Features Posts

Waterproof Cycling Clothing: Top 4 Essential Rain Gear Pieces

Man cycling in the rain.

Finding the Best Cycling Rain Gear: What Works, and What Doesn’t?

I live in Vancouver. While it is a beautiful city with picturesque mountain views and the mildest climate in Canada, it has one significant downside: rain.

You might think that would deter the many cyclists who prefer to commute by bicycle. Not so!

The truth is, a well-equipped rider can ride in moderate comfort, even in wet weather. A few good pieces of cycling rain gear will keep you dry and warm on that gusty ride to the office.

That being said, the word ‘waterproof’ is thrown around a bit too liberally in the apparel world. So, finding something that actually works is imperative, or you’ll be right back behind the wheel.

But what do you actually need? In this article, I’ve compiled a list of fantastic rain gear for cycling. I will list 4 essential pieces to keep your ride dry.

My purpose is twofold: I want to help you get properly equipped so you’ll arrive happy and dry, and I also want to recommend a few brands that really work.

Interested? I hope so!

5 of the Best, Affordable Fat Tire Bikes | Ride Reviews

Fat Bike on Beach

Five Fat Bike Reviews: Cheap Options for Riding Bliss

Nothing on two wheels draws looks like a fat bike! They are truly compelling.

With their oversized tires and impressive traction, these bicycles can ride virtually anywhere. And they look incredible.

Since you’re probably reading this for the fat bike reviews, I don’t really need to explain the appeal.

Why ride a fat bike? I think the real question is why not!

Whether you’re riding on snow, mud, slick rock, sand or even ice, these monster rides give you unprecedented traction. And they’re more responsive and fun than you might think.

Unfortunately, they also tend to be expensive. So for this article, I want to focus on five cheap fat bikes that review nicely and will serve you well.

For each bicycle, I’ll go over the features, capabilities, pros and cons, along with a short verdict on what it’s best suited for. Hopefully this info will get you rolling in no time.

Ready for some reviews of inexpensive fat tire bikes? Let’s get started!

Updated! Bike models come and go. Thanks for your patience!

A Road Cycling Tour of the Best Places to Visit in Sherwood Forest

Liam cycling past Sherwood Nature Reserve

Liam Hallam Rides Through the Home of Robin Hood

Many visitors to Nottingham and the surrounding area are surprised at the area that Sherwood Forest covers. Back in the times of Robin Hood, Little John and Maid Marion, Sherwood Forest would have been a dense woodland a third of the size of modern day Central London. It passes from the North of Nottingham, past the Industrial town of Mansfield and up to Worksop in the North.

Now the forest still takes up a huge section of the Nottinghamshire countryside and offers some fantastic cycling routes for both road cyclists and mountain bikers.

It is an amazing place to ride for cyclists: a picturesque setting, with plenty of historic stops along the way. The roads are quiet, fun and challenging, and the setting must be seen to be believed.

We took a few photographs on a recent ride though. Is Nottingham forest really one of the most beautiful places on earth? Read on and find out!

The $1000 Cyclocross Bike Review Showdown: 5 Best Options

Cyclocross Bike Race

Can You Get A Race Worthy Cyclocross Bike For $1000?

Cyclocross racing is one of the fastest growing sports in North America and across parts of Europe. Merging the speed of road racing with the handling technique of mountain biking, it offers an exhilarating way to spend fall and winter as the mercury starts to drop.

Cyclocross bikes are extremely versatile. Yes they can be used as a thoroughbred racing machine through winter but their adaptability means that you could fit some fenders and some road tires to use one for comfortable, quick commuting. Alternatively, you could fit a rack and head off touring with minimal additional investment.

We’re going to take a look at some of the best low-cost cyclocross bikes around the $1000 price mark which represents the lower end of the marketplace. With a selection of different options depending on rider preference and individual style it should be possible to pick up a bargain.

This review will focus on Raleigh’s Furley singlespeed cyclocross bike ($799) which features disc brakes for reliable stopping, Internet retailer Nashbar’s Steel cyclocross offering which features an impressive Shimano 105 groupset ($849 at time of review), Diamondback’s Haanjo ($900) featuring a flat bar and aluminum frame, Tommaso’s Bestia with Tiagra groupset and excellent price ($849), and the Redline Conquest ($1089) which features a performance orientated aluminium frameset.

This review will focus on whether the bikes are tailored towards cyclocross racing and if $1000 can buy you a race-worthy cyclocross bicycle for beginners or those on a budget.

Cycling Energy Gels & Chews: Rich Nutrition or Hype?

Cycling Energy Gel Reviews

Are Energy Gels for Cycling the Best Nutritional Choice?

Cycling is a demanding sport and a fantastic workout. Like with any other exercise, refuelling your body after your ride is essential for good health. But what about longer rides and races? When your energy level starts to sag, sometimes you need a boost.

Energy gels are heralded as a breakthrough for endurance athletes of all types. They provide a dense energy supply in an accessible form, and they’re supposed to be packed with exactly what your body needs on a ride: electrolytes and quick carbohydrates.

These little packs come in a handy flat tube that you can tear open and consume. They also come in ‘chew’ form.

But do they work?

You might be surprised at what’s in the average cycling energy gel pack. And what’s not.

Are energy gels for cycling the answer to your sagging energy levels after a long race? Read on to find out. 

Cycling to Work? 3 of the Best Urban Bikes for Commuting

Finding a Good Urban Commuter Bike

3 of the Best Urban Commuter Bike Styles to Consider

Planning to start cycle commuting to work? Good choice! You’ll save money, and you might even arrive faster than by car. Not to mention you’ll skip the need for a cardio workout each day. Commuting to work by bicycle has so many upsides, and many employers are even incentivizing it.

But be careful! If you ride the wrong type of bike, your adventures in two-wheeled transportation will be short lived. Your rusty old beach cruiser or department store mountain bike will get pretty frustrating if you’re riding it five times per week!

Picking the best possible urban commuter bike is essential to sticking with it. Just as you’d invest in your car, you should invest in your bike. It will pay dividends!

So what’s the best bike for commuting anyway? That’s the question I’ll be tackling in this article. We’ll check out three great bicycle styles that are, in general, well suited to your daily commute.

Within each style, I’ll offer a review of a great commuter bike and brand to investigate.

What about bicycle styles to avoid? You bet! I’ll cover that too.

Top Three Vintage Retro Style Bicycles To Check Out

Vintage Style Bicycles: What's For Sale?

Affordable Vintage Style Bicycles: What’s for Sale Today?

There is nothing more satisfying that cruising on a beautifully restored vintage style bicycle. Your ride is completely unique and gets tons of looks. The only problem? A genuine vintage or antique bicycle sells for a ton of money these days!

If you’re a fan of vintage style bikes but you have a limited budget, your best bet is to check out the many beautiful new rides that are being build in this style.

Mimicking the lines and features of cycles from days gone by, old style bikes are making a real comeback. It makes sense: people long for a time when life was simple, when carbon fibre and cell phones didn’t exist, and when a bike frame had a classic geometry and minimalist good looks.

Here’s the problem though: because the retro style bicycle frame is so popular, everyone and their dog is jumping on the bandwagon, including big manufacturers.

The difference between a home run and a strike? It’s all in the details!

This article will be taking a close look at a handful of my favourite vintage style bicycles for sale today. Primarily, I want to point you to a ride that not only looks amazing, but functions beautifully too.

How to Restore a Bicycle | Beautiful Vintage Bike Tips

Restored Vintage Bicycle

The human eye is a remarkable thing. It can pick up on incredibly subtle details, and your brain transforms those signals into snap judgements. In the case of bicycles, the eye can pick out imperfections like a magnet.

Rust, scuffed and scratched paint, shoddy or worn out components: all are identified almost immediately. If you’re here to learn how to restore a vintage bicycle, I have some good news for you: I know how to trick the eye.

Performing a beautiful vintage bicycle restoration isn’t always a trial. You don’t always have to tear it down and start from scratch.

There are a few simple and quick ways to restore your vintage bike and make it look like a million bucks (or at least several hundred). Curious? Keep reading. 

Vintage Bicycle Restoration | Finding a Gem

2011-05-19 16.51.18

The  Peugeot bicycle leaned against the moss covered shed. The owner stood behind me as I brushed a decade worth of leaves and pine needles off the frame. “I don’t know if it even still works,” she said.

That was an understatement. Orange rust speckled the frame and chrome. One wheel was detached and lay forlornly on the damp earth.

The tires were nothing but bare vinyl and wire: probably the same set that came with it 40 years ago. The brake cables had fused with their housings. They would have to be cut.

I asked what she wanted for it. “A hundred,” she said, a Hail Mary offer, gleaned from my unexpected interest. “Nope,” I said, “Fourty, max.” I pointed out various disintegrating components. We agreed on sixty.

As I loaded it up, I smiled. After a haircut and a shave, I’d sell this beautiful bike for $150, easily. Where she saw junk, I saw potential.

How do we distinguish between the rust bucket and the hidden gem? How do you determine if a vintage bike project is ‘too far gone’?