Bicycle transportation on the train: all the subtleties and nuances
Very often, a person is faced with the need to go on a long journey by train, but at the same time take a two-wheeled friend with him. This is not as easy as it seems at first glance, so initially it is better to study all the intricacies of transporting a bicycle in rail transport.
Bicycle transport regulations
In accordance with the legislation of the Russian Federation, a number of clear requirements have been developed for the carriage of bicycles on trains:
- The bike must be disassembled for parts
- Packaging in the form of a special cover is required
Depending on the size of the bike, you can carry it in the luggage compartment or on the third rack. In the latter case, the bicycle must be securely fixed using special fasteners or a strong rope. This will help avoid sudden falls and injuries to passengers.
Do not try to get on the train with an unassembled bike. Many bike owners wonder why their two-wheeled friend cannot ride in the vestibule. However, due to its significant dimensions, your bike will create certain difficulties for passengers getting on and off the car. And this, of course, is unacceptable.
Choosing the right cover
- Dense matter
Fold the fabric in half and gently wrap the disassembled bike in two layers. Then wrap it several times with plastic and secure the package carefully with tape. The homemade cover is ready. The only drawback is that such packaging is very inconvenient to carry in your hands, so the journey from home to the station will cause certain difficulties.
Which carriage is best suited for transporting a bicycle?
Before purchasing a ticket, think about how best to transport your two-wheeled friend. High-speed trains with seats are not designed to carry such cargo. Therefore, you will definitely have to give the bike to a special cargo compartment. Not the best option. a compartment carriage. There is no third shelf on which you can place your bike. The best option is a reserved seat. Here you can safely place the bike on the third shelf, the main thing is to get special fasteners in advance. An important nuance! Do not take tickets for the first and last reserved seat carriages. Here, usually the third shelves are occupied by additional sets of linen and blankets.
If the bike packed in a cover does not exceed the set parameters of hand luggage, you will not have to pay extra for its transportation. Significant dimensions require the purchase of a special ticket in the cargo hold.
The rear wheel has a more complex structural principle than the front, so the main thing is to master the skill of assembling and disassembling it. If you succeed, then there will definitely not be any problems with the front wheel.
According to the rules of the metro, transportation of a bicycle in its usual form is prohibited. After all, you cannot carry large hand luggage in the metro, which will prevent passengers from entering and leaving the carriage.
What are the advantages of this device is clear to everyone, but the installation process can cause some difficulties.
Cycling lovers living in Russia cannot enjoy their hobby all year round and with the arrival of the winter period they are forced to find a worthy storage place for their two-wheeled friend.
We will talk about how to correctly carry out this process in the next article.
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On a train with a bike
The transport accessibility of places suitable for cycling in Karelia is a separate saddening and painful factor, familiar to everyone who has planned a cycling trip across the republic. If you are going on vacation for a week or two, the problem of route planning is somewhat mitigated: it is easier to find the right options for reaching the starting point of the hike. But with the weekend, everything is sad, in a couple of scenarios you will have to capture more parts of Fridays and Mondays, and this is a luxury not available to everyone.
How to get to Karelia by train
The first is the passenger train 349 / 350V St. Petersburg-Kostomuksha, even with the ability to place bicycles in the luggage compartment, but with one small amendment: it leaves the Ladozhsky railway station in St. Petersburg on Friday afternoon, at about three o’clock, and arrives back on Monday afternoon. But here you are, tea in cup holders, chicken in foil, reserved seat romance, everything we love. and this is almost without irony, honestly! The train is very convenient for autumn hikes deeper in the direction to the north of Karelia, but provided that you take the weekend on Friday and Monday, you get two nights on the train and one in a tent, and two whole days can be devoted to bicycles, bonfires and lakes.
The second option is a bunch of Swallow to Kuznechnoye suburban diesel. It’s a good thing, but you have to leave on Friday evening (around 17:30 from Finland Station), since diesel leaves Kuznechny for Sortavala at half past nine in the evening on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays. The method almost does not work for weekend hikes in the direction from St. Petersburg, because you will have to unload, turn to the parking lot and set up camp late in the evening or at night. On white nights it is tolerable, on the rest it already creates unnecessary complications. On the way back to St. Petersburg, this train is very suitable: it travels with all stops from Sortavala to Kuznechny, and from Kuznechny to St. Petersburg there is an agreed train (ordinary, not Swallow, so at 23:30 you can already unload at the Finlyandsky railway station.
Option three. Swallow 821CH, which departs from Finland Station at six in the morning on Saturday. Keep in mind that the Lastochka to Sortavala has a long-distance train numbering, that is, tickets are bought in advance and for certain places. At the same time, you do not need to take a baggage receipt for a bicycle, the main thing is to pack it in a cover. We drove this way in the spring and summer of 2019, it turns out conveniently. At intermediate stops, the doors of the first, third and fifth carriages open, and all your bicycles can be parked at the doors of the second and fourth. Swallow arrives back to Petersburg by train 822Ch at eleven in the evening on Sunday.
Somewhere at the top, with the edge of their ears, they listened to our prayers and rolled out the fourth option. Train 159 / 160В Moscow-Petrozavodsk via Petersburg. As an option for traveling to Karelia, it is very successful: it departs from the Ladozhsky railway station at half past midnight, you sleep or do not sleep on the reserved seat, and in the morning you immediately start your bike trip from the platform. If you are from Moscow or Tver, it will turn out well too, but here you cannot do without grabbing a piece of Friday. It is a pity that there is no stop somewhere between Janisjärvi and Suojärvi. there would be no price for this train. In the opposite direction, it is not so convenient, because it arrives in St. Petersburg at about two o’clock in the morning from Sunday to Monday.
Honda Jazz swallows mountain bike
The sad realities of Karelian cycling tourism
Karelia has a huge, incredible potential for the development of active tourism: hiking, water, skiing and cycling, but the realization of this potential in an accessible way. by delivering tourists by rail. is lame.
Other options. buses and private vehicles. are much less suitable for water and cycling tourism. The author of this text once traveled by bus from St. Petersburg to Petrozavodsk with a bicycle in the luggage compartment; a single cyclist out of season (it was in October) did not bring any special problems and sidelong glances, but it is hardly possible to fit more than two bicycles on a bus.
If you want to go by train on a simple and picturesque weekend bike trip to Karelia from St. Petersburg, there are, at first glance, two options: one line of the railway goes around Ladoga from the west, the other from the east. But this is only at first glance, and on the second. the eastern route through Lodeynoye Pole to Petrozavodsk is practically not suitable for easy routes on Saturday-Sunday. It would seem, well, it doesn’t matter, there is a Western one, but it’s worth rereading the first phrase of the paragraph again. Cycling tourism in our country is closely associated with overcoming. Do you want to go on Friday evening or Saturday morning in the direction of Elisenvaara, Lahdenpohja, Sortavala and return on Sunday evening or Monday night? Please, here are the options.
Transportation of a bicycle in Lastochka and other trains to Karelia
The article was supplemented with new facts 03.12.2019.
BIKEPACKING 101: The Basics of Bikepacking
Swallows, diesels and reserved seats
All these options can be combined, which we do when organizing weekend bike routes for you. For several years in a row, Karelobike drove late spring hikes, going on Friday by train to Kostomuksha and returning with a bunch of diesel and electric trains. In 2019, we tasted Swallow to Elisenvaara and back from Sortavala.
In the conditions that are dictated to us by the effective management of passenger traffic, it is not easy to organize bike tours in Karelia, but the years have shown that we can do this. Let’s hope for an improvement in the situation, but for now we invite you to join and go with us to admire the beauty of this amazing land, rocks, forests and lakes, looking at which, you can forget about all the minor inconveniences on the way to them.
Break through with a bike into “Swallow“: personal experience of high-speed travel
Cycling is good for everyone. Only you won’t go far. And the surroundings around Vladimir have long been searched. The train can quickly and comfortably move you hundreds of kilometers at once “Swallow”. Is it realistic to carry a bike. experienced by the correspondent “Key-Media”.
Last year I gave up the car. You can find my experience of transporting a bicycle by train here. “Swallow” much more interesting. It only takes half an hour to Kovrov. Now, thanks to dynamic pricing, tickets have fallen in price to 200 rubles, and it has also become profitable to travel over short distances. By high-speed train you will get to Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Tver, Veliky Novgorod. They also go from Krasnodar to Sochi. This gives such a variety of routes, it is already breathtaking.
We will test the transportation of a bicycle over a short distance from Kovrov to Vladimir. I buy a ticket in person at the ticket office, as I cannot issue a luggage one for a bike online.
The cashier in the window immediately declared: “it might be easier for you to go by train?”. Of course, easier, but not in this case. The girl at the box office began to study the instructions to find out the rules for transporting bicycles. I consulted with a colleague. Summary: it is allowed to transport, but disassembled and covered so that it does not interfere with the passage and does not stain passengers. I tried to clarify to what extent to disassemble and what to pack, to which I received an answer: “to the extent that it does not interfere with passengers and do not stain them”. Everything is clear, no questions.
Passenger ticket. 201 rubles. Luggage ticket. 54.5 rubles.
I buy trash bags and scotch tape. I have my universal bicycle key with me. The rule required disassembly, but I decided to take the path of least resistance, unscrew the wheel and removed the steering wheel. The bike is nominally disassembled.
I put a garbage bag on the rear wheel, rewound the fork and chains with tape.
We are waiting for the train. People on my platform, looking with interest, apparently, not every day they come across passengers with bicycles.
And now the train arrives on the platform, the moment of truth comes. Bicycle in one hand, tickets in the other.
The conductor looked at my tape-rewound construction and did not even say a word. Once inside the train, I realized why the bike needs to be packed. There is no way to leave at the entrance, there is a place in a wide vestibule by the toilet. I make my way through the whole car and I am glad that I was not wasting my time on packing. My bike did not stain neither the seats nor the passengers.
In 30 minutes we arrive in Vladimir, 5 minutes for unpacking and assembling, and here I am again on the move.
As a result, disassembling the bike was unnecessary. But I packed it for a reason. I think it will be enough to rewind the dirty parts: wheels, sprockets and a chain. Take on board the instructions and go on a journey.
Transporting your bike by train
Tired of lying on the couch and then regretting wasted weekends? Excellent! Bicycle to help you!
How great it is. spend your vacation or just a day off with friends, interacting with nature, with health benefits and just enjoying the fact that you are all so sporty and active. Of course, it’s not bad to go for a ride in the park, but your soul is eager for the vastness of our vast Motherland and you go to the PVD (weekend hike), somewhere on the Karelian Isthmus. How to transport your iron friend to the starting point? In the absence of a car, of course, you cannot do without an electric train.
According to the rules of the railways, it is allowed to transport one assembled bicycle in the vestibule (no more than one for the whole carriage!). As bulky baggage, you need to pay for it. Although the bike with the front wheel removed. This is already hand luggage, so you can walk past the checkers at the turnstiles by removing the wheel, and then put it back on, because bicycles on electric trains, as a rule, do not pay attention.
As for the transportation of bikes in the vestibule, it is not entirely realistic. Of course, if you go for a couple of stops and disperse one by one on the vestibule, then you can be patient, but when you are driving in a big gang, and even 1.5-2 hours, then this method of course will not work. In order to easily place your led in the carriage, if possible, you need to sit down at the terminal station.
If you’re lucky, you can run into wagons with luggage. each such niche can accommodate 4 bicycles; there are also cars in electric trains that lack some of the seats; bicycles can be conveniently placed on such sites. Therefore, if the time of the train’s parking allows, then you can walk around the train and find such cars, after which you can already be accommodated with bicycles. But these are all ideal options, often you have to carry bicycles in a regular carriage and listen to the unhappy booze of ordinary passengers.
Because in ordinary carriages, there are no places for transporting bicycles, you have to improvise, for example, hang the bike by the seat from the overhead rack, the method is reliable enough, it is checked. it will not fall (just check if the seatpost is tightened with the eccentric)
You can also place bicycles vertically between benches and fasten them by tying them to the luggage rack with an expander.
A small number of bicycles (2-3 pcs.) Will fit at the end of the car, between the wall and the seats.
Needless to say, you need to prepare in advance for unloading.
So, the rules state: A passenger can carry with him for free 1 travel document (ticket) hand luggage weighing not more than 36 kg (for wagons with 2-seater compartments (CB). 50 kg), the size of which, in the sum of three dimensions, does not exceed 180 see The bike can be transported, on account of the established carry-on baggage allowance, disassembled and packed.
We are now talking about the rules of transportation in force on the territory of the Russian Federation. In international traffic with far abroad, the rules may be different, it is necessary to clarify additionally. These rules are determined by separate agreements between countries and their carriers. Although such a practice has developed in Russia that the rules of the country where the train is being formed are more often in force.
So, our task is to disassemble the bike, pack it and, without causing inconvenience to other passengers, arrange it in the place intended for carrying hand luggage, i.e. on the luggage rack.
In fact, you don’t need to invent anything, because everything has already been invented, sewn and is on sale)))
For transporting a bicycle on a train, a soft case is ideal, for example:
To pack in a soft case, you will need to lower the saddle, remove the front wheel, front fender and left pedal from the bike. Place the removed front wheel on the right side of the bike and rest against the unremoved right pedal.
There are, of course, lovers of folk art, for example. You can pack your led with large trash bags and duct tape. In principle, a piece of polyethylene or a sheet will also be considered packaging, this is at your discretion. In my opinion, such handmade will protect the bike from possible damage worse and may cause a desire not to let you into the carriage of the conductor.
When buying a train ticket, you should think in advance about a more convenient option. It is best to take tickets for a reserved seat carriage. It is easier to load bicycles into it, because space is less limited, and in every second-class coupe you can, without any problems, carry 4 bicycles, placing them on third luggage racks. True, we are talking about old second-class carriages. In the new ones, the luggage racks are fenced off with bumpers from the side of the compartment and a solid wall from the side of the corridor, which greatly complicates the task. If tickets are taken for side seats, then it is better to agree with people so that the bike is still loaded on the third compartment of the compartment, and not on the sides, otherwise it may fall out.
Coupe cars are not very convenient for transporting bicycles. because they only have a short shelf for luggage, into which only one bicycle will fit. Although, judging by the experience of friends, it is possible to cram as many as 4 bicycles into a compartment (provided that the entire compartment is yours). How might it look like?. The shortest and most disassembled bike is pushed onto the luggage rack, the second is placed on the upper shelves (although you will have to sleep on them with your legs tucked to your chin)), and the two remaining ones are placed in the aisle.
Separately, I would like to say about high-speed trains, they are especially uncomfortable for traveling with bicycles. If, nevertheless, it (the trip) is ahead, then it is better to take tickets for the first seats where there is space for luggage.
BROMPTON UP&DOWNS Stairs the easiest way to carry
Of course, for a fee, you can return the bike to the baggage carriage if it is included in the train (according to the rules, it can be returned unpacked and not disassembled). Problem getting the bike back if the train costs 5 minutes at the unloading station.
Now we are at the station, the bike is packed and now our task is to load the train with it. In the experience of many travelers, about half of boarding a train begins with a conflict with the guide. He is either trying to send the lead in the luggage (and at least there is absolutely no time for this), or simply to get a raise in his salary. It is possible (and necessary) to solve this problem by reminding the conductor of the rules of transportation: A disassembled bicycle, packed in a cover, is transported free of charge. Therefore, we find and print the necessary part of the rules in advance (so as not to be unfounded) and go ahead.
This task is not easy and requires well-coordinated teamwork. It is advisable to do this not 5 minutes before the departure of the train, the fewer people in the carriage, the easier and faster loading. If there is only one traveler, then it is better for someone to guard the bike or things that lie on the platform, well, when pushing the bike onto the shelf, one more pair of hands will not interfere. First, we load the bike. If for some reason it was not possible to win back part of the second luggage rack, then both wheels will have to be removed and then the bike will fit on one rack, only it will need to be fixed so that when the train brakes it does not crash on the heads of the whole honest company. If, after all, we are talking about a team, then one person goes to the car and prepares a place for loading. he removes mattresses and other things from the third shelf, the second guards the things, the rest bring bicycles into the car. It is better to load the bicycles in the carriage together: one handed in, the other put it on the shelf. We fold the bicycles so that the handlebars are on one shelf and the rear wheel on the other. The pedals are between the shelves. When the bicycles are loaded, we bring our things, sit down and take out sandwiches with sausage)))