If you enjoy long bike rides, you should check out some of the best bikes for long rides to maximize comfort, performance, and durability.
When going on a long ride, you may encounter a variety of road surfaces and weather conditions. For a more pleasant riding experience, you should find a bicycle that can handle whatever comes your way.
We list the Fuji Touring Disc, Kona Sutra SE, and Trek 520 Disc as some of the best bikes for long rides. All of these bikes have strong frames, wide wheelbases, and dependable brakes for outstanding durability, comfort, and performance in different riding conditions.
The best bikes for long rides should have durable frames and forks made with high-quality materials. The frame should have enough space to accommodate several harnesses and carriers such as racks, panniers, bags, and water bottle cages.
The frame should be partnered with sizable wheels with lightly-treaded tires to ensure the bike firmly grips the road and remains as stable as possible during your entire ride.
10 Best Bikes For Long Rides
When going on a long ride, you will have several needs that are different from a short ride. The best bikes for long rides will have features that do more to address durability, comfort, safety, and supply space.
Bikes with strong materials and simple designs are more likely to withstand breakdowns and make repairs easier on the road. Bikes with an upright position let riders sit long distances in a comfortable posture. This can keep riders more energized and alert to avoid accidents during long rides.
Long-distance bikes have become far more advanced with their intricate designs and state-of-the-art materials. These bikes also have durable parts that hold up well under harsh conditions.
When going on a long ride, you should choose a bike that puts the least amount of strain on your body, has materials that aren’t easily damaged, and can carry enough supplies for your trip. One of the ten bikes below could make your next long ride smoother and more enjoyable.
Fuji Touring Disc
The Fuji Touring Disc is a well-rounded and adaptable bike that is a good fit for long rides. This bike features drop handlebars that allow riders to sit upright or lean forward. Having the option to lean forward can be beneficial for riders that want to speed things up.
The light and durable Chromoly steel frame provide a long wheelbase for solid stability. There is also abundant frame room for an assortment of gear to be added. This bike comes with a sturdy rear rack and strategically-placed eyelets so you can easily access your belongings on the road.
Versatile bike features can come in handy during long rides. This bike can take on flat or angled terrain with its Shimano 3x10 drivetrain. Having thirty gears at your disposal should be more than enough to meet the varying exertion and speed demands you’ll probably face.
Ensuring your ride is smooth and safe should be a top priority. The wheels on this bike are exceptionally reinforced by 36-hole rims with double eyelets. The flat-mounted mechanical disc brakes foster smoother stops and greater safety.
Kona Sutra SE
The beautiful glossy frame and leather seat of the Kona Sutra SE instantly get noticed but dive deeper and you'll find a well-designed and expertly-crafted bike that can perform well on long rides.
The frame on this bike is an innovative steel blend specifically designed to promote smoother and more stable rides. The leather saddle has a wide sitting area that will progressively fit you over time. You’ll essentially get more comfortable the more you ride this bike.
The tubeless-ready rims offer flexibility when it comes to tire selection. Riders can install standard tube tires or tubeless tires that are more resistant to punctures and require less tire pressure.
Along with other steadying components, this bike has a 12mm rear axle that provides a stiffer rear wheel so you can experience a steadier ride over a long period of time.
Trek 520 Disc
The Trek 520 Disc is one of the company's best-selling bikes and a cornerstone of the touring bike market. The classic red on the steel frame gives me retro vibes and is an excellent color to help riders stand out on the road.
This bike comes equipped with racks on the front and rear that offer a cleaner integration of panniers and other attached items. You won’t have to worry as much about having to leave certain gear behind.
Long-distance riders will appreciate this bike's front hub as it strengthens the wheel assembly and allows for easier removal of the wheel. Though you hopefully won’t have to remove the wheel, it’s reassuring to know you can do so on your own.
As far as safety goes, this bike’s disc brakes will support stops in any weather while the tires will protect you against punctures from unforeseen odds and ends on the road.
As its name suggests, the KOGA Worldtraveller is a fully-equipped bike that is great for traveling the world. Compared to standard touring bikes, the KOGA Worldtraveller is made with higher-end materials and includes enhanced performance and safety features.
The aluminum frame is lighter than steel, but it’s sturdy enough to battle rough roads. The frame’s long profile offers bountiful room for bottle cages and other items to be mounted. You can securely store your belongings in a neat and streamlined way.
This touring bike makes the most out of available technology features. It includes battery-powered lights for improved night vision, hydraulic disc brakes for firmer stops, and a steering limiter for tighter control and protection from sudden swerves.
The versatile handlebars are great when you want to switch hand positions during your long ride. You can place your hands in a down or standard flat position.
The frame on the Masi Giramondo is unlike steel frames on other touring bikes. This frame is a double-butted Chromoly frame that is TIG-welded for smoother and cleaner welds. Not only does that make the bike look better, but it also makes it much stronger.
There are more than enough mounting locations on this bike for storage. The triangle on the frame has three areas for mounting while the fork legs have two. Carrying all your long-ride necessities shouldn’t be a problem on this bike.
This bike has plenty of gears for the numerous speed adjustments you’ll likely make on the road. It also has MicroShift shifters at the end of the handlebars for easy and reliable shifting. When you need to react quickly on the road, having bar-end shifters can make all the difference.
The 700c tubeless-compatible rims on this bike can stand firm against rough and uneven surfaces. The tires come with puncture protection to help you contend with sharp objects that might pop up during your long ride.
Surly Disc Trucker
The Surly Disc Trucker is a touring bike built to take you long distances. Its overall design and features emphasize unwavering stability and maneuverability. It has a shortened chainstay that increases stiffness and enables freer movement around corners and tricky twists and turns.
The 26" wheels with tubeless tires supplement this bike’s stability and boost traction and handling capabilities. You’ll want all the stability and control you can get when you're out riding for hours on end.
Being able to change your posture and hand positions on a long ride can be a huge convenience. The handlebars give you multiple grip options by combining drop and riser positions. The brake-shifter offers an upward grip similar to a bullhorn handlebar.
When your bike is heavily loaded for a long ride, having all the stability you can get will be a plus. The stiffness of the thru-axles promotes a more stable ride and makes wheel removal and installation much easier.
KHS TR 101
The KHS TR 101 touring bike is a finely-crafted 27-speed workhorse that can take you anywhere you want to go. It is built to withstand long treks and allows for easy maintenance should any unforeseen circumstances arise.
Its double-butted Chromoly frame and fork give this bike a solid structure that will keep you safe and steady during your long ride. The aluminum Micro-Adjust Seatpost provides added suspension for an extra layer of support and comfort.
The large 36-spoke aluminum rims on this bike enable smoother rides over rugged and uneven roads. The anti-puncture tires will protect you from flats that could leave you stranded in undesired locations.
I was impressed at how the handlebars present multiple grip configurations while being sensibly compact. The rear rack is also relatively compact and capable of harnessing large panniers and other containers for your long rides.
The Co-Motion Deschutes has all the hallmarks of a well-balanced touring bike. At its core, it has a double-butted Chromoly steel frame and steel unicrown fork.
You can stop and go with high precision through its mechanical disc brakes and 2x11 gears. The cassette is 40T on the low end, so you'll be fitted for easier rides on sloped roads.
Building a long-distance bike that is a fine-tuned machine requires thoughtful design and skillful execution. Co-Motion gives their Deschutes special care and attention by hand-building the frame and wheels themselves.
Aside from its impressive design, features, and craftsmanship, this bike has enormous add-on potential with multiple mounts on its frame and fork. You'll be able to outfit your bike with custom cages, racks, and mudguards to optimize your long bike ride.
FOCUS ATLAS 6.7 EQP
The FOCUS ATLAS 6.7 EQP is an all-terrain bicycle that works well for long trips with varying road conditions. If you plan to run into dirt trails, gravel paths, hilly roads, or any combination of surfaces, the ATLAS 6.7 EQP has features that will help you smoothly traverse whatever comes along.
The handlebars on a bike are one of the most important features for comfort and control. The handlebars on the ATLAS 6.7 EQP smartly combine a flat and down option to accommodate whatever you feel works best at any given moment.
Though many touring bikes have eyelets and other mounting options for accessories, the ATLAS 6.7 EQP includes a sturdy rear rack and battery-powered lighting system so you can get your trip started faster.
This bike has a design and features that strike an impressive balance between high performance and simple usability.
Brodie Mega Tour
The tough and versatile Brodie Mega Tour bike has a sleek and rugged look that makes me think it’s a top-secret military vehicle. Unlike helicopters and planes, it is much simpler to ride with its flat handlebars and user-friendly gear shifters.
The low-angled top tube gives the rider ample space for getting on and off the bike. The short seat tube allows for low or high-angled riding positions. Riders will be able to go from a very upright to a very tilted sitting position within seconds (when the bike is stopped, of course).
This bike comes packed with loads of frame and fork space for cages, panniers, and other carry-on goods. The handlebars have a unique double-crossbar that offers even more real estate to strap or hang goods on the front of the bike.
The 2.4” thick and 29” wide tires make it suitable for both paved roads and occasional off-road trips. The wide-ranging gears will help you hit the right speeds for steep climbs or long coasts. You can comfortably make your way in and out of the city or wherever your journey takes you.
What Features Are Good For Long Bike Rides?
Long bike rides present a unique set of challenges riders may not face during shorter rides. You can make your ride more pleasant by choosing a bike with a long sturdy frame, disc brakes, and ample space for cages, panniers, and other attachments.
A bike with an optimal design and set of features will help ensure your long ride is safe and comfortable. Factors such as weather conditions, riding surfaces, and trip durations also come into play when considering your bike choice, but the features below should be valuable regardless of what you encounter on the road.
When you go on a long bike ride, you may frequently find yourself in areas where repair services are not readily available. Choosing a bike with strong components will help to ensure your bike can resist unpredictable riding conditions and not fall apart.
Two of the primary features of a durable bike are the frame and wheels. The frame should be made of a strong material like steel, particularly Chromoly steel, which is an alloy steel that is lighter and as strong as a standard steel.
Wheels on touring bikes are often made with aluminum and steel, which are highly durable materials. The wheels should have at least 32 spokes, though you should shoot for 36 spokes, if possible. Having eyelets to reinforce and protect the spokes also helps with durability as they prevent the spokes from breaking.
When you are moving quickly on a bike, there are many things coming toward you that can put you in danger. Having features like a reliable braking system, battery-powered lights, and a steering limiter can help to keep you safe on a long ride.
Common types of brakes on a touring bike include rim brakes and disc brakes. Rim brakes can be beneficial on a long ride since they are easy to replace. Since rim brakes are not the most effective at braking and may wear down your rims, disc brakes are often considered to be a better option.
Also, disc brakes are more likely to hold up through higher speeds and harsher weather conditions. They can be activated through a mechanical or more expensive hydraulic system.
As far as other safety features, placing lights on the front of your bike will help you navigate dark roads. A steering limiter will limit how far your handlebars can be turned, which can mitigate dangerously quick swerves.
You may face bumps and potholes in the road during your long ride, so you will want your bike to have stability features that can absorb vibrations and keep you more balanced. A smooth ride will also help you maintain control of your bike and give you a more pleasant experience.
Some touring bikes have shock absorbers built into several areas of the bike including the fork, head tube, and seatpost. Adding thru-axles can stiffen your wheel hub and increase your bike’s overall stability.
A touring bike for long rides should have a long frame that provides a wider wheelbase. Having a wider wheelbase means the overall weight is distributed over a wider area, which leads to more stability.
There are lots of unexpected things that could happen during a long bike ride. To better deal with any situation, you should use a bike with as many flexible components as possible.
Since you may face different road angles during your long ride, having a drivetrain with a wide range of gears will allow you to adjust your speed and physical output to match the angle of the road you’re on.
For instance, a steep road will be harder to climb with high gear, so being able to switch to lower gear will make it easier for you to pedal.
As far as wheels, it can be advantageous to have tubeless-ready rims that give you the ability to use tubeless or standard tube tires. When you are on a long ride, tubeless-ready rims can expand your wheel replacement options if a tire is punctured.
Comfort and Convenience Features
It can be tough to be on the road for long stretches of time, so having features that can boost your comfort and give you easier access to water, tools, and other items may help to push and soothe you during your long ride.
Picking a bike with several racks and cages will allow you to add panniers, drink bottles, and other carriers that will be useful during your ride. Having a cushioned or form-fitting saddle and handlebar grips can also soothe your contact points on the bike.
If you plan to be on the road for a while, you will probably want to sit in as comfortable a position as possible. A bike frame that can keep you in an upright position will make it easier to go long distances compared to a backward or forward-leaning position.
What Kind Of Bike Is Best For A Long Ride?
There are many kinds of bikes that can be used for a long ride, but certain bikes will make your ride more comfortable and efficient. You should think about where you are riding, how long you plan to ride, and your personal style preferences when choosing a bike.
Mountain bikes can be used for long rides, but they are typically more suited for hilly off-road terrain. Gravel bikes are suitable for long rides on flatter rough terrain like dirt trails. A popular versatile option for long rides is touring bikes. They are designed for long rides on paved roads, but can also hold up well on more rugged surfaces.
Touring bikes have key characteristics that make them more suitable for long rides. The frame is often made with a strong material like steel that does not easily break and can absorb vibrations well. Touring bikes also have larger wheels with a wider wheelbase, both of which make the bike more stable.
Since you might be away from shops and restaurants during your long ride, having a bike equipped with supplies like water, snacks, and medical items can be extremely valuable. A bike with a large frame will have more space for mounts to attach racks and cages for baskets, packs, water bottles, and other containers.
Though technology can enhance long rides and provide added convenience, you should keep things as simple as possible to avoid breakdowns and make fixes easier when repair services are out of reach. When choosing your bike, you should carefully consider the riding distances, terrains, and weather conditions you will likely face.
About THE AUTHOR
Mountain biking is more than just a hobby for me - it's a way of life. I love the challenge and excitement that comes with it, and I'm always pushing myself to go faster and ride harder. Some people might think that mountain biking is dangerous, but I see it as the only way to live.Read More About Danny Lawson