Gravel Cycling

The Complete Guide to Gravel Racing and Adventure Bikepacking

By Nick Legan


Nick Legan shares everything you need to know to enjoy gravel cycling and bikepacking: course profiles, recommended gear, bike setup and upgrades, and how to build your dream ride.

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Head out for adventure on the unpaved back roads of America with Nick Legan’s complete guide to gravel grinders and bikepacking!

Gravel cycling is a glorious return to the purest roots of two-wheeled adventure. From farm roads and miners’ paths to the high passes of the Rockies and the Alps, gravel cycling and bikepacking will set you free to explore, enjoy, persevere, and discover.

Escape the traffic and ride unpaved with Nick Legan’s GRAVEL CYCLING: The Complete Guide to Gravel Racing and Adventure Bikepacking. In this ground-breaking guide, accomplished gravel cyclist Nick Legan shares everything you need to know to enjoy gravel cycling and bikepacking.

Drawing on interviews with top gravel junkies and his own hard-won knowledge from countless backcountry miles, Legan covers all the gear, bike setup, riding tips, course previews, and outfitting strategies you need to enjoy gravel cycling with confidence. He profiles 18 favorite one-day gravel events and 8 epic multiday bikepacking adventure routes. Legan shares colorful stories of the origins of gravel cycling in North America and its rapid spread to Europe, Asia, and South America. Best of all, this full-color guide is packed with more than 320 gorgeous photographs from beautiful rides that will inspire you to seek out dirt and gravel roads near you.

Legan brings his experience as a ProTour bike mechanic to this guide, offering detailed data on bike setup, how to build your own dream gravel bike. He shares crucial ride-saving tips and smart ways to make sure you’ll enjoy every moment.

Over one-third of the roads in the U.S. are unpaved, which means you can enjoy the roads less travelled at the perfect pace to soak up new vistas and valleys, canyons and creeks—or push the pace over an epic day with fast friends. From gear to racing, route planning to camping—the wild ride of a lifetime awaits you in GRAVEL CYCLING.

Includes complete profiles, tips, and gear set-up for favorite gravel grinders: Almanzo, Barry-Roubaix, Crusher in the Tushar, Deerfield Dirt Road Randonnée, Dirty Kanza, Dirty Reiver, Grasshopper, Gravel Fondo, Gravel Roc, Gravel Worlds, Great Otway, Grinduro, La Gravel66, La Résistance, Land Run, Pirinexus 360, Rebecca’s Private Idaho, Trans Iowa.

Offers route guides to favorite multi-day bikepacking routes: The Arizona Trail, The Colorado Trail, Denali Highway, Great Allegheny Passage and C&O Towpath, Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, Katy Trail, Oregon Outback, and Trans North California.

Read some selections! Take a sneak peek at Gravel Cycling on the VeloPress Gravel Cycling & Bikepacking page.

Gravel Cycling: The Complete Guide to Gravel Racing and Adventure Bikepacking
Nick Legan
Paperback with four-color interior and 380 photographs and illustrations throughout.
9 1/2″ x 7 1/2″, 304 pp., $24.95, 9781937715700

Gravel Cycling: The Complete Guide to Gravel Racing and Adventure Bikepacking

Nick Legan

Paperback Four-color interior and 380 photographs and illustrations throughout.

Shipping Dimensions: 7.5in x 9.5in x .75in 304pp $24.95, Inventory 9781937715700, Shipping 1.9375lbs

1 Getting Started

2 Race Prep: Your first event, getting organized, pre-race bike tune-up, bikewashing 101, navigation

3 One-Day Domestic Events

4 One-Day International Events

5 Multiday Adventures

6 Outfitting Your Bike: Bike fit, wheel and tire size, rim and tire width compatibility, mountain bikes, road bikes, cyclocross bikes, gravel bikes, fueling, hydration, punctures, going tubeless, gearing, brakes, maintenance, and pre-ride checklist.

7 Bikepacking Gear for Multiday Adventures: Bikes; route-specific recommendations; how to carry the load; powering electronics; GPS trackers; tents, bivvy sacks, pyramid tents, tarps, and hammocks; sleeping bags, quilts, and pads; cooking and water filters; hygiene; multiday checklist and gear.

8 Building Your Gravel Dream Machine: Bespoke, compatible component upgrades, gearing, drop bars, brakes, and dream bikes.





About the Author


For more info, take a look at this Gravel Cycling Chapter Summary.

Preview book.

Gravel Cycling is an encyclopedia but definitely not an unabridged one. Still, the book gives you stunning visuals, enough stoke to last a lifetime, and valuable bits of knowledge from many of the best soldiers in the trenches of the gravel and bikepacking worlds… As a ‘coffee table paperback’, it makes for a stunning presentation of the gravel and bikepacking scenes. Combined with the technical and practical knowledge that you can access from this book, the value it presents far outweighs the asking price. The honesty with which Nick looks at the gravel and bikepacking scenes and the clear way which he navigates the reader through this book is refreshing as well. Would it make a great gift for the aspiring or avid gravel/bikepacker? Absolutely.” —

Gravel Cycling by former VeloNews tech editor Nick Legan offers everything you’d want from a guide to gravel.” — VeloNews

Gravel Cycling is both a utilitarian reference for gravel riding and a celebration of the fastest growing discipline in the cycling world…Worthy of display with its top-notch photographs; selected race and tour descriptions from around the world; and Q&As with race promoters, athletes, bicycle designers, route-planners, and other experts.” — Mountain Flyer

“Gravel riding and bikepacking are buzzing. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more knowledgeable gravel rider and writer than Nick Legan…Legan’s book is packed with more than 250 pages of insights on two-wheeled adventure off the beaten path.” — Gear Junkie

“This IS the go-to book for your next adventure!” — Yuri Hauswald

“With beautiful photos, detailed maps and illustrations, and spot-on guides, Legan covers everything from the history of gravel cycling to the best international routes and the bikes of the gravel-racing pros.” —Adventure Cyclist

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