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Tips and Tricks

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.

Tips and Tricks

Old 09-05-18, 11:47 AM
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I'd go further and say don't eat where you sleep. Stop before you camp and do your dining. Then, if bears are a real concern, hang your food bag from a tree.
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Old 09-10-18, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by acantor View Post
On all tours, long or short, I carry a patch kit and a pump.

On a long tour, I bring a replacement inner tube. On a short tour, or if I am going out for just the day, I may or may not carry one.

But going forward, I will always bring an extra inner tube. I just experienced a rare failure: the nut on the presta valve snapped off while I was inflating the tire, which rendered the valve useless. The only solution: a new inner tube!

The moral: Unless you are OK with not being able to cycle on a cycle tour, always carry one or more replacement inner tubes.
Oddly, this is actually not that rare, especially when affixing a pump to a valve. In this case it would be well to have an extra valve core or two handy, as it's easier to put a new core in than it is to change out a tube.
Don't complain about the weather and cower in fear. It's all good weather. Just different.
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Old 09-22-18, 11:25 AM
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Touring lessons I am still learning!

1. It's easy to underestimate how much water you might need while touring. If you are planning on carrying one bottle, double that!

2. Carry enough food, and eat frequently. Your body will need fuel if you are exerting yourself.

3. Even if rain is not in the forecast, bring rain gear. (I ignored this advice for yesterday's five-hour outing. Thunderclouds unexpected rolled in, and we got soaked.

4. If you use sunblock, apply sparingly to your forehead so it doesn't drip into your eyes.

5. Carry clean tissues or paper towels or something similar to help clean up. (See, 4, above!)

6. If your energy starts to flag, take a break. Even five or ten minutes gives tired muscles some much-needed recovery time.
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Old 11-06-18, 05:24 PM
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What do you get for your significant other who enjoys bicycle touring ? Probably only the greatest bicycle accessory ever !

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Old 11-08-18, 09:59 AM
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Rollers? Gosh you pack heavy, where's the kitchen sink? Andy (written in the best humor)
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Old 11-15-18, 08:43 AM
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When i tour, i like to bring a hiking backpack instead of panniers. i attach a plank to my cargo rack, then i tie the backpack on laying horizontally.
Benefits: the backpack can be used to hike with during the tour. less air resistance while biking. everything in one place, so if you camp away from the road it's easy to bring it all with you.
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Old 12-28-18, 11:36 AM
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Keep a big fat cotton ball in your tube patch kit for flats. Running it along the inside of your tire helps you find those tiny metal wires that might otherwise be missed. The cotton ball will snag on anything protruding, no matter how small. I've read journals that describe getting 2 and 3 flats in a row, most likely from a missed thorn/wire. It will also keep the glue, chalk and patches from rattling around in their little box. Repairing a flat should be an organized methodical procedure, all the way to ensuring your quick release is properly tightened and wheel aligned, trying the brakes and freespinning. Pumping the tire up to pressure is best done by counting strokes- my tiny pump requires 170 pumps to achieve the 90lbs I prefer. I pause in 100 meters to spin the wheel and double check myself.
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Old 01-14-19, 09:22 PM
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If you're touring in New York State, you can camp for free in most state forests managed by the Dept. of Conservation (DEC). Details about 'primitive camping' here: www. dec. ny. gov/outdoor/camping. html . While the page talks mostly about the Adirondacks and Catskills, primitive camping is allowed in most state forests managed by the DEC: www. dec. ny. gov/lands/34531. html . Click on a state forest near where you want to go, and the page will tell you if camping is permitted within the state forest. Note that camping is not permitted within most wildlife management areas.

Free camping is also allowed along New York State's canal system: www. canals. ny. gov/trails/camping. html . The page lists the sites available along the canals, but you may also be able to camp for free at any of the locks along the canal system. Call ahead to the lock - www. canals. ny. gov/wwwapps/boating/locks. aspx - and ask the lock personnel if you may camp overnight there.

Tip regarding canal camping - railroads often run through the valleys parallel to the canals and they often run all night long. If you think the sound of the trains and the horn blasts will keep you awake, bring along some foam ear plugs like construction workers use.

(Apologies for the "links" in text with the clumsy inserted spaces. It seems I may not post links until I have 10 posts...)

Last edited by MontgomeryMeigs; 01-14-19 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 03-20-19, 03:26 AM
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Originally Posted by ModeratedUser View Post
Little more info please for those, cough cough, less informed?
i know im 2 years late but, its essentially a sweetened guava paste. (you can find it under guava paste in more places than under bocadillo. also they tend to drink agua de panela instead of water, basically a block of pure cane sugar that you dump in your water bottle and squeeze a lemon into.

also just finished reading this entire thread, hoping to so some touring this summer so this was pretty usefull

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Old 01-22-20, 07:35 PM
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Do most of you guys camp? No one goes from AirBNB to AirBNB?
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Old 01-22-20, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by joejohnstun View Post
Do most of you guys camp? No one goes from AirBNB to AirBNB?
If you bike toured like that I'd like to know.

I don't. From experience there's a overhead checking in and out of AirB&B that makes a one night stay unappealing. If you stay for a few days then it's a different story.
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Old 04-17-20, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by joejohnstun View Post
Do most of you guys camp? No one goes from AirBNB to AirBNB?
I mostly camp, often taking a hotel rom every fourth or fifth night. It give me a chance to recharge electronics, do some laundry, watch so TV nd take a rally long shower. The availability and quality of camping resources also determines how often I camp or 'credit card'. When I rode across the desert, I stayed in hotels whenever possible.
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Old 04-20-20, 06:46 AM
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Old 04-23-20, 06:25 AM
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DIY Single Packets of Chamois Cream

I'm just getting back into biking. I'd like to get to the point where i'm packing my camping gear. I'm almost 50 and my body hurts and I get sores when biking too far. My buddy turned me on to chamois cream. I started buying the packets in order to re-apply while on the road. Those run about $2 to $3 per .3 oz packet. That's about $6-$10 an oz!!!! So.... i make my own now. This is on Youtube. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to drop a link. Don't want to get in trouble, but here's a screen shot of the video. These packets are the bomb!

Hope this is a helpful trick that is worthy of this thread.
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Old 04-26-20, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by ~Stuart~ View Post
one trick i cant seem to find in the forums is, how to weight the bike

like are front paniers(sp?) needed? do you run like 20% weight front and 80% back? or 50%50% or 60%40% or 40%60%?

help would be awsome (wanna know if i need front paniers for my bike trip, or if i can just pile everything on the back and hope for the best)
Good question! Thanks!
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Old 05-25-20, 12:54 PM
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One more thing about oatmeal. I mix my before hand with powdered milk and protien powder. I like the vanilia especially. It may be an acquired taste though.
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Old 07-18-20, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by joejohnstun View Post
Do most of you guys camp? No one goes from AirBNB to AirBNB?
On the KATY Trail in Missouri... from St. Charles until Jefferson City there are bed and breakfasts, small hotels and AirBnB rentals about every 10 miles or so. We like to park at Jeff City and take the Amtrak train (which will let your bikes ride with you) east to Washington, then bike further east to Augusta, spend the night, then start working out way over multiple days to Jeff City. Or there are bike taxi services which will come pick you up and take you anywhere you want, which is more flexible than Amtrak. Saint Charles is a wonderful town. Using a bike taxi lets us park anywhere and start anywhere. And we only stay in bed and breakfasts, small hotels and AirBnB rentals. We take two pairs of bike clothes and wash one in the sink each night. We eat in diners, restaurants and the many wineries that are in that first 100 or so miles of the trail. The only things we pack are a few clothes, some snacks and some sunscreen. Credit card touring is the best.
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