We try to keep things simple. We don’t want to nickel-and-dime you for extras, or surprise you with additional costs, so we try to include as much as we can in our tour cost:
- Transportation to and from the airport. We personally pick you up and take you back in our vehicles.
- Mechanical support, including putting your bike together upon arrival, and packing it for departure.
- All lodging.
- All breakfasts, lunches and most dinners. Check the itinerary for your chosen ride to see how many dinners are included on that tour. Some of our tours give you a night or two to check out the local cuisine on your own.
- Wine and beer tastings.
- All snacks and beverages during the ride, and protein smoothies afterward.
- Ride support, including luggage transportation, mechanical support during the tour and the support of our expert tour guides.
- Basic coaching advice from Bart Bowen to help you be fully prepared for your tour. A more customized program is available upon request.
We try to include as much of our services as possible in the overall cost of your trip with Ride Cycling Tours. However, there are just a few things that are not included:
- Your transportation to the start location is your responsibility. This includes airfare, trains, driving and sherpa. The start location is the town we’ll meet in, and leave on our bikes from on the first day of the tour.
- During some of our tours, some of your dinners will not be included to give you a chance to explore the local cuisine as you wish. We love Indian food, but not everyone does. This is your chance to satisfy a craving, or have a quiet dinner, or even select a few of your new riding buddies. Of course, we’ll be happy to give you suggestions based on your favorite types of cuisine and preferred ambiance. Be sure to read the itinerary for your chosen tour to see how many dinners are included.
- In-room snacks and beverages.
- Our scheduled beer and wine tastings are included. However, any alcoholic beverages served with included dinners are not.
Like all of our trips, we try to include as much as possible in our One Day Tours, so you don’t feel nickel-and-dimed.
- Transportation to and from the ride from Bend for you and your bike. You’ll ride in our clean and comfortable passenger van, and your bike will ride protected in our custom enclosed trailer.
- Full SAG (Support and Gear) during the ride.
- Map and cue sheet.
- At least one guide who will ride with the group, and one who will drive the SAG vehicle.
- Gourmet box lunch, your selection from a few choices including vegetarian.
- Complimentary Backporch Coffee for the road.
- Post-ride recovery protein drink for the ride home.
- Complimentary pint of locally-brewed craft beer at GoodLife Brewing upon our return to Bend.
Most of our tours are challenging, both in terms of mileage, and in terms of terrain. Our Oregon Pinnacles Tour covers more than 530 miles in seven days, and boasts more than 40,000 vertical feet of elevation gain. Needless to say, a good amount of fitness is a prerequisite, not only for being able to do the ride, but to have fun doing it. What kind of fitness are we talking about? We’d hope that you’d be able to ride back-to-back centuries two days in a row. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you’d like our help in picking an appropriate tour for you based on how many hours you want to be in the saddle.
When you book your trip with Ride Cycling Tours, we’ll send you a checklist you can print and use to help you pack for your vacation with us. However, you can count on bringing your road bicycle, at least three changes of cycling clothes and casual clothes for relaxing and dining out in. Also, we may experience dramatic changes in climate and weather during our tour, so an array of cycling accessories like warmers, hats, jackets, vests and gloves are a good idea to bring.
This is a road cycling tour. Do not bring your BMX bike, mountain bike, beach cruiser or recumbent. Only a road bike will be comfortable over the distances we are covering. Ideally, the bike you bring has been through thick and thin with you, and you are quite comfortable with each other. Perhaps you even use the “L word” when describing your bike. That’s between you and your bike.
Although we do not rent bicycles, we do work closely with a local bike shop in Bend that makes high-end road bikes available to rent for our tours. Especially for our longer, more challenging tours, however, we encourage you to bring your own, tried-and-true, trusty steed that has proven its comfort on long, consecutive days in the saddle. Now is probably not the time to experiment and try dancing with a prettier girl. That said, a rental bike might make life easier for you, and work out well for one of shorter tours.
Now is not the time to be a hero. Your objective is to finish the tour with your legs still connected to your pelvis. The Oregon Pinnacles Tour is a climbing tour. We’ll be crossing the Coastal Range twice, cresting the Cascade Mountains once, and then of course, riding Rim Drive around Crater Lake. The Oregon Pinnacles Tour includes over 40,000 vertical feet of climbing over seven days of riding. If your last name is Armstrong or Contador, a 39 x 23 may suffice. Otherwise, we recommend either a:
- Compact front chainring (with a 34-tooth low gear); or,
- A 27- or 28-tooth cog on the rear cassette.
A few of the rides include sustained climbs–meaning climbs lasting approximately 10 miles–and we’ll also have days that include short steep climbs with grades of approximately 15%.
We’ll try our best to take as much hassle out of getting your bike to your tour destination as possible. To that end, our expert mechanics will assemble your bike and make sure it’s ready to ride, whether you fly it with you or ship it ahead. If you ship your bike to us, we’ll build it prior to the tour, and bring it with us in our enclosed trailer to our starting location, where you’ll be joyfully reunited.
If you fly your bike in a travel case as a checked piece of luggage, be prepared for airline fees to vary wildly. Depending on the carrier, the cost of flying a bicycle ranges from $50 each way (Southwest) to $200 each way (US Airways and Delta). We encourage you to investigate the cost of flying your bicycle, and factor that cost into your trip prior to booking your airline ticket.
If you decide to ship your bike to us a ahead of time, you can either choose to:
- Pack and ship it yourself with a carrier like FedEx or UPS. If you do this, make sure you purchase insurance and have it signed for upon delivery.
- Have your local bike shop pack and ship it for you. Again, make sure it’s insured and signed for.
- Or, you can use an online company that specializes in shipping bicycles.
- Bike must be insured and signed for upon delivery, and not left unattended.
- Bike must be received at the Ride Cycling Tours offices no later than the Wednesday before your scheduled tour.
Ride Cycling Tours prides itself on its unparalleled customer service, and an important component of that service is our mechanical support. Our team of expert mechanics will assemble your bike and tune it upon arrival, whether it’s shipped to us before you arrive, or you bring it with you. Your bike will be cleaned, tuned and prepared daily. Our support vehicles are stocked with supplies, like tubes, as well as parts that can commonly break, like chains and pedals. We’ll even carry spare wheels.
Yes. Our support vehicles carry commonly-needed supplies like spare tubes and bicycle pumps. We also stock spare parts that sometimes break during long rides like pedals, chains, spokes and saddles. Ride Cycling Tours also provides spare wheels should your wheel fail during the ride.
A former racecar driver meticulously researches and chooses all the roads we ride. Ironically, the same driver who made a career out of piloting nitro-fueled funny cars delights in finding roads with low vehicular traffic. There are many other criteria taken into account, but the biggest emphasis is placed on quiet roads that are also scenic and challenging. We study maps and pre-ride every route to ensure it’s up to snuff. This attention to detail makes our tours exceptional.
For our point-to-point trips, like our Oregon Pinnacles Tour, we’ll book a maximum of 20 riders, with five guides along for the ride to maintain our ratio of one guide for every four riders.
For centralized trips, like the Bend Spoke Tour, which return nightly to one or two base hotels throughout the trip, our group sizes may accommodate more riders. However, we’ll still hold true to our 5-to-1, rider-to-guide ratio.
Ride Cycling Tours provides an industry-high guide-to-rider ratio, with one guide for every five riders. This insures that our guests have easy access to the guides, who are also riding the route, as well as our staffed support vehicles. Our commitment to providing excellent guides is part of our grand design to provide the best possible experience for our guests.
Chances are, if you’re interested in a Ride Cycling Tour, riding is your passion, too, and you’re reasonably fit. Our advice is don’t sweat it. We used to live in Indiana and travel all over the country with our bikes. We looked forward to long climbing rides because they were so novel. However, we understand the cyclist’s need to prepare mentally for every challenge, and there are ways to train for hills, even if you live in a place that is vertically challenged.
Even if you live in the flatlands, there are things you can do to simulate hills in your training:
- Ride into the wind.
- Ride a bigger gear with a lower cadence to build strength.
- Find a hill in your area and do repeats.
Your guess is as good as ours. Truly, even regional weathermen have a tough time nailing accurate forecasts in the Pacific Northwest. We’ll be traversing through a range of diverse ecosystems and climates. It’s not unusual to ride through microclimates, too. Summers in the Pacific Northwest typically have excellent weather, but especially when we’re riding over mountain ranges, the weather can suddenly, and dramatically, change. Usually rain showers are brief and refreshing, and our support vehicles will carry supplies, including your extra accessories like rain jackets and warmers.
No worries. Depending on the number of riders we have on each tour, we’ll have a minimum of two vans and two guides with us. There will always be a SAG (support and gear) wagon to pick you up should you decide you do not want to continue riding. And there’s no shame in this. Everybody has a bad day. Even Lance himself has crawled into a car.
If you need to cancel your trip for any reason, you may do so and receive a full refund minus a $150 cancellation fee up to 60 days from the first day of your scheduled trip. You may transfer to another date up to 60 days from the first day of the scheduled trip without incurring a fee. If you must cancel between 60 days and the beginning of the trip, the cancellation fee is 75% of the trip cost. The transfer fee is 25% of the trip cost.
All Ride Cycling Tours prices are based on private, single-occupancy accommodations. However, if you’re traveling with a friend and want to share a room, each person will receive a discount. We can also hook you up with another super-cool Ride Cycling Tours rider if you want to share a room and receive the discount. The double-occupancy discount for each tour is on the tour’s page under Tours and on the Reserve a Tour page.
Didn’t find an answer to your question? Email us or call us at 541.390.1537.