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bikejunkie
05-17-2006, 09:36 PM
Last night I attended Jeff Smith's discussion on bike touring (http://www.flickr.com/photos/60961560@N00/148581424/). I was looking for more info regarding the upcoming Community Exchange trip (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ExchangeCycleTours/message/138). Jeff Smith and Jeff Bernards gave an excellent amount of information on getting to outer campgrounds in the Northwest.
"Touring is anything you want it to be. Any distance is fine and there are no rules [regarding what is considered touring]."
Bike touring guru Michael Wolfe (http://www.flickr.com/photos/60961560@N00/148581426/) was also on hand to help with camping spots and helpful suggestions
State DOT maps are very useful as are US Parks Dept maps for finding small minimally traveled roads. Many campgrounds offer specific areas for hiker/bikers which require less space. The internet is a great resource to find out about this and other options.
Equipment: Any bike is fine for touring. Depending on the load you are looking to carry, it's recommended that your rear wheel be a 36 spoke wheel to handle the load. You should be familiar with your bike and know how to do basic maintanance. Obviously you want a rack and good set of panniers (unless you prefer a small trailer). Jeff B mentioned the need for a rearview mirror. A comfortable saddle is essential and a multi-tool. Keep a patch kit AND a spare tube (in case the stem breaks).
If using panniers, you want the weight to be balanced on each side and put heavy items in the bottom.


More info can be found at:
http://www.kenkifer.com/bikepages/touring/ or
gettingaroundportland.org