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Around the world advice

Old 06-16-24, 09:42 AM
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Around the world advice

Hi everyone!

Kind of a newbie on this forum, so my apologies if I miss mentioning something in this post.

I am a 24 years old man (boy?). I have some experience bikepacking, namely four trips in central Europe of around 1000km (~600 miles) each and a trip in Norway of 800 km (~500 miles). I was always limited to the holidays period, being a student. However, I will graduate in September. Graduating seemed to be the perfect opportunity to tour the world before I was reigned down by a stable job and a family. Thanks to the student jobs I did, I have the means to travel, but feel like I lack the experience for such a long voyage.

There are five major steps in this trip. I would really appreciate your take and (if you have any) advice as experienced tourers on this project of mine. I also added for each step my main unanswered concerns

Step 1 - USA
I plan on taking the plane from Brussels to NYC, depart from there and go west to Los Angeles. To do so, I would follow the Transam to Pueblo, Colorado, then go towards LA to prevent going too much north with the upcoming winter. This would take 2.5 months, so October, November and the first half of December.

* It will be my first time packing a bike in a box for plane travel. There are some great videos online of how it should be done, but there remains a question: what do you do with your bags? I will have two paniers, a small framebag and a handlebar bag. Do you use a cheap suitcase and put your bags in it? Or do you also put them in the cardboard box? If so, does security open the box to check your material?
* As can be seen by my route, I am a bit concerned with the winter in western US, therefore the decision to not follow the Transam completely but deviating in Pueblo to take a more southern route. Is this route ok in your experience? I read that there were a lot of passes that could be closed off if snowfall occurred.
* I suppose most campings will close during winter. Are there any alternatives? Is it allowed to bivouac and if yes, are there special rules to it?

Step 2 - Oceania
Starting in Sydney, follow the coast of Australia to Perth, take the plane to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and continue northbound through Thailand, Laos and Vietnam. I expect this part to take about 3 months, so mid-December until mid-March.
* Australia is infamous renowned for its wild animals and deadly creatures. Is this true? Any precautions I need to take when setting up camp?
* How friendly are the oceanic countries towards cyclists?

Step 3 - China
The next big step is crossing China. I am planning on going from Kunming to the Xinjiang prefecture, through Chengdu and Lanzhou, and crossing the border with Kazakhstan at the Ili Kazakh autonomous prefecture. I expect this step to take around 3 months, so mid-March, May, June and mid-July.

* I have read that it is mandatory to sleep in hotels so the police can track your position. Is this true? Or is it also possible to camp?
* Rural China seems to be really... "empty". In the sense that sometimes 200 km (130 miles) needs to be cycled before coming across another town/village. Has that ever proven to be an issue for any of you?
* I understand that google and all other western tech companies are not really welcome, such as Facebook or Whatsapp. How did you communicate with family? An alternative via internet? Via phone?

Step 4 - An-countries and Turkey!
Kazakhstan and Kirghistan to Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. I expect to cycle around 3.5 months - mid-May to mid-July from china to the Caspian sea, and mid-July until August from the Caspian sea to the border of Bulgari.
* Logistics in Kazakhstan and Kirghistan: How are the road conditions in these countries? Is it easy to find fuel for the whisperlite international cooking stove? Is it easy to find food and water?
* I read online that the borders to Azerbaijan are closed, but it is possible to ask an exemption when crossing the Caspian sea with a bike on a cargo ship. Anyone has any experience with this?

Step 5 - Europe
Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, France. Home stretch! I do not expect any issues in this region and know what awaits me

Thank you very much for any advice/feedback, and my apologies for the long post
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Old 06-16-24, 11:55 AM
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why vietnam? if you're heading north singapore-malaysia-thailand, vietnam will add quite a bit of mileage. you would go straight thru laos to kunming.

china may cause you some difficulty.

i believe the maximum duration of stay with a tourist visa is 30 days.
i know of some people that have camped in china, although i never have. almost always possible to find a hotel with rooms under $15. out in the boonies you can find basic lodging at some gas stations or truck stops.
assuming your phone works with chinese frequencies, will you be using a chinese SIM card? for foreigners, that usually requires registering with passport at the main telecoms office in whichever town.
facebook and google won't work without a VPN. you'll need to install the VPN software beforehand, as getting one set up in china can be problematic.
learn to use baidu maps for when your googles won't work.
for communications, you can install chinese weixin (wechat).
wifi is everywhere in cities.
internet bars are restricted, require chinese ID card to register and use internet.
in towns, you can ask for a "computer room" at many hotels. costs an extra $1-2, comes with desktop computer with internet.
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Old 06-16-24, 12:49 PM
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A few general comments:
1. I have also structured a long trip as building from several smaller parts, e.g. I split up one year into 8 months around perimeter of Australia, 2 months across US, one month in New Zealand and one month in India. This is a nice way to have some variety. Crossing the US seems like a good warm up. A few things to watch for:
- I assume you have looked up Visa regulations, particularly for China and Central Asia. As well as the climate. I use weatherspark.com to cross-check climate averages.

2. As far as crossing the US in November/December, I would definitely go more south after Pueblo. To give a few examples - if you went northwest instead, Leadville @ 3000m in November gives an example of climate averages in crossing: https://weatherspark.com/m/3368/11/A...-United-States High temperatures of ~0C and low temperatures down -10C as averages with the 90th percentile 5C colder. Around 10% chance of snow each day. Silver City NM gives a contrast - https://weatherspark.com/m/3086/11/A...-United-States It still can be cold in the deserts at night with a large day/night swing but more likely cold rain than snow.

3. As far as camping goes this will vary a lot as you go further west. The map below shows the percentage of land that is Federally owned land. Not all of it you can camp on but a lot more of the National Forests and BLM land you would be able to camp even in a number of cases where official campgrounds are closed. This would probably work slightly better if you were a few months earlier (and that would make Australia also slightly better, see below).

4. Oceania. Looks like you will be crossing Australia in middle of the summer. Not as hot as if you went across the top via Darwin but temperatures in Adelaide give an idea of averages across the Nullarbor Plain - https://weatherspark.com/m/143693/11...alia-Australia. If you were somehow able to go slightly earlier across the USA, this would also help with not being as hot in Australia. As far as "how friendly" goes, the thing to recognize is most Australian's live in or close to some of the major cities and most of your cycling will be more in the outback. On my trip I found the cities to be like cities elsewhere with a mix of impatient and patient drivers. I really liked going through the outback areas where I would often camp at roadside areas with others with camper vans or caravans. These folks were very friendly.

5. I have only done pieces of Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. Each were different but overall found them enjoyable and not to difficult to ride.

6. China. I cycled ~2500km across China in 2007 but that was a supported trip and enough has changed that I will rely on others to provide more up to date information. However, there were gaps of ~200km at times between a few of the villages - nice but surprisingly open desert and cold when we rode in October/November. I was on a supported ride so that helped us with logistics.

Other than noting the climate would likely be slightly better for several places if you could go a month earlier (US, Australia, China and perhaps heat in Turkey) - and to expect things to change so be flexible, looks like a good trip.
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Old 06-17-24, 06:30 AM
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Thank you for the good advice!

To saddlesores: I checked beforehand and Chinese visa's can be up to 90 days if you fill in a special form. And thank you for the guidance concerning the communication in China. A VPN is something I completely forgot! It is definitely a good idea, even outside of China. And the idea of buying a local SIM, at least for countries where I have an extended stay, is definitely a good one! I will further look into it. PS: Vietnam as a friend of mine went there and was telling me excitedly of its beauty

To mev: Thank you for your take on the timestamp. I had already looked at the weather and thought it would be fine, but clearly I might be cutting it too close. I will see if it is possible to depart earlier, in September! Also nice to have some reassurance with the camping situation in the US and your nice experience in Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia.

Thanks to the both of you

Last edited by Aesr; 06-17-24 at 06:40 AM. Reason: Answer both messages
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Old 06-17-24, 11:02 PM
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Well, this looks like a big trip! From an Australian perspective, don't even think about cycling out of Sydney, the traffic is a nightmare and it's a dog eat dog world. Best to get to the start of the first major road by train/bus, depending on which route you are taking. "The coast route" means many things, but I take it you're planing to ride south from Sydney to Melbourne, then around the coast to Adelaide then across the Nullaboor. Some simple things - ALWAYS wear a helmet. In some states it is complusory anyway, and it makes good sense given our drivers. Lights are a must as well. Across the Nullaboor can be tricky given the huge "road trains". Not done it but have read the stories. Having said this, there are plently of people who have had wonderful rides. As mentioned in other replies, you really need to have a good look at the time of year if you want to avoid 40c temps. Let me know if/when you are plannign the Sydney bit and I can give you some more detailled advice.
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Old 06-17-24, 11:05 PM
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PS re your question about the wildlife in Australia. When camping (which we do often), make sure you keep your footwear inside your tent at night. Spiders love nothing more than a nice warm and dark shoe, and there are plenty here that could kill you. Same for snakes. Take care when having a pee in the bush .
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Old 06-18-24, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by HappyAussies
Well, this looks like a big trip! From an Australian perspective, don't even think about cycling out of Sydney, the traffic is a nightmare and it's a dog eat dog world. Best to get to the start of the first major road by train/bus, depending on which route you are taking. "The coast route" means many things, but I take it you're planing to ride south from Sydney to Melbourne, then around the coast to Adelaide then across the Nullaboor. Some simple things - ALWAYS wear a helmet. In some states it is complusory anyway, and it makes good sense given our drivers. Lights are a must as well. Across the Nullaboor can be tricky given the huge "road trains". Not done it but have read the stories. Having said this, there are plently of people who have had wonderful rides. As mentioned in other replies, you really need to have a good look at the time of year if you want to avoid 40c temps. Let me know if/when you are plannign the Sydney bit and I can give you some more detailled advice.
For what it is worth, my route around Australia and journal starting in Sydney - https://mvermeulen.org/oneyear/Journal/may01.htm#May01 In my case, I started things out cycling from the airport to the opera house and then north to suburb of Mount Kuring-Gai. I had a short night due to jet lag and had to get used to cycling on the left. That was probably the ride with most traffic - as well as the day I came into Melbourne. You are headed the other direction. I didn't have much issue with road trains, but kept aware with a mirror and could hear them coming.

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Old 06-18-24, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Aesr

Step 1 - USA
I plan on taking the plane from Brussels to NYC, depart from there and go west to Los Angeles. To do so, I would follow the Transam to Pueblo, Colorado, then go towards LA to prevent going too much north with the upcoming winter. This would take 2.5 months, so October, November and the first half of December.


* As can be seen by my route, I am a bit concerned with the winter in western US, therefore the decision to not follow the Transam completely but deviating in Pueblo to take a more southern route. Is this route ok in your experience? I read that there were a lot of passes that could be closed off if snowfall occurred.

* I suppose most campings will close during winter. Are there any alternatives? Is it allowed to bivouac and if yes, are there special rules to it?
as you're traveling across the US, between the appalachian and the rockies, you can often find free camping opportunities in small towns. many will have a municipal park that allows cyclists to set up camp overnight, some will have swimming pools with showers. check in with the local police/sheriff office when you arrive for info. other times you can set up on the lawn at a church or fire station.

check historical weather for pueblo area. given your time frame, you might want to divert south sooner. the roads south to santa fe can get snowed under early. i might consider going thru amarillo and roswell and las cruces, then follow a more southerly route.
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Old 06-18-24, 05:26 PM
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Have you heard of endurance cyclist Lael Wilcox? She is attempting a record in cycling around the world. You might look at her route to get ideas:
https://www.cyclingabout.com/exact-r...-world-record/
In particular, she is cycling across some of the countries you mentioned (Turkey, etc.)

Look her up on Strava to find details on her daily rides. Plus, she has a podcast that is interesting: https://www.laelwilcox.net/podcast

Sounds like you will have an awesome trip. Have fun!
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Old 06-18-24, 10:04 PM
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Way too ambitious, IMO. The USA part is plain crazy in Nov. and soooo boring IMO. I doubt campgrounds will be open in Oct.
I would head south from Harrisburg PA, thru Virginia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Amarillo TX, Hwy 64 across top of NM if the snow holds off, then the awesome Monument Valley in AZ and what's left of route 66 to Kingman. Might have to get on a freeway in eastern California. I drove this route to Las Vegas in Sept/ Oct. in 2019, then north to home in Canada. It was actually 95F in Nashville, way too hot to get the bike off the car. Was a 2 month trip.

I never camped on this car trip or either bike tours. In 2014/15 I flew to Saigon and rode 3/4 of the way to Chengdu. It was in Dec. going up Vietnam. Wore shorts the whole time. Got to China at Mong Cai Jan. 15.
Was still warm going thru Nanning, Liuzhou. It got cold on the mountains west from Hechi to Guiyang, in Dafang I decided to take the bus to Chengdu. There was a cold mountainous 120 mile ride to Luzhou, one mountain top actually had ICE covering all the trees, that was Feb. 5. LOL.
So I did mostly love Vietnam, but did a poor job getting to the attractions many visit. Malaria pills made me listless till I stopped them and weren't necessary at all either. Most skip the ride to Vung Tau, big mistake IMO. I did ride all the way up from Hoi Anh to Dafang. I had to sneak by traffic cops to get on even some 2 lane highways, partly because of tunnels I guess.
It is pretty convoluted to do both Malaysia, Thailand and VN. Laos is nothing special. IMO.
The Xinjiang desert is ill advised alone. JMO. I need to go where the fast food is anyway, KFC. LOL It was bad enough in small cities in VN and China.

You are using Pinion or Rohloff14 I hope. A guy on YT called, The sunday ride, broke just about everything on his CUBE bike with thru axles, cracked flange, hanger, pedals, crank. LOL. He started in Holland and went the usual eastward world loop.
In Hanoi I met an also older guy doing the same, he took the train over the mountains to Chengdu. His Rohloff bike was unloaded after washing I guess, looked like new still, he had changed tires in Istanbul. I think he had a belt drive. I also saw a tall young guy just starting in Saigon, he had a Rohloff on a Surly LHT 26er.







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Old 06-19-24, 03:32 AM
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To HappyAussies: Thank you for your opinion on the Sydney/Australian traffic and the good advice for the wildlife (definitely not looking forward to spiders in my footwear (*-*) ), it is useful to have the viewpoint of a native person! And you do well reminding me of the rules. I always wear a helmet for my own safety, but your post led me to looking at laws in the places I travel to, and some require lights even in daylight for visibility. I would not have known that without your comment! PS: you have some heavy fines in Australia, I am really shocked!

To mev: Once again, my thanks! The route I was planning on taking nearly overlaps with the southern part of your route

To saddlesores: thank you as well for the more detailed tip about camping. After your previous advice of departing a month earlier for the weather, I tried to change the planned departure. Unfortunately, I will only be able to depart a week earlier, the 23rd of September, at the earliest. Hope that one week will be helpful either war

To Pearson100: I will definitely look at her route, thank you! I did not know her before, I took inspiration on the routes of Ed Pratt and Josh Reid, adapting it so as to fit the weather more. However, I will definitely tweak it following the good advice I get here.

To GamblerGORD53: Thank you for suggesting an alternative route and sharing your experience of the oceanic countries. Reading your post (and looking at the pictures), I added monument valley to my tosee list and I might consider making a detour to Vung Tau, though as of now that is not the plan. But plans change right? As for the bike issues, I am definitely afraid of those. That's why I decided to buy a Pinion bike with carbon belt drive, which should prevent most serious issues and leave me to worry about just my spokes

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Old 06-19-24, 09:30 AM
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Arizona is goat thorn central. I got dozens in my car tires. LOL. The best defense is thick knobby tires. Look up Alee Denham and his Koga bike on YT. He rode in the Jordan desert and NW Aussie Outback. You could upgrade to 2.3/ 2.0 spokes, but my Rohloff only allows plain 2.0. Would help with baggage handlers, if nothing else. LOL.
Nov. in Arizona is prime time for motorhomes with seniors escaping winter.

>>> Here's my bike now with a tandem fork and disc brake. The first wimpy one broke 3 times that trip. Too big and heavy to steal. LOL.
There's nothing better than the SA XL-FDD dyno drum brake. My first one has 32,000 miles, now on it's 3rd bike.
You might need to put your pinion oil in several small bottles to get on airplanes.
I like a bath tub, so I needed bigger pricier hotels in Vietnam. The highways are all paved good now. I hate gravel and mud.
On tour I have 3 thermos bottles for iced water and 2 or 3 juice or Gatorades. The ice stays all day till they are opened.
I love my ABUS granite folding lock that goes behind the seat tube. Also carry a longer key lock and chain for around trees.

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Old 06-20-24, 03:08 AM
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I've biked across China twice.

You can camp anywhere in China, including in the middle of a village. There is no legal concept of private land in the People's Republic of China. All land is owned by the state, including the land under a person's house. You can camp in front of someone's house, in front of someone's store, in front of the village administration office, inside a bus stop, in a farmer's field, in any city park, any parking lot, river, forest, mountain, side of the road, at a temple, next to a school, inside a university, nobody cares. There's a reason the country is called a People's Republic.

However I suggest you avoid camping at a place where many people will walk past your tent, because they will all ask you questions and want to take photos with you, so you will never be able to sleep. Also I suggest if you plan on camping at a busy place like in the middle of a village, you ask permission first from someone who is standing there. They will then tell each other your story, saving you from having to repeat your story 30 times.

Business hotels in China are $20 US dollars per night. More in the cities, less in the countryside. China has the highest density of hotels of any country I've been to the world. Even the smallest town has multiple hotels. You don't really need to camp.
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Old 06-20-24, 06:58 AM
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salut le belge,
The longest trip I have done is about 2-3 months, so what I can add is that being away for a very long time is perhaps something that you will not like, or maybe get tired of.
My suggestion is to get a good, basic bike with easily replaced parts and good well built panniers and racks, and then see how your first "section" goes and then plan more for the next section.
When I started getting into touring somewhere around your age, I didn't know much about fixing bikes, but I did start making the effort to start learning and getting my hands dirty doing things---on any long bike trip, being more comfortable fixing the basic things and learning to recognize things before they become a problem is a big advantage.
I've met some riders doing really long trips who had very little mechanical knowledge, but it is in your best interests to become more knowledgeable.

good luck with your dream.
I would have loved to have done this when younger if I had had a suitable partner to do it with. I personally wouldn't have wanted to do it alone.
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Old 06-24-24, 08:29 AM
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To Yan: Thank you for the information on Camping. As I have no passive income, being freshly graduated, I would rather camp than using hotels, so your post really set my mind at ease. It is nevertheless good to know that there is a backup solution in case of really bad weather!

To djb: You make a good point! As you mentioned, I am indeed a bit concerned about loneliness being far away alone for a longer period (maximum I have done is around 2 weeks), so considering your warning I asked some friends around me if they are interested. For the moment 2 potential candidates who are still considering the proposal, so I remain hopeful! But I am doing it either way!
As for material, I think I am quite well equipped. It may be a bit weird considering I just said I prefer camping for budget reasons, but I always prefer buying material I know is solid, even if it is pricier, heavier or the model is outdated. But the idea of working in sections is a good one. As for fixing... I must admit I am not the most comfortable with mechanics, but having done mtb'ing weekly the past 6 years and done the maintenance on my bike myself 2/3 of the times, I think I should survive
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Old 06-24-24, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Aesr
Step 3 - China
The next big step is crossing China. I am planning on going from Kunming to the Xinjiang prefecture, through Chengdu and Lanzhou, and crossing the border with Kazakhstan at the Ili Kazakh autonomous prefecture. I expect this step to take around 3 months, so mid-March, May, June and mid-July.

* I have read that it is mandatory to sleep in hotels so the police can track your position. Is this true? Or is it also possible to camp?
* Rural China seems to be really... "empty". In the sense that sometimes 200 km (130 miles) needs to be cycled before coming across another town/village. Has that ever proven to be an issue for any of you?
* I understand that google and all other western tech companies are not really welcome, such as Facebook or Whatsapp. How did you communicate with family? An alternative via internet? Via phone?
I have bicycled in Xinjiang twice. In 2014 along the red line. In 2019 along the blue line.

In 2014 there were zero security measures and you could go wherever you want. In 2019 the situation had changed dramatically and there were checkpoints everywhere along the road. I was interrogated by police at every checkpoint and there was a 24 hour government security team following my bike in a car. There were also some sections that the police made me skip by taking a vehicle. Quite the experience. The security clampdown is only in Xinjiang province. Other provinces are normal.

You are correct that the distances are quite long in western China. You will need to carry enough food and water to get you to the next town. However the roads always have traffic, so you will be able to stop cars and beg for water if you get desperate. It was a challenging ride but not as extreme as you are imagining. You will be fine. The scenery throughout was unbelievable. The Chinese desert is prone to sand storms so be prepared for the possibility of some time sand bound waiting things out. Also, you should not mind sand, because the sand will get everywhere. You will need some sand anchors for your tent because your tent will fly away in the wind storm if you try to use regular pegs, which don't work at all in the sand.

You may be tempted to ride directly from Chengdu to Xining, and then on to Zhangye. I would recommend against this because it is an absolute beast of a route that will wreck you. And also because you would be missing out on some very interesting areas on the historical silk road. Stick to the silk road route.


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Old 06-24-24, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Aesr
...
* It will be my first time packing a bike in a box for plane travel. There are some great videos online of how it should be done, but there remains a question: what do you do with your bags? I will have two paniers, a small framebag and a handlebar bag. Do you use a cheap suitcase and put your bags in it? Or do you also put them in the cardboard box? If so, does security open the box to check your material?
...
Every round the world traveler that I have met had four panniers on their bike if they were camping.

Machka and Rowan were the only exceptions to the four pannier norm that I can think of, if I recall they had some giant rear panners and no front panniers on their round the world trip. But, I do not recall if they were camping on that trip or always sleeping indoors.

When you go bike shopping, I suggest getting one that has the fittings you need on the front fork to install a front rack later for panniers if you decide later that you need the extra volume capacity. Or, if not a front rack, something like a Anything Cage that uses the three bolt pattern.

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Old 06-24-24, 12:28 PM
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LOVE HEARING about world tours, even if it's just standing at the north pole and doing a pirouette. MY world bicycle tour 1998-2000 was reverse direction, the America's and then Eurasia.


NEVER forget...a BAD DAY touring beats a good day working.


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Old 06-24-24, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Aesr
* It will be my first time packing a bike in a box for plane travel. There are some great videos online of how it should be done, but there remains a question: what do you do with your bags? I will have two paniers, a small framebag and a handlebar bag. Do you use a cheap suitcase and put your bags in it? Or do you also put them in the cardboard box? If so, does security open the box to check your material?
For shipping on the airplane, I put my panniers, handlebar bag, & helmet in a lightweight nylon duffel bag which I could later roll up and put in the bottom of one of my panniers. That way I had 2 pieces of checked luggage for the airplane: my bike and the duffel bag.

Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
Every round the world traveler that I have met had four panniers on their bike if they were camping.

Machka and Rowan were the only exceptions to the four pannier norm that I can think of, if I recall they had some giant rear panners and no front panniers on their round the world trip. But, I do not recall if they were camping on that trip or always sleeping indoors.

When you go bike shopping, I suggest getting one that has the fittings you need on the front fork to install a front rack later for panniers if you decide later that you need the extra volume capacity. Or, if not a front rack, something like a Anything Cage that uses the three bolt pattern.
I've never toured with front panniers, though I would agree that it would be useful to have the front fork fittings, just in case. I've only toured with rear panniers and a handlebar bag. Although I stopped camping many years ago, I did many long tours which were mostly camping. My longest trip lasted 14 months, though I was only touring for 8 of those months. I was mostly camping during those 8 months of touring. That was a "halfway round-the-world" tour on 3 continents. As for the couple you mentioned, they didn't actually tour around the world. They flew around the world and did some touring exclusively in a few developed countries. They seemed to carefully avoid stopping in any developping countries and some entire continents. Buying a round-the-world plane ticket is a fairly simple matter compared to actually biking around the world.
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Old 06-24-24, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by axolotl
[T]hey didn't actually tour around the world. They flew around the world and did some touring exclusively in a few developed countries. They seemed to carefully avoid stopping in any developping countries and some entire continents. Buying a round-the-world plane ticket is a fairly simple matter compared to actually biking around the world.
No dog in this fight, having never ridden much outside the USA, but don't all "around the world" bike tours involve very substantial amounts of air travel, and also involve skipping "some entire continents"?

You can't ride across the oceans, and the Pacific alone is nearly half your around the world journey, and the Atlantic is rather wide too.

And i suspect that very few "around the world" cyclists figure that, having ridden across North America, that they must also go back and ride across South America, too, or that, having ridden across Europe from Portugal to Turkey, that must now go back and also ride ride across Africa.

How does one cycle across Oceania (assuming one recognizes it as a continent)? What are good sources for tips as to riding across Antarctica?

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Old 06-24-24, 02:23 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by ignant666
No dog in this fight, having never ridden much outside the USA, but don't all "around the world" bike tours involve very substantial amounts of air travel, and also involve skipping "some entire continents"?

You can't ride across the oceans, and the Pacific alone is nearly half your around the world journey, and the Atlantic is rather wide too.

And i suspect that very few "around the world" cyclists figure that, having ridden across North America, that they must also go back and ride across South America, too, or that, having ridden across Europe from Portugal to Turkey, that must now go back and also ride ride across Africa.

How does one cycle across Oceania (assuming one recognizes it as a continent)? What are good sources for tips as to riding across Antarctica?
Agree those definitions can get fuzzy. They may not completely matter unless for example you are trying to set some type of record. It seems Guinness has created their definition for people trying to set a Guinness record - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Around...cycling_record Cycling long distances through Antarctica is also fairly recent - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ng_expeditions
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Old 06-24-24, 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ignant666
No dog in this fight, having never ridden much outside the USA, but don't all "around the world" bike tours involve very substantial amounts of air travel, and also involve skipping "some entire continents"?

You can't ride across the oceans, and the Pacific alone is nearly half your around the world journey, and the Atlantic is rather wide too.

And i suspect that very few "around the world" cyclists figure that, having ridden across North America, that they must also go back and ride across South America, too, or that, having ridden across Europe from Portugal to Turkey, that must now go back and also ride ride across Africa.

How does one cycle across Oceania (assuming one recognizes it as a continent)? What are good sources for tips as to riding across Antarctica?
Of course, all truly round-the-world tours involve travel by plane or boat. Nobody is saying you must somehow cross Oceania or Antarctica on a bike to claim you've toured around the world. But when you're deliberately sticking to a few limited portions of a few wealthy countries and very carefully avoiding 98% of Asia, anywhere in the Middle East, anywhere in Africa, & anywhere in Latin America, I think it's disingenuous to claim that you toured around the world. Moreover, I believe their cycling was even quite limited in the handful of wealthy countries they did visit. Lots of day rides, for example. From what I recall, they were not biking from "Portugal to Turkey" or anything similar to that.
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Old 06-24-24, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by ignant666
No dog in this fight, having never ridden much outside the USA, but don't all "around the world" bike tours involve very substantial amounts of air travel, and also involve skipping "some entire continents"?

You can't ride across the oceans, and the Pacific alone is nearly half your around the world journey, and the Atlantic is rather wide too.

And i suspect that very few "around the world" cyclists figure that, having ridden across North America, that they must also go back and ride across South America, too, or that, having ridden across Europe from Portugal to Turkey, that must now go back and also ride ride across Africa.

How does one cycle across Oceania (assuming one recognizes it as a continent)? What are good sources for tips as to riding across Antarctica?
Guiness World Records has a standardized criteria for what constitutes cycling "around the world".
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Old 06-24-24, 08:04 PM
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Which is of course relevant to those who aspire to their speed record, and to no one else. Their rules are quite arbitrary, and rather silly (having looked at them after mev mentioned them).

And their requirements appear to necessitate considerable air/boat travel, and skipping some entire continents. Which was where i came in, pointing out that it really isn't possible to "ride around the world" without doing those two things.
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Old 06-25-24, 02:33 AM
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When I met the gal ten years ago in the photos below, she was in year seven of her around the world tour. She started in South Africa, rode north to and through Europe, then east to Asia, down to Australia, back up to China, then to North America. I met her on the Pacific Coast route, I think it was in one of the Oregon hiker biker sites. I have no clue if she went down to South America, but I suspect she did.



I was very surprised to see a front suspension fork (air suspension) on a mountain bike frame for that type of journey. She had so many location stickers on her frame, the brand and model were quite hidden. She estimated that the frame had 100 thousand km on it. Wheels and pretty much every other part on it had been replaced at least once.



One of her pairs of Ortliebs started the trip with her and had held up all that time.

Her Tubus front rack had been repaired several times. That model was no longer produced, so she kept getting it repaired instead. That rack was designed to reduce unsprung weight.
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