Since there is about 4in of fresh snow preventing me from riding today, thought I would say hi to the group. I've been riding since the 70's - but am new to loaded touring. Did 2 rides last September (300m, 176m) in and around the Columbus Ohio area - and am now hooked. It is difficult to put the experience in words other than to say I rank it right up there with skiing above a tree line, or sailing in the Mediteranean, but a lot less expensive
I have a '78 trek in pieces, and now have a '84 trek 720 with some minor changes to the drive train (replaced the maillard heliomatic hub/freewheel with a wider range hub/cassette (13-34)) for the truely steep hills found in hocking county - and east. I am looking forward to some really long tours this spring/summer, and reading about others touring experiences.