Everything You Need to Know About Bike Touring

What Is Bike Touring?

Bike touring is a combination between mountain biking and bikepacking. It usually entails traveling on primarily paved roads for days, weeks, or months at a time, with the occasional incursion onto dirt or gravel.

What Kind Of Bike Should I Use For Bike Touring?

Touring can be done on a variety of bikes. Although some bikes are made expressly for touring, you can adjust most good bikes for touring except for road racing bikes, which prioritize weight reduction and rapid handling over durability and comfort.

Low gears for climbing hills are crucial features of a suitable bike. It is also beneficial to add racks and other accessories.

Key Features for Touring Bikes

Frame Geometry

Bikes made expressly for bike touring are built to be comfortable and stable even while carrying a hefty load. Most touring bikes have longer wheelbases than road bikes to achieve this. Longer wheelbases make it easier to steer and maintain stability while having weight.

Frame Materials

For its robustness and smooth ride quality, Chromoly steel is the most popular choice among bike tourers - steel can absorb road vibrations, resulting in a less jarring ride than other materials. Mostly bike tourers prefer steel because of its durability, especially when biking long miles in rural regions.

Wheels

Consider the following while shopping for touring bike wheels.

The number of spokes: More spokes normally equal stronger wheels, so choosing wheels with at least 32 spokes is a good general guideline. Always consider the terrain when choosing wheel size.

Tires

Consider the following factors while choosing tires for touring bikes:

Puncture Resistance

Many bike tourers use tires with puncture resistance built-in.

Tread

On a variety of road conditions, a little tread improves traction. You will not want massive knobs unless you are riding on mud and gravel, but riders often favor a simple traction pattern over slick road tires.

Size

The size of the tires is also an essential factor to consider. Many bike tourers opt for tires at least 35mm wide when riding on pavement.

Gearing

Here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to touring bike gear. Choose easy gears over difficult gears. Make sure your components are dependable and long-lasting. Often, simpler gearing is preferable.

Brakes

When riders strapping 30 or 40 pounds on a bike and heading off on a long-distance tour, it is crucial to think about how you will slow down and stop when necessary. Rim brakes and disc brakes are the two most common methods.

Types of Bike Touring Adventures

Loop

A bike packing or touring excursion that starts and ends in the same spot can be longlasting (like the Trans-Uganda Route) or short (like this 112-mile, 3-day loop in Arizona).

Point-to-Point

It means routes that require transportation to or from the beginning, middle, or end. The Great Divide Mountain Bike Path is the world’s longest off-road route, and one of the most notable is the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route.

Guided Tour

With the growing popularity of biking and cycling vacations, a short google search will usually yield a plethora of possibilities for guided bike tours in your desired region.

Overnighter

Bikepacking or bike touring journeys do not need to be longer to be enjoyable. Carry a tent and food supplies to connect two sections of the path in a remote environment, or pack light and plan to spend the night in a cabin, Airbnb, or lodge.

Expedition

Exploring a new destination on a bike is one of the best ways to learn about a different culture and the natural beauty of somewhere.

Bike Touring VS Bikepacking

The terms “bike touring” and “bike packing” are frequently interchanged, but they have slightly different meanings. When most people talk about “bike touring,” they mean traveling to or around a location on roadways. Long distances and extended time travel are typical of bike touring, which can be assisted by adventure travel organizations or undertaken on rider’s own.

“Bikepacking,” on the other hand, refers to an off-road adventure. Bikepacking journeys often entail singletrack or doubletrack paths that take you deeper into the woods, necessitating the use of a bike that can give more traction and comfort in inclement weather. When people go on a bike packing vacation, they usually travel for a shorter time than they would on a bike tour.

Conclusion

Touring on a bike might be as easy as a weekend excursion close to home or as big as embarking on a months-long journey covering thousands of miles. If you spend some time researching what individuals use for bike touring, you will discover that there is no one-size-fits-all bike.

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