Are you interested in outdoor adventures and bike touring, but aren’t sure what to wear - or buy - or borrow?
There is no need for lycra or other expensive or specialised items. Most of what you need to enjoy your next bike tour is probably already in your wardrobe or garage.
Before you rush out to buy anything, let’s see what makes good wear:
Since you are interested in the outdoors and activity, you probably already have some exercise tops or t-shirts that are comfortable, quick-drying and easy to wash. Perfect! We don’t recommend 100% cotton tops, but any other ‘activewear’, that helps control sweat and can dry overnight after a quick wash is perfect. There is no need to bring one shirt for each day, nor buy specialised lycra bike clothing, skin-tight tops, or expensive merino. You will see us wearing something comfortable and functional and whatever you might use for other types of activity i.e. gym exercise, hiking or gardening.
Wind and Rain
A lightweight rain jacket is useful for both wind, rain and to keep the chill off on a fast downhill.
Pants and Bottoms
This literally sums up the two options when it comes to protecting yourself from the potential pain in the * that can occur when biking for longer periods. We do recommend opting for one of these if you haven’t been riding long distances lately:
Option 1 - Bike shorts with padded inserts. These are popular and work well. However, some people struggle with the look and what some feel is akin to wearing a ‘nappy’, especially if stopping at cafes or shops is part of your biking experience, and you are not keen on walking around with extra padding.
Option 2 - An extra comfortable saddle or gel saddle. If you already have a super comfortable saddle that you want to use on your tour, please feel free to bring it along and we can mount it on your touring bike for you. Also effective are gel saddles, which are saddle-shaped sleeves that can be pulled over any existing seat and turn it into a luxury ride - without the need for any padded clothing. In this case, any quick-drying, general exercise pants or shorts will do the trick. No need for lycra or specialised bike clothing. Functional and comfortable wins again.
Do you have good fitting, solid sneakers or running shoes? Perfect. Any shoe with a good stable sole, good fit, and breathable upper will do. If your shoe is too soft, you won’t get enough grip and all that hard work paddling will be lost in the energy transfer. And if it doesn’t fit tight, you might get blisters. In any case, make sure you don’t wear sandals or any shoes with open toes. Ouch!
Some people prefer the clip-in system of shoes and paddles. If you have this and prefer it, feel free to bring along the paddles and shoes, so we can mount them on your bike, but don’t feel like you need to get them especially for the trip. They are not for everyone and do take some getting used to!
Hands Not strictly essential, but we wouldn’t want to ride without biking gloves. We love the padding they provide on your palms, so your hands don’t ache after a long day holding - or gripping - your handlebars and when riding uneven terrain. Also, if it’s hot, your hands don’t get too sticky or too slippery on the grips and if your forehead is sweating, you can use your gloves to wipe that off too. Of course, they are great to protect your hands should you ever come off your bike, but we aren’t planning on doing that :)
Head Last but not least – your helmet. High-quality helmets are included with the bike hire on all our tours.
If you prefer to bring your own helmet, you can of course, but not many people are aware that helmets have use-by dates and that materials can weaken over time or even develop hairline cracks, whether they are in regular use or not. So, make sure to check your helmet - or have it checked - ensure it’s comfortable, fits well, offers enough ventilation, and maybe even a sun visor. This is the one item we would definitely recommend for you to invest a little bit of money in!
Do you prefer wild, beautiful and adventurous places? Are you keen on scenic downhills, spectacular gorges, dramatic landscapes filled with history? Perhaps cycling from our highest mountains, past great lakes and rivers, down to the mighty Pacific Ocean is more your thing? We are happy to help if you can't decide which tour is right for you or which one to choose first!