Old 08-08-19, 05:43 AM
Senior Member
PedalingWalrus's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Maine, USA
Posts: 877

Bikes: Surly Ice Cream Truck, Surly Disk Trucker, Salsa Warbird, Salsa Beargrease, Dandelion Dream Tandem

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 269 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 15 Posts
Our original plan was to pack the bike in a hard case, leave the hard case at the airport baggage storage and upon reaching Monaco, bike for another two days to Savona and take the ferry back to Barcelona where we would bike to the airport and pack the bike again.

I bought a nice Tri-All 2 Hard case for the tandem. A week before the trip I packed everything into the case, including the panniers and our gear. It looked legit. Then I tried to move it and realized it was quite heavy and I thought...I wonder if we will be over the bike allowed weight limit ? :-) yeah. So I drove to the dump with the case and had them weigh my car with the case and then without the case. Whoa. Not only was I over the limit. I was so overweight that when I called the airline they flatly refused to fly it even with penalty fee.

So I weighed the case alone, then subtracted it from the total and divided by 2 and I came up with realization I needed two LIGHTWEIGHT cases to make this work. Amazon is awesome. I found two cheap bicycle bags and they came in within 3 days. I packed the two cases and padded everything with bubble wrap and cardboard and ended up meeting the weight limit by a few ounces.

This was a good news but also a disconcerting news as last years flying with a bike left some minor damage and I vowed to go hard case next time. Well I was flying soft case again. :-( But, it's only gear....

One positive opportunity developed out of this scenario ... the possibility to carry the bags with us on the trip and have more flexibility for our return to Barcelona.

Everything worked out ok if You discount dings in a new bike paint ... they really throw the bags around too much. We assembled the bikes, popped the bike bags onto the bottom of our front panniers and off we went. We saved money on baggage storage fees at the airport.

When we reached Nice, France we realized the ferry from Savona schedule would only give us one day at Barcelona and my wife wanted to spend at least 2 days there. Instead we decided to take a Flix bus from Nice Airport all the way to Barcelona. It was cheaper but now we had to pack the bike again.

We had 2 hours before check in to our hostel in Nice so I ended up disassembling the bike right in front of the hostel.

I scoured the streets of Nice with the other homeless for cardboard and foam packaging and scored a thick soft foam mattress in one of the garbage cans. As I was checking it out my eyes met with another homeless man smiling at my find. :-) I told him : here, you can have it and walked on. As I returned 30 minutes later the foam was still there. He decided not to take it so I ripped it into 4 square pieces that worked awesome during the packing of the bikes.

Originally Posted by sapporoguy View Post
Wonderful trip post! My wife and I have been fantasizing about flying to Barcelona and starting a tandem-camping trip there, so this is inspiration.
Did you fly your bike inside bicycle cases, and if so, where did you leave the cases?

Last edited by PedalingWalrus; 08-08-19 at 06:00 AM.
PedalingWalrus is offline