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Techniques for Winter Riding

If you ride all year like a growing number of people in the world, I’m sure you have experienced less than ideal riding conditions, especially during these winter months. I’d like to give you a few pointers on good riding technique to keep your ride safe and uneventful!

Eye contact: This is true in all weather conditions, but eye contact with motorists is very important. Don’t assume that people see you 100% of the time. Intersections are a place where the unexpected can happen in a heartbeat. Make sure you have eye contact with someone driving near you. It’s always better to know that someone sees you than to make assumptions.

Lights: The nights still come upon us early and riding without lights is unsafe and sometimes illegal in certain states. Not only does it help with vehicles, but it helps with fellow pedestrians on the bike path. I can’t tell you how often I barely see other riders because they don’t use a light. I can’t imagine driving without headlights, and we shouldn’t be riding without lights either. Personally, I’m a fan of multiple rear lights too–one blinking and one steady. You can never be too safe!

Avoiding Debris: While riding on the roads be careful about riding too close to the curb. That’s an area of the road that collects debris this time of year. Broken glass and a lot of miscellaneous items that can ruin your day live by the curb during the winter months. Riding just a bit further into the lane, away from these potentially dangerous items, can be a good idea to avoid a puncture or flat tire. Also keeping a straight line and riding predictably is much safer than weaving to avoid debris and keeping the cars behind you guessing your next move.
 
 
Winter cycling tips from Trek Travel Logistics Manager

Winter Riding Blues

As Juno covers the East Coast in snow, and others of us have been riding downstairs on the trainer for months, we are all dreaming of those warm 72 degree days. But if you’re brave enough to face the elements, we’re here to provide you with a few tips on riding in the snow and cold.

  1. Don’t bring your bike inside. It’s best if the bike stays the same temp throughout the day. Having the slush/water freeze then melt daily will wreak more havoc on it than just keeping it below freezing all the time.
  2. Keep that chain as clean and lubed as you can. A daily wiping down of the chain is a good practice to get into. All of the road salt will quickly erode any lubrication properties of most chain lubes. Use a good wet lube weekly to keep your chain in tip top shape and don’t forget to wipe the excess off after you apply it. Remember you are trying to lube the parts inside the chain, not the parts you see!
  3. Gear up, get out, and enjoy the ride!

 
 
Winter Riding Tips from Trek Travel

Picnics Aren’t Just For Summer

As the holidays quickly approach, we want to help you prepare for the family gathering you’re required to host or annual neighborhood party that never disappoints. It’s the perfect time of year to prepare a big meal, light a roaring fire, and of course, gather your friends. Our picnic making tips and tricks will help you create the perfect spread – because long winter days beg for hearty laughter, rich red wine, and bountiful buffets.

One way we love to ‘wow’ our guests is by providing them with opportunities to taste the finest, local cuisine. Our team spends quality time in every destination before trips begin to run. We know the local flavors, we’re friends with baker down the street, and we’ve found the best-kept secrets in every region.

And if there’s one thing we’ve mastered throughout the years, it’s picnics. Over and over, guests are ‘wowed’ by their guides’ ability to provide a feast. I’m not just talking about a large meal, banquet, or lavish celebration. F.E.A.S.T. is actually a mnemonic device our guides use to help remember the five most important principles of creating a killer picnic: full, elegant, appetizing, selection, and timely.

The first and most important thing to do when preparing a picnic is to organize the grocery list. This will save time and reduce stress. Tip: Organize the menu by departments of a grocery store: produce, dry goods, condiments, bread, dairy, and deli. To provide the best possible selection, always choose regional specialties and locally produced brands. A picnic is only as good as the food on the table.

Next, providing food in a timely manner by prepping as much as possible in advance will minimize the risk of hangry (anger invoked by hunger) guests. Tip: Putting a napkin in a plastic bag with pre-cut food with help absorb moisture and keep things fresh.

When actually preparing a picnic, it’s crucial to make the table to look full, elegant and appetizing. This requires mastering the art of garnish. Tip: Use fresh leafy vegetables – parsley, kale, collard greens, and romaine lettuce – to spread throughout empty spaces. Or choose items you can eat at the next picnic – different colored onions, bell or hot peppers, garlic, lemons, limes – to add zest and color to the display.

When it comes to display, elevation is the key. Tip: Place cardboard Ziploc boxes, empty berry containers, or upside-down bowls under your tablecloth. Then set a bowl or platter of food on top, and a flat table will be transformed into a bountiful multi-level display. Tilting the food toward guests will allow for easy viewing and serving.

But what would a blog about picnic making be without sharing some of our favorite recipes. In today’s collection we will be featuring an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert from various regions across the globe. They are tried and true, and some of our favorites here at Trek Travel.

tuscany

SOUTHWEST BEAN SALAD
This salad works well as an ingredient in tacos or as a topping on a green salad

Region: Bryce and Zion
Source: Rebecca Falls

Ingredients:
1 can seasoned black beans
1 can whole kernel corn
1 can salted garbanzo beans
1 can kidney beans
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 red onion
2 roma tomatoes, with seeds removed and diced
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Directions:
1. Mix the dressing ingredients and set aside.
2. Prepare all other salad ingredients and combine in a large bowl
3. Toss the salad mixture with the dressing and add salt and pepper to taste


Costa Brava

FISH TACOS
Fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients are the hallmarks of California coastal cuisine

Region: California Coast
Source: Tania Burke

Ingredients:
2 cups packaged shredded cabbage or coleslaw mix
¾ cup salsa
2 T. sour cream
1 lb. halibut, mahi mahi, or tilapia fillets
2 tsp. olive oil
8 corn tortillas
2 cups shredded cheese of your choice
Lime wedges

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl, combine cabbage, ¼ cup salsa, and sour cream. Mix well and set aside
2. Cut fish into ½-inch think strips, Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add fish and cook 2 to 3 minutes per side or until fish is opaque in center.
3. Fill warm tortillas with fish, cheese, cabbage mixture and top with extra salsa. Serve with lime wedges if desired.


Great food on Crater Lake & Oregon Cascades bike tours

MAPLE SYRUP COOKIES
This is an old Vermont recipe described as “nice to come home to”

Region: Vermont
Source: Audrey Coty, Nebraska Knoll Sugar Farm

Ingredients:
1 cup maple syrup
½ cup of soft butter
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
½ cup milk
3 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt

Directions:
1. Combine and sift dry ingredients
2. Beat syrup and butter to a cream
3. Add eggs, well beaten, and vanilla
4. Add milk alternately with flour mixture
5. You may roll these cookies out, or just drop them on a greased cookie sheet and flatten with a glass dipped in milk
6. Bake 10-12 min. at 400°F

Private

If a date is marked as Private, it is reserved for a private group.

Looking to travel with a small group or looking for a custom date?
Call our trip consultants at 866-464-8735

What is the Difference?

Ultimate Luxury:

Savor some of the most spectacular, 5-star properties in the world. Exuding luxury and elegance, these one-of-a-kind accommodations offer the chance to rejuvenate at award-winning spas, dine at Michelin-starred restaurants, and more.

Luxury:

Enjoy luxurious accommodations handpicked for a refined experience. From signature spa treatments to delicious local cuisine, you’ll be more than provided for; you’ll be pampered.

Explorer:

These handpicked hotels provide relaxation and fun in a casual and comfortable environment. Delicious cuisine and great service mix perfectly for a memorable stay.

Combined:

On select cycling vacations, you’ll stay at a mix of Explorer and Luxury hotels. Rest assured, no matter which hotel level you’re at, our trip designers carefully select every accommodation.

Activity Level

Level 1:

Road: 1-3 hours of riding. Up to 25 mi (40 km). Up to 1,000 ft (300 m).

Gravel: 1-3 hours of riding. Up to 20 mi (35 km). Up to 1,000 ft (300 m).

Hiking: 1-3 hours of hiking. Up to 5 mi (8 km). Up to 1,000 ft (300 m).

Level 2:

Road: 2-4 hours of riding. 20-35 mi (35-60 km). Up to 2,500 ft (750 m).

Gravel: 2-4 hours of riding. 15-30 mi (25-45 km). Up to 2,000 ft (300 m).

Hiking: 2-4 hours of hiking. 4-8 mi (6-12 km). Up to 1,500 ft (450 m).

Level 3:

Road: 3-5 hours of riding. 25-55 mi (40-85 km). Up to 4,500 ft (1,500 m).

Gravel: 3-5 hours of riding. 20-40 mi (35-60 km). Up to 3,000 ft (900 m).

Hiking: 3-5 hours of hiking. 6-10 mi (9-16 km). Up to 2,000 ft (600 m).

Level 4:

Road: 4+ hours of riding. 40-70 mi (60-110 km). Up to 8,000 ft (2,400 m).

Gravel: 4+ hours of riding. 30-50 mi (45-80 km). Up to 4,000 ft (1,200 m).

Hiking: 4+ hours of hiking. 7-15 mi (11-24 km). Up to 4,000 ft (1,200 m).

What are your trip styles?

Classic - Reserve:

Savor the finer things as you relax in luxurious 5-star accommodations and wine, dine, and ride in some of the most unforgettable destinations around the world.

Classic - Signature:

Explore beautiful destinations by bike, enjoy extra inclusions, savor delicious local cuisine, and enjoy the perfect mix of accommodations.

Classic - Discover:

Enjoy a casual cycling vacation with fantastic routes and comfortable accommodations.

Ride Camp:

Train like the pros in some of their favorite riding destinations.

Pro Race:

See the pros in action at the biggest cycling events of the year.

Cross Country:

Tackle an epic adventure that takes you point-to-point across mountains, countryside, and more.

Self-Guided

Enjoy a bike tour on your schedule with just your chosen travel companions.

Single Occupancy

Sometimes it’s more convenient and comfortable to have your own room while on vacation. We understand and that’s why we offer a Single Occupancy option. The additional price guarantees a private room all to yourself