Not So Wild Camping Hokkaido

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4 Responses

  1. Leon Carney says:

    Hi. You are my wife’s friend (and mine :-) ) and you were our wedding photographer. I would have liked to have attended your Red Beard bikes talk, but couldn’t make it. I have co-incidentally bought a Brompton. Mine was adapted by NYCeWheels to be electric (which is a whole ‘nother debate on the morals/ethics/reasonableness of electric bikes). I bought my Brompton about 4 months ago, and weirdly have only ridden it about twice, including today to get to work on a Saturday. I guess all of this context is forming a question. With all your worldly travels, did you have any trouble or reservations about locking your bike outside. Even in NYC, some places are not bike friendly and they just don’t want you carrying your bike inside their place/restaurant/store especially if you are in a nice place and it’s been raining. My fear is that I wouldn’t want to lock my bike outside even for a minute, and I’m worried that I don’t want to be caught in a situation where I’ve brought my bike and I’m not allowed to bring it inside. I even had a lot of trouble today bringing my bike in to my office and luckily I brought a full bike bag/sack with me so I was able to carry it in the bag using a shoulder strap, (I discovered feels really heavy to hold it like that and it’s not an optimal way to get me and my stuff around.) Anyhoo – this is the first time I’ve really thought about the merits of my Brompton and so am now spewing my mental guts at you. It obviously looks like you’ve had a trip of a lifetime and I’ve only really seen some of your Japan photos so far! Hope to hear from you.

    Leon

    • Dmitry says:

      Hey Leon,
      Electric Brompton! Sounds like a lot of fun.
      The ONLY place where we’ve ever locked our Bromptons outside is Japan, and even then only for a few minutes. I would never ever lock up a Brompton in NYC (though I’ve seen a few of them locked up outside). When we first got our Bromptons in NYC I was a bit bashful about bringing the into any establishment, but that wore off quickly. Even places that aren’t “bike friendly” might be Brompton friendly. (Office buildings with idiotic bike policies that obviously didn’t have folders in mind are another story.) But here’s what I’d suggest if you’re feeling weird about bringing a Brompton inside. If you don’t have it already, get the zipper cover and saddle bag (http://www.nycewheels.com/brompton-cover-and-saddle-bag.html). This takes up almost no space and can always live on your bike and once you zip the cover over your Brompton, it looks pretty much like a nondescript piece of black luggage. The other thing I’d suggest getting is the Off Yer Bike handle for the Brompton (http://www.nycewheels.com/off-yer-bike.html). This makes the bike extremely convenient to carry. What you do is put the cover on the bike, zip it almost all the way, leaving a gap at the top where you will grab the handle. I can carry two bikes this way, one in each hand, without too much problem. You’re a stronger guy than me, so you’ll be fine. (Though it just occurred to me that your modified Brompton will be a bit heavier, but still, it should be ok.)

      In summary, with the cover bag, you should be fine, even at “nice” places in midtown or wherever. There’s always a cloak room or some area where you can put a piece of luggage. And please,. DON’T LOCK UP YOUR NICE ELECTRIC BROMPTON OUTSIDE IN NYC! Don’t do it. And let me know how you like the electric Brompton. Can’t tell you how many times we secretly wished for a pedal assist going up a hill in India…

    • Mila says:

      Hi Leon! One quick thought in addition to what Dmitry wrote: any restaurant/bar/business that has room for a stroller has room for a Brompton. I used to be shy about bringing my bike inside as well, but people are usually very accommodating – there’s pretty much always a spare corner or closet for your bike.

  2. Amy says:

    Found you guys non instagram and reading through your blog. I don’t bike when traveling and your blog is encouraging me to do so!! You guys get caught in the rain a lot. I wear glasses and a helmet with a visor which works unless there is wind. Any tips to protect your eyes?

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