New to long distance cycling and in need of some info :)


New Member
Oct 25, 2016
This is my first cycling forum and I'm pretty new to cycling (long distances) as well so I appreciate any and all advice! Thanks!

I have been planning to take an indefinite around the country trip for a while now but haven't REALLY started to plan what I will need until now. My hope is to get some much needed information on the types of bikes best suited for the job.

My plan is to haul most, if not all, my gear in a cargo trailer. I've read that touring bikes are much better suited for long hauls than road or mountain bikes (seeing as that's what they are made for) but when I go to my local shops I feel like they just want to sell me one and aren't being completely honest when it comes to what I need or what will work. I currently have a Kona Blast with Serfas Drifter tires 26x1.5’’ with a cargo rack similar to a TopeakExplorer MTX Rack. (Pic Below)

My question is, since I won’t be carrying a load on the bike, will my bike work just as well? Oh and I noticed that the seats ride much more level to the handle bars on touring and road bikes would I be alright to just lower my seat for a better riding position?

Thanks a million!!
Will you be riding any off road stuff? If so a trailer will be a burden off road. If not then a suspension fork is a burden for efficiency on pavement or packed dirt or limestone, you could lock out the fork but the fork is still heavy, but it could work. I would try to find a Kona steel fork, or some other steel fork, and they aren't expensive.

If you will be riding off road then you need to do some research about touring off road because most people who do that don't use panniers either but on frame bags instead because panniers will get damaged from stuff sticking out on the trails that can scrape and damage panniers, but on frame bags are protected from that.

See this for on frame touring bags for MTB's:

There is way too much information to post here about touring, you're best bet is to research it like crazy on the internet, then once you get things narrowed down then focus those questions here.
New to the forum and my first posting. I am somewhat in the same spot as you are with the exception that I've figured out the bike I wanted through trial and error and for me it ended up being a Surly disc Trucker the shop just called me today and let me know it was in and to come get it. I've always ridden but recently retired I had no idea it would become such an obsession the advice given on research in my opinion is very good advice and is what I did. Good luck on your decision and your trip.
I remember my friend who rode long distance. He was used to it by now. He told me that it's best to start with short distances especially, for remote areas. It's hard to turn back once you're already halfway there.