Cycling the Rail Trails near Victoria's alpine regions | Peter Dunphy
6 Essential Bike Gear Tips for a Cycling Tour
What clothing and equipment should you take on your cycling tour? It may seem like a mundane subject to think about when all you want to do is hop on your bike and go experience some of Australia's best cycling trails. Yet, it is absolutely essential that you get the gear right!
We've consulted our cycling experts for their advice on what to wear for comfort, weather, and technique. Keep reading for their tips, and remember that the bottom line is that you have booked an Australian cycling tour because you enjoy cycling. You want to soak up the regional culture and landscapes at a relaxed pace from the comfortable saddle of your bike. Enjoy!
1. Ensure you have quality wet weather gear
Invest in good quality wet weather gear – including a rain jacket and pack cover. You won’t regret it!
On a social ride, which for all intents and purposes the vast majority of organised cycle tours are, there is nothing worse than riding in the rain without adequate protection – especially if it is cold rain!
- Garry Corbett
2. Replicate your comfortable set-up
If you already have a comfortable set up at home but won't be taking your bike on this particular trip (due to distance or convenience), then perhaps it's possible to take certain parts with you. Check with our staff for further information regarding this.
All of our Australian cycling tours include helmets. You will be sent a pre-departure kit before you leave with all sorts of important information, including a comprehensive gear list. Our travel experts are also always on-hand to advise on recommended gear.
3. Consider wearing a bike jersey
Bike jerseys with a number of pockets on the back are another good addition to your wardrobe for both comfort and convenience. Don’t worry, not all of them look like a brightly coloured billboard.
The pockets can conveniently hold everything from snacks to cameras and money. It is important to note here that if you shop around you can purchase cycle jerseys that do not make you look like a Tour de France contender.
4. Cycling gloves make a big difference
Cycling gloves are another addition to your wardrobe that are highly recommended when cycle touring. While gloves may seem like a small consideration, they serve a number of very important functions including grip and sun protection.
First and foremost, gloves keep the hot sun off the back of your hands, but on a more practical level they stop blisters, chafing and other discomfort caused by the constant friction of handlebars and road vibration against the skin of your hands - especially when they are damp with sweat.
If you have booked a mountain bike tour, the extra grip provided by gloves could mean the difference between staying on your seat or taking a tumble and landing on the ground. The improved grip enables better control of your bike because your hands are less likely to slip on the handlebars each time you turn.
- Garry Corbett
5. Comfort is key
While it’s important to focus on fitness, one shouldn’t forget about comfort. If you’re feeling uncomfortable it will make it hard to enjoy your trip.
All your contact points must be really comfortable including your hands, backside and feet. If you are not used to long periods of riding we recommend buying a gel seat pad or padded cycling pants.
Sitting on a bike seat for multiple hours can present some challenges if you haven’t done so for a long time, or at all. Some people like to bring padded bike pants, others gel seats, and while they all help to some degree nothing aids your buttocks better than getting it used to being on a bike seat gradually before your trip. Just like you wear your boots in to avoid blisters before a trip, wear your bum in by sitting on the bike before you travel.
- Brad Atwal (World Expeditions Marketing Director)
6. Wear synthetic clothing – not cotton
Carefully consider the clothing you pack before you leave and consider investing in some quick-drying clothes. Cotton does not dry quickly and can hold too much moisture.
It is best to bring along fast-drying clothing that is predominantly synthetic or of a synthetic blend. Cotton holds onto moisture and can be a cyclist’s worst enemy. Not only does it look unsightly to be wearing a T-shirt and shorts soaked with sweat, but the moisture magnifies both heat and cold and can make things very uncomfortable.
- Garry Corbett
Now you can pedal safe in the knowledge you won't be one of those 'all the gear and no idea' people! Continue browsing our affordable cycling adventures.
>> View all Self Guided Cycling Tours in Australia
>> View all Guided Cycling Tours in Australia
Do you have any other cycling gear advice for us? Share your tips in the comment section below.