Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    5

    Reasonable daily mileage for single track?

    Howdy - I'm an experienced at road touring and mountain biking, but not bikepacking. I've put together a kit for my mountain bike and want to try it out this summer.

    For those of you who are experienced at bikepacking, I was wondering what would be a reasonable expectation for daily mileage when on single track. I'd expect mileage would depend on the condition of the trail, but I want to get an idea of how far I can expect to get in a day. I realize it will be less than on pavement or dirt roads, but I have no idea of what a reasonable distance would be.

    Background -
    I ride an average of 80 miles per day when touring on paved roads and have ridden as far as 167 miles in a day. My longest paved ride last summer was 115 miles.

    When I mountain bike on single track, I typically ride 15-40 miles with about 1 to 3 hrs in the saddle.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Big B's Trails
    Reputation: ImaFred's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    1,719
    75-100, some can do more. TD rides do much more sometimes eclipsing 200
    I dig dirt!

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    1,055
    "...mileage would depend on the condition of the trail..." You nailed it. Prevailing wind and elevation are factors as well. I would not underestimate dirt/fire roads. I've struggled to get 20 in a day, and gotten over 60 without an all-out effort. If you routinely ride 40 miles in 3 hours, you'll kill it with a loaded bike and all day to ride.

    Load that beast up and ride it. That's what shakedown rides are for, boss. Cheers...

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    446
    Quote Originally Posted by She&I View Post
    "...mileage would depend on the condition of the trail..." You nailed it. Prevailing wind and elevation are factors as well. I would not underestimate dirt/fire roads. I've struggled to get 20 in a day, and gotten over 60 without an all-out effort. If you routinely ride 40 miles in 3 hours, you'll kill it with a loaded bike and all day to ride.

    Load that beast up and ride it. That's what shakedown rides are for, boss. Cheers...
    Well said. Conditions are key. I am a recreational bikepacker and not a racer, so I am not generally riding super fast. I strive for 30-50 miles a day on average in an area with a good deal of climbing (assuming you actually have the whole day) but again, it depends on the conditions. 70-80 in a day is doable but about my limit as far as still having time to explore, take detours, take photos, maybe a nap and enjoy myself. I have ridden longer, but I like the roses and the smelling thereof. My time is about the same as you for my regular 35-40 mile weekend rides. I also figure, if I can ride 40 miles in 3 hours unloaded, I should certainly be able to ride that far loaded if I have all day.

    Another way of looking at it is how fast you ride. Unloaded, I average about 13mph or so on flat singletrack. Loaded in the mountains I have been as slow as 5mph but I bank on 7mph when planning. If its flat, I increase to 10mph or so. I really just use these as estimates to figure out what time I need to be on the trail to reach a particular destination. I actually like getting to my camp spot a good deal before sundown so I can get off the bike, make camp and explore the area a little. Doesn't always work out that way, but its nice when it happens.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    5
    Thanks for all the input! I really appreciate it!

    I'm really looking forward to starting with a couple overnighters to troubleshoot and get used to the differences between road touring and bikepacking. I'll hopefully find time to a longer trip before the end of the season!

  6. #6
    Slothful dirt hippie
    Reputation: verslowrdr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,586
    I've said it for years: Not all miles are created equal.

    Here in the central Cascades there's lots of 20-something-mile-rides that take pretty much all day even unloaded. I've tentatively put together a 36 mile day ride route I've been eyeing for years, and every guy that's ridden out there kinda blanches at it when I show them. They've ripped off 50+ mile days down in Bend no problem so... yeah... lol.

    Shakedown cruise is where it's at! Handling a loaded bike on singletrack can be 'interesting', so get out there and experience it on terrain you're expecting to encounter on your big trip.
    "...Some local fiend had built it with his own three hands..."

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: vikb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    6,303
    Quote Originally Posted by verslowrdr View Post
    I've said it for years: Not all miles are created equal.
    +1 - Daily mileage could be 15-120kms. It just depends on the trail [climbing, surface, moisture, techiness, direction you are riding, etc..], on your bike, on your gear setup and then on your fitness.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  8. #8
    Slothful dirt hippie
    Reputation: verslowrdr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,586
    Probably the most notible local example would be Ward, Spovegas, etc. trip through the Quilomene last year. I'll let the mighty Spove himself do the 'splainin'....

    You may have noticed that the total distance we would be covering is just over 50 miles. In four days. Elevation profile notwithstanding, I couldn't imagine, at the outset, how a trip that averaged just 12-13 miles a day could be even moderately challenging. But I was intrigued by the scenery and the chance to get out and bikepack in some remote areas. I packed a book, so I would have something to do during all the downtime. Heh, heh, in 20/20 hindsight, what a fool I feel like, as I type the previous sentence.

    26InchSlicks: Colockum Quilomene Traverse - Introduction

    Ward said that book was never cracked on the entire trip.
    "...Some local fiend had built it with his own three hands..."

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    5
    Quote Originally Posted by verslowrdr View Post
    Probably the most notible local example would be Ward, Spovegas, etc. trip through the Quilomene last year. I'll let the mighty Spove himself do the 'splainin'....
    [/url]

    Ward said that book was never cracked on the entire trip.
    Thanks for the link. I read through it and enjoyed the pictures. That elevation profile looks gnarly!

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Aushiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    178
    On the Munda Biddi Trail here in Western Australia the campsites are 45 km apart or there about. Some riders double hut but the 45 km distance seems a pretty reasonable one for "average" rider.

    Andrew

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dream4est's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    1,217
    I averaged a 4.1 mph moving speed (2.3 overall) in the 2013 AZT750. 300-330 miles singletrack out of 770. About 90k climbing? My time was 13d16h. The winner, Max Morris, avg. 6.0 moving speed and 3.7 mph overall. His time was 8d12h.

    Those are real world numbers of ppl trying hard on hard trail. I would say that most touring bikepackers would have numbers looking like mine or worse over the course of a 3-5 day slog over trails. Max's numbers would take some real work to achieve. Is every singletrack loaded multi-day ride like the Arizona Trail? No, but it is a good example of what average speeds are all about. Typical racers ride and stop at about a 60/40 ratio. Touring folks usually reverse that trend.

    Arizona Trail Race and AZT 300 2013 live tracker by trackleaders.com

Similar Threads

  1. Project! 930 single track going single speed
    By Samblam in forum Singlespeed
    Replies: 38
    Last Post: 12-18-2013, 06:10 AM
  2. Keeping it single..... Married but prefer single track.
    By jaycastlerock in forum Colorado - Front Range
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 07-18-2013, 11:01 AM
  3. Single Track
    By rickcin in forum 29er Bikes
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 09-07-2012, 10:42 PM
  4. Recommended daily mileage on long expedtion rides
    By sea monster in forum Bikepacking and Bike Expedition
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 04-20-2012, 05:53 AM
  5. New Single Track In Cg
    By 22GILBERT22 in forum Arizona
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 09-08-2011, 09:17 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •