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Thread: Touring on dirt

  1. #1
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    Dec 2010
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    Touring on dirt

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    I have discovered that I am in love with backroad bike touring. Something about riding on dirt roads, not much traffic and usually some pretty countryside just makes me smile. Here are 3 photos of a recent 3 day tour we did in central Idaho. This section was 47 miles of dirt and gravel, dropping about 2,000 feet in elevation. Yes, we did have to ride up the next day but on a different road (whew) I told the bike hermit that if a cougar jumped out and ate me it wouldn't be the worst way to go
    Anyone else addicted to "adventure touring"?
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    Sky King
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  2. #2
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    Aha! I guessed it before I read the second and third captions... dropping down into the Salmon River Canyon! I"ve been on that road. Did you hit the Burgdorf hot springs at the top?

    Have you done the Magruder corridor or the Lolo trail?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Richmond, VA
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    333
    Quote Originally Posted by Sky King View Post
    I have discovered that I am in love with backroad bike touring. Something about riding on dirt roads, not much traffic and usually some pretty countryside just makes me smile. Here are 3 photos of a recent 3 day tour we did in central Idaho. This section was 47 miles of dirt and gravel, dropping about 2,000 feet in elevation. Yes, we did have to ride up the next day but on a different road (whew) I told the bike hermit that if a cougar jumped out and ate me it wouldn't be the worst way to go
    Anyone else addicted to "adventure touring"?

    How fun!!!! I need to move! I love singletrack mixed with fireroads- but most of the continuous fireroads I have found here are loops- nothing "tour-able" Enjoy (:

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Erin, Ontario
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    194
    I don't actually tour. But as I talked about in a previous thread I wanted a steel bike, specifically a Cross Check to ride the dirt and gravel roads around my home! I have had my Cross Check for a couple of weeks and I love it and the dirt roads. Having that bike has opened up another 40 per cent of roads to me. Your are right less traffic, and new scenery. We have toyed with the idea of moving because we are on busy road but every time I start to really think about it, I realize we have it all right in our neighbourhood. We have some paved rural roads to ride, lots of dirt/gravel roads, two rail trails within 10 km of our house (one is 47 km, the other even longer) and scenery galore! Farm, conservation land, a provincial park. The option of going on longer rides because it not the same old route I have ridden for the past 3 years. Gravel grinding rocks! And I owe you another big thanks Sky King because I honestly almost didn't push for this awesome bike until you told me to!

  5. #5
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    Dec 2010
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    Boise Idaho
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    .
    Quote Originally Posted by Irulan View Post
    Aha! I guessed it before I read the second and third captions... dropping down into the Salmon River Canyon! I"ve been on that road. Did you hit the Burgdorf hot springs at the top?

    Have you done the Magruder corridor or the Lolo trail?
    Yes, the drop into the salmon river canyon and yes we rode McCall to Burgdrof, than Burgfdorf to Riggins and 3rd day was Riggins to New Meadows


    We are hoping to do Magruder next year, have you done it? Sounds like we need to get together for a fun ride
    Sky King
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by DebSP View Post
    I don't actually tour. But as I talked about in a previous thread I wanted a steel bike, specifically a Cross Check to ride the dirt and gravel roads around my home! I have had my Cross Check for a couple of weeks and I love it and the dirt roads. Having that bike has opened up another 40 per cent of roads to me. Your are right less traffic, and new scenery. We have toyed with the idea of moving because we are on busy road but every time I start to really think about it, I realize we have it all right in our neighbourhood. We have some paved rural roads to ride, lots of dirt/gravel roads, two rail trails within 10 km of our house (one is 47 km, the other even longer) and scenery galore! Farm, conservation land, a provincial park. The option of going on longer rides because it not the same old route I have ridden for the past 3 years. Gravel grinding rocks! And I owe you another big thanks Sky King because I honestly almost didn't push for this awesome bike until you told me to!
    YIPPEEEEEEE Watching the bike hermit help a customer build out his new cross check as I type
    Sky King
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  7. #7
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    This tour looks like a lot of fun! I would enjoy that too. Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos!
    Emily

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Meridian Idaho
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    18
    That sounds like something my husband and I would love to do.
    We have Mt. Bikes and just bought road bikes, but now I am thinking we should have bought
    something we could do this type of riding on.
    I saw the pictures of your ride in the Owyhee's and we talked about trying the Magruder but didn't know what type of bike was needed.
    I like the road bikes but touring back roads and Mt. biking is more our style.
    Oh No , do we now need a third bike LOL
    I love the picture's .

  9. #9
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    ride4fun, I don't see any reason you couldn't do a "backroads" tour like this on mountain bikes. In fact, that is probably what I'd do a ride like this on. I know it would be faster on a roadie or cross bike with wider tires, but I prefer the comfort of a MTB on anything unpaved. You could always change out the knobby tires for something with a bit less tread (not slicks but something in between) to gain a bit more speed.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Oregon
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    Beautiful - that's my usual riding - fire roads and single track - every day after work. I would love to do a longer tour like that and it's not too far away from me!
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  11. #11
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    Boise Idaho
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    Ride4fun - yes consider something like the Schwalbe Marathon Mondial or the Schwalbe Big Apple. We have some Mt bike friends who have ridden the dirt/paved routes with us and either one of those tires works well.
    Last edited by Sky King; 10-12-2012 at 07:30 AM. Reason: links
    Sky King
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  12. #12
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    Aug 2012
    Location
    Meridian Idaho
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    That is so exciting to hear.
    My husband has told me we could switch out tires and use the Mt. bikes but ( I needed to hear it from someone that has done this type of riding alot) LOL
    That will be something we do soon, I love to do a mix of riding and the touring on back roads with paved mixed in when needed sound so fun, along with haveing a tire that rolls easer.
    I love the harder single track riding, but it is hard to go all day riding like that and I like being out all day, so the touring on back roads is just what I am looking for.
    I have enjoyed the road bikes but I am more of a dirt type person ,and I really miss being out on longer rides without the cars going by.
    We could even switch out tires when on vacation so we could get in a good mix of riding ( easer then taking four bikes along)
    Thank you for the advice on tires ,I will be checking them out.

  13. #13
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    Whitmore Lake, Michigan
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    I love riding dirt roads, I don't really tour per se but enjoy long back roads riding. No traffic, beautiful scenery and a chance to get to know a place more intimately. We have a local author who wrote a book about back road riding in our county and I believe he is working on another for a neighboring county. It a whole other world out there on the backroad byways. Here is a link to the website for Dirt Road Washtenaw.
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  14. #14
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    That's awesome, Bike Writer! I have bookmarked these. Love backroads riding and hope to get up that way one of these days. Thanks for sharing!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  15. #15
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    Boise Idaho
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    Thanks!!! that is great will have to bookmark the website
    Quote Originally Posted by Bike Writer View Post
    I love riding dirt roads, I don't really tour per se but enjoy long back roads riding. No traffic, beautiful scenery and a chance to get to know a place more intimately. We have a local author who wrote a book about back road riding in our county and I believe he is working on another for a neighboring county. It a whole other world out there on the backroad byways. Here is a link to the website for Dirt Road Washtenaw.
    Sky King
    ____________________
    Gilles Berthoud "Bernard"
    Surly ECR "Eazi"
    Empowering the Bicycle Traveler
    biketouringnews.com

 

 

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