Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

What does "unsupported" mean?

Notices
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.

What does "unsupported" mean?

Old 11-09-20, 09:30 AM
  #1  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
What does "unsupported" mean?

The thread title says it all.

Why I ask is for a few reasons. It appears that term is used in a lot of different ways at times.

As an example - I ran in to a guy that travels by bicycle. He's traveled most of the past 3 years with a bike and a trailer with gear. He would fit the category of being a homeless guy - so when he is traveling that is is home. He carries spare parts, lots of food, etc and, of course, makes his stops to resupply when he needs to. Other than that - he's "unsupported".

The same theory of the above example can be applied to a larger percentage of bike touring. I would think it is more common with the longer duration and more remote touring locations where it is harder to get support from the get-go than it is in, say, the midwest US where there are uber and lyft services, stores, restaurants, hotels, beds/breakfasts, etc.

I suppose the question is leaving out the obvious - organized group rides/tours. I would think, by nature, organized group rides/tours are "supported" by way of their organization - contingency plans are surely in that organization.

So is it fair to say "unsupported" is dealing with what you have with you, or making do with what you come across/run in to along the way, with no prior planning of getting resources?

I think, to illustrate the last point above, a good example of planned resources is guys that hike the long distance trails (like the CDT, PCT, AT). One of the most common ways for thru-hiker planning is to have mail drops at towns along the route. Those mail drops may include food, gear, new shoes, what ever. And if they are shifting gear (say, shelters and insulation - think summer turning to fall and winter) they can mail back what they aren't using. That, to me, is "supported" - even if it is on the far end of it. It is still planned support.

So "unsupported" would be planning and prep prior to the trip with resources and gear along with at the start, gained along the route, and not provided by outside sources at any step of the way. I guess I don't know where anyone would draw the line between what "support" is.

Maybe that is a better question - How would you define "support" on tour?
KC8QVO is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 09:37 AM
  #2  
CargoDane
Not a newbie to cycling
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 910

Bikes: Omnium Cargo Ti with Rohloff, Bullitt Milk Plus, Dahon Smooth Hound

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 349 Post(s)
Liked 307 Times in 189 Posts
I think you're overcomplicating things.

I'd define "support" as having someone doing things for you at the backend. Be it sending you stuff at the right time or driving a van with all your gear.
When I tour, I carry what I think I'll need, some of what I want to bring (luxuries), and a means to make dinner, coffee etc., a tent etc., sometimes a computer, and what have you (i.e. loads of stuff).

Now, you can also do credit card touring, sleeping in hotels, B&Bs etc. and still be unsupported. It's just that credit card touring is a bit easier as you don't carry as much stuff.

A supported tour usually entails you carrying less because you have support from someone else - be it to mail you packages of stuff or drive that van with all of your gear, spare parts, tools, and whatnot, ready to come to your rescue whenever you want, and you not having to carry anything but the water you need while riding.
CargoDane is offline  
Likes For CargoDane:
Old 11-09-20, 10:17 AM
  #3  
andrewclaus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Golden, CO
Posts: 1,940

Bikes: 2016 Fuji Tread

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 368 Post(s)
Liked 127 Times in 98 Posts
Just to complicate matters, there's "self-supported." I use that term for my style. I'll ride into town for groceries, meals, showers, motels, etc. I'd consider "unsupported" doing none of the above, relying only on what you carry with no outside support, even getting your water from natural sources. (That definition comes more from the long-distance hiking/trail running world.)
andrewclaus is offline  
Likes For andrewclaus:
Old 11-09-20, 10:25 AM
  #4  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
Good points. Thanks!

I didn't even think about credit card touring. I suppose that may come with it, though, the idea of prior planning for the stops. Who's to say you'll find vacancy at a hotel or bed and breakfast if you go on a whim? If you aren't self-supported and don't have the support with you (IE - the gear with you to camp and eat) what are you going to do? Find a 24/7 laundromat and crash on the floor for the night? In the case you go on a whim with no self-support (gear) and get turned down anywhere you might find for hospitality service (hotel, bed and breakfast, what have you) then you hit the "not prepared" category.

I ran in to a group that, of all things, was rollerblading down the route I was going up a few weeks ago. I got an early start in the morning and went a bit before I stopped and cooked breakfast. They were camped at the trail head shelter I stopped at for breakfast. Come to find out, they weren't prepared for the cold and the only food they had was snack bar stuff - no cooking gear/stove. So they were cold and no way to get hot food and drinks. I brewed up a pot of coffee for them to get them something to boost their morning. That gets back to the support/no support theme though - I couldn't imagine not having the gear to get me by. To me, that is suffering. I suppose it still goes to the category of "unsupported" but maybe the far end of it closer to the degree of having problems (the sacrifice, if you will) at the gain of less weight/easier ability to travel.
KC8QVO is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 10:35 AM
  #5  
HerrKaLeun
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 1,845

Bikes: Giant Toughroad SLR1 and Motobecane Sturgis NX

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 873 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 182 Times in 142 Posts
Unsupported is when you dig our iron ore, cut trees to make charcoal and build a smelter. Then you build your own steel bike from scratch without support form anyone else. Just kidding.

supported: friends, or a team or organization you pay bring you supplies along the way

unsupported; you bring what you need or acquire on the way what you need (i.e. buying more food, but you just go in a store and no one stands by the road to hand it to you). Requiring to not buy stuff on the way, would make all longer tours impractical.

I don't know if sleeping in the tent you bring, or in a hotel matters.
HerrKaLeun is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 10:35 AM
  #6  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
Originally Posted by andrewclaus View Post
Just to complicate matters, there's "self-supported." I use that term for my style. I'll ride into town for groceries, meals, showers, motels, etc. I'd consider "unsupported" doing none of the above, relying only on what you carry with no outside support, even getting your water from natural sources. (That definition comes more from the long-distance hiking/trail running world.)
So you would consider resupplying on-the-go "support". Interesting.

On the same subject - Are there any longer trips you have done where you would consider them "unsupported" by your terms? I know you state your treks you would classify as "self-supported" instead. Just curious.

Thinking out loud - I would be curious how long one could be out by your terminology of "unsupported". In my case, I can filter water on-the-go if necessary. Unless I am in remote areas with less pollution likely in the water sources I don't like to do that unless I have to (I have, I just don't like to and will do what I can to get tap water or buy bottled). So the two limiting factors for me are fuel and food - at what point do I get low? Or, how much can I carry? Or can I stretch what I have by fishing/hunting or cooking over a wood fire?

I don't like wood fires because that soots up my pots/pans. In fact, I can't recall cooking in camp over a wood fire since around 2008 maybe. I used to do that to cook things like instant oats and easy mac around a camp fire as I didn't have a stove at the time and didn't want to use others' stoves. Thats also why I don't like dealing with soot - been there, done that (and a bit of ash in the meal...).
KC8QVO is offline  
Likes For KC8QVO:
Old 11-09-20, 10:37 AM
  #7  
CargoDane
Not a newbie to cycling
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 910

Bikes: Omnium Cargo Ti with Rohloff, Bullitt Milk Plus, Dahon Smooth Hound

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 349 Post(s)
Liked 307 Times in 189 Posts
Originally Posted by KC8QVO View Post
Good points. Thanks!

I didn't even think about credit card touring. I suppose that may come with it, though, the idea of prior planning for the stops. Who's to say you'll find vacancy at a hotel or bed and breakfast if you go on a whim? If you aren't self-supported and don't have the support with you (IE - the gear with you to camp and eat) what are you going to do? Find a 24/7 laundromat and crash on the floor for the night? In the case you go on a whim with no self-support (gear) and get turned down anywhere you might find for hospitality service (hotel, bed and breakfast, what have you) then you hit the "not prepared" category.

I ran in to a group that, of all things, was rollerblading down the route I was going up a few weeks ago. I got an early start in the morning and went a bit before I stopped and cooked breakfast. They were camped at the trail head shelter I stopped at for breakfast. Come to find out, they weren't prepared for the cold and the only food they had was snack bar stuff - no cooking gear/stove. So they were cold and no way to get hot food and drinks. I brewed up a pot of coffee for them to get them something to boost their morning. That gets back to the support/no support theme though - I couldn't imagine not having the gear to get me by. To me, that is suffering. I suppose it still goes to the category of "unsupported" but maybe the far end of it closer to the degree of having problems (the sacrifice, if you will) at the gain of less weight/easier ability to travel.
Unsupported does not mean "cashless" or "homeless". Buying stuff - including food or going into a laundromat or sleep in a hotel does not mean you're suddenly on a supported tour.
CargoDane is offline  
Likes For CargoDane:
Old 11-09-20, 10:40 AM
  #8  
CargoDane
Not a newbie to cycling
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 910

Bikes: Omnium Cargo Ti with Rohloff, Bullitt Milk Plus, Dahon Smooth Hound

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 349 Post(s)
Liked 307 Times in 189 Posts
Originally Posted by KC8QVO View Post
So you would consider resupplying on-the-go "support". Interesting.

On the same subject - Are there any longer trips you have done where you would consider them "unsupported" by your terms? I know you state your treks you would classify as "self-supported" instead. Just curious.

Thinking out loud - I would be curious how long one could be out by your terminology of "unsupported". In my case, I can filter water on-the-go if necessary. Unless I am in remote areas with less pollution likely in the water sources I don't like to do that unless I have to (I have, I just don't like to and will do what I can to get tap water or buy bottled). So the two limiting factors for me are fuel and food - at what point do I get low? Or, how much can I carry? Or can I stretch what I have by fishing/hunting or cooking over a wood fire?

I don't like wood fires because that soots up my pots/pans. In fact, I can't recall cooking in camp over a wood fire since around 2008 maybe. I used to do that to cook things like instant oats and easy mac around a camp fire as I didn't have a stove at the time and didn't want to use others' stoves. Thats also why I don't like dealing with soot - been there, done that (and a bit of ash in the meal...).
I agree. I don't do wood fires either if I can avoid it (which means I haven't made one in 25 years or so). It's nasty, unhealthy, chars the ground and is not necessary at all.
CargoDane is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 11:00 AM
  #9  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 8,900

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2500 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 946 Times in 645 Posts
Many years ago I did three ~800 mile, ~8 day tours. Camped (without either permission or discovery and leaving no trace) on private land, bought food in stores, many days eating one meal at a restaurant and usually getting a motel room one night. Likewise, a three day Memorial weekend tour in southern Michigan.

Cannot help you with the labeling. It never occurred to me I had to decide what my tours were. First two were a fun way to get to a place I wanted to be (college, then my college roommate
s home to start a post-college driving tour of the West. Last was a mid-fall ride from Boston to simply tool around

Vermont with no plan, just a bike, gear and post-season racing legs. (Aborted when cold fall rain hit and a city with Greyhound service wasn't far off.) In my Michigan ride, I almost broke my policy of no discovery camping on private property. First night I slept on low ground. Lots of underbrush and well hidden. But the mosquitoes! Next night, I sought a high open field and found it. There was an occupied farmhouse just over the other side. No problem. No mosquitoes. Almost summer solstice: I needed no light and didn't plan to cook. As i was retiring, the sky changed. Clouds moved in, Wind started to build, The color of the clouds became weird. I remembered. I was in tornado country. Was this is it? I dressed, put my shoes and helmet on and prepared to run to that farmhouse as fast as I could to beg to hide with them in their basement. Nothing happened, The wind toned down. Next morning I stopped for breakfast and bought a paper. Yup, there was a front page map of the midwest with a huge swath from southern Ohio right through Michigan of random tornadoes. My campsite was dead center. (Had that farmer let me in, I guess I'd have to call that ride "supported". Being Michigan, I"m sure he would have.)

Ben
79pmooney is offline  
Likes For 79pmooney:
Old 11-09-20, 11:07 AM
  #10  
andrewclaus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Golden, CO
Posts: 1,940

Bikes: 2016 Fuji Tread

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 368 Post(s)
Liked 127 Times in 98 Posts
Originally Posted by KC8QVO View Post
So you would consider resupplying on-the-go "support". Interesting.

On the same subject - Are there any longer trips you have done where you would consider them "unsupported" by your terms? I know you state your treks you would classify as "self-supported" instead. Just curious.

Thinking out loud - I would be curious how long one could be out by your terminology of "unsupported". In my case, I can filter water on-the-go if necessary. Unless I am in remote areas with less pollution likely in the water sources I don't like to do that unless I have to (I have, I just don't like to and will do what I can to get tap water or buy bottled). So the two limiting factors for me are fuel and food - at what point do I get low? Or, how much can I carry? Or can I stretch what I have by fishing/hunting or cooking over a wood fire?....
I've never gone more than 10 days completely unsupported, and those were hiking trips. Five days max by bike in wilderness and National Park areas. My ten-day hiking trips were in true, roadless wilderness (Sierra Nevada and Pasayten/North Cascades). I went stoveless on those trips, and pure natural water was a feature of the landscape. Food load was a big factor, but only for the first few days. Both those trips were part of multi-month thru-hikes, and were bracketed by self-supported stays in towns. I met a hiker who can stay out for over three weeks with a food load, but I can't (or haven't). I won't even consider foraging, hunting or fishing, other than the occasional wild onion or ramp--just not my style.
andrewclaus is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 11:10 AM
  #11  
jadocs
Senior Member
 
jadocs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 1,928

Bikes: Ti, Mn Cr Ni Mo Nb, Al, C

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 835 Post(s)
Liked 432 Times in 289 Posts
Unsupported to me means self sufficient. Doesn't matter if I carry everything or acquire it on my own accord, such as purchasing meals, etc...

Supported to me means there is someone or some organization who's sole purpose is helping me achieve my endeavor in some way.
jadocs is offline  
Likes For jadocs:
Old 11-09-20, 11:31 AM
  #12  
mev
bicycle tourist
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Austin, Texas, USA
Posts: 1,801

Bikes: Trek 520, Lightfoot Ranger, Trek 4500

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 262 Post(s)
Liked 55 Times in 46 Posts
Not sure why it matters but seems pretty straightforward to me:
Support is someone else helping along the way. Most common examples is carrying gear or being there to address issues that come up during the ride.
Unsupported is not having that support.

Whether you cook your meals or sleep in a motel or heaven forbid filter water from a stream, doesn't make a difference.
mev is offline  
Likes For mev:
Old 11-09-20, 11:34 AM
  #13  
BikeLite
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 867
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 242 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 22 Posts
The GBDuro had this image about the definitions. Agree that self-sufficient is basically unsupported, but GBDuro takes it one step further on waste.
https://www.theracingcollective.com/...orted_orig.png

Tour Divide rules for comparison
Rules | Tour Divide
BikeLite is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 11:38 AM
  #14  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
It never occurred to me I had to decide what my tours were.
Thanks for the input Ben. What year was that in Michigan? Back in the '70's by chance?

As to needing to decide what your tours are - that wasn't where the thread was going. It was merely my curiosity with how others define things. The discussion of it is what I was after - and to that point your input is appreciated. Good stuff.
KC8QVO is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 11:46 AM
  #15  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 8,900

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2500 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 946 Times in 645 Posts
That was '85 or '86. First two week long tours were to Michigan in '73 and '75 from opposite directions; Boston to Windsor, Ontario where my housemate picked me up at customs Second was from Minneapolis through southern UP and down to Saginaw.
79pmooney is offline  
Likes For 79pmooney:
Old 11-09-20, 11:50 AM
  #16  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
Originally Posted by BikeLite View Post
The GBDuro had this image about the definitions. Agree that self-sufficient is basically unsupported, but GBDuro takes it one step further on waste.
https://www.theracingcollective.com/...orted_orig.png

Tour Divide rules for comparison
Rules | Tour Divide
The racing collective chart needs a 4th category - "in-sufficient". Ha! Reading through that was a bit humorous, my "in-sufficient" being a joke of course.

I do see both those sites pertain to "racing" as opposed to "touring", though. Maybe I am off on that. In any case, by nature of "racing" - ultimately speed (distance/time, or getting to x destination fastest) is most important so gear becomes slimmed and trimmed way down to get the most efficient means of transportation with the hope of increasing that speed. I think that skews the thoughts on trip preparation further towards the "less prepared" edge, not necessarily inadequately prepared, but that line between would get rather thin.
KC8QVO is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 12:16 PM
  #17  
Doug64
Senior Member
 
Doug64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 5,910
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 932 Post(s)
Liked 302 Times in 174 Posts
In the last 12 years my wife and I have bike toured a total of 2 years. During that time we have done two 3-month tours, and several tours longer than 2 months. I consider all of our tours being self-supported, even though most of our tours are a mix of campgrounds, wild camping, motels, cooking, restaurants, etc.

What difference does it make if you buy the food before the tour or during the the tour? I don't think that most people would or could carry a 3-month supply of food on their bikes. Heck, I have a hard time carrying 2 weeks of groceries the 2 miles home in my bike trailer.
Doug64 is offline  
Likes For Doug64:
Old 11-09-20, 12:24 PM
  #18  
CargoDane
Not a newbie to cycling
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 910

Bikes: Omnium Cargo Ti with Rohloff, Bullitt Milk Plus, Dahon Smooth Hound

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 349 Post(s)
Liked 307 Times in 189 Posts
Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
In the last 12 years my wife and I have bike toured a total of 2 years. During that time we have done two 3-month tours, and several tours longer than 2 months. I consider all of our tours being self-supported, even though most of our tours are a mix of campgrounds, wild camping, motels, cooking, restaurants, etc.

What difference does it make if you buy the food before the tour or during the the tour? I don't think that most people would or could carry a 3-month supply of food on their bikes. Heck, I have a hard time carrying 2 weeks of groceries the 2 miles home in my bike trailer.
Exactly! Unless you're "living off the land", you would then be on a "supported" tour if you bought food or other stuff along the way, making the whole point of"supported vs unsupported" a distinction without a difference. Buying everything beforehand is no different than buying it underway. In fact, it's smarter to not attempt to carry everything if you can buy it underway as you need it.

I will say that the person who claimed that it was "supported" if you bought it underway was referencing hiking - where a 10 mile detour to buy groceries may make it easier to carry some extra food. But for a couple of weeks, months, or years? Yeah, even with a huge trailer that wouldn't be possible. And you would still end up eating bought food, using bought toothpaste, and so on.
CargoDane is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 01:09 PM
  #19  
Happy Feet
Senior Member
 
Happy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Left Coast, Canada
Posts: 4,438
Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1810 Post(s)
Liked 893 Times in 480 Posts
I don't think we need to recreate definitions here about touring as they are pretty well established.

Supported means someone, or some group, is participating in the tour. Usually leading it, setting up accommodations, and providing a support vehicle. Some tours don't have a vehicle but the leader acts as a group mechanic.

Self supported means you take care of yourself in those regards. One can access stores, cafes, hotels and bike shops but you make those calls.

A variant of that is carrying very little gear, eating in cafes and sleeping in hotels/hostels etc... That is called credit card touring but is still self supported if the participants themselves are making all the decisions/arrangements.

If you carry most of your food and supplies with you because of remote locale/lack of services it would be called expedition touring, assuming it's more than just a short trip. If it's shorter you would call it bike packing.

A very short trip used to just be called an over nighter but recently two terms have been popularized. The s24o (sub 24 hour) or micro adventure, though over nighter fits just as well.

Those definitions cover most of the spectrum.

Last edited by Happy Feet; 11-09-20 at 01:14 PM.
Happy Feet is offline  
Likes For Happy Feet:
Old 11-09-20, 03:00 PM
  #20  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 28,063
Mentioned: 196 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12094 Post(s)
Liked 4,019 Times in 2,114 Posts
Originally Posted by CargoDane View Post
Unsupported does not mean "cashless" or "homeless". Buying stuff - including food or going into a laundromat or sleep in a hotel does not mean you're suddenly on a supported tour.
Yes. I believe the common definition of unsupported means you donít have help carrying you gear, preparing meals, etc. Of course, people can come up with whatever definitions they like.
indyfabz is offline  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 11-09-20, 03:03 PM
  #21  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 28,063
Mentioned: 196 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12094 Post(s)
Liked 4,019 Times in 2,114 Posts
Originally Posted by mev View Post
Not sure why it matters but seems pretty straightforward to me:
Support is someone else helping along the way. Most common examples is carrying gear or being there to address issues that come up during the ride.
Unsupported is not having that support.

Whether you cook your meals or sleep in a motel or heaven forbid filter water from a stream, doesn't make a difference.
Yep. If I use a toilet at a c-store instead of always going au natural am I doing a supported tour?
indyfabz is offline  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 11-09-20, 03:58 PM
  #22  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 6,265

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1340 Post(s)
Liked 432 Times in 299 Posts
Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Yes. I believe the common definition of unsupported means you donít have help carrying you gear, preparing meals, etc. Of course, people can come up with whatever definitions they like.
Concur. I don't see much difference between buying food as I pass through a town, vs. ordering food on-line and having it mailed ahead, vs. asking someone back home to ship food to a post office 2-4 days ahead. (And I'd say the same for spare clothes, bike parts, etc.) The breakpoint for me is, do I carry my own sleeping and cooking gear? Or do I "buy" those in the form of motels or B&B and dining out OR have a support person or vehicle hauling the tent and stove for me?
pdlamb is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 04:59 PM
  #23  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 28,063
Mentioned: 196 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12094 Post(s)
Liked 4,019 Times in 2,114 Posts
We should focus on something really important, like when is one touring and when is one bikepacking?
indyfabz is offline  
Old 11-09-20, 05:30 PM
  #24  
Happy Feet
Senior Member
 
Happy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Left Coast, Canada
Posts: 4,438
Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1810 Post(s)
Liked 893 Times in 480 Posts
One can look at two current US trans continental races to see how the terms are used.

RAAM is supported. There is a team that actively assists the rider(s).

Trans Am is self supported. The rider has no other supports other than what they might ordinarily find on the road. They can sleep in a bivi sac or hotel, eat in gas stations or restaurants.. that part doesn't matter.

It's all about the pre planned inclusion of others (who are not active riders) in the tour.
Happy Feet is offline  
Likes For Happy Feet:
Old 11-09-20, 05:53 PM
  #25  
KC8QVO
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 887

Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 283 Post(s)
Liked 58 Times in 50 Posts
Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
We should focus on something really important, like when is one touring and when is one bikepacking?
I would say bike packing = bags and lashing gear to the frame, fork, handlebar, stem that are not held on with racks. I would think brackets (like a pump with snap in bracket) to hold gear would still be included.

However, I think you can tour with a bikepacking rig just as well as racks + panniers in most cases. I don't think you could separate them at that point other than how you describe the rigs - not what each is doing.

Though, if you are off-road I would think bikepacking would be better - and to go lighter - as panniers held to racks might be an issue with the roughness of being off-road.

There was a tourer that did the GDMBT on a folding bike that I saw. The rider started with panniers and ditched them for the bike packing technique if I recall correctly. I think it was a Bike Friday.
KC8QVO is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.