Bike Touring

When it comes to biking, you can never be too apparent to drivers on the road, especially at night. Reflectors, bike lights, and bright, high-visibility colors should all be no-brainers, but what if you want to announce your presence with an even more striking display? Here are three options to consider. Spin hypnotic color There’s one…

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The sun sets before 4:30 p.m. in most of New England for the next two months. This means that if you spend any time out and about in the evening—running, biking, walking—you will be enjoying the cloak of early darkness. And if you happen to be active on the weekdays in the hours immediately after…

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It was late one night in September 2014, probably past midnight, and my wife, Sarah, and I were in the garage, bolting 5-gallon buckets onto our kids’ bikes. Together with a bike trailer, these “poor man’s panniers” would carry all of our food, clothing, equipment, and tools for the five-day bike-camping trip on which we…

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Flat tires can happen on any surface, to any type of bike. If you ride, you have to be ready with the tools and knowledge necessary for a roadside repair. With practice, the right equipment, and a little baby powder, you’ll be back on the road or the trail in no time. BEFORE YOU HEAD…

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For $15 or less, the Schwinn Merge provides as much protection as helmets many times more expensive. Shortly after I wrote a recent column on bicycle helmets (Safety on the Brain: How to Choose a Bicycle Helmet), Consumer Reports released its latest study on this year’s crop of helmets (subscription required). The results are insightful—and…

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I like my brain. I would rather not damage it. So I wear a bicycle helmet to protect my skull and its useful contents while riding. Always. You never know when bad luck might send you hurtling head-first into the road, a car, or some other unyielding object. You probably like your brain too. So…

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One of the biggest challenges of winter cycling is keeping your fingers from becoming icy popsicles of pain. Over a decade of winter bike commuting, I’ve tried multiple solutions—a whole universe of gloves, lobster claws, and mittens—and to date the best, warmest option I’ve found are Bar Mitts. Constructed from thick 5.5mm neoprene, Bar Mitts…

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Over time, dirt and body oils steadily permeate your sleeping bag and rain jacket, decreasing their warmth and breathability. Practicing some basic outdoor gear maintenance can extend the life of your equipment. Wash them once every season or two, depending on how often you use them. Apply leather conditioner to your hiking boots at least…

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Most bike tires feature a bead, the raised element around the inside edge that locks the rubber against the rim. Wider tires are measured in inches according to their bead-to-bead diameter and width, for example 26 x 2.0. Most adult-sized bikes use 26-inch tires, though 29- inch tires can be found on an increasing number…

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In more than 90 percent of bicycle fatalities, the rider was not wearing a helmet. Don’t become part of this statistic! Make sure your bike helmet fit is optimized to your noggin. It should feel snug but not uncomfortably tight and sit level on your head. The front should rest no more than one inch above…

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