What are your adventure cycling plans for 2016?

Over the recent holiday season, I’m sure your mind has wandered towards what 2016 might have in store for you.

Perhaps you’re dreaming up new bicycle expeditions of your own.

Perhaps you’re in the middle of a big cycling journey already. Perhaps you’re happy to continue experiencing vicariously the adventures of others. Or perhaps you’re making your first tentative steps into the world of cycle touring.

Where do you fit into all of this?

(This is not a rhetorical question – I want to hear from you about your plans!)

For TomsBikeTrip.com, this is going to be a year of building on what already exists, developing and creating resources to help others explore the world by bicycle.

Seeing new journeys emerge from the help and advice I’ve published is one of the most rewarding things about what I do for a living. While my two-wheeled travels are nowadays interspersed with other kinds of adventure, I always come back to the bicycle, finding its potential for adventure to be matchless. Continuing to evangelise that is going to be my top priority.

In concrete terms, there’s a new book in the works, due for publication in the first half of the year. While my last two books have been on specialist topics, this one’s going to be a broad introduction to adventure cycling, with the aim of teaching the newcomer what’s possible on two wheels and how to get started. It’ll also be the first physical book I’ll have published since Janapar, professionally designed and including tons of stunning full-colour photography. More news as it comes!

Beyond that, I’ve been looking into using video as a format for new in-depth tutorial material, rather than written word. There are some specialist topics best explained visually – particularly on the mechanical front (there’s a big clue!) – and with my filmmaking background and contacts it makes a lot of sense to put these two things together.

As for the blog, expect a glut of long-overdue gear reviews of equipment I’ve been field-testing over the last couple of years. There’ll also be plenty more in-depth how-to material, regular news from the evolving (and expanding!) world of bicycle-mounted adventuring, and a few of my own stories (and rants) too.

I’ve no concrete plans for my own year’s trips, but I suspect they’re going to involve continuing to experiment with bikepacking in some of the wild places that have become close to my heart – particularly Armenia and the Caucasus, where I’ll be based for the majority of this year. Again, watch this space.

Do feel free to leave a comment with your own plans for 2016. It’s always good to hear what’s happening in the broader adventure cyclcommunity.

31 Responses to “What are your adventure cycling plans for 2016?”

  1. Allysse Riordan

    I like the ideas of videos tutorial 🙂 I can’t wait to see what you’ll produce.

    In a few weeks (beginning of March), I’ll be heading to Spain and Portugal for a three months cycle tour. Your e-book ‘Essential gear for adventure cycle touring’ was very helpful in the planning of this trip. I can’t wait to be there 🙂

    Reply
    • Tom Allen

      Very glad to hear that it’s come in useful! Best of luck with the tour 🙂

      Reply
    • Barrie

      Hi, long term resident of Portugal here. If I can help with any information would be a pleasure. It’s a beautiful place to travel I hope you have a great trip
      Barrie

      Reply
  2. Katie Bow

    I have been very inspired by your blog and in 2015 built my own touring bike. Due to illness I have been unable to give it a whirl but I have a 3 day cycle tour planned in the Cotswolds in May as practise for 2 weeks in the Netherlands in the summer. I cannot wait!

    Reply
    • Tom Allen

      Sounds like the perfect place to begin. Some claim the Netherlands is somehow boring, but I’ve always had very enjoyable experiences riding there. Hope you do too!

      Reply
  3. Aurora

    I am hoping to do 2-weeks of bikepacking in Oaxaca in late April. Looking for a partner(s) now! Anyone interested?! 🙂

    Reply
  4. Tim millikin

    2016 will see Finola and I continue our round the world trip. Will are currently in Vietnam and we plan to cycle into loas, Cambodia, Thailand,mayalasia and Singapore before cycling from Darwin to Adelaide and a loop of New Zealand!
    Follow our progress on http://www.reading2reading.com

    Thanks
    Tim and fin.

    Reply
  5. Lars Erik Sira

    I have finally managed to get three months off to explore my home country Norway in depth by bike this summer, thanks to a genereous wife and employer, and partly inspired by you for several years. I also plan to write a book about the trip. Looking forward to see your videos!

    Reply
    • Tom Allen

      That’s brilliant – I’ve found a great deal of satisfaction in touring my home country after many years away. I hope you do too!

      Reply
  6. tommaso savoia

    Hello. I’m planning to cross the Adriatic Sea from Italy (where I live) to Split and ride until Igoumenitsa. An other ferry to Ancona (It.) and last 130 km to home. I hope to leave in 20 days.

    Reply
  7. Jonathan Sedgebeer

    As a couple in our 50’s we will be cycling from Ho Chi Minh to the Mekong delta and around and back in February. Not a mega cycle but an adventure nontheless. Really enjoy your writing, tales and films. Keep going.

    Reply
  8. Keith warner

    did Eastern Europe last year,nothing much planned this year,coast to Coast in May and. Some weekend trips in Wales,getting bits together to build a bike,and saving for the next trip

    Reply
  9. Jan Cooper

    I shall be doing the St Malo to Nice trip in August. The ferry to France will be booked at the end of this month. Once I have done that I know that the trip will definitely be happening after a couple of years of procrastination. So it’ll be me, my bike, a couple of panniers and 20-odd Chambres d’hote. Looking forward to it.

    Reply
  10. Allen Ashworth

    Last year I biked the Lancashire and Welsh coasts followed by a second trip from Lands End along the south coast, with a side trip around the Isle of Wight, then continuing on around the Kent, Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk coastal routes. That completed a circumnavigation of the UK.
    This year, In early September, I plan to take The European Bike express bus down to Montpellier in France. Pick up the River Rhone cycle route and follow that to the rivers source at Oberalppass Summit (Lia da Tuma Lake) in Switzerland. There I will get the start of the River Rhine and follow North that all the way to Rotterdam on the North Sea coast and board a ferry for home. All told about 3000km. I would be grateful for any info about this route and any expressions of interest

    Reply
  11. Joakim Westerbring

    Im preparing for my first tour this summer! Yeah! From Oslo in Norway into Sweden all the way up into Norway again and then down to Oslo. Really looking forward to it. Its happening 🙂

    Reply
  12. Ellis Meade

    Many thanks for publishing your inspiring blog. I’ve dreamt about cycling around the world for years and have finally realised a way that I can marry my love of art and illustrating with a world tour. The first mobile art gallery on a bike will hit the roads at the end of March! The bike is an Omnium Mini-max from Copenhagen and will have a custom built box on the front. Each person I meet can have the change of exhibiting whether or not they are an artist, and their work will travel through different countries inside the mini art space.

    Reply
  13. Paul

    Having just got married flights are booked to Singapore Tuedsy morning. We’re cycling back to Southampton over the next 6/8 months on a honeymoon which should be amazing. Thanks for all of the inspiration and we’ll keep you updated. Can’t wait.

    Reply
  14. Glenn

    Hi, I have been doing quite a lot of cycling these past years. My trip this summer will be starting at my home in Denmark, down through Germany, and holland. I will be sailing to England where I will be cycling across , two years ago I cycled around the uk (3000k), I will finish my tour with a trip around Ireland. Well actually I will by cycling to Wales where I am visiting my family.

    Reply
  15. Cliff Pope

    Cycling from Gibraltar ( or as I prefer to call them The Pillars of Hurcules!) to Reading! Route via Seville, Córdoba, Granada then up to Toledo, Avila, Segovia. Then Pampolona, over Pyrenees to Bayonne, La Rochelle, Nantes, Rennes Cherbourg. Finally Portsmouth, Basingstoke! and Reading!
    I’ve got three months to complete so a fairly easy daily average! Have done lands end to John O’Groats before but this time I’ll be solo for the most part. Leaving early April 2016 – the idea is to follow the spring north and not be too hot. Feeling nervous and excited!

    P.S. Found your preparation book very useful.

    Reply
  16. Ian Denton

    Took redundancy from work and planning on spending the next couple of years touring around europe and surroundings.

    Reply
  17. Mike Grenville

    In the August/September to October 2016, I am planning to cycle a chunk of the Iron Curtain trail. I will be cycling from the old east-west German border on the Baltic down through Germany, around the Austrian border and ending in Trieste on the Mediterranean.
    http://www.ironcurtaintrail.eu/en/

    Reply
  18. Simon

    Hi , Im new to cycle touring apart from weekends away but would love to do the Carratera Austral next year , I’ve heard a lot of the roads are being tarmaced though and wondered if anyone has done it recently ? Many thanks. Si

    Reply
  19. Nigel

    Over the last five years or so in Europe we,ve followed many of the cycle routes mapped by the Euro Velo cycle path network – an on-growing project. These have included the length of the Danube to the Black Sea and a couple of trips from southern Germany over the Alps as well as the northern part of the Iron Cutain Trail. So what,s left? The US west coast – Seattle to San Fransisco ? Done that. SE Asia – some of the best parts too while we were living in Laos. Apparently there,s a good route in Bavaria and maybe a new route over the Alps to the country with the best food on the planet – Italy!

    Reply
  20. Kevin Copinger

    I’ve just started to research cycling the Silk Road but literally have no idea where to start! Or even got a bike yet, though thinking of the Kona Sutra. Do I take a trailer? I’m hoping to camp for the most part to cut down costs. But which route? Will I need visas & if so how long do they take, how much do they cost? What’s the best direction of travel along the Silk Road? Agghhhh where to start????

    Reply
  21. Gareth

    Hi Tom After reading your 7 critical questions article I don’t feel it’s for me. But I love my bike and I lovd cycling and exploring my city . I also take trips to Spain and Italy regularly so next time Im going I will rent a city bike and enjoy it that way! Less hassle for me.

    Reply
  22. Lukasz

    2016: finish building a tourer and buy other gear (tent, sleeping bag, the lot)
    2017: test it on a few longer rides across the UK
    2018: make my first long trip – Sheffield to Szczecin (Poland).

    Reply

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