Are you the type of person that's always up for an outdoor adventure? Are your weekends spent trekking through the woods, biking from here to there, and camping in the wilderness? Then bikepacking is the newest trend you need to try.
The term ‘bikepacking' has only come into use recently, around the early 2000's. However, the idea of going on a cycling trip with all one's gear is nothing new. Bikepacking, no matter how you define it, is not an option that everyone will enjoy. However, for those who are capable of it, the experience can be completely fulfilling and enjoyable.
If you're looking for a fun challenge, but don't have the time or energy for backpacking, bikepacking has become a great option for a trip with all the enjoyment of a biking trip, but with the added bonus of being able to ride up to the destination whenever you feel like it! It's also a good change of pace for backpackers who are used to a slower and more relaxed form of travel.
TIP: Make sure you can multitask! When bikepacking you'll find yourself biking, walking, camping, and doing other things throughout your trip. You'll need to be able to do it all!
Tons of people are discovering the fun of adventure biking! Bikepacking is an exciting way to enjoy the outdoors and get more exercise at the same time. If you're curious about bikepacking, check out the rest of the article and our blog for some great information and instructions for newbies!
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Why You Should Try Bikepacking
Bikepacking is a different and unique way to explore the outdoors. While backpacking is an awesome way to enjoy the wilderness, there are a few reasons to try bikepacking instead.
Bikepacking allows you to cover more ground on your adventure. Even the most seasoned long-distance hikers usually max out at 20-30 miles per day. Most hikers can only do 10-15 miles per day. Obviously, this limits how much ground you can cover in a single trip.
Most people can easily cover 25 or 30 miles a day on a bike. And avid bikers can get in far more miles than that. So, bike packing allows you to experience so much more in a single trip.
Bikepacking also makes it easier to carry everything you need for your trip. Instead of having to put everything you need in a pack on your back, you can use saddlebags, sometimes called panniers, to pack some things on your bike.
Because bikepacking bags are attached to the bike and not the rider, it is easier for the biker to carry more gear. In fact, some bikepacking bags are roomy enough to carry everything the biker needs, including a camp stove, food, water, and other supplies. Bikepacking bags are also often made from waterproof materials so that the gear inside doesn't get damaged if the bike is ridden through streams or other wet areas.
Many people also find biking easier than hiking. Biking has some compelling benefits! It's easier on your back, usually doesn't require as much cardio, and you're not likely to get any awful blisters. You can also bike more miles in a shorter amount of time than you could ever do with hiking. You'll get a good workout, you'll explore the outdoors, and you'll get to see different and beautiful scenery. It's also easier to carry gear on a bike than it is to carry it in a backpack.
For those looking for a multi-day outdoor adventure, bikepacking is often an easier option than backpacking. Plus it allows you to pack more experiences into one trip.
What do You Need for Bikepacking?
The type of bike you'll need depends on the kind of trip you want to take. If you're headed into the deep woods, you'll need a sturdy mountain bike. If you're head into the woods where there are well-maintained, dirt-packed trails, you can probably use a hybrid bike instead of a mountain bike. If you're sticking to paved roads for your trip, a hybrid bike can work, but a road bike will increase your speed.
Don't have a bike? No worries! Plenty of outdoor gear shops allow you to rent bikes by the day.
You'll also need camping supplies. When it comes to bikepacking, packing light is the name of the game. It's not easy to bike with a full-sized pack on your back, so you'll want to cut down on what you're bringing to the absolute essentials.
You'll need enough food and water for the length of your trip, utensils for cooking and eating, a sleeping bag or blanket, and a tent or a hammock at the very least. Many bikepackers opt for a camping hammock and a blanket instead of a tent or a sleeping bag because it makes for a lighter pack.
You'll also need an ultralight backpack and bike bags or panniers to carry all that gear in.
Ready to Try It?
Bikepacking is an awesome way to take a trip in the great outdoors and experience nature at its best. The concept is simple: load up all your gear and food on a bike and pedal to your destination. It's great for a simple day trip, or if you're looking for an extended adventure, you can bikepack for months and months.
If you're a fan of biking and camping, bikepacking is a must-try experience.
For more information and tips about bikepacking, check out our blog.