Road Bike for 40mi commute through snowdonia?

TheKrikkitWars Posts: 178
edited December 2008 in Road beginners
I'm looking at cycling to work in Y Bala which is about 40 miles from my flat in Bangor, I've already established that doing it on my MTB would be impractical.

I want a road bike solely for this purpose.
Cheapness rates above quality, so long as whatever is recommended is fit for purpose.


  • redddraggon
    redddraggon Posts: 10,862
    For a 40mile commute in Snowdonia I'd be looking for something like a Scott Addict.
    I like bikes...

  • Any sensible suggestions? I'm fully expecting the commute to be 2-3 hours.
  • redddraggon
    redddraggon Posts: 10,862
    What budget?

    No budget = Scott Addict
    I like bikes...

  • Al_38
    Al_38 Posts: 277
    Go second hand if you know enough to tell if something is in decent condition or not.

    Will you need to take stuff with you on the ride or will you have showers and clothes waiting at work? If you need to take stuff make sure you get a bike that can take pannier racks - will make life much more pleasant. Some audax bike of some sort I would guess

    If you won't have to carry much at all go for more of a racer if you want a lighter and more aggressive bike - look for something like a specialized allez something or other, or similar priced products from the other major manufacturers giant, scott, trek etc. Personally I really like cannondales but there is a slight price premium attached to them over most similar specced bikes as the frames are a bit nicer IMO. Trade off with this is it might be less comfy than a bike with more relaxed geometry (the audax / tourer bike)

    Depending on how much you want to spend look for shimano sora / tiagra / 105 kit as a decent benchmark of what should be up to the job
  • Cheapness rates above quality, so long as whatever is recommended is fit for purpose.
    What budget?

    No budget = Scott Addict

    Emphasis added.

    I'm a raft guide (still a trainee hence money scrimping) so changing clothes etc isn't an issue, leaving stuff there wouldn't be a problem either. I guess i'm after a second hand road racer then,
  • andyrr
    andyrr Posts: 1,819
    heck of a long commute : that's something around 2 1/2 - 3hrs+ ? Each way !
    So a 9am start would mean leaving house at 6am latest and if you finished at 5pm then home 5:30ish giving time for getting changed etc
    Maybe your working day is a bit shorter with the lack of light around at the moment so you might finish at 3:30pm but if it is 80 miles/day then doing that 5 days a week is very tiring along with a physical job.
    Even a round trip of 40 miles/day equates to 200 miles a week if you work monday - friday.

    Ideal bike is prob a light, fast but not overly stiff racer : maybe ti (never riden one myself) - P-X do a good priced bike at the mo' or one of their carbon framed-bikes in their C18 special offer
  • redddraggon
    redddraggon Posts: 10,862
    What does cheapness mean? It's not a budget.

    A P-X with DA is cheap @ ~£1000
    I like bikes...

  • cougie
    cougie Posts: 22,512
    That is a massive commute. And the roads arent that great to ride on - very fast and a fair amount of traffic.

    A road bike would be the thing to get - but make sure its ok for mudguards.

    After a season of doing those milages - you could turn pro !
  • Pirahna
    Pirahna Posts: 1,315
    I do a 40 mile each way commute a couple of days a week, although in the sunny south east. The best advice I can give is have a contingency plan ready for those mornings when you just can't get up a 6am, or it's pissing down and you really don't fancy 2.5 hours in heavy rain.
  • cougie
    cougie Posts: 22,512
    TKW - what kind of biking do you do now ? Are you up to this milage ?
  • take it from me . when you wake up at 5.30 its dark , its feezing and your tired no scott addict or anything else will get you to do 40 miles . get in the car and save up for next summer .
  • Thats a hell of a commute-even if you did it a couple of times a week.
    Sleeping and eating well,taking water too,will be important for you or youll burn out quickly.
  • big-peugeot-satelis.jpg
  • MichaelW
    MichaelW Posts: 2,164
    I think that commute is too far to do everyday AND do a days physically active work.
    Have you considered a folding bike? You can mix cycling with bus so you can get to the bust station quickly and you can ride the last 5-10 miles so you dont need to be too picky about the bus destination. It may sound dorky but works. Some people leave an old road bike each end of a public transport section.
  • Jay dubbleU
    Jay dubbleU Posts: 3,159
    Giant Escape M2 - fast hybrid - light frame - good range of gears
  • Just to say I agree with many of the others on here - I wouldn't even think of starting a 40 mile commute EACH WAY!! especially since Winter is coming on. That kind of ride is what I would normally aim to do on a weekend and I would just get tired, ill, cold and wet if I did 80 miles a day 5 days a week in the winter, and with the short days much of it would be in the dark. Then you would also not have much free time to do anything much else with the maintenance of the bike - what if something goes wrong or it snows or there is black ice on the roads or it's bitterly cold or there is a puncture etc - you would have to allow time for that possibility as well. I couldn't imagine working straight after a 40 mile ride - I would need a change of clothes etc, showers.. all more time to allow. Anyway if you do go for it then you definitely have my respect :shock: Maybe 2 days a week would be more realistic?
  • Hi TheKrikkitWars

    I thought I would pass on some practical experience that I have.
    I have done a commute that you are contemplating many years ago.
    I too cycled 40 miles each way to work and back, that is 400 miles per week!
    The bike I used was a super light weight bike that would be equivalent to a bike to the value of £5000 in today’s money.

    The problems you will face is there is not enough hours in the day.
    Physically you should be able to do it, but it will effect you mentally.
    You will be sleeping cycling and working during the week with little rest.

    When I did my mammoth commute it was summer and I was blessed with the warmest summer on record and no rain (yes no rain). I managed to keep up the commute for 3 months then I bought a motorbike.

    I wish you luck in your challenge.
  • father_jack
    father_jack Posts: 3,509
    That is a huge distance, is it hilly or on the flats? Are you working full time hours, or part time? Should be possible if you're a part timer, as won't have to get up so early, not tired at work since not doing a full shift, and will arrive later (that's if it's something like 10-4 shift)

    I'd look into a fast tourer, full length guards and panniers. You'd need to take enough things in the pannier from change of clothes, to wear weather gear, to bike tools (chain breakage, allen keys) pump, innner and replacement tyre.
    Say... That's a nice bike..
    Trax T700 with Lew Racing Pro VT-1 ;-)
  • hammerite
    hammerite Posts: 3,408
    I agree with the others. It's a heck of along ride, and whilst I'm aware that the roads in Snowdonia don't go up and down the mountains, there'd still be a fair amount of uphill work to do!

    Plus I would imagine your job as a raft guide is physically demanding.

    I do a 40 mile round trip a few days a week between Mar/Apr-Sept. But as soon as it's dark for the rides I give up for the sake of my life! I ride to work on country roads (unlit in winter), and people tend to use them as a race track.

    I wouldn't even consider doing your sort of distance commute more than twice a week, and have to work too.
  • redddraggon
    redddraggon Posts: 10,862
    That is a huge distance, is it hilly or on the flats?

    I think you could call Snowdonia pretty mountainous..
    I like bikes...