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The Essential Touring Cyclist: A Complete Guide for the Bicycle Traveler, Second Edition Paperback – December 18, 2000


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The Essential Touring Cyclist: A Complete Guide for the Bicycle Traveler, Second Edition + Bike Touring: The Sierra Club Guide to Travel on Two Wheels (Sierra Club Outdoor Adventure Guide) + The Complete Book of Long-Distance Cycling: Build the Strength, Skills, and Confidence to Ride as Far as You Want
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The Essential Series--Your Trusted Guides "One of the best pieces of equipment you can get to prepare for a tour."--Odyssey

"If you like to bicycle and you're prone to wanderlust, proceed with caution before reading The Essential Touring Cyclist . . . you may find yourself suddenly giving two weeks' notice and hitting the road."--Outdoor Traveler

"Just about everything a person needs to know to travel by bike."--Denver Post

Each year thousands of people pedal across the country, and even more choose weekend or weeklong tours near home or abroad. Bike touring is a way to really see and experience the countryside and come home healthier than when you left. The Essential Touring Cyclist, the only fully illustrated manual for bicycle touring, guides you through choosing a bike, equipping and customizing it for touring, and preparing yourself for life on the road. Other features include

  • Getting into shape and dealing with aches and pains
  • Touring solo or with groups
  • Riding skills and endurance techniques
  • Tips on clothing, camping, food, and safety

Whether you're heading out for a few hours or a few months, this new edition of The Essential Touring Cyclist gives you everything you need to know about traveling on two wheels.

About the Author

Richard A. Lovett has published more than 2,000 articles on travel, science, and cycling for such publications as the Economist, Backpacker, and Travel & Leisure. The coauthor of Freewheelin': A Solo Journey Across America, he has bicycled more than 50,000 miles, including a 5,400-mile trek from California to Maine. He is also coauthor of The Essential Cross-Country Skier: A Step-by-Step Guide and Alberto Salazar's Guide to Running.
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Product Details

  • Series: Essential (McGraw-Hill)
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press; 2 edition (December 18, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071360190
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071360197
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #406,805 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard A. Lovett is a science writer, distance-running coach, and award-winning science fiction author. He has written more than 3,000 newspaper and magazine articles for such publications as Nature, Science, Running Times, and Travel & Leisure, and has sold more than four dozen science fiction stories. He also coaches Portland, Oregon's 300-member Team Red Lizard, as well as private clients, ranging from age-group competitors to Olympic Trials contenders. He holds degrees in astrophysics, law, and economics, and was a law professor before he retired from academia to pursue full-time writing.

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
I was new to bicycle touring (but not road biking), and I picked up the first edition of this book in a used book shop. The book is well written in an informal, friendly style. The text is supported by several simple but clear illustrations, and there are many scenic (black and white in 1st edit) photos which inspire wanderlust. Most importantly, this book conveys a wealth of information specific to touring, including equipment, how to set up your bike, camping, and trip planning. You get the sense that the author is really an expert, as he peppers each chapter with useful tips that I was not aware of previously. He also includes some surprisingly good (considering their brevity) practical chapters on riding skills, training, injuries, and repairs. In summary, the book is clear, concise, conveys the fun of touring, and contains a lot of useful info. Of the 3 books on this subject I've read, it was by far the best, the most relevent, and I'd highly recommend it.
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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Tortfeasor on June 21, 2004
Format: Paperback
Richard Lovett does a good job of describing, in a general way, the three basic modes of bicycle touring: vehicle-supported, "credit-card" (i.e., inn-to-inn), and loaded (camping). It's rare to find *any* books on touring, so on that basis, the book is great. And if you've never toured before, this is a good, informative book. However, if, like myself, you're looking for in-depth hints and kinks on loaded touring, you won't find them here. Ergo, four stars for this one.
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40 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Roy Hoogenraad on October 9, 2001
Format: Paperback
I bought the first edition a number of years ago, and it was a well loved and thumbed through book ... I even lent it to all and sundry ... I decided to update it for this one, as there were a number of minor errors in the first one ... the second edition is even better!!!
The style of the book is written by someone well experienced in cycle touring and his style is very easy to read and the advice is sound ... the information contained in the book will benefit both the novice cycle tourist as well as the seasoned veteran.
I like this book and refer to it often for inspiration and ideas ...
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Gary Kavanagh on August 10, 2009
Format: Paperback
Based on the title of the book I thought as someone wanting to tackle big self supported bicycle adventures I would come away with some unique insights from this book. Unfortunately this was not the case despite some reviewers claiming a "seasoned veteran" could benefit from the book. I hardly consider my self a seasoned veteran of touring, but as someone who has done a few light weekend tours and plenty of miles of experience of road riding and endurance training, very little was new to me in this book. Especially after a little internet reading on the topic of bicycle touring. When it came to the topic of camping specifics, a large part of touring if you are not doing credit card touring, the book glosses over details, assuming anyone reading probably has experience or other books on camping.

So if you are someone who has lots of outdoors experience, are interested in bicycle touring, but haven't a clue about riding bikes for long distances or the cycling specific gear involved, this book may be a great starting point. If you are an experienced endurance cyclist who has done plenty of centuries or some multi-day event rides like AIDS LifeCycle, and are looking to take it to the next level with planning epic self supported adventures, this book won't tell you much you don't already know or couldn't find out with a little internet research.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Shawn on September 18, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book to be extremely helpful and engaging. Thourough without unnecessary padding. Written in an easy and digestible manner with useful tools for my new forays into bike touring.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By perrymasonary on April 29, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a good book to get an overview of touring by bicycle. This book is published by the same publisher who published Trudy Bell's The Essential Bicycle Communter, which is unfortnately out of print and should be a canidate for updating.

The Essential Touring Cyclist has been fortunately been updated and kept in print. I found the information useful. Maybe this is not the right book for an experienced touring cyclist, as some other reviewers have mentioned. While this book gives an excellent overview and tips to prepare for a cycling adventure, it could have been a bit more detailed like Bell's book--why I gave it 4 instead of 5 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jose A. Vivo on May 27, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Good practical basic will recommended general good information. Very helpful on planning a trip lot of information and good source of information
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I haven't read the whole book yet, so I will update regarding content once I finish. I purchased the kindle version and wish I would've purchased the physical book. I say this because the kindle format is strange - I'll be reading about a topic and then start reading about a new topic and after going to the next page the first topic is discussed as if there was no break from it then there is a line and it is back to the second topic again. Something from the way the print copy is formatted didn't translate well into the kindle format.
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The Essential Touring Cyclist: A Complete Guide for the Bicycle Traveler, Second Edition
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