6 equipment tips for the perfect cycling holiday
Published on 3. February 2020
A multi-day bike trip requires proper equipment. The old principle that a bit more is better than too little applies here with limitations. After all, you want to avoid too much weight on the bike. That is why it is important to think about the type of bike tour in advance.
What bike for which route?
The bike should be suitable for the tour. Thus, there are a couple of things to think about in advance: Do I ride on asphalt, on gravel roads or through the forest and across meadows? How many altitude metres can I expect? Is the gear ratio of my shifting system suitable for ascents? All this can significantly influence the fun factor on the road.
What about the luggage?
Anyone planning only relatively short day tours will be fine with a backpack. Because they offer much more space and save you from possible back pain caused by a backpack, saddlebags and handlebar bags are the better choice if longer, multi-day trips are on the agenda. Important: The bags must be sensibly distributed so that about two thirds are positioned at the back and one third at the front. Too much weight at the rear or front increases the risk of falling when cycling uphill or downhill. Also, it is best to use waterproof models.
What about food and drinks?
Every cyclist should always have a water bottle at hand. A few energy bars in case of sudden snack attacks or hypoglycaemia are never wrong either. Whether additional provisions are necessary depends on the route and the cycling style (sporty or leisurely). Luckily, there is always the possibility to stop for a snack along the Velontour leisure tours.
What should I wear?
To avoid surprises, you should always check the weather forecast first before you start your bike tour. Otherwise, the good old layered clothing technique applies: first the functional underwear and then several layers of thin outerwear. This means you are well prepared for changing weather conditions. A breathable and waterproof jacket is recommended in bad weather. If you are on the road wearing padded cycling shorts, you can protect yourself additionally with leg warmers. A rain cape in your bag or backpack is also practical.
Map or GPS?
The good old bicycle map is not yet completely obsolete. The navigation system on the smartphone is of course more comfortable. With the latter, you can also access important on-the-go information such as a rain radar map or nearby stops for a rest. It makes sense to always have a map or smartphone on the handlebar.
Do I need tools?
Cyclists should always carry a minimum of tools. A flat tyre or a broken chain can happen faster than you think. Carrying an air pump, repair kit, spare inner tube, tyre levers and suitable spanners and Allen keys as well as chain rivets or chain lock pliers is therefore important. The standard equipment should also include a wheel lock and a first aid kit.