Book Review: Basic Illustrated Bike Touring and Bikepacking
grit.cx contributors Justin Kline and Beth Puliti have spent the past year traveling around the world by bicycle. (You’ll read more about their bike set-ups in issue 007 of grit.cx.) If you’re really into getting into proper bicycle touring, Kline has taken his heaps of practical knowledge on the subject, and teamed up with well-known long-distance hiker Justin Lichter to put out a Falcon Guide titled Basic Illustrated Bike Touring and Bikepacking.
Preparation should be everyone’s life-guiding principal, especially if your life is going to include setting out on week-long (or more) bicycle rides in remote locales. This guide articulately and beautifully dispels any anxiety that might go along with such planning.
Basic Illustrated Bike Touring and Bikepacking covers all the bases of such adventure – from choosing the correct bike and gear, to preparing for cultural differences, packing weight minimization, logistical concerns and off-the-bike considerations and needs.
Most of the book’s 95 photos are attributed to Puliti, who offers a good mix of beautiful photos from their adventures, and shots that clearly illustrate proper bikepacking and touring practices.
The book also provides a few very important tables, such as one that helps you determine the best water-treatment purchasing options, and one to illustrate what size pot (or how many) you’ll need to carry with you, depending on how many people want to eat, and what you plan to cook.
Too much to detail in this quick review, Basic Illustrated Bike Touring and Bikepacking offers a long list of ideas, suggestions, direction and best practices to consider, but it’s enough to thoroughly get you ready for that big adventure you’ve been dreaming about. In fact, its content is deep and engaging enough that it’s planted a big adventure seed in my mind.
The book is available in paperback or digital formats, and can be purchased at specialty retailers that carry such sorts of guidebooks. You can also order it from Amazon if you’re more remote.