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Messages - Galloper

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General Discussion / Re: Luxuries
« on: February 17, 2011, 08:57:30 am »
Lagavuilen!  Simply the best :)

Although in a pinch a bottle of The Famous Grouse or Jameson's will warm the cockles.

Totally agree with Westinghouse.   One additional comment I'd make is to keep a separate small notebook and make notes of each photo as you shoot it.   Otherwise, if you have lots of photos, it can be difficult to remember the circumstances and even the location of each one.

It's also a good idea to keep a scrapbook for things like park entrance tickets, restaurant bills etc.   Brings the whole thing wonderfully alive later on.

General Discussion / Re: Recommend a bicycle for travelling round the world
« on: February 15, 2011, 06:30:58 am »
Lots of choice.   As you're in the UK, first stop I'd suggest would be SJS cycles

Also have a look at Koga Miyata and Dawes. 

General Discussion / Re: Motorbike riders out there?
« on: February 12, 2011, 09:46:02 am »
Honda Transalp, Kawasaki ZR7S, ZX6R and Royal Enfield Bullet 650

2 x 35,000 mile trips around the USA (all 48 contiguous states).   Longest day ride:  from the Pyrenees through France to the North of England, 1115 miles on a ZX6R.   Who needs a Gold Wing :)

Gear Talk / Re: moving bar end shifters?
« on: February 11, 2011, 09:15:09 am »
Just a thought, if you're thinking of trekking bars, why not fit shifter pods.  Much more convenient to use than down tube shifters.   I fitted trekking bars to my Surly LHT with Shimano shifter pods and SRAM brake levers.   Works very well.

General Discussion / Re: Compact carbs? Do they exist?
« on: February 11, 2011, 09:01:51 am »
Tony, have you read Mark Beaumont's book, "The Man who cycled the world"?   There's a very interesting section on his ride across the Nullarbor.

I'd go for the normal pasta, rice etc.   Once you've cooked it, the water you drain off is still usable.   I recently saw a programme on southern India where clean water is valuable and they mentioned that after cooking their rice, the drained off water was kept for the children.

General Discussion / Re: New to downhill grades
« on: February 10, 2011, 06:39:13 am »
As regards checking rims for heat, I was taught to use the back of your hand and not finger tips.   If the surface is sufficiently hot to burn, it's better to lose a bit of skin on the back of your hand rather than a finger tip!   Ideally you should try and sense the heat before touching.   Spit is good - it sizzles :)

Oh, and by the way, this was on vehicle hubs not bikes :)

The descent from the In-Ko-Pah pass on the ST to Ocatillo is interesting.   I recall passing semis on that descent :)

General Discussion / Re: Luxuries
« on: February 10, 2011, 06:23:56 am »
Eeh Lad!   Tea is an essential.   Nowt better than a cup of Yorkshire tea and a slice of cake at the end of the ride :)

General Discussion / Re: Travel Insurance Q.
« on: February 09, 2011, 07:40:52 am »
Try these guys

General Discussion / Luxuries
« on: February 07, 2011, 06:52:02 am »
I read in an article on touring, many years ago, that one of the keys to a successful trip was having a luxury.   I've always subscribed to that.   By a luxury I mean something non-essential but more something you carry with you which makes the trip more enjoyable.

In recent years I've carried an MP3 player but my big luxury has always been a book or two.   I've recently treated myself to a Kindle and that has just popped to the top of my luxury list.

What do you take?

General Discussion / Re: Travel Insurance Q.
« on: January 27, 2011, 07:21:48 am »
Have you checked out the CTC insurance site, they were the best I found and, unlike a lot of other providers, give full coverage for non-competitive cycling?

As to "the certain type of insurance" - there's no legal requirement, I suspect they may just be commenting on the fact that a lot of standard travel insurance policies don't cover cycling.

General Discussion / Re: Surly LHT: Need help setting my bike up
« on: January 22, 2011, 07:24:20 am »
I've got the 26" model in contrast to my other tourers which have 700.   I like it a lot.   There are pros and cons, of course but they're as you would expect.   In all fairness I have to say I'm equally happy with either - swings and roundabouts.

+1 for the GPS.   I use a Garmin 605 which lasts a couple of days between charges.   I recharge it in motels or use the razor socket in a camp site.   I also use a solar charger and have never had any problems in keeping it going.   It's not much good for serious route planning and you can't really see what's outside it' narrow picture so maps are a necessity.   As mentioned above, it's best helping you find your way through built up areas or in finding motels/campsites etc.

Routes / Re: Road bike tour routes in Northern Spain?
« on: January 20, 2011, 08:38:11 am »
Lots of route info here on the CTC web page -

Routes / Re: Road bike tour routes in Northern Spain?
« on: January 20, 2011, 08:33:22 am »
There is a Eurovelo route which roughly follows the old pilgrims route to Santiago de Compostella.   Northern Spain is fairly hill but if you stick to coastal and valley routes you should be OK.   Get hold of the Michelin Regional Maps, they're pretty good for finding quieter roads, look for the green highlighted roads, they're scenic routes.

General Discussion / Re: Surly LHT: Need help setting my bike up
« on: January 20, 2011, 08:23:45 am »
I don't know what availability is like in the USA but I've found the Panarace Pasela Tourguard a very good tyre, smoother rolling than Schwalbe but better suited to pure pavement use.

+1 for Brooks and Roadmorph pumps.

I use Shimano M530 pedals which have a clip on one side and a platform on the other.   Having said that I'm now starting to wonder about flat pedals.   I use them on my mountain bikes and find them comfortable and grippy.   Given the larger surface area and the ability to be used with virtually any shoe, they have some benefits which I want to explore in a touring setting.   I've used them with dedicated MTB shoes, Merrell walking shoes, Brasher lightweight walking boots and cross trainers and they've worked very well with all of these.

I have a suspension seat post on one of my bikes and have no criticism of it.   It certainly helps with overall ride comfort on some of the rougher cycle trails and with 2k of use seems to last well.   A note of caution however, I found that the suspension seat post on a cheap and cheerful Trek 7200 has become a bit wobbly after about 1k.

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