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Quick question - Who tours alone?

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by tyred, 16 Jun 2016.

  1. tyred

    tyred Legendary Member

    All my tours (and the majority of my other holidays) have been on my own. I'm not anti-social as such but I have always preferred to travel alone no matter what means of transport and cycling throws up the problem of someone who wants to ride faster/slower than I do. I love the freedom of being entirely self sufficient, just me and the open road and freedom to do as I please when I like and to change my plans on a whim.

    I also find that when travelling alone, I get talking to other people along the way in a way I probably wouldn't have if part of a group and staying in hostels as I tend to do, I've met plenty of others travelling alone, occasionally hooking up with a temporary companion for a day or two. I've even kept in touch with a few people.

    To me, travelling alone makes perfect sense yet when I talk about my trips (and I realise my cycle tours are pathetic compared to many but I enjoy myself) to others, the majority seem to think I'm nuts and say they they couldn't travel alone.

    I think the reason I've fallen in love with cycle touring is because it appeals to me on two different levels as I can have my own space and thoughts when I'm actually riding during the day and then can usually socialise with others from the hostel in the evening, or even if there is no-one around, I can go to the pub or just read.

    So basically, am I weird for preferring to go on holidays alone?
  2. mcshroom

    mcshroom Bionic Subsonic

    Egremont, Cumbria
    Not really - well any more weird than anyone else who goes cycle touring :biggrin:

    Some of my favourite touring memories are from solo tours. Touring alone is different to touring in groups as you say., You get more involved in the world round you. I've toured in groups, with a friend and on my own, and all have their advantages and disadvantages.
  3. Fab Foodie

    Fab Foodie hanging-on in quiet desperation ...

    This summer I'm doing my first cycle tour alone. The Outer Hebrides .... though I will stay with friends for a few days. Also first time wild Bivvy Camping, so quite some personal challenges. Looking forward to solitude.
    skudupnorth, Glow worm, robjh and 7 others like this.
  4. snorri

    snorri Legendary Member

    Possibly, but your post could have been written about me and my attitude to cycle touring so you are not alone in any weirdness:smile:.
    The people I have sympathy for are those who find themselves unable to travel or go on holiday alone and have to stay at home year after year.
    r04DiE, Brandane, robing and 4 others like this.
  5. OP

    tyred Legendary Member

    I was one of those throughout my twenties until I'd had enough and went of on my own.

    The other thing as far as cycle touring is concerned is that I don't know anyone else who does it!
  6. growingvegetables

    growingvegetables Guru

    Maybe. But if you are, I'm weird too. :smile:

    [Hmmm - I may be weirder. If I can (and the guy/lass is willing), I'll strike up a conversation with any solo tourer I meet while I'm out riding or walking. Solo tourers - like fishermen - are bloody good story-tellers! :smile:]
  7. Yellow Saddle

    Yellow Saddle Veteran

    Loch side.
    You will not be alone. The midges will be with you. And the FORCE of course.
  8. Fab Foodie

    Fab Foodie hanging-on in quiet desperation ...

    I fear the midge is mightier than the light sabre ...
  9. Yellow Saddle

    Yellow Saddle Veteran

    Loch side.
    Thank me later.

  10. jay clock

    jay clock Massive member

    Hampshire UK
    I am in exactly the same position as you. And I am a very sociable extrovert but still mostly go alone. I do have one friend I have toured with several times but life conspires against us most times
    mcshroom likes this.
  11. raleighnut

    raleighnut Guru

    On 3 Wheels
    I love solo touring (backpacking too) you get to meet/talk to more people than you would even as a couple (not to mention in a group)
    Don't get me wrong I love it when Maz and I go away camping (she doesn't cycle much) but then you've always got to take notice of what they want to do, whereas on my todd I can do what I want.
    Nothing better than getting the tent up and having a sit down with a brew in one hand, a glass of Whisky in easy reach and a smoke, something nice playing on my Minidisc through a little pair of speakers and no-one in sight.
  12. robing

    robing Well-Known Member

    Always tour solo. I couldn't imagine anything different. Lots of reasons. Freedom, being able to go where and when you want. Also being self employed I am lucky that I can go for a month or more, not many folk are able to come away for that length of time. Plus I don't care what other people think :smile:

    I do find cycle touring can be a bit more solitary than backpacking if you are staying in campsites, hotels. I don't generally like cycling with other cycle tourers as I find they some are often much slower than me as they are carrying everything including the kitchen sink!
    tyred and raleighnut like this.
  13. OP

    tyred Legendary Member

    I'm pleased to know I am not alone in my loneliness!
  14. Tanis8472

    Tanis8472 Über Member

    Not done it but it appeals to me
  15. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Staff Member

    On the whole it doesn't appeal to me.... I love being able to turn around and say - wow wahat a view, did you see that... Or shall we stop for cake.

    I agree that it does give you the freedom to go as slow as you like, to stop to take the twentieth photo, to please no one but yourself, but I miss the companionship. I do like random conversations with strangers, I would have been too shy when I was younger to enjoy them then!
    Pat "5mph" and raleighnut like this.