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Bike in a Box

Bike in a Box

Quite simply the goal of #bikeinabox is to explore the world we live in and ride new places on your bike. It doesn’t have to be road or ‘endurance road’, nor does it have to be across a continent or even a country, it can be any type of bike ride. But a ride that has taken some planning, is challenging and has some adventure – how you personally define ‘planning’, ‘challenge’ and ‘adventure’ is up to you.

The adventure can be as big or as small as you want and make it. It’s great for you to step outside your comfort zone and your familiar places, where you feel safe and secure. Story and photos by Matt Ryley

HOW EXPERIENCED DO YOU HAVE TO BE?

MR: You can do something like we did with no experience of multi day bike packing rides. However, I would recommend preparing and researching as much as possible. The more time you can spend planning, researching and plotting the route the better your chances of riding a better route on nicer roads. It may not be the fastest route, but fastest is often not what riding your bike is all about.

A LINEAR ROUTE

MR: 99.9% of every ride that I have ever done has been a circular one. From my earliest days on a bike; as a kid riding around the block, every training ride, every Sunday morning ride, every race. I always end up where I started. It was incredibly refreshing to not be doing that in France. Bordeaux to home was a point to point ride, made possible because of #bikeinabox

ANY ADVICE?

MR: My overriding takeaway from this experience is 'Be mindful'. Be mindful of:

1. Yourself: fatigued, broken, sore or achy makes for a miserable experience. You need to look after yourself.

2. Your energy levels: Food and water, where from and what.

3. Your bike: making sure it works – without it you’re on Google looking at train times.

4. Your accommodation: how far will you ride today, need to book or will you wild camp

5. Your power: recharging lights, computers, phones, when and how.

6. Your route: which roads? The more time you can spend preparing beforehand the better.

FIND THE TIME

MR: Everyone should pack their bike in a box and go somewhere to ride home.

We are all busy with work, family, children and there are always jobs to do at home and things to do but as American author Jack Kerouac said: “In the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn”

WHY BORDEAUX TO HOME?

MR: I don’t want to do the TCR; cycling home from Bordeaux is a different kind of adventure. This ride had its own challenges, but unlike mass participation endurance events, it's just me, my bike (in a box) and a buddy cycling home, it was as simple as that.

A target is always good for your motivation, it won’t always be easy, but break it down into smaller chunks and when the going gets tough, just keep going, and the bad patch will be over and you will be glad that you didn’t give up.

THE LOGISTICS

MR: One of the reasons for choosing Bordeaux as the ride start point is that it worked so well logistically. Flights from Gatwick to Bordeaux were fast and cheap (1.5 hours, £102 each including bike transport) and we were able to recycle our cardboard bike boxes upon arrival.

Upon the return leg we took the ferry from Cherbourg back to Portsmouth (£39 each), though you could link up with the UK on any number of ferries from the French coast. We did use some hotels, but our main indulgence was coffee, croissants, chocolate and ice cream! Total trip cost was £400 each – though you could certainly do it cheaper.

DO YOUR OWN

If you are inspired by Matt and Nick’s adventure, how about planning your own #Bikeinabox adventure? It doesn’t have to be far or even abroad, and you don’t have to pack your bike up. How about looking on a map, picking a random train station, and planning a cycle back from there?

It’s all about getting out of your comfort zone and embracing the spirit of adventure.

Let us know about your trips by tagging us on social media.

Instagram: @kinesisbikes_uk

Facebook: @KinesisUK

Twitter: @KinesisBikes_UK

THE BIKES

The Kinesis GTD is not just a Sunday best bike, it is the perfect Audax or fast paced touring bike. Comfortable, fast and adaptable the GTD is designed to take on everything from a local Sportive to an Intercontinental race epic like the 'TCR'.

The Kinesis RTD is designed to be ridden fast across cities, counties or continents, the RTD lives up to its name – Race The Distance, be that to work, on the Sunday club run, or even The Transcontinental Race. It's the perfect Audax bike or for bike-packing-set.

THE ROUTE MAP

Bordeaux to Cherbourg Guidance:

Difficult

Riding: 29:53hrs

Miles: 449

Average: 15.0 mph

Elevation: 11,825 ft

Descent: 11,950 ft

Ferry crossing on route.

Expert road ride. Very good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may be unpaved and difficult to ride. The tour includes crossing by ferry.

Kinesis Ambassadors

Nick Finch & Matt Ryley

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