Bikepacking England

20 Multi-day off road cycling adventures by Emma Kingston

Bikepacking, new or not so new? That really depends on your reference point i.e., your experience, engagement or exposure to it defines your reference point. It could be that you used to go camping in your local woods with mates using your bike as transport to get you there, this is Bikepacking, though you probably wouldn’t have associated it with this back then and maybe don’t now.

Bikepacking has been around for echelons and it’s become more popular as bikes and access has improved, access still lags behind, but there is a definite push for greater shared access rights.

How you rate, enjoy and utilise this book will very much depend on your reference point for Bikepacking.

The book is well written with enthusiasm and love for all that is Bikepacking, it has some wonderful inspiring photography, the routes are well described, distance and elevation profiles are provided along with useful tips on when to best ride them, the local access rights, availability of water, food and drink, accommodation and additional pertinent notes that you may find handy.

The introduction is a great starting point for anyone looking at Bikepacking, it gives advice on pretty much everything you need to know about Bikepacking, and it goes into the legalities of Wild Camping, which is only really legal in Scotland.

I enjoyed reading the book, the route information was spot on and has inspired me to head out and ride these places, though for me these are epic day rides, I wouldn’t camp as my personal challenge would be to complete the route in a day. Truth is I need to slow down a bit and take in the scenery a bit more, this book does give you a different perspective on this and it may well be time to take its advice. I’d also like to know a bit more about the Wild Camping side of things, I’ve camped and Bikepacked, and I have all the kit for Wild Camping but as yet not actually done any, I do think the book misses a trick with this, though knowing the current issues surrounding Wild Camping I fully understand.

I’m hoping to tick off the Wild Camping box on a planned trip to the Scottish Borders this autumn (it’s the place I call home even though I’m from the Midlands), where weather depending I will hike my bike to the top of a previously foot hiked Munroe, bivvy down for the night in the ruins of an old shelter and then ride down in to what I hope will be a glorious sunrise over the Cairnsmore of Fleet National Nature Reserve.

Review written by: Andy Hampshire (Hampy) – #TotalMTB 
Instagram: @hampy4pmtbuk
Twitter: @hampy4PMTBUK


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