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What do you consider a tour?

Old 05-08-10, 06:08 PM
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a1rabbit
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What do you consider a tour?

Maybe this is a silly question but I don't think I've seen any mention of it.

So what do you consider to be a tour?

Do you have to cover a certain distance?

Do you have to be away from home for at least one night, more than one night? If so is there a distance associated with the night out to make it a "tour"?

I could ride an hour away and camp out, but I would not consider that a tour. Likewise I could ride 100km and come home, but that's just a long ride.

What are your thoughts?

And to be clear, I mean a bicycle tour.

Last edited by a1rabbit; 05-08-10 at 11:39 PM. Reason: Wanted to clearify I meant bicycle tour.
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Old 05-08-10, 06:37 PM
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Myself.... Anytime I plan on not spending the night in my own bed. Be it hotel, tent, under a rock. Number of days don't matter to me or miles for that matter.
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Old 05-08-10, 06:49 PM
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I'm the same. If I carry luggage on a bike and won't be sleeping in my bed, it's a tour.
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Old 05-08-10, 06:51 PM
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Today I rode my normal 60 Saturday miles with my local group.. I'm now kicking it on the couch watching the Giro... This is not a tour.
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Old 05-08-10, 06:53 PM
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A tour is what you make it. I do mostly what I call day tours. I leave in the morning to go somewhere, spend a few hours, and then return in the evening. Mostly taking back roads to community festivals in some of the neighboring towns.
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Old 05-08-10, 06:57 PM
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<<heavy sigh>> Here we go again. This is almost an annual thing now ... some newb comes along and wants a definition of a tour. This has been done so many times before ... and believe it or not, the search function actually does work.

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...pes-of-touring

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...sing-a-bicycle

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...quot-you-think...


https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ported-Touring

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...n-the-minority



But really ... who cares??? You don't get a prize for doing one type of "tour" rather than another type of "tour".

Last edited by Machka; 05-08-10 at 07:19 PM.
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Old 05-08-10, 07:15 PM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
<<heavy sigh>> Here we go again. This is almost an annual thing now ... some newb comes along and wants a definition of a tour. This has been done so many times before ... and believe it or not, the search function actually does work.

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...pes-of-touring

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...sing-a-bicycle

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...quot-you-think...


But really ... who cares??? You don't get a prize for doing one type of "tour" rather than another type of "tour".
Thanks for the links, I'll defiantly read them. (typo was on purpose, was trying to be humorous.)

You've actually been one of the people who's comments I've paid a lot of attention too for many reasons, you definitely have some miles under your belt and I appreciate your input to my threads and others.

You came off a little rude here though, Machka. Maybe you just woke up on the wrong side of the bed and forgot that at one point you had under 80 comments too, at one point you where not the uber-bikeforums.net-guro that you are now.

My search resulted with no decent hits, believe it or not, not everyone searches for the correct terms to find what they want right off the bat, typically because the way other people may word something is not the same as I do. However, On forums I frequent I tend to find searching for an old thread I remember extremely easily because, *gasp* I read it before and remember something about the thread I can search for.

Thanks again, Machka! I appreciate the info.

Last edited by a1rabbit; 05-10-10 at 04:36 PM. Reason: To clarify
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Old 05-08-10, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
You came off a little rude here though, Machka. Maybe you just woke up on the wrong side of the bed and forgot that at one point you had under 80 comments too, at one point you where not the uber-bikeforums.net-guro that you are now.

My search resulted with no decent hits, believe it or not, not everyone searches for the correct terms

Thanks again, Machka! I appreciate the info.
When I had under 80 posts, I had a couple 1200K randonnees and some touring under my belt already. I came here as an experienced cyclist. As for searching, I searched on the word "definition".

But my pet peeve with these sorts of threads is that there are some people who want to create a definition of touring in order to determine whether they themselves are real cycle tourists or not, and/or in order to classify other cyclists. It leads to elitism ... 'my cycletouring accomplishments are better than yours because my tour was this and that, and yours wasn't'.

As I say in one of those links, when someone says they are going on a cycling tour, my first thought is not, "How long is the tour?" or "Does it fit within prescribed touring definitions?" ... my first thought is ... "Where are you going?" ... and I don't care if you go there on a day tour, an overnight tour, a hub-and-spoke tour, a weekend tour, a week-long tour, a month-long tour or whatever. I'm just curious about places ... what did you see, what did you do, etc.


--------------------
Maybe a better "definition" of a tour (if we really want to define a tour) should not include anything about time and length, but rather that we went somewhere we don't usually/often go and saw or did something other than the usual things we see on our usual evening or weekend rides. So perhaps it's not a tour if you ride the same 25 km loop you do after work 3 days a week, but it might be a tour if you look at a map and decide to go visit that lake over there that you've only been to twice. Just an idea.

Last edited by Machka; 05-08-10 at 07:40 PM.
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Old 05-08-10, 08:31 PM
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This discussion has made me stop and think about this whole "touring" thing. I think Machka has made some good points.
If you take the "tour" out of the bicycle catagory for a moment think about this: If you're out for the day and take a "tour" of say the local cheese factory, that doesn't mean you're going to stay there overnite. So for me a tour can be a single day ride where you actually stop to look around and learn about the area you're cycling in as opposed to going on a ride to just get some miles in. Two fun, but different, things to do on a bike ride.
At least this makes sense to me. Others certainly are entitled to feel different.

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Old 05-08-10, 08:44 PM
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The OP asked... "what do you consider a tour?" Well.............. seems like a reasonable question for anyone who wants to answer. Don't answer it if you don't want to. Of course there is no correct answer... It's your opinion.
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Old 05-08-10, 08:50 PM
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Obviously, a tour is whatever you want it to be. For me, it has to be at least 2 nights away from home to qualify as a tour. Less is an overnighter or day ride, not a tour. For me. Not you. Mere semantics here.

Recently the subject of a sometimes heated debated over at CG.
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Old 05-08-10, 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by kbbpll View Post
Or, it's whatever a Canadian in Australia experienced cyclist says it is.
The Canadian in Australia prefers not to define a tour. If you want to call it a tour, it's a tour.
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Old 05-08-10, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
The Canadian in Australia prefers not to define a tour. If you want to call it a tour, it's a tour.
Now that wasn't so hard
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Old 05-08-10, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by kayakdiver View Post
Now that wasn't so hard
So ... it took me saying the same thing three times before you could understand Canadian/Australian English?
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Old 05-08-10, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
So ... it took me saying the same thing three times before you could understand Canadian/Australian English?
I live a stones throw from the great white north.. eh.
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Old 05-08-10, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by kbbpll View Post
Has anyone else toured with a cat?
One of my cats, Sabre, used to climb into my panniers when I was packing for a tour, but I never brought him along. I don't think he would have travelled well.
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Old 05-08-10, 09:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
When I had under 80 posts, I had a couple 1200K randonnees and some touring under my belt already. I came here as an experienced cyclist. As for searching, I searched on the word "definition".
I had to look up what a "Randonnees" was!


Originally Posted by Machka View Post
But my pet peeve with these sorts of threads is that there are some people who want to create a definition of touring in order to determine whether they themselves are real cycle tourists or not, and/or in order to classify other cyclists. It leads to elitism ...
I'm not trying to be elite by any stretch of the imagination. I guess I just assumed touring was an overnight event to a location that won't allow you to get home before nightfall. Like you said, I'm a noob, and I admit it. When I used to tour, I called touring "bicycle camping" because I had no idea there was a term for it. This was years ago when I was a teen.

Originally Posted by Machka View Post
As I say in one of those links, when someone says they are going on a cycling tour, my first thought is not, "How long is the tour?" or "Does it fit within prescribed touring definitions?" ... my first thought is ... "Where are you going?" ... and I don't care if you go there on a day tour, an overnight tour, a hub-and-spoke tour, a weekend tour, a week-long tour, a month-long tour or whatever. I'm just curious about places ... what did you see, what did you do, etc.
But you see, if you don't ask "does it fit within prescribed touring definitions?", you seem to know or have some idea what the definition is, and probably quite a solid understanding at that. I don't, I'm learning and that's why I'm here. To get answers to questions, to meet people, to help others in whatever way I can with my limited knowledge. Now, I did wiki "bicycle touring" before posting this thread. I read their information. But I wanted to know what others here considered a "tour". That's all.

I've never asked myself how long someones tour was right off the bat, eventually I may wonder but my first thoughts tend to be where they went, how long they rode each day, what they took and what they learned. That's information my developing touring mind can use!

Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Maybe a better "definition" of a tour (if we really want to define a tour) should not include anything about time and length, but rather that we went somewhere we don't usually/often go and saw or did something other than the usual things we see on our usual evening or weekend rides. So perhaps it's not a tour if you ride the same 25 km loop you do after work 3 days a week, but it might be a tour if you look at a map and decide to go visit that lake over there that you've only been to twice. Just an idea.
That makes good sense, I guess I just think the definition is too wide or something. I don't need precise details of what touring is. It just seems strange to consider a ride to a park I never visit in my town, a tour. But when you really think about it, that's exactly what it is for the simple fact that I've never visited it.

It seems odd though, does it not? Maybe I could call it a "Local tour"... But once you start labeling things like that it just gets out of hand. What's local? 15k? 50k? 100k? It's just the same can of worms.

As much as it makes sense to me to assume a ride of whatever distance or time frame it may cover would indeed be a bicycle tour if the place I went was new to me... I just have this nagging sensation that tells me you have to sleep at least once because if you don't, you won't make it home.

Maybe a tour is any ride you'd not want to take any bicycle but your touring bike on! Hmmm! Just an idea.
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Old 05-08-10, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by kbbpll View Post
Has anyone else toured with a cat?

Do a test ride with the neighbors cat. No point in freaking yours out.
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Old 05-08-10, 10:05 PM
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At the fire station I worked at we had a station cat that would sometimes sleep in the hose bed of the engine. More than once it went on a fire call with us. I'd say the cat went on a "tour" while the rest of us just went on a fire call.

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Old 05-08-10, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
Maybe this is a silly question but I don't think I've seen any mention of it.

So what do you consider to be a tour?

Do you have to cover a certain distance?

Do you have to be away from home for at least one night, more than one night? If so is there a distance associated with the night out to make it a "tour"?

I could ride an hour away and camp out, but I would not consider that a tour. Likewise I could ride 100km and come home, but that's just a long ride.

What are your thoughts?
the question isn't what i consider a tour. the question is, what do YOU consider a tour. i consider a tour anytime that i ride and have my tent with me, whether it's just an over nighter or far longer.
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Old 05-08-10, 11:35 PM
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A bike tour.. A couple of days on the road without returning home heading out to god knows where.
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Old 05-09-10, 12:13 AM
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Definitely
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Old 05-09-10, 03:00 AM
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Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
I guess I just assumed touring was an overnight event to a location that won't allow you to get home before nightfall.
Not necessarily ... in the randonneuring world, most of the events are to locations that won't allow you to get home before nightfall. Same with the 24-hour time trials. I've also done a number of non-event rides that took me past nightfall, but wouldn't have necessarily called them tours.


Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
Like you said, I'm a noob, and I admit it. When I used to tour, I called touring "bicycle camping" because I had no idea there was a term for it. This was years ago when I was a teen.
Bicycle camping is one type of bicycle touring. However, you don't need to camp on a tour if you don't want to. You can stay in hostels, hotels, cabins, or wherever.



Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
But you see, if you don't ask "does it fit within prescribed touring definitions?", you seem to know or have some idea what the definition is, and probably quite a solid understanding at that. I don't, I'm learning and that's why I'm here. To get answers to questions, to meet people, to help others in whatever way I can with my limited knowledge. Now, I did wiki "bicycle touring" before posting this thread. I read their information. But I wanted to know what others here considered a "tour". That's all.
Back in the old days of touring (based on books I've found in libraries published in the 1970s and even into the 1980s), cycletouring seemed to have much more of a definition than it does now. In those days, it seems that a cycletour was generally at least 5 days long, and preferably longer. In order for it to be a "real" tour, cycletourists would load up their bicycles to some astronomical weight, carrying with them everything they thought they might possibly need on the tour. Cycletourist had front panniers so that they could carry a large bag of rice in one and a large bag of oats in the other, with a few dehydrated meals tucked in around. And they would be entirely, or almost entirely self-sufficient during the tour ... even if the tour was through a fairly heavily populated area. At no point would a cycletourist do something like hopping on a train mid-tour to take them to a different part of the country to continue the tour ... using any other method of transportation than the bicycle was frowned upon.

I guess the idea was to get away from civilisation and to challenge yourself to survive for a length of time with what you had with you.

But times have changed and the concept of cycletouring has loosened up a lot. Now there's no particular time or distance that makes a ride a tour ... you can do a "daytour" to a park, cheese factory, or the bakery in the next town, or you can spend 2 years cycling around the world ... or anything in between. Now a cycletourist can ride a racing bicycle with a teensy saddle bag containing a tube, tire lever, and a granola bar, and can stop at restaurants and hotels along the way (credit card touring). Now you can ride for three days, then board a train, bus or ferry to get to the next place you want to ride, and ride some more. Or you can drive to a particular location, set up your headquarters there, and cycle out in several different directions over the next few days (hub-and-spoke tour). You can carry the bags of rice and oats, but it can be nicer to stop in at shops along the way to buy your food, if shops are available.


Originally Posted by a1rabbit View Post
That makes good sense, I guess I just think the definition is too wide or something. I don't need precise details of what touring is. It just seems strange to consider a ride to a park I never visit in my town, a tour. But when you really think about it, that's exactly what it is for the simple fact that I've never visited it.
Exactly ... and it's a great place to start if you've never toured before. It can also be something interesting to do if you don't have a lot of time to spend touring.

And if it takes a day (or an afternoon or whatever), it's generally referred to as a "daytour".
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Old 05-09-10, 03:25 AM
  #24  
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I am a member of the Melbourne Bicycle Touring Club. I have been a member of the Salamanca Cycle Touring Club in Hobart, Australia. I imagine they are very similar to other touring clubs around the world. Their agendas include a large number of day tours or rides, and then a few other organised rides that are overnight or longer.

I am also a qualified tour guide. Basically, a tour can be anything that takes a person out of their famililar home environment and allows them to experience new things, whether those things be cultural or natural.

Ultimately, it does come down to what a person wants to call a tour. the mevs and nancys of this world are uber-tourists who wouldn't consider anything less than a week's ride a tour. But there are people like me (and Machka) who employ the definition I've used in my second paragraph.

And no, she didn't wale up on the wrong side of bed. Trust me on that one.
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Old 05-09-10, 06:01 AM
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Feel free to call whatever you want a tour, but I think most folks here and on other touring discussion boards will expect a tour to be at least overnight.

To me a tour is when you carry your stuff and stay a different place every night for at least one overnight. There isn't any particular daily mileage required, it doesn't require that you cook or camp.

Others have different definitions,
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