View Full Version : Bike trip to the Utah Desert

04-22-2007, 08:33 AM
DH has been invited to go on a bike trip thru Zion Ntl Park and various other areas of that part of Utah in October. Has anyone ever done something like this before? Just curious what your experiences were like and how you prepared for the trip. He would be renting a bike there so he won't bring his own but what other things would you take on a trip like this (besides lots of sunscreen)? The trip will be for 3 days and they will stay in condos at night so no camping.

BTW, I am very envious of him, I have always wanted to visit Moab, Zion and Bryce....so beautiful!!

04-22-2007, 09:38 AM
i've never been on that particular bike trip (although have always wanted to), but have been to several in italy, france, and the states. if it's through an organized tour company (ie backroads or?) they do a great job of answering all questions. it makes their job easier if you're prepared physically and from an equipment standpoint... and can give you the best info.

adequate physical training, bike clothing (not much, just the right type) that can be layered for weather changes, and your basic travel necessities for slight ailments to make sure you're comfortable.

bike trips are the best!!

you should go too!!


04-22-2007, 09:54 AM
Thanks Wendi!

The trip is not thru an tour company. It is a "guys only" weekend so I obviously was not invitied;) .

I do know they ride about 15 miles per day. But it is very rocky terrain.

DH is not a biker at all. He has been taking a spin class once a week for the last 3 weeks but other than that he doesn't have a lot of experience.

As for training, what did you do to train for your trips?
And what type of bike clothes do you recomend?
This is all new to us. DH is in good physical shape but just doesn't have a lot of bike experience. Hopefully, 6 months is enough time to prepare as this trip wouldn't be fun if you weren't able to keep up.

04-22-2007, 01:58 PM
well miss kitty...

that's a bit more of a challenge... first and foremost, 6 months is more than enough time to get ready for the trip (3 would be plenty!)

i'm a road biker (skinny tires), so it's very easy to get in shape... plenty of riding and/or spin classes. mountain biking is really different... the bike is easier but the terrain is really different from a technique standpoint, and that's what i would want to practice.

the easy suggestion is, if he has or can get his hands (butt!!) on a mountain bike, he should get on it even one day a week and put on some miles to get used to changing gears and the bike's functions and overall handling, but more importantly, he needs to get out on a trail (dirt, rocks, boulders, etc). He could even check out a mountain biking class... check with local bike shops.

if none of that is practical, he can do plenty to get in bike shape... cardio and legs. spin 1-3 x/week, and some good quad, hamstring, calf, and ab exercises should get him in great shape.

clothing and equipment and great advise are best found at a bike store or possibly better, an r.e.i. type store. he can do with as little as one pair (if he doesn't mind really grungy) mountain bike shorts (lycra/padded short under a baggy regular looking short)... and a mountian bike shirt out of fabric that wicks moisture and has pockets for stuff. a t-shirt would suffice but the right gear (if nothing else, just the shorts) really makes a difference. he also need mountain bike shoes (he needs to find out what lind of pedals/clips the bike he'll use there will have), and mountain bike gloves (good for gripping w/ padding in all the right places to absorb shock). water bottle (the bike he uses should have a holder) and helmet of course. sun glasses... preferably something designed for sports activity with some type of attachment thingy (holds around your head or neck), sun screen, first aid stuff (they should have something between the group), bandana or something similar (dip in water- wipe off).

the gear and overall conditioning is pretty easy... he really just needs to practice in somewhat similar conditions so he know how to handle the bike and himself skidding downhill on dirt, rocks, water, brush, etc.... or climbing up that terrain.

i've never done it but everyone loves it!!

hope this helped a little but a good outdoor store (or his buddies) will be the best bet!

hope he has a blast!!!


04-22-2007, 03:30 PM
Are his buddies avid mtn bikers? If so, then I second Wendi's advice. If his buddies aren't very hard core, then I'd find out what kind of trails they are planning on. There are some nice easy rolling trails in that area that don't require as much technical expertise. If they plan to do some of the tougher stuff, then he will need to have good bike handling skills. But no matter what he should probably be riding 3-4 days/week in the months leading up to the trip so that he will be ready for it. Even if he is pretty fit, doing a new sport tends to work your muscles in new ways which will mean some major soreness. (Which reminds me, he should pack some Aleve or Ibuprofin...)

Just for comparison, when DH and I first moved to CO, we had been pretty serious road bikers (riding 150-200 miles per week) and decided to go out on a local mtn bike trail. We rented bikes (first mistake, they were CRAP because it was the end of the season and had been beat up) and proceeded to do a 13 mile loop around a local reservoir. Well, 13 miles on a road bike is NOTHING, but 13 miles of single track on a mtn bike (oh, and we were at 9500 ft!) is a LOT tougher. It took us 2.5 hours (because I keep taking a header over my handlebars!) to finish. But we had fun, bought our own mtn bikes and learned some mtn bike skills (like how to get over those darn tree roots when you are heading uphill!) and now have a lot of fun with it.