Is bikepacking the most exciting new thing in cycling since the invention of the mountain bike or a much needed rebranding of the venerable pastime of cycle touring? Or is just another cynical ruse to get us to buy more stuff, an attempt to commercialise that wonderful thing called adventure. Jack heads to mid-Wales for the Bear Bones Winter Event to find out, and meets up with Beth Barrington of WildCat Gear to hear about the homespun beginnings of a small company that makes some of the best bikepacking gear available.
In a live event Jack Thurston talks to double Olympic gold medallist and top Team Sky rider Geraint Thomas about his life in cycling as told in his new book The World of Cycling According to G.
If your cycling is more pottering than peloton, then you can find out more about Jack’s latest book: Lost Lanes Wales over here.
Tim Dawson has the lowdown on Cycle Revolution, a major new exhibition of bicycles at London’s Design Museum. The show including cargo bikes, city bikes and the bikes used by Merckx, Moser and Wiggins to break the Hour Record. He speaks with the shows curator Donna Loveday and consider the show’s strengths and weaknesses. Tim and host Jack Thurston then wonder if it’s right and proper to fall in love with a bicycle and discuss other great cycle collections in the UK and overseas.
Image: Donky Bike by Ben Wilson
In the first ever rolling bike test on The Bike Show, Jack Thurston takes the Pinnacle Arkose 2 for a spin around the hills above Abergavenny and Blaenavon. The Pinnacle Arkose 2 is an ‘adventure road’ bike featuring a 1×10 drivechain, hyraulic disc brakes and 40mm tyres. The list price is £850 though it’s currently on sale at £765. For more photos of the bike, see Jack’s review for BikesETC magazine.
Come along, say hello, buy a book:
Thursday 10th September. The Station Hotel, Abergavenny NP7 5UH. 6.30pm-9pm. Real ale and traditional pub snacks. Free.
Wednesday 16th September. Rossiter’s bookshop, Ross-on-Wye. Bike ride followed by talk and signing. Bike ride leaves Rossiter’s at 5pm and the book talk is from 7pm. Tickets are £3 and refundable against the purchase of a book.
If you’d like me to come and talk about Lost Lanes Wales, and the delights of exploring Wales and the Borders by bike, at your bookshop, bike shop, cycle group meeting, christening, bar mitzvah or funeral wake, please do get in touch.
Bespoked, the UK’s Handmade Bicycle Show is Britain’s biggest annual showcase for custom bike builders. It’s full to the rafters of beautiful bikes but Jack Thurston went in search of the most useful bikes at the show, from an off-road porteur to a separable road bike to a childback tandem in titanium.
Bikes discussed as follows:
George Longstaff: RuffStuff adventure touring bike / tandem trike with integrated wheelchair carrier
Caren Hartley: Demi-porkeur off road cargo bike
Richard Hallett: 650b Adventure
Wheeldan: Childback titanium tandem
Sven Cycles: Roadster
Sword Cycles: Cargo-trike
Teague Bicycles: Separable road bike
Sturdy Cycles: no maintenance audax bike and steel TT bike
View the bikesin the gallery below:
Joining Jack Thurston for this Rest Day Review is Simon Warren, a man who knows cycling’s great ups and downs better than almost anyone outside the professional peloton. Simon is an accomplished amateur racing cyclist and author of the 100 Greatest Climbs series of pocket sized books cycling hill climbs. His latest is a guide to the greatest climbs of South East England.