Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 18 weeks 1 day ago

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 5:17pm
I’d price it per bed and make it clear sole room use was an option. I’ve recently booked a few for a group and all of them were willing to negotiate to meet our needs. As examples, a couple in a four bed room are paying the price of three beds, five in a six bed room are just paying the five bed price for the whole room and we didn’t take it but were offered a ten bed room for the cost of eight, regardless of how many beds we used.
I’m sure you’ll get a feel for what your visitors want as you go along, most people who are looking at bunkhouse accommodation are expecting to share, though it can feel a bit awkward if you find yourself in a room where everyone else knows each other.
Breakfast – It’s nice to have it offered, whether I’d take it up depends on what’s being offered and you’re not going to please everyone, it also depends somewhat on location. I’d expect a bunkhouse to have reasonable self catering facilities, so the offer has to be something better than I could easily do myself. The other alternative is to offer breakfast kits and let people cook and clean up themselves. I dislike the growing trend in YHAs to have the breakfast included in the price, it not only restricts choice but also stops me making an early start without missing what I’ve paid for!

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 5:06pm
Cyclists on tour usually manage a big breakfast, "larding up" with a full-fried always seems popular with outdoorsy types though usually good to have a veggie option. If I'm luxuriating in a bunkhouse rather than staying in the tent I'll generally figure I might as well do it properly and add in a breakfast.

Pete.

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 4:26pm
A friendly welcoming owner, you would be amazed at the number of miserable people who decide that running a B&B, campsite or hostel is for them.

Secure bike storage. It should be difficult to break into and have something solid to lock your bike to inside. Putting in some kind of racking (hooks or a bar) can mean you can fit more bikes on the leaning them against the wall.

The ability to buy breakfast (cereal, toast, cooked breakfast) and evening meal plus access to kitchen facilities for those who want to make their own.

An inside and outside communal seating area, one of the nice things about hostels is meeting other people.

A drying room and if the weather is up to it an outside washing line.

Ear plugs for sale in case I've forgotten mine. There seems to be a man who snores and he follows me round to every hostel I've ever been to.

Coded lockers.

The room allocation can be difficult. 2 by 2 rooms as rooms for couples. One male, one female 4 bed room. The six bed mixed?

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 4:23pm
In addition to the sensible suggestions above:
1 Tap and hose outside for bike washing
2 Drying room in preference to tumble driers - much better for shoes and boots (and it will stop people putting them in the drier!)
3 I'd like breakfast! Cereal, toast, porridge is fine unless you want to offer the whole hog.
4 Free tea and coffee - suggest a water boiler (Burco type thing) on the wall to keep things neat.

I would rent the rooms as above, most people don't seem keen on communal rooms these days. The ones in youth hostels are disappearing.

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 4:00pm
I'd probably hedge my bets:

- the two doubles available as rooms (ie for one or two people)
- the four-beds as dorms or family rooms if a family gets there first
- six-bed as a family room or to groups?

A place to dry wet and/or smelly clothes. I think dryers are the spawn of the devil, but very occasionally are a useful thing to have (coin-operated of course). A stand-alone spin dryer for clothes that are absolutely sodden (so you don't have to pay a fortune for a wash when all you want is a quick spin)?

Lots of sockets for gizmos (maybe even a little locker with a charger socket). The double sockets with in-built USB sockets seem like a good idea.

If you didn't provide breakfast maybe facilities to make a DIY breakfast (eg cup of tea, bowl of cereal, slice or two of toast)?

Workstands and toolkits are nice, but really most people don't need them most of the time. A decent floor-standing pump is always handy. Ditto a sink where you can mess with an inner tube. Mountainbikers might appreciate facilities to wash their bikes.

Re: 5 Days in the UK - where to go

22 March 2016 - 2:54pm
Across to Carlisle then follow Hadrians Wall to Tynemouth then back home.

Did this a few years back (2009) train to Leeds then Richmond over to Brough, up to Carlisle, then train home from Newcastle. Not too much hard work any day with plenty to see on the way.

Re: Chromebook

22 March 2016 - 2:29pm
Sweep wrote:On viruses al, why is android less prone to them as you seem to imply?
Dont know about Android but on Chromebooks Google take care of all virus issues in the Chrome operating system so no need to install anti virus software. I suspect its the same as with Apple stuff, fewer folk use them, they are not so attractive as 'takeover' servers for criminals, so they remain virus free.

Al

Re: 5 Days in the UK - where to go

22 March 2016 - 2:15pm
What about the Borders loop? 250 miles in total. It's quite hilly in bits (well, very hilly in one or two places!) but there are lots of small roads so you can find shortcuts. Very attractive countryside with small towns and historic buildings, and most roads are quiet. Take a train to Berwick - if you find it too strenuous you could also finish at Tweedbank (Melrose) and get a train to Edinburgh.

Re: Chromebook

22 March 2016 - 2:02pm
Sweep wrote:Wandered into another pc world today.

Saw this

http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/computing ... 3-pdt.html

Looked not half bad and definitely cheap enough.

Also looked at a chromebook again and noted that it had only 16 gig of storage - my tablet has twice that - of course you are encouraged to store stuff on google's cloud - you get a period of free high capacity storage but then after that i presume you will pay. Am afraid that this rather smacks of a google plan to rent you your oown computer/take over the world on the sly.

I did rather like the look of the lenovo unit linked tonabove.

that Lenovo device might be rather useful. Windows 10 like 8.1 has a nice maps application. Unlike 8.1 maps can be downloaded and stored on disc & used offline, so could be useful for touring. All depends on the battery use. 9 hrs seems rather too good to be true for such a cheap item? cant see it has gps

but look at some of these reviews -

http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B016BB8V84/ref=cm_cr_dp_see_all_btm?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1&sortBy=recent

Re: Anyone Cycled from La Rochelle Airport?

22 March 2016 - 11:35am
I did a quick search and this is a route from La Rochelle centre to the south. If you click on the chequered flag at the start and drag it a couple of kms North to the airport it will give a new route. This can be saved as a PDF or GPX.

http://cycle.travel/map/journey/14488

What should we have in our bunkhouse

22 March 2016 - 10:12am
Hi there, hope you don't mind me posting but I'm trying to get the views of cyclists as we're converting a barn on the National Cycle Route 1 into a bunkhouse for cyclists. We're in Northumberland but in fairness to other accommodation providers I won't state where exactly.

What I'm struggling with is how to let the rooms, we have a 6 bed, 2x 4 beds and 2x 2 bed rooms, each with code locks on the doors. I don't know whether to advertise them as the whole room or have it where you book a bed and share with others you might not know. Or shall I have some that you book the room and a male dorm/female dorm?

The other thing is whether you want things like breakfast included, what you want for breakfast, what should be in a vending machine etc.

And finally what things can we do to make it the perfect cycling bunkhouse (it will be furnished to a high standard), things like what should we include in the secure storage, drying room etc.


Thanks so much in advance, Alison

Re: Anyone Cycled from La Rochelle Airport?

22 March 2016 - 9:03am
Well in that case you are fortunate enough to have choices - Greenbike is virtually on the route!
If you care to pm me an email address I could send you the navigation files that we used for Oleron to La Rochelle - one for a satnav and/or one that will display on Google Earth and Streetview. I wouldn't dream of suggesting that you simply follow our tyre tracks but you might find some bits helpful. The road approach to the Oleron bridge , for example is an unpleasant fast dual carriage way. It can be avoided! (The bridge itself was ok) And we cut a big loop off the official route East of Rocheforte which seemed to be not particularly interesting converted rail track and an unattractive stretch of road which we later found to include a pretty stiff climb . We went through the middle so as to bag a ride on the transporter bridge

Re: Chromebook

22 March 2016 - 8:19am
On viruses al, why is android less prone to them as you seem to imply?

Re: Rhine route (EV15) - is it worth it?

22 March 2016 - 12:43am
I did the full route from Andermatt to Rotterdam (Europoort for ferry to Hull) a few years ago with a friend, you'll see mountains, lakes, valley gorges and everything in between. The industrial bits around Dusseldorf and the like are not too bad, they actually make a nice change of scenery at times. Of all the long distance routes I've done, this is the only one I'd like to do again before my legs tell me to stop.

Re: Would you rather..

21 March 2016 - 11:41pm
I can ride a bike in anything....rain/snow/freezing cold/fog/plague of locusts/sandstorm/you name it.....EXCEPT....Wind !!!....

My hatred of the wind probably has something do do with the fact that I live 200 yards from the North Sea......

Re: Chromebook

21 March 2016 - 11:14pm
That'l be the day they do that…

Al

Re: Chromebook

21 March 2016 - 11:12pm
Yes i realise that you can plug in usb storage al.

Get garmin basecamp on android al and i would very probably jump ship with you.

Re: Chromebook

21 March 2016 - 10:57pm
Some Chromebooks have 32Gb, but thats still huge and the space is more useable than a card on a tablet. Then theres the SD card slot, easy to double it. Or, plug in a 1Tb HDD, memory stick etc if you dont trust the cloud. Google Drive, Skydrive, Dropbox etc etc

And… thats a Windows PC! Ssssssss. Viruses, Ssssss, Windows Updates Ssssss.. Ugh!

Al

Re: Barcelona to Gibraltar in August.

21 March 2016 - 10:55pm
I agree about the coastal roads, avoid. I don't agree about the heat though, all my Spanish tours have been in summer and I've never had a problem, I really enjoy it, water is available everywhere and I find that the heat only becomes a problem when I stop cycling.

You should always be able to find a room in Spain although you may have to ask, I often stay above bars that don't even advertise rooms but hostals, bars and roadhouses are everywhere.

Re: Tour North England : Ideas please

21 March 2016 - 10:51pm
If you like quiet roads, come to the North Pennines. The C2C passes through, but there are masses of little used roads, extensive views, long steady hills, cyclist friendly cafes etc. Youth hostels at Alston, Langdon Beck, Dufton, Edmundbyers, plus independents.
http://roofofenglandcycling.co.uk
You can ignore the bit about the sportive, unless you just want to check out some challenging routes!
 
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