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Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

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Old 05-16-10, 07:54 PM   #1
k9power
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Bike Touring 101

Are there any good books for beginners wanting to learn to tour?
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Old 05-16-10, 07:58 PM   #2
kayakdiver
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I'm sure you can find some but.... check out the stickies at the top of this page. Will give you lots of information for free
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Old 05-16-10, 08:26 PM   #3
NeilGunton
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Here are two fairly up-to-date books with lots of good info:

"Bike Touring: The Sierra Club Guide to Travel on Two Wheels", by Raymond Bridge:
http://www.amazon.com/Bike-Touring-S...dp/1578051428/

"Adventure Cycle-Touring Handbook" by Stephen Lord
First edition came out in 2006:
http://www.amazon.com/Adventure-Cycl...dp/1873756895/

- but if you can wait, then the 2nd edition is coming out in June, apparently:
http://www.amazon.com/Adventure-Cycl...dp/1905864256/

My favorite book back in 1998 when I was preparing for my TransAm was "Bicycle Touring: How to prepare for long rides", by Steve Butterman:
http://www.amazon.com/Bicycle-Tourin...dp/0899971741/
It's probably a little dated now in some of the specifics, but I found the book to be very good at outlining some of the basics, which don't really change over time.

Neil
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Old 05-16-10, 10:02 PM   #4
nancy sv
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TravellingTwo just released a free e-book today - I've only skimmed it but it looks excellent! Check it out at www.travellingtwo.com
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Old 05-17-10, 02:47 AM   #5
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Go to your library and have a browse ... that's what I did.

Now one thing you may notice is this:

The books they've got in the library from the 1970s and into the 1980s will talk about a different style of touring than people do now. Back then, it was all about loading your bicycle to the gills with everything you might imagine you'd need, and touring self-supported. Back then, you brought all the food you figure you'd need for the entire trip, and try to keep to yourself as much as possible. Camping was the way to go, and cycletourists abhored the use of any other form of transportation than cycling. And tours were at least several days long, if not weeks or months.

These days a tour can be anything from a daytour to one of several years. These days you might bring a couple days worth of food with you just in case, but then you shop along the way so that you can interact with the locals and try the local fare etc. You might camp, or stay in a hostel, or stay in a 5-star hotel ... whatever you prefer. And it is still touring if you want to ride a while then take a ferry to another location, then ride a bit more, then catch a train, then ride a bit more, then rent a car, then ride a bit more, etc.

If you scroll partway down my Links page, you'll arrive at the two Touring sections I've got there:
Touring Tips & Ride Reports and Touring Clubs & Organisations
http://www.machka.net/links.htm

You'll be able to pick up some tips from the links there.

And then get on your bicycle and go ride!
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Old 05-17-10, 07:42 AM   #6
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There's great online stuff:

http://www.adventurecycling.org/features/howto.cfm

http://www.bicycletouring101.com/

http://www.biketouringtips.com/
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Old 05-17-10, 08:25 AM   #7
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All these resources are good. Read them. View the online ones. Check out people's journals on CrazyGuyOnABike.com. When you feel adventurous (hopefully not too long) take a short tour - a 3-day weekend, a week, etc. You'll learn more about yourself and how you like to tour by doing it. There are a wide variety of "ways to tour" and only you can determine what works best for you.
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