† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.
Come spend 12 days in the beautiful Noto Peninsula and the mountains known as the “Japan Alps.” This tour spends six days along the spectacular coast of the Noto Peninsula and then five days (Days 8-12) in the Japan Alps.
We start our tour in Kanazawa, worth spending a minimum two-three days visit before or after our cycle trip. Kanazawa, called “Little Kyoto” for its strong traditions of arts and crafts, was not bombed by Allied Forces during World War II and thus, its Geisha District is large and intact. This city is also the location of the Kenroko-en Garden (one of the premiere gardens in Japan), and adjacent to the Garden is the ancient Kanazawa Castle. Kanazawa is also known for its crafts and holds the world class 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art.
From Day 2-7, we are along the coast of the Noto Peninsula, shaped like a serrated fishing hook, jutting into the Sea of Japan for 66 miles. Along the way we cycle along Chirihama Beach, a path of hard-packed sand, and see what was formerly designated by the Guinness Book of World Records as the "World’s Longest Bench" measuring in length at 1500 feet. In Wajima, we rest for the day, and take in the sight of the “1000” rice fields. These fields, which used to be lit by over a million candles and are now lit with dazzling solar lights, still awe everyone at night. We finish this first part of the tour in Wakura Onsen, a mecca of ancient ryokans and salt-water hot springs, some dating back more than 1200 years.
On Day 8, we will get on the bus to start the second part of the tour-the Japan Alps. Our first stop is in Shirakawago Village, renowned for its steeply angled thatched houses, some of which are more than 250 years old. We will spend the night in one of these houses. We continue our mountain cycling along rivers with views of the mountains, and rice fields. We visit Gujo-haciman Castle, built on a mountain in 1559. On our 11th day, we finish our cycling in Gifu with a dinner cruise along the Nagara River.
The tour is fully supported by Cycling Japan, which has previously led other BAC tours in Japan. Cycling Japan will support our tour with two eight-passenger vans, and a guide who will cycle with our group.
This tour starts on May 28th, eight days after May 20th ending of the Kyushu and Yukushima Island tour.
For a day by day itinerary, click on this link. Noto
RIDE RATING: This ride is a 2B. A "2" rating calls for an average elevation gain of not more than 2500 feet. A "B" rating calls for a distance of not more than 50 miles per day. There are eight mandatory cycling days in which the average distance is 41 miles/day and the average elevation gain is 2,189 feet/day. Day 7 at 58 miles exceeds the far range of 50 miles for a “B” rating. Day 4 at 2634 feet, Day 9 at 3,966, and Day 10 at 2690 feet of elevation gain exceed the far range of 2500 feet of elevation gain for a “2" rating. Day 9 at 3966 feet of elevation gain even exceeds the elevation gain of 3500 feet for a "3" rating.
Cycling and driving in Japan are on the left-hand side of the road. Most routes are lightly trafficked and have been scouted.
As with many BAC tours, this is a tour for independent and experienced cyclists. We do not ride together as a group on the road and do not have a “guide” with us at all times. The vans are primarily luggage transport vehicles but will be available for riders who are injured or ill. Riders should arrive for the tour in sufficient physical condition, and plan to ride the distance and elevation set for each day.
BIKES AND RENTAL: Tandems are not “legally” allowed throughout most of Japan with its law that expressly prohibits more than two cyclists on a single bike, applying also to tandems. The law’s rationale was to prevent two people from riding on a bicycle designed for one person but did not contemplate the use of the tandem. Nevertheless, Cycling Japan strictly follows the law, and will not allow tandems on its tours.
If you wish to bring your bike, we suggest equipping it with 28cc tires and having gearing that can take you up the average elevation gain per day. Your bike box will be shipped to the last hotel for about $50.00. Cycling Japan will rent participants hybrid or road bikes for 20,000 Yen and E-bikes for 40,000 Yen. For those renting on this tour as well as the subsequent Kyushu & Yakushima Island tour, the total costs to rent for both tours is 35,000 Yen for the hybrid and road bikes, and 70,000 Yen for E-bikes. You should contact Cycling Japan directly to rent a bike.
Cycling Japan will provide a basic Garmin bike computer loaded with the GPS tracks to all participants. GPS tracks will be provided for all routes, but it is up to you to know how to use your GPS device before the trip begins. Ride with GPS links will also be provided for all routes which could be downloaded to smartphones and bike computers
WEATHER: As we will cycle along the coast, inland and at elevation, the weather will be variable. In October, in Kanazawa and the Noto Peninsula, the highs are in the 70’s and the lows in the high 50’s. In the Japan Alps, the highs will be the high 60’s and the lows will be in the high 40’s. Any weather conditions are possible and, as always, riders should bring layers and rain gear.
LODGING & MEALS: The tour provides for 11 nights lodging, staying mostly in traditional Japanese inns called “ryokans.” Most ryokans have futons as beds although some ryokans may have a Western bedroom with a traditional bed. Some rooms do not have private showers, and you bathe in communal baths called “onsens.” Onsens have both showers and a spa. There are separate onsens for men and women. Some ryokans have a public ”onsen spa” that would allow all genders to bathe simultaneously.
In the ryokans, street shoes are not allowed. In the room, riders will find usually three sets of slippers, with each specifically earmarked for the ryokan, inside the room, and in the toilet.
On most days, after the ride, most riders relax in the indoor onsen spa. After the onsen bath, most riders wear only the hotel provided robe called a “yukata.” Most ryokans permit riders to wear the yukata throughout the ryokan and also during dinner if they are dining at the hotel restaurant.
As to meals, the tour provides for 11 breakfasts, no lunches, and 6 group dinners. Drinks and snacks will be provided during the riding day. We eat most of our meals with chopsticks called “hashi” in Japan. We will be sitting on cushions on low tables. The diet is local and fresh – mostly fish and other products from the sea, both plant and animal, and some of it raw. (Although we will request a Western option when available, we should anticipate this to be the exception, not the rule.) If you like fish and other seafood, you will enjoy the meals. And the presentation of the food often involves numerous courses, and meticulous and artful layouts.
We will have a happy hour most evenings with some beer and/or wine provided as well as snacks as part of your tour costs. Any additional drinks with dinner are on your own. Happy hour will include information provided by our guides about the next day’s route, historical and cultural information, and points of interest along the route, in addition to socializing opportunities.
LOGISTICS: There are different ways to travel to Kanazawa. Near Kanazawa is the Komatsu Airport which is a short bus ride to the Kanazawa train station. Use an airline search engine to find the flights which would lead you to the Komatsu Airport. If you wish to visit Tokyo and Osaka first, you can take a high-speed train called a “Shinkansen” from either of these two cities. You should arrive early enough to be ready for our happy hour on May 28,2023. . If you intend to rent a bike, you will be informed of the time you should arrive to pick up and be fitted for your rental bike. Our tour ends after breakfast on June 8, 2023. You can take local transportation to the Gifu train station. Trains run frequently to the nearest international airport—Chubu International Airport (NGO). You might use the search engine “rome2rio” for transportation options.
COST & ADMINISTRATION: The total tour cost is $4100. A deposit of $2300 is required upon registration and a second payment of $1700 will be due on November 7, 2022. The total tour is based on a currency exchange rate of $1.00 equals 100 Yen. The current exchange rate is currently more favorable, but it fluctuates. Depending on currency exchange rates, there may be an adjustment in the amount of the final payment. (Note: The second payment has been reduced and the due date has been moved up to take advantage of a significant drop in exchange rates. 11/4/2022)
At the end of the tour, riders will receive a refund of any remaining money in the budget. The price does not include airfare, transportation from the airport to the starting hotel, extra nights in the hotel, lunches and other optional food along the routes and the cost of rental bike.
SINGLES & SOLOS POLICY: Solos will be allowed if the maximum of 14 riders is not reached. Singles who would like a roommate should try to find their own. However, after receipt of the initial deposit, a single without a roommate will be placed on the ride and given until Feburary 1, 2022 to find a roommate. If they are unable to find a roommate, they will have the option to receive a full refund (minus the BAC fee and payment processing fee) or pay the solo supplement. A solo supplement will be an additional 48,000 Yen (Approx. $480). If a single pays the supplement, they may continue to seek a roommate, but must plan to participate without a roommate if necessary. The Ride Coordinator will assist by attempting to match singles who apply for the ride. Solo supplement payments need to be sent to the BAC office by June 1, 2021. Checks should be made out to “BAC” with a notation of the tour name included on the check. They should be mailed to: Bicycle Adventure Club, PO Box 23998, San Diego, CA 92193.
RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY: Please remember that BAC Ride Coordinators are volunteers, and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well-maintained bicycles. All participants have an individual and shared responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from the Ride Coordinator. While on the ride, support your Ride Coordinator with offers to help with various tasks such as happy hour preparation and clean-up. Please do not interfere with the ride by inviting non-participants onto any portion of the ride or tour. Keep the Ride Coordinator informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Coordinator’s decisions.
CANCELLATION POLICY: The BAC ride registration fee and payment processing fee are not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled due to participation below stated minimum requirements. Refunds of tour payments will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped. The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour’s remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations. If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund may be made at that time. If the cancelling participant cannot be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and final expense report are completed. If a single participant cancels and another roommate cannot be found, in addition to other costs that cannot be recouped the cancelling roommate may also be liable for the solo supplement fee of the roommate remaining on the tour.
In addition, the following cancellation policy of Cycling Japan, which outlines the time period before the start of the tour and the percentage which is non-refundable, applies: (1) 29-41 days 25% of tour costs; 22-28 days-50% of tour costs; 1-21 days and after-100% of tour costs. The tour cost is the charge per participant by Cycling Japan which is 400,000 Yen or approximately $4,000. These percentages will be applied to the tour costs, and not the total costs of $4700.
The contract with Cycling Japan allows changes to the start and/or end date of the tour – or cancellation, if weather or other adverse or threatening conditions exist which may affect the safety of participants and guides of the group.
INSURANCE: Before participating in any BAC tour, members should review their medical coverage and assess whether what you have is sufficient. If it isn’t, you should purchase additional travel medical coverage. BAC maintains limited coverage for medical expenses associated with accidents incurred by US residents when on tours within the US. None of the policies maintained by BAC will cover costs associated with self-quarantines that may be government mandated. Members should also ensure that vaccinations are up to date (e.g., COVID, annual influenza, tetanus, etc.). If travelling outside your home country you may wish to consult with a travel physician or nurse to ensure that the appropriate vaccinations are up to date..
COVID: The specific safety precautions to protect participants from COVID will be determined 60 days prior to the tour start date. At that time, we will meet with tour participants using a video conference to explain any safety precautions that will be necessary. You may be asked to wear PPE in public, maintain social distance in public and limit social gathering in public according to the state's mandate. All participants must have been “fully vaccinated “prior to starting the tour and be prepared to present vaccination documentation for viewing by Ride Leader if requested. Negative COVID tests may be requested. Ideally, we would like to consider our group our COVID-free bubble. Your vaccination will help us stay safe.
SIGN UP: To submit a request to join this ride use the "links" displayed above this Ride Description. When you are accepted, the Ride Coordinator will move you from the Waitlist to the Pending List. At this time, you will receive an email notification to login to the BAC website to sign the release of liability form and pay the non-refundable BAC ride registration fee and the initial tour deposit of $2400 by credit card. As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List. To contact the Ride Coordinator, "click" the name at the top of this Ride Description.
Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 firstname.lastname@example.org