I’ve lately found myself more and more interested in cycling and mountain biking over engine powered enduro. Although I do still regularly train enduro with the 500, I have very little interest in getting out and riding gravel for days. However, my lust for two wheeled travel has not diminished in slightest.
My first bikepacking tour in Estonia ended up being a bit of a mixed bag. I loaded my ultralight kit on my Specialized Diverge, and headed west from Tallinn, without too much of a plan, except ride. The weather was perfect ant the scenery the typical Estonian variety; flat and boring for the most part. It was only on the seaside where the endless trees gave way to view to a view over the water.
To be honest there really isn’t much to tell, except that I followed the coast west and and then south where I had planned to camp. Unfortunately I had been faster than expected and it was still too early to camp, especially since every potential camping spot was infested with mosquitoes which would have made for a pretty long and miserable wait for the morning in the tight space of my ultralight and ultra small tent. So I just kept riding and eventually found myself back where I started in the morning. The ride was just over 230 km so not too bad for one day of bikepacking I suppose.
It was funny to observe how much the game changes when you replace MX gear with a t-shirt and a pair of shorts. There is absolutely no cover from the bloodthirsty mosquitoes, and setting up a tent in the swarm would have been a nightmare without changing first. Well it was a lesson learned I suppose. But to be honest I think the lesson was actually never to bike pack in Estonia in the summer again. On lighter note the cycling was an incredibly nice way to travel. And I felt much more in touch with my surroundings on the bicycle, as opposed to a moto.
I too find mtn biking is a great compliment to motorcycle riding. Cardio, balance, weight control, closer to nature…. just a few of the benefits. Kerp up thr great work!
Fully agree, and I’ve found MTB, and especially DH, do complement riding petrol enduro too. It’s weird why that is, since they’re such different rides in terms of weight and handling. Anyhow, I’ve found moto enduro a great source of more confidence and control in the air with mountain bikes.
Wow how funny !!! I’ve abandoned my 690 in Australia to go bikepacking on Camino trails in France from Paris-Epernay-Vézela-Spain it’s a 50 day ride to Barcelona, sometimes I really do wish I had some horses but loving it !!!
Sounds epic! Are you on a gravel bike or hardtail? Got any public photos somewhere for a sneak peak?
I’m trying to figure out whether to head to Spain or the east for a ten day ride or so in spring. Will definitely be bringing my hardtail over the gravel bike.
I’ve got a Salsa Fargo frame with lots of extra gear to make it handle the rough stuff. Both France and Spain are brilliant for riding. Here is a link to a Dutch website that has all the GPS tracks of most caminos: https://www.santiago.nl/downloads
And here are some pictures I’ve taken: https://mpgphoto.smugmug.com/Camino/PARIS–Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
All the best
Thanks Michael, looking awesome!