No Stupid Questions: What’s The Future Of Cycle Touring Electronics?
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1w ago
A reader writes: [What is] the future of cycle electrics? Dynamos vs power banks. Lights are becoming much more efficient, but there’s more and more requirements for charging eg: mobile phones and navigation. Any thoughts? Thanks for the question! I’ve had a fair few questions about tech and cycle touring, specifically about getting the best out of smartphones on bike trips – but none about what the future might hold in terms of electronics and their ever-increasing demands for power. It’s an interesting one! Well – I don’t know exactly what the future of bicycle electronics holds, of course ..read more
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No Stupid Questions: How Can I Use My Smartphone As A Bike GPS?
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
2w ago
A reader writes: I would like up to date information on integrating my iPhone to my bikes as a GPS. Everything from safe phone mounting through power supply (I have built a usb feed into my elekky bike’s battery shoes) and route planning and following on the phone. I was raised on 1” OS and Bartholomew’s half inch maps. The half inch are unusable nowadays and the OS 1: 50,000 are too large but when folded into a map clip not big enough. I can read OS maps and like to see the Historical and Landscape information that may make a detour interesting. I have installed OS Maps and OS locate on my p ..read more
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Introducing Yet Another Cycle Touring & Bikepacking YouTube Channel
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
3w ago
So I’ve caved in to demand and rebooted my long-abandoned YouTube channel. Check it out here. This is a long-overdue experiment to see if my obsession with exploring the world by bike will translate into the short, informal video format. I have no more intention of becoming rich and famous on YouTube than I did when I created my first free Blogspot account in 2006. My articles seemed to help more people get out riding, so I kept writing them. Likewise, if these videos help more people get out riding, I might keep making them. Cue dramatic music: Will Tom’s enthusiasm fizzle out when he realise ..read more
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No Stupid Questions: Where To Buy Cycle Touring Maps Of Europe & Morocco?
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
A reader writes: I have two questions, both of which you have probably been asked frequently before. I am planning a 6 month cycling tour through France, Spain and Morocco so this winter/spring: Do you know where I can buy decent maps for cycling in Europe and Morocco avoiding busy roads and mountains? Any ideas on basic sat-navs for cyclists? Thanks for the questions! This fits into the more general topic of route planning for cycle touring. I don’t get as many questions as you might imagine on this subject, so there’s actually plenty to say here. 1. Where Can I Buy Cycle Touring Maps Of ..read more
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Tom’s Bike Shed: Packing Ultralight Camping Gear For A Bikepacking Race (Video)
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
In this episode of Tom’s Bike Shed (also the first episode, for what it’s worth), I conduct a test-run of packing and attaching to my new bike the camping gear I’ve selected for the bikepacking race later this year. Further reading and links to some of the things I mentioned: The bike: Oxford Bike Works Outlander custom-build The race: Ascend Armenia 2024 Sleeping bag: Alpkit PipeDream 250 Sleeping bag liner: Scottish Silkworm Camping pillow: Alpkit Drift Camping hammock: Hennessy Hammock Deep Jungle …and if you’re one of the readers who asked me to start a YouTube channel, you’d better “li ..read more
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No Stupid Questions: What’s The Best Route Planning & Campsite Finder App For Cycle Touring In The USA?
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
A reader writes: Are you familiar with [the Great American Rail Trail] at all?  The route is currently about 55% off road and more complete in the east but there is an almost 1,000 [mile] gap through Montana and Wyoming. So my question is what app do you use when riding to find the best on-road [but] safe cycling conditions on the gap sections between trails? And do you have a favorite app to find accommodations: camping (preferred) or hotels on the route every few days? Thanks for the question! Let’s start with what might be called “dynamic” route planning for cycle touring. This is wh ..read more
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Warmshowers Launches New Website For 2024 (Hosts: Update Your Profiles!)
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
A quick heads-up for anyone who – like me – continues to use the nonprofit hospitality platform Warmshowers to find local hosts when cycle touring and bikepacking, and/or to host fellow riders. As the post title suggests, the all-new Warmshowers website was launched earlier this week, with implications for both tourers and hosts (to use Warmshowers’ own terminology). Of all the site’s users, it is existing hosts who will see the most obvious changes. The official Warmshowers YouTube channel has a handy video overview for hosts, which I’ve also embedded below. The official Warmshowers video ov ..read more
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No Stupid Questions: How To Plan Cycle Tours In Unusual Places (Like Jamaica)?
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
A reader writes: I am a new subscriber to your mailing list as I hope to get into travelling by bike. I was wondering if you have any insights about biking in Jamaica? While being there I will able to do both short and very long rides. So my questions are: Is it safe? Is Jamaica friendly to cyclists? I have a gravel bike and wondering what kind of wheels I may need in that country. Any route suggestions? Anything that you can provide I will greatly appreciate it. This is an interesting question for a couple of reasons. First, for a personal reason: for years I’ve been dreaming of an unorthod ..read more
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Tickets Now On Sale For The 2024 UK Cycle Touring Festival
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
Fancy a weekend-long festival of all things cycle touring and bikepacking this spring? Well, the good news is that the UK Cycle Touring Festival returns this May after a five-year COVID-induced hiatus – this time at a new venue near the shores of Coniston Water in Cumbria. I gave a couple of talks at the inaugural festival in 2015 and have since watched this lovely institution go from strength to strength, with round-the-world cyclists Laura & Tim Moss at the helm. Somehow both casual and inspiring at the same time, it’s rare that bicycle travellers – mostly a solitary breed – can get toge ..read more
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First Look: The New Oxford Bike Works Outlander Off-Road Bikepacking Bike
Tom's Bike Trip
by Tom
1M ago
In an incident that will likely prove exciting for me alone, I dropped in on Richard at Oxford Bike Works last week to pick up my first new bike in about ten years. Everybody say ooooh! Christened the Outlander, this new addition to Richard’s range of offerings is the typically principled Oxford Bike Works take on the rigid, steel-framed, off-road adventure bike – more burly than a gravel bike, more agile than the now-classic Expedition, and downright more fun than a traditional tourer, yet sitting somewhere at the intersection of all three. Aimed squarely at those who want a simple, durable ..read more
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