I’ve always felt that you should never stop learning. Even if you feel that you’re an expert in a subject, I think you should still stay current and up-to-date, as well as read what others have to say on a subject. I’m no expert when it comes to bicycle touring, but I did do a 6 month tour of Europe from Ireland to Portugal once, so I do have a little experience. While preparing for a simple little jaunt down the Natchez Trace, I came across Steve Butterman’s book, Bicycle Touring: How To Prepare For Long Rides and decided to give it a read. I thought it might give me a few tips or tricks that I might find helpful. Surprisingly, the book did quite a bit more than that.
Mr. Butterman has travelled over 20,000 miles including riding across the United States 3 times as well as touring Canada and Mexico. Clearly he knows what he’s talking about. The good news is that he can write about it too. The authors style is very engaging. He’s brief and yet through as he writes about a topic. You gain all the information you need, but you don’t have to wade through a lot of fluff to get to the point. All told, the book is only 88 pages, which includes the index and all the appendices, so it’s a fast read. With Butterman’s pace in writing you feel yourself pulled along through the book and you’re ready to get out there and ride!
The book is broken down into 4 chapters. The first covers the things that you’ll need on the road. Chapter two revolves around how to plan for your trip, the third gives you a run down of what you can expect when you’re on the road and the last chapter gives you a good overview of all the places you can travel. It may sound like this book is targeted only to those looking to go on week long self supported trips. However, even if you’re just taking a weekend jaunt, I’d still recommend that you read this book. Not everything would apply to you, but there’s plenty of good information that will.
To sum it all up, Bicycle Touring: How To Prepare For Long Rides is a must have on your bookshelf if you’re a cyclist. Between the pictures of other touring cyclists, to the funny anecdotes, to the wealth of practical solid information, you’ll know everything you need to know to take a trip on your bicycle. In fact, the information found in the Appendices alone is worth the price of the book. Happy cycling!
My Rating: (5 out of 5 stars)