Flinders wrote:Slicks wouldn't be a good idea on towpaths round here, which are muddy, grassy and crumbly on the edges.
What are the towpaths in question like? Good hard surface, or mud and grass?
Muddy and crumbly on the edges, the odd pieces of stones etc but not so much grass as they are very often used by other cyclists and pedestrians walking
Sorry that I didn't reply sooner, I've been away for a few days and honestly only expected a handful of replies, I've read every single comment word for word but obviously can't reply to all 3 pages worth individually, so a big thank you to everyone who contributed to this. It's been a great help.
Honestly I'm feeling pretty excited to get started, been a while since I've been on a bike and I'm looking forward to it now.
From what I've gathered from the replies it seems like the only absolutely, 100% essential piece of kit I need are lights, possibly some reflectors for the bike in lieu of a high vis jacket (my preference) I've seen some people suggest puncture resistant tyres as opposed to getting a pump and repair kit which I think I'm in favour of since it'll save me hassle and give me some peace of mind though I'll be looking at prices before making any decisions on that.
Essential: Lights, reflectors (if not for safety then for liability reasons), good lock or safe place to store bike
Things to pick up: waterproofs, gloves, pump+repair kit OR puncture resistant tyres
Recommended: Have the bike looked over, mudguards
Good practice: Lubricate chain, check tyres daily for a slow puncture, carry spare clothes or keep some at work in case of torrential rain
I'm very surprised by the amount of people who didn't say helmets or even flat out said helmets weren't a priority - could someone elaborate on this? I was expecting it to be a somewhat controversial topic but no one seems to have mentioned it.