If you are thinking about taking a holiday you will find that there is a dizzying array of options available to you these days. You are not limited to lying on a beach in the sun anymore – not that there is anything wrong with that – as there is a whole holiday industry offering weird and wonderful vacation plans. One of the latest to become popular is bikepacking, and this guide will tell you all you need to know about it.
What is Bikepacking?
The question most newcomers to bikepacking ask is: what exactly is it? It is essentially a blend of biking and backpacking, where you pack your basic camping equipment and travel from place to place by bicycle instead of on foot or by car. Beyond that simple description though, there are different types of bikepacking holiday that you can choose. Some people use normal bikes and stick to the roads for their travel routes, while others prefer to cycle across more treacherous wilderness terrain. If the latter option appeals to your sense of adventure then a mountain bike will be a much better vehicle to use than a standard bicycle.
Bikepacking trips can also vary wildly in length, as some people go on single-day trips of around 40 miles – which are often called S240s (sub-24-hour 40-mile overnighters). Others take much longer treks that last for several weeks and see them bike hundreds of miles. These will take more time to plan and need a lot of stamina, but you can start off with short trips while you are learning how to bikepack and then build up to more ambitious ones.
Why Should You Try a Bikepacking Holiday?
There does actually seem to be a lot of reasons to avoid bikepacking, from ending up with a sore bottom to having to map a route and buy all the necessary equipment. This means it is for people really seeking something different for their holiday, and what makes it unique is the chance to travel from place to place at entirely your own speed. If you come across a spot that you find particularly beautiful or interesting you can just stay there until you are ready to move on. All of the cycling you will do is also allows you to combine holidaying and keeping fit and hopefully you will be having such an enjoyable adventure that you won’t even mind the exercise part.
Furthermore, if the basic idea appeals to you but the prospect of planning out a route and camping in the rough doesn’t, there are overnight bikepacking trips through the peak district available. These let you explore the great outdoors by bike while knowing that you will be spending the night in a warm bed with a real roof over your head at the end of it.
Bikepacking is an exciting new way to see the world on holiday, and there are accessible ways of easing yourself into the experience for the newcomer.