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MOV - Cycling Vietnam - Solo Traveller

Anonymous
Tue, 05/29/2012 - 14:19

Hi,

Second trip with Exodus, last to Kibo last year - great fun. Looking forward to this one too. Solo traveller, male, 47. Live in Surrey. If you are doing the trip....or even one close to same date.....live close and fancy hooking up for some practice, or just to share notes etc. Please get in touch.

 Howard

Wed, 07/04/2012 - 20:35

I'm thinking of doing this trip - have contacted Exodus for some more info, but if there's anything you want to share which may convince me to sign up.  But I don't live near Surrey, sorry.

Anonymous
Tue, 07/10/2012 - 07:30

Sorry for late reply, been away....business - nothing exciting!

Why did I chose this? Done Kilimanjaro last year and loved it, done lots of walking in the UK and some in Europe. Fancied something a bit different. I have spoken to people who have travelled to Vietnam and they all say 'how adorable' it is. Then I saw the Top Gear (not a big fan but my kids watch it) Vietnam special and I was sold! The distances to cycle look reasonable, there is rest days, and there is a bus just in case...so the bit I was most worried about seems fair to acheive.

 I guess I wanted to see Vietnam before it really goes big as a tourist spot....and gets ruined!

Not sure if that helps?

Thu, 07/26/2012 - 18:36

Well my Tibet trip has been officially cancelled so I've signed up for this trip as an alternative.  I too watched the Top Gear guys in Vietnam and I love the thought of going into Halong Bay (though not on bike-boat conversions).  I noticed there's also an overnight train - hopefully we end up in the correct city!

I'm flying from Edinburgh so am not on the group fight - but am flying out 2 days early to spend a bit more time in Saigon.

See you there

Anonymous
Fri, 07/27/2012 - 07:29

Well done on signing up - shame about your other trip being canx though. I think there is quite a crowd going now, so it should be good fun. I have a friend in Hanoi, that I hope to hook up with towards the end of the trip.

My Sister lives up in Edinburgh, well Rumford near Falkirk, she works in town though. 

I have a number of mates who are all long distant cyclists and very clued up on Assoss cream, pants and padded shorts (my other big worry) and the rest, so if you want to email me feel free....click on my profile left, and the address is  firstname.lastname@bainessimmons.com

Fri, 08/17/2012 - 03:16

 Richard (husband) and I have signed up at last to see Vietnam. Richard is a Brit but has been living here for 20 years - Im originally a Brit but am an Aussie (confused?). He is a keen long distance cyclist (53 years old) and I am "keen" but not very good!!! Im in "training" - have bought myself a second bike to cycle in Brisbane - am doing about an hour a day - not enough! Hope the sag wagon is comfy! We too are having a couple of days in HCMC/Saigon before teh trip and in Hanoi afterward. Really looking forward to a holiday - last one was June last year............Will be working on some curly physics questions to ask Einstein.........

Linda

Anonymous
Fri, 08/17/2012 - 09:56

Hi Linda and Richard, always nice to know a few names before the adventure. Hey your email prompted me to cycle to work this morning. I am not a massive cyclist generally, I prefer walking or running, but wanted to take the opportunity to see Vietnam. So, I have been training......but I fully intend to sample the comfort of the bus on the long uphill climbs!!

Take care, see you soon. Howard

Fri, 08/17/2012 - 10:55

>Will be working on some curly physics questions to ask Einstein

I'm becoming an expert on the "relationship between gel seat and comfort".  However, looking at your photo Linda I'd rather talk dogs!

Helen

Sat, 08/18/2012 - 10:11

I think we are going to get on fine - a lack of physics knowledge (on my behalf) and a love of dogs :)

Howard - I have to say that your talk of running etc was the thing that scared me - I am so unfit! 2 weeks of sitting on my bum watching the olympics didnt help! Might be crowded in the sag wagon........Wanted to go on a bike ride today but it is freezing cold, raining and blowing a gale in Adelaide........a good red is more tempting. There is always tomorrow.......

Linda

Tue, 08/21/2012 - 12:22

Has anyone thought about foot wear? Richard and I were wondering if something like this would work

http://www.gondwanaoutdoor.com.au/index.html?Action=Commerce2.Product&ID...

am thinking trainers and socks may get a tad sweaty!

Also, has anyone thought about doing Carry for Kids?

http://carryforkids.org/

Linda

Wed, 08/22/2012 - 08:55

Are these for cycling in?

I will be wearing my MTB shoes and fitting SPD pedals to the hire-bike.

When not cycling I was planning to take walking-sandles, and trainers.  Appologies to whoever I may be sharing a room with if my feet smell.

Anonymous
Wed, 08/22/2012 - 09:22

Ditto, Goretex MTB shoes and SPD pedals - hope the size thread is the same on the hire bike!! I generally wear socks too, I find it keeps the sweat down a little....not sure Goretex is as breathable as they claim. Was also planning to take my saddle and fit that to the bike as well. basically anything I touch is then comfortable and 'normal'.

Evening etc, either flip flops or lightweight trainers was my plan. Appart from the gala dinner evening.....is that not on your itinary then? Dinner jackets long dresses etc?? No, seriously I plan to pick up a couple of lightwieght long sleeve shirts and long trouser for evening.....apparently the mosies can get quite 'nippy' in the evening time.

Regarding CarryforKids Linda, not this time. I have for the past four years now done holiday charity things (Marrie Currie, Have and Heart, Help for Heros, and Ty Hafen), and wanted to take the pressure off myself completely this year....just felt I needed a year off, and deserved a simple holiday - sorry if that sounds a bit selfish.

Howard

Wed, 08/22/2012 - 11:54

mmmmm

I hadnt thought of taking pedals.........food for thought. Thanks.

And perfectly alright giving yourself a year off vis a vis good deeds - very understandable. We are going to give it a go, hopefully wont get lost in HCMC.......

Linda

Anonymous
Sun, 09/02/2012 - 20:13

Hope the departure date is 6th October NOT the 7th !!

Travelling as a solo traveller so keen to get some long distant training in!

What are  MTB shoes?

Steve

Anonymous
Mon, 09/03/2012 - 07:40

Hi Steve,

I think it is the 6th - not checked my tickets for a while so perhaps better do that this evening. Sometimes they place the start date of the tour on this page, which is the 7th.....but hopefully it is the 6th :)

MTB = Mountain Bike, I have the 'clippy' SPD type that make life a lot easier - until you stop suddenly.

I see from your 'name' are you from Cardiff area? If so which part? My Kids live in Barry, in fact I will be through there next weekend seeing them.

How is the training going (everyone). I went on a 36 mile ride on Saturday, found it really difficult....I fear I will be the 'one at the back' :( hey ho!!

 Howard

Mon, 09/03/2012 - 12:35

Maybe your flights leave on the 6th with the torture , oops sorry, cycling starting on the 7th??

mmm 36 miles beats my 40kms..........and I felt slow, so slow. You will have to fight me for last spot Howard! Linda

Mon, 09/03/2012 - 17:58

I'm leaving on Thursday 4th Oct.... 4 1/2 weeks to go (although had the Tibet trip gone ahead I would have been in Lhasa today, bah!).  I arrive in Saigon on Fri 5th - I'm pretty sure I have one full day there before the group arrives, so that makes a 6th departure and a 7th arrival.

Haven't told the dogs I'm abandoning them yet though!

Helen

Anonymous
Mon, 09/03/2012 - 20:25

Yes the fun & games start on the 7th I think!

I live in Whitchurch,Cardiff close to the Taff Cycle trail but still not managed a 40 mile day trip yet!

Still 5 weeks to go so enough time get up those hills! Steve

Mon, 09/03/2012 - 21:24

I thought most of the route was flat - just need to practice downhill free-wheeling ;-)

Tue, 09/04/2012 - 12:34

Is it too late to order a tandem? Actually, when I went to my Dr to ask about shots etc she told me about her trip to Vietnam last year - by vespa!!!!! Now she tells me

Linda

Tue, 09/04/2012 - 12:39

>Is it too late to order a tandem?

Yes - but if you bring lots of cash you can become a Vietnamese Millionaire and hire/buy a motorbike.  Try watching the Top Gear Vietnam Special to see how great it wasn't ;-)

Anonymous

Hi All,

Less than three weeks now. Training is going okay but I am really struggling to get past the 40mile barrier. I just seem to run out of energy.....and thats in the cool climates of the North Downs, Surrey. So going to be using the 'bus' when I am there!!

Hope everyone is well and still all excited - I am. Never been to Vietnam so really looking forward to it.

CU all soon. Howard

Mon, 09/17/2012 - 21:19

Can't believe it's almost departure time.  Planning to do my last long cycle this weekend - providing the weather is dry (yes, I'm a fair-weather cyclist).  I'm determined to not use the 'bus' when I'm there - people think I'm cycling all the way (haven't told them about the overnight train!)

Happy packing

H

Anonymous
Sat, 09/22/2012 - 11:49

Hi All, under two weeks now.....cant wait! Better start thinking about a kit list sometime eh?

Just wondering about money etc. I was planning on taking some USD and some GBP, change into some dong at the banks which i assume will be there. Certainly seems to be according to previous trips. Anyone got any other ideas that are better perhaps??

42 miles today......thats it no more!! Reckon those uphills there is a seat on the bus wirh my name on it!!

CU all soon, H 

Mon, 09/24/2012 - 20:15

Can someone please tell me that Vietnam is FLAT?????  I had some horrible hills on my training cycle this weekend - the downhills were fine, but I had to get up them first!

Howard - I was just going to take Dollars and my credit card, and changing money as/when needed.

Anonymous
Tue, 09/25/2012 - 08:38

Oh Yes Vietnam is very flat!!!!

 Of course, I have never been so I have no idea at all, but you did ask Helen :). I struggle with the hills myself, I get into a low gear and plod, but I do worry in the heat it might be different. It seems like there are only two big climbs.....and I'll happily have company on the bus on those :). Ah well it will be fun if nothing else, a great experience.

Spoke to my colleague in Hanoi last night, USD are the best currency. Ideally dont carry too much on you, usual stuff dont 'flash' lots of cash. New bills only though, some will not take any pre 2004 vintage, so get them from the bank. Changing is fairly easy, either at banks or the local gold shops which do reasonable rates too.

Street food is very very cheap - but 'questionable for the western mouth' was the phrase.... mmmm!

Lots of great restaurants in the towns, and they too are quite cheap. under 10GBP for a meal she reckons.

Still got to do a kit list - really do need to get organised!!!

CU all soon, Howard

Tue, 09/25/2012 - 13:51

We did a 50km ride Sunday - my a*se killed me!!!! Am loving down hill but not the up bit you have to do before hand. One more ride Sunday - but I intend to do the Barossa so having lunch and wine halfway will soften the blow :)
Richard's Vietnamese work mate says that any currency is OK when changing in bank, but Im not going to chance taking Aussie dollars and will stick with US.

Weather forecast for HCHC - 92% humidity!!!!!!!!! Mental note to self - take flippers

See you all anon

Linda

Wed, 09/26/2012 - 15:38

I tend to do circular routes so what I go up, I can then go down.... unfortunately my so-called mate took me UP a 20% hill, but not just one, oh no, he thought that FIVE would be good - and all in quick succession so I couldn't get my breath back.  Granny gears were well used - as were the soles of my feet whilst pushing ;-)

Linda - a good gel seat, and gel-filled shorts should help your bum, but don't use a gel-seat cover as they can move and make it more unfomfortable.  I was also told to "go commando" under my shorts - not to remove the VPL (though that is very important for the photographs!), but to prevent chafing.

This time next week I'll have finished work and be doing my last minute packing...

Sun, 09/30/2012 - 17:38

Can't believe how much stuff I seem to have - I never thought about doing some weight-training just to be able to carry my kitbag! Anyone else seem to have lots of gear?

Anonymous
Mon, 10/01/2012 - 07:10

I havent even tried packing yet. Got all my kit on the spare bed at the moment......and there is no way on Earth it is going to fit in that tiny little bag!!

Safet travels all - see you in HCMC

 H x

Anonymous
Mon, 10/01/2012 - 07:11

My pedals, helmet etc are still not even in the pile. Deary me!!

Mon, 10/01/2012 - 12:32

It would only be a nightmare if we had to carry it all on our bikes! I think I might have bought too many snacks............Last bike ride yesterday and it was freezing - will be slightly different this time next week. We did a huge hill first up and I was very proud of myself getting up there - and was grateful that we tackled it first and not last - otherwise I would prob still be pushing! Only 2 more work days - yeehar. See you all in HCMC Linda

Mon, 10/01/2012 - 14:35

I still have to carry the bag up the road to the train station, then from the platform to a bus (up stairs and squeezing through a ticket barrier), then to the luggage trolleys at the airport.

I think it might be the EMPTY bag that weighs too much.... perhaps I should eat the chocolate now though, just to be on the safe side.

Mon, 10/01/2012 - 21:05

Panic over.... I've just checked the airline baggage allowance and I'm allowed 23kg.  Room for some more chocolate I think ;-)

Tue, 10/02/2012 - 12:31

I would eat  the chocolate now - have you checked the weather?? It doesnt stand a chance over there! Linda

Tue, 10/02/2012 - 12:34

It doesn't stand much of a chance in my house either!

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