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Hahah, yeah. It's kind of a problem.

A lot of these suggestions are not flawless, though. A shopping cart would be way too noisy, holy cow. A bike's fast, but generally can't carry a whole lot of gear. Ideally, you'd want an adult trike with a big ol' basket on it, I'd think, but those aren't super common in America. Either that or people are too ashamed to ride them by daylight. :p

Then there's the matter of overland travel. You would have to throw the bike away every time you ditched the roads.

I think there's a lot to be said for walking. It's all-terrain, it's very stealthy, it gives you more time to notice traps...as for cars, I just had aliens blow up anyone who used them. That is probably a protip.
 

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I never use Bikes or Motorcycles in my novels for the same reasons why you don't see them in a warzone.

Most bikes don't do well in rough terrain and its way too easy to clothsline a rider.

Motorcycles null one of your most important senses - hearing.

Whoever wrote that comment has never seen combat.
 

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Edward W. Robertson said:
Hahah, yeah. It's kind of a problem.

Ideally, you'd want an adult trike with a big ol' basket on it, I'd think, but those aren't super common in America. Either that or people are too ashamed to ride them by daylight. :p
Ha! They're all in my part of Florida, everywhere.
 

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Once the tires are gone, a bike is pretty useless. Didn't one of the characters in The Road use a shopping cart? I can't see them being very usefull either. They're not very maneuverable.
 

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Even if you were using a rubber-wheeled bike and the wheels got trashed, or you had to go over non-bike country for a while, you could still wheel the bike (and whatever gear you've got on it) more handily than lugging it on your back - at least until you found another bike.

I'd also pick up a Razor scooter or two, for adaptable fleeing.
 

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Edward W. Robertson said:
Hahah, yeah. It's kind of a problem.

A lot of these suggestions are not flawless, though. A shopping cart would be way too noisy, holy cow. A bike's fast, but generally can't carry a whole lot of gear. Ideally, you'd want an adult trike with a big ol' basket on it, I'd think, but those aren't super common in America. Either that or people are too ashamed to ride them by daylight. :p

Then there's the matter of overland travel. You would have to throw the bike away every time you ditched the roads.

I think there's a lot to be said for walking. It's all-terrain, it's very stealthy, it gives you more time to notice traps...as for cars, I just had aliens blow up anyone who used them. That is probably a protip.
You can carry more on a bike than you can in a backpack. Saddlebags, bike trailers? I carry a couple of heavily nickel plated mountain bikes fitted with sand tyres on my ketch. They can go almost anywhere.

 

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Catana said:
Once the tires are gone, a bike is pretty useless. Didn't one of the characters in The Road use a shopping cart? I can't see them being very usefull either. They're not very maneuverable.
That is why they have both solid tyres and tyre repair kits. Mountain bike riders cover thousands of miles off-road with little difficulty.
 

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My grandparents made tyres out of whatever they could find. Hell yeah, it was uncomfortable, but a lot better than walking.

Scooters (those blade scooter type) would be awesome, too.

Hmm, what exactly would you do with a car with the same problem? What about the need for fuel?
 

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DarkScribe said:
You can carry more on a bike than you can in a backpack. Saddlebags, bike trailers? I carry a couple of heavily nickel plated mountain bikes fitted with sand tyres on my ketch. They can go almost anywhere.
Now there's a sweet post-apocalyptic ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
"Whoever wrote that comment has never seen combat."
The Japanese used bikes to transport thousands of troops in the WWII Singapore campaign. Very interesting story. Until a few years ago, the Swiss Army had troops on mountain bikes moving overland.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FkjpDZ1O4C0
 

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Joe_Nobody said:
I never use Bikes or Motorcycles in my novels for the same reasons why you don't see them in a warzone.

Most bikes don't do well in rough terrain and its way too easy to clothsline a rider.

Motorcycles null one of your most important senses - hearing.

Whoever wrote that comment has never seen combat.
I have seen many motorcycles - in Military camouflage paintwork - in combat zones. Most country's Armed Services have used them. Why would you suggest otherwise? They might not be ideal on the front lines but warfare is not all front lines.
 

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Heh, he's right: most post-apocalyptic fiction completely ignores the fact that bicycles exist. They'd be a great way to get around, as well; quiet, portable, don't ever run out of gas (making neccesary dangerous trips into undead territory to get fuel) etc.

I think I covered this plot hole in my novel by setting most of the action in uninhabited woodland. There wouldn't be any bikes hanging around in a primeval forest -- would there?
 

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People use bikes in my first book once it becomes smart to use bikes. They use trailers for their gear, I think. Been a while since I read it. :p

But it strikes me as pretty conditional on your world, your characters, and their goals. Even walking is a terrible option if you may need to get away fast or whatever.
 

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DarkScribe said:
I have seen many motorcycles - in Military camouflage paintwork - in combat zones. Most country's Armed Services have used them. Why would you suggest otherwise? They might not be ideal on the front lines but warfare is not all front lines.
Most armies, Japan, Germany and even the U.S. used bicycles (and later motorbikes) behind the front lines, or in secure rear areas.

In a modern combat zone, I've never seen one.

If I understood the OP correctly, "walk home hundreds or thousands of miles across a post-apocalyptic landscape." with madmax trucks running around - sounds like a combat zone to me.
 

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There's a self-pubbed novel called Extinction Point that's often in my alsobots. Its protag plans to go from NYC to Alaska on a bike. It's gotten a moderate amount of flak from reviewers who wonder why she doesn't just take a car.
 
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