating lifestyle, travel from port to port and marina to marina with their bikes. Once docked, they hop on their bikes and go exploring to restaurants, etc.

    So when I first saw the title of this thread, I thought it might be one of those liveaboard couples with their bikes travelling the world by boat.

    The only thing that really comes to mind is, as much rust and corrosion that results from being down on the water in the salty air, plain steel bikes are soon toast. Titanium lasts the longest (forever, best as we can tell). Aluminum - depends on the alloy.

    Bikes at sea certainly can make sense...
    Who is John Galt?

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    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    It's a good thing they don't have a lot of food on those cruises.
    My Book: Drive, Ride, Repeat: The Mostly-True Account of a Cross-Country Car and Bicycle Adventure

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    The last cruise my wife and I took we brought our bikes along. We cleared it first with the cruise line (Princess I think). They said no problem as long as we kept them in our room. They actually fit in the closet. We road at most locations St John, Halifax, Bar Harbor, Boston, Newport. Great way to tour.

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    Senior Member xizangstan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pennstater View Post
    The last cruise my wife and I took we brought our bikes along. We cleared it first with the cruise line (Princess I think). They said no problem as long as we kept them in our room. They actually fit in the closet. We road at most locations St John, Halifax, Bar Harbor, Boston, Newport. Great way to tour.
    Awesome! Good for you guys. I would love to hear more about the logistics of traveling with the bikes, and the special sorts of places you got to see, that you probably wouldn't have without the bikes.
    Who is John Galt?

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    Quote Originally Posted by xizangstan View Post
    Awesome! Good for you guys. I would love to hear more about the logistics of traveling with the bikes, and the special sorts of places you got to see, that you probably wouldn't have without the bikes.
    No special logistics. Just walked the bikes on and off the ship. At a couple of ports we had to take a small boat to shore. We were allowed to put our bikes on those boats. At Bar Harbor we had intended to make it a day of riding the carriage trails in Acadia and climbing Cadillac Mountain. Other ports we made it up as we went or visited the local bike shop for ride recommendations. We would also combine cycling with tourist activities like visiting museums, the mansions at Newport or just enjoying the scenery along the coast road out of Halifax. Much better than taking a taxi or mass transit. A bit of change from the usual cruise stuff. I was amazed by how many other passengers said they would have done the same, if they had only known bikes were allowed.

    I'd actually like to try and find a cruise that is dedicated to cycling as a shore activity. I don't know if such a thing exists as it probably wouldn't be a big money maker for the cruise lines.

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    Senior Member xizangstan's Avatar
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    Is bike theft a greater or lesser concern at those stops, than back home? I assume you lock 'em up everywhere you stop. You got maps to the places you wanted to visit, I'm sure. And any considerations you needed to make for local laws or regulations concerning bikes?

    I bet there are a lot more gray-headed folks interested in bike touring than many realize. Especially if the rides are easy. Don't you think that many of the people who are active enough to take cruises and go exploring ashore, are also physically fit enough for easy bike rides?
    Who is John Galt?

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    Quote Originally Posted by xizangstan View Post
    Is bike theft a greater or lesser concern at those stops, than back home? I assume you lock 'em up everywhere you stop. You got maps to the places you wanted to visit, I'm sure. And any considerations you needed to make for local laws or regulations concerning bikes?

    I bet there are a lot more gray-headed folks interested in bike touring than many realize. Especially if the rides are easy. Don't you think that many of the people who are active enough to take cruises and go exploring ashore, are also physically fit enough for easy bike rides?
    We did not take our A rides which we never lock because we never leave them unattended. The places we visited didn't seem like high risk areas, but you never know so yes we did use locks to keep honest people honest.

    This was about seven years ago. We just asked the locals or used road maps. Today I would probably use the internet for route planning. I really didn't think of this as touring but as sightseeing by bicycle. We've done similar bicycle sightseeing when traveling by car. I'd jump at the opportunity to cruise the Mediterranean with organized land support for cycling excursions.

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    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    I remember when I was a younger racer sitting next to Vancouver cycling legend Lorne "Ace" Atkinson thumbing thru his old albums. Back when the Canadian Olympic team went to Helsinki, they travelled by steamship, so they'd have to ride the rollers to try to keep fit on the long ocean voyage. You ride in the footsteps of Olympians...

    As for seniors cycling on cruises: a lot of cruise stops, especially on islands, tend to involve some immediate steep climbing. After all, the dock is at sea level, but the town is usually up on a hill overlooking the harbor. Although this doesn't stop a lot of older cyclists who regularly ride the Gulf Islands and San Juans off the coast of BC and Washington. But I was told that when you land at Santorini, you can rent a mule to take you up the steep hill to the town.

    Luis

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    Over the Grand Banks

    Heading home just coming off the Grand Banks (and one mile above the cycling path)
    Have cycled in the gym every day for an hour (16 miles). The girl in the gym said I had not missed a day. (Unfortunately, I also have not missed a meal.) Down to one vertical machine that works well so I have to get up around 5:30 am to get the use of it. In a few days I will be in New York but alas, my bike is in Maine so I won't get to take it for a spin for a few days longer as we are staying with my daughter for my grandson's birthday.

    All in all my impression so far is that Barcelona seemed the most bike friendly city but I am hardly a proper judge having spent so brief a time in Monaco, Rome, Naples, Gibralter, Lisbon and South Hampton.

    Hope to publish some bike pictures when I get back to my own computer.
    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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    Barcelona is Bike Friendly

    Here are pictures from my recent voyage to the Mediterranean. These are all from Barcelona which was the most bike friendly city I visited. The city has recently added many miles of bike trails.

    First picture shows bikes from a community bike sharing program.






    Fuji S10S, Trek 1.1

    "The bicycle, in the hands of a novice, is as alert and acute as a spirit-level in the detecting of delicate and vanishing shades of difference in these matters. It notices a rise where your untrained eye would not observe that one existed; it notices any decline which water will run down." -Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

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