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Create your next cycling adventure with komoot

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4 Mar 2021
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13 ways komoot can turn any bike ride into a riding experience

Words: Martin James Photography: Gavin Kaps/Osprey Imagery

As cyclists, why do we love riding our bikes? It’s for that sense of adventure, of exploring the unknown and broadening our horizons. It’s about the promise of taking us to places we’ve never been under our own steam and in our own time.

Or at least that’s the answer when you’re 12 and have just got your first proper bike as a birthday present. These days, chances are you’ll say you ride for fitness, stress relief, as a convenient or cheap way to get from A to B, or perhaps even to help the environment.

Yet that 12-year-old is still in there somewhere, and that’s a good thing. Cycling should be about the spirit of exploration and the allure of exploring your surroundings, and with komoot it can be.

Too often we glorify grand cols we’ve only seen on TV while overlooking the challenge of the local hill we don’t know about even though it’s 10 minutes’ ride from our front door. Or we barrel down a main road on a training loop, riding past that little byway or towpath that could make for an equally challenging but far more rewarding ride.

We’re all looking forward to once again being able to head for those mythical Alpine cols of cycling legend, but one thing the past year has taught us is that there are still rich riding possibilities to be had closer to home, and komoot is all about helping you unlock those possibilities and turn an ordinary bike ride into an experience.

Using a broad range of tools, the input of a community of fellow cyclists and an interface that’s easy to navigate, komoot provides cyclists with a richer palette with which to plan and enjoy their next two-wheeled adventure – however near or far it might be.

Komoot was an integral part of planning Cyclist’s ongoing JOGLE The Scenic Route series, which saw us ride from John O’Groats to Land’s End over 13 days, taking in the very best parts of the UK you can experience on two wheels.

So read on as we break down what makes komoot much more than just a route planning service and give you 13 reasons why you should sign up today.

Sports-specific routing

Cycling has undergone a quiet revolution in the last decade. Thanks to bikes that are increasingly designed to go just about anywhere, no longer do we look at ourselves as strictly road riders, touring enthusiasts or off-road lovers. We are simply cyclists.

With komoot’s sports-specific routing, you can choose exactly the kind of ride you’re looking for between Road, Touring and Gravel routes, and you’ll be given personalised route recommendations for that type of riding.

Detailed elevation details

Seeing a route’s overall elevation profile gives you a sense of which parts of a route are the toughest, but komoot goes further than that. Zoom in on a section of a profile and colour-coded overlays will show you exactly where things get toughest.

It won’t make a 20% ramp near the top of a long ascent any easier to climb, but at least you’ll know it’s coming. 

Waytype and surface profiles

Planning a two-wheeled adventure that takes you off the tarmac and onto unpaved surfaces can be fun, but it’s good to get a sense of just how much unpaved riding you’ll be doing.

Komoot’s route planner will break down exactly which parts of your route are on paved and unpaved roads, even giving you the proportion of the total ride that is on each type.

Route warnings

We’ve all done it. From ferry crossings to restricted roads, many a promising riding adventure has been undone by failing to realise that part of it is on roads that are restricted or completely unsuitable for cycling.

Komoot’s route warnings will flag up any such sections of your proposed route ahead of time so you can tweak it accordingly.

Highlights

Komoot’s Highlights are real-world recommendations from other cyclists in the komoot community. Showing up as little red dots on the map, Highlights can be anything from challenging climbs and picturesque stretches of road to wonderful views or great places to stop for a mid-ride coffee.

You can add your own photos and tips to existing Highlights or create new ones to help inspire others.

Hideable tour line

Seeing your route laid out on a map is all well and good, but we don’t ride on maps. Hold down the 'm' key on your  keyboard or click on the eyeball icon and you can hide the tour line and see just the map itself to get a sense of the type of road you’ll be riding, or use the satellite map overlay to see the road itself and even the level of traffic to expect. It’s one of those small features that makes a big difference.

Multiple map overlays

Komoot allows you to switch between different map overlays, including Google Satellite and OpenCycleMap, which displays all the National Cycle Network routes across the UK to potentially add another dimension to your ride.

Offline routes

Getting off the grid and into parts unknown is part of the thrill of riding for many people. If you know your ride is heading into an area with poor reception you can download your route to your phone ahead of time, allowing you to navigate your way without an internet connection.

Pioneers

Beyond the routes and recommendations on offer from everyday cyclists are the komoot Pioneers. These are real-world people but have a passion for discovery and are happy to pass on their knowledge and experience to their fellow cyclists.

From hand-picked highlights to insightful tips and information, these inspirational adventurers are at the heart of the komoot community. There are thousands of komoot Pioneers spread all over the globe, and you can easily find and follow Pioneers who inspire you, whether in your own region or further afield. 

Multi-day planning tools

Putting together an ambitious multi-day adventure on the bike such as Cyclist’s 13-day JOGLE series took a lot of planning, and komoot’s multi-day planner was instrumental in getting it done.

Available as a feature with komoot Premium, it helped us easily divide our cross-country expedition into manageable daily chunks, keeping each day’s effort consistent based on distance, terrain and difficulty.

Accommodation tips

Komoot’s multi-day planner doesn’t just cover your time on the bike either. Once you’ve broken down your route into daily stages, this Premium feature can steer you towards accommodation options such as B&Bs or local campsites in the area your day’s ride will finish.

You can then easily tweak that day’s route to take you straight there and the following day’s will adjust accordingly.

Dynamic weather forecasts

There’s nothing you can do to change the weather but you can at least plan for it. With komoot Premium’s dynamic weather forecasts, not only do you get overall weather conditions and important information like sunrise and sunset times, but you can also see forecasted local conditions including wind speed and direction for each part of your ride to help you keep one step ahead of the elements.

Unparalleled support

The range of tools and features komoot offers is quite staggering, and fortunately the level of support and advice is equally comprehensive. A broad range of helpful tutorials, Help Guides and expert tips and tricks from others in the komoot community are available to all users to help you get the most of your komoot experience, while the Support Centre offers extensive troubleshooting tips and answers to frequently asked questions.

To find out more about what komoot has to offer, head to komoot.com and create your free account today.