Sunday, July 24, 2011

Recommended touring bikes

A friend of mine asked me recently what touring bike he should get, not too expensive. Based on these broad requirements, here's my list:
  1. Surly Cross Check - The most versatile of the lot - use for commuting, touring, or cyclocross, and you can get it as a standard build, or built to your whims for not much more (in Boston, go to Broadway Bicycle School for either) (or go for the Long Haul Trucker if you're doing serious miles - see a nice example pictured here!)
  2. Novara Randonee - Great combination of modern & classic bike design, and very good value - and you can't go wrong shopping at REI (You can also do the Fuji Touring or Jamis Aurora for about the same price, but I still like REI)
  3. Bike Friday Companion Select - A nice economical folder, great if you need to travel by air to the start of your tour
  4. The Trek 520 is a modern classic, but about 40% more expensive than any of the above
  5. Or, for a beautiful classic touring bike, go to Bikes Not Bombs in Jamaica Plain and get a nice steel Schwinn, Nishiki, Bridgestone, or Raleigh.