If you have a great guide on your bicycle tour, you’ll be sure to have an amazing bicycle touring experience.
In many cases, it is not the location of your bike tour, so much as it is the guide (or guides) that makes the tour so incredibly memorable.
But what specific qualities should you look for in a bicycle touring guide?
There are several qualities you could look for, but here are some of the characteristics I see repeatedly displayed in the world’s best bicycle touring guides:
Excellent cyclist – The best bicycle touring guides are also excellent cyclists. Having a guide that is knowledgeable about all things bikes makes the bicycle touring experience that much more enjoyable. And having a knowledge guide who can help fit you on your bike, repair your bike if need be, or assist you with anything cycling related is extremely important.
Knowledgeable about the area – You’ll be passing through some incredible areas on your bicycle tour and if you have a guide that can tell you the history, stories or ideas behind the places you are seeing, that will make your bicycle touring experience that much more rich.
Good with people – Because most guided bicycle tours are conducted with several different people on the tour, a good bicycle touring guide needs to not only know how to get along with the different types of people, but he or she should be good at bringing those people together and resolving any conflicts that might arise out of the group.
Incredible problem solver – Good bicycle touring guides can make quick decisions and speedily solve any problems that might pop up. While one of the major benefits of guided bicycle touring is that most of the major problems have been eliminated before you even arrive for the start of the tour, unexpected incidents do occasionally occur, and having a tour guide who can quickly resolve these issues is extremely important.
Fun, entertaining and nice – Finally, you want to look for guides that are generally good, fun people. The best bicycle touring guides feel like your friends when the trip is all over. They are people you want to hang out with, learn from and tell others about. Many bicycle touring guides are like this! They are great, fun, entertaining people.
What other characteristics do you think are important for a bicycle touring guide (or leader) to posses? Leave a comment below and tell me what you think.