Professional! Amazing! Challenging! Rewarding!
With three tours with Ride Japan in the last three years, I can highly recommend Adam Cobain & his team on a professional, amazing, challenging & rewarding tour that offers great value for money. Having been to Europe over 6 times, I was amazed at the cycling on offer in Japan, with smooth roads, minimal traffic, challenging hills & the most amazing descents. Having done the last two Alpe Route Japan tours, a tough week of riding through a great part of Japan & its culture, finishing climbing Mt Fuji twice on the last day a highlight.
The perfect balance of cycling and culture.
The RideJapan team make sure that all we have to do is ride the bike. My husband and I are keen cyclists, have been on many tours in Europe and the US and have always wanted to come to Japan as we had heard from friends how amazing the cycling was. We were nervous at first with the language and food, but Adam and his crew made sure that we could relax and enjoy the riding. It was the perfect balance of daily distance and the variety of accommodation is excellent. Thanks for a great trip RideJapan.
Having spent most of my life on and around bicycles, I am always on the lookout for a new bike adventure or challenge. When I heard from a friend about the first edition of the Alps Route Japan, due to take place in September 2015, I was intrigued. Unfortunately, before I could sign up for it, I suffered a back injury that stopped me from riding. Thankfully, as my day job is running a bicycle workshop, I was able to offer my services to Alps Route Japan in its inaugural year. What struck me most about the guys running the tour was their passion for cycling and Japan. An expat Aussie running bike tours in Japan, Adam Cobain, is not only a man with an eye for detail, but one hell of an experienced top level rider. The other part of team is Bade Stapleton, also an Aussie, however based in Melbourne. He is another super strong rider with exceptional organisational skills.
Combine these two great guys with Japan’s awe inspiring scenery and world class roads and you have an unbeatable cycling experience.
So in 2015, I drove a support car and acted as a mobile mechanic when needed. Even though I was jealous of the riders taking on these mammoth climbs and adrenaline pumped descents, I was still able to have a great time. It certainly helped having my fiancé in the passenger seat documenting the whole event with her camera. Some of the fantastic images on RideJapan’s website are hers. Another highlight of the tour was the food & accommodation. There was a perfect mix of modern hotels with traditional ryokans, and a seemingly never ending supply of delicious Japanese food.
The 2015 tour delivered an amazing experience and strong friendships with everyone involved were developed. Needless to say, that when the 2016 Alps Route Japan itinerary was announced, I signed up to ride. The transition from driving the course in 2015, to riding the course in 2016 was extremely challenging, but ultimately satisfying. Being submerged in the Japanese culture whilst on a bike, I regularly had to pinch myself to check that this was actually happening. Riding through the valleys of rice paddies outside Hakuba, to navigating the back streets of Matsumoto, or to climbing our way over the peaks of Norikura, there is something for every rider. These memories eclipse all other rides I’ve done in so many other parts of the globe. The final day of ascending & descending two sides of Mt Fuji is unable to be described, other than to say, there’s no way to know unless you go do it yourself!
It is the best riding in the world. Period!
Even though the long steep climbs can be very painful, the experience of reaching the top of each climb made it so rewarding. The support & encouragement from Adam & Bade, the tour crew and riders made each pedal stroke seem easier. This RideJapan tour is so well organised that all you have to do is ride, eat, sleep & repeat. That to me is a road cyclists dream holiday.
I don’t know how, but I hope to be back next time to do it all again.