Once you are hooked on long-distance cycling, the logical next step is to pack the bike with bags and go away for multi-day trips. CyclingGravel is more inclined to “Flash bikepacking” (staying in pubs, cabins, motels and hotels), but very committed to a “fastpacking” bikepack setup (rather than a bike touring arrangement with panniers etc – this is a term I first saw used by Stefan Amato of pannier.cc fame). There are lots of gravel cycling options around Australia, particularly in NSW and Victoria near where I live – the problem is a lack of time!
At the bottom of this page I’ve included a few thoughts to help with planning your own trip, and also how to make good choices on bikepacking setup. There are also a number of day or one-way routes on CyclingGravel that can be made into great overnight bikepacking trips – I’ve listed them here and these are in addition to the longer trips that follow. I hope you enjoy one yourself!
- Canberra – Yass.
- Canberra – Braidwood (also via Majors Creek).
- Canberra – Gunning.
- Canberra – Tumut (also via Wee Jasper).
Flash bikepacking: SE NSW breweries loop
Bikepack trip. Lots of different beer. Enough said.
Flash bikepacking: Canberra to Spirit of Tasmania Ferry
Why fly to Tasmania when you can cycle? Other than one takes 6 days, the other a lot less….
Flash bikepacking the Kilkivan to Kingaroy & Brisbane Valley Rail Trails
An epic four day trip on the Kilkivan to Kingaroy Rail Trail (KKRT) and Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT).
Flash bikepacking weekender: Canberra to Binalong
The first in a series of flash bikepacking weekenders.
Flash bikepacking: Canberra to Gippsland return
Travelling around and over the Australian Alps, 9 days of NSW and Vic bikepacking offers an unforgettable trip.
Flash bikepacking: Canberra – Nowra – Goulburn
3 day bikepacking weekend taking in Nowra, Kangaroo Valley, and back through the Southern Highlands
Flash bikepacking: Canberra – Crookwell – Harden
3 day bikepacking weekend looping through the Southern Tablelands and Southwest slopes.
Planning your own bikepacking trip
Travelling by bike is amazing. I really do love it – the things you see, the people you meet, the understanding you gain of the countryside. All are benefits of travelling at bicycle pace.
I do get asked what advice I would offer. There are really only a small number of things that I’d suggest as important to do before setting off on your trip.
- Do some research as to what style of bike setup will work best for you, and consider the kit that you want to take. Bikepacking allows you to ride free – fire trail, single track, hike-a-bike are all much more possible with a lighter setup. I have found bikepacking.com to be really helpful and is now my most commonly used resource. I like it so much I’m a collective member now. I also got the knowledge and inspiration to go by watching youtube videos from different vloggers to get ideas and inspiration (for example, a good start is Ryan van Duzer and Path Less Pedaled, and for bikes and tech the idiosyncratic JOM from gravelcyclist is a favourite).
- Not every bike setup is good for every type of bike – partly because of geometry, partly because of type of riding you might do. I do need different bags for my XC MTB vs my gravel bike – see below.
- Invest in a couple of really good pairs of knicks – a great chamois and knick fit that is right for you makes a massive difference. Having tried many, I personally find Black Sheep to be most comfortable, but not necessarily longest lasting (Santini wins here in my experience).
- Do some 2 and 3 day rides first and figure out what works and what doesn’t. Based upon my early rides I’ve made some kit changes and added some accessories (eg water filter, battery pack, handlebar bag, plastic mud guard, additional wet weather clothing) that led to a setup I’m pretty happy with. But, everyone is different!
- Plan your route and download it so that it works without mobile reception. I prefer Komoot for a whole range of reasons, but also find Strava routes very useful – it shows where people are and are not cycling. And then be prepared to change it when you want – PocketEarth is my go-to help with that. As a result I like using a quadlocked iPhone – also readily available for photo taking!
Receive Cycling Gravel Articles
Get new content delivered directly to your inbox.