|The copy of Gravel Cycling that I paid for has been read now. How was it?|
I know, an amazing title, right? But it gets right to the point. The book is by Nick Legan, who you may remember from his stint at "Velo News". Nick is an admitted gravel cycling lover and he also has a penchant for bikepacking. Yes- he managed to squirrel that into a book called "Gravel Cycling".
So, how's that work? Well, it does to the extent that a certain event is arguably the defining event for the bikepacking genre'. That would be the Tour Divide. The course for this event, early on known as the "Great Divide Race", has been described by one of its early promoters as "a boring gravel route". So there ya go. It fits in that vein, I suppose. Oddly enough, when you read the book it actually does fit together. This gravel to bikepacking leap is more seamless than you'd imagine at first.
And that is really a feat. Nick Legan has basically shown us that in between the go-fast, shaved leg world of road cycling and the full-face helmet wearing, knobby tired world of mountain biking, their exists a realm of cycling based more on adventure and challenges. Ridden off pavement, this realm of cycling ranges far and wide and this is where "Gravel Cycling" is aimed at. The places, people, and gear that help define this genre's place in the cycling world is what Nick Legan has attempted to show us here. Is he successful?
Well, for the answer to that you can click HERE and read my review on "Riding Gravel". What I will say here is that if you are new to gravel road riding, "gravel curious", but maybe never intending to ride gravel, or if you have been reading these Trans Iowa Rookie advice posts all week with great interest, I suggest that you get this book. It's only $24.95, and I will tell you- you'll get more good tips than $24.95 can buy you elsewhere. In other words, just the knowledge within the pages is worth the asking price. But you also get some awesome photography as well. The book is loaded with stunning images.
So, for the "real review", read my piece on "Riding Gravel". But yes- it is a good bit of work and I feel that many who enjoy gravel road cycling will enjoy this book.
Note- I bought "Gravel Cycling" with my own damn money and I was not bribed nor paid for this review.