For the second year in a row, Swift Industries is facilitating a worldwide bicycle campout with the aim of getting more people on their bikes and out into the country. The event rallies together thousands of people from all over the globe to hop in the saddle and get back to the basics on the longest day of the year, June 25-26, 2016.
Swift “hosts” the event on their Campout page, which allows users to map their destinations, organize rides, invite friends, and swap pictures. By offering an easy, integrated forum to organize an event, Swift hopes to encourage seasoned and new riders alike to give bike-camping a try. “Swift Campout is an ode to the simple pleasure of camp coffee, fly fishing at dawn, it’s rediscovering the lost art of lying in a field braiding tall-grass,” the page reads. “Swift Campout is a celebration of the longest day and the first summer night.”
As a maker of bike packs and panniers, Swift is in a reasonable position to want to encourage more people to give gear-heavy bicycle trips a try, but the event is about much more than that. As bike camping surges in popularity around the globe, Swift is offering newer riders a chance to get in on a trend that may otherwise have seemed too daunting. The Campout page equips potential campers with mapping tools and a social network of like-minded people. Users can sign up to mark their spot on the map, then “invite friends far and wide” to join them on their chosen trip.
The page invites bike shops everywhere to coordinate with Swift in promoting the event locally, as well as help participants from their community get set up for the ride. For eager participants who have never been bike camping before, it’s a wonderful opportunity to coordinate with more experienced campers and build community in the process.
The inaugural event last year drew in people from all over the globe, with 600 camps staked out from the US to China. This year’s Summer Solstice event is expected to be even bigger.
With the proliferation of bike-camping gear, route planning tools, bicycle-only campgrounds, and bike camping blogs, it has become easier than ever to head out into the wilderness on two wheels. Bike camping is no longer the domain of the particularly hardcore, but an increasingly accessible weekend getaway for recreational and casual riders alike.
Swift’s worldwide bike campout is an awesome event that makes the whole process even easier, and could just be the gentle encouragement many people need to finally get out there and give bike camping a try. To learn more or stake out your own camp, check out the Campout page. See you out there!
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