Grab all the essentials, load up your bike and ride beyond where the map ends, let your imagination guide you and your bike to places you would rather be.
Bikes have always been known as the freedom machine, but a Touring Bike allows you to load enough gear to ride self-supported for hours/days/weeks/months on end in comfort.
Before you start your adventure, make sure that you have a reliable touring bike and the necessary equipment to ensure you finish your adventure and look forward to the next one. A bike that is comfortable to ride for long distances, can accommodate all the gear you will be taking and is strong enough to last the journey over the terrain you have chosen to ride.
Northside Cycles has one of the best ranges of Touring Bikes available in Australia. With brands like Breezer, Fuji, Kona, Salsa, Soma, and Vivente, along with accessories from Axiom, Ortlieb, Tubus, Salsa, Soma and more, we will make sure you get the best quality and advice for your money.
What is a touring bike?
Fundamentally, identifying and selecting a touring bike starts with the frameset and finishes with the wheels.
The frameset (frame and fork) needs to have comfort, load and durability as the cornerstones of their design and the ability to accommodate the wheels of choice. Comfort in the main part, is the framesets ability to achieve a comfortable riding position for long hours/days/weeks/months of riding. For most touring riders, this means a spacious cockpit with high handlebar, with multiple riding positions. The framesets ability to accommodate load means having all the necessary mounting points for racks and accessories. Lower bottom brackets and longer wheelbases assist with stability and clearance for toe and heel clashes with bags. Durability and ability to accommodate the correct wheel and tyre combination are closely related. If you have chosen the path less travelled, and things get rough, large tyres and good clearance will help your equipment and body last the duration of the journey.
The wheels (and tyres) on a touring bike are vitally important, as this is where the most common problems occur on challenging routes and/or with heavy loads. Think about the route you have chosen and the amount of weight you will load your bike with (including yourself). If there are long sections of rough roads or trails, a large tyre is wise, and if your gross load is over 100kg, closely scrutinise the quality of the wheels. In other words, if you have some extra dollars in your budget, spend it on your wheels and tyres, it will be money well spent.
There are many other things that are great traits for a touring bike, but do not strictly define it as a touring bike. For example, wide gear ranges, for example 3x9sp or 3x10sp systems are great for mountainous terrain with heavy loads, but modern 2x9sp or 2x10sp road systems are adequate for light loads and modest terrain. And if “bike-packing” is considered part of the realm of touring (which I do) then what defines a touring bike has all of a sudden become really confusing for someone starting out.
Ultimately, that is what we are here for, so come on in or send us an email, we will work it out together.