The Gear

So what do you take when your going on the road for a few months?

Tent- Vango Spirit 200+ Expedition tent. Spirit 200+I’ve spent a long time researching tents, .I wanted something which was tunnel shape , big enough to relax in, and store the bike and equipment in when needed. I like the extended porch for those very reasons. the weight 3.10kg was also big bonus and the HH is 5000. I’ve also bought the footprint as well. This tent has great reviews from fellow cyclist’s/backpackers so that will do for me, And the price, £196.00 after negotiation!
one month in so far and the tent has proved brilliant . Dry and I’ve had some terrible weather to contend with , condensation free . Very happy .
Dont for one moment think I’m spending every night camping, because as much as I love camping I love a nice soft bed as well. I will be camping when possible , but using hostels, B&B’s etc along the way. I’ve also joined Warmshowers a cycling community who offer you help, a place to stay the night or even the use of a warm shower. Couchsurfing is another organisation I’ve joined and the detail is in the name ! Ive joined a Dutch cyling organisation as well which translated is Friends of the bike. 4000 private addresses who offer cyclists B&B for the night for 19 euro .

Panniers. Back Ortlieb back packer classic 40 litre capacity

Panniers -Front Ortlieb front roller plus 20 litre capicity

Bar bag- Ortlieb Ultimate 5 plus

Rack bag- Ortlieb 35 L Dry bag
The panniers have proved a great buy , yes they are expensive but well recommended.

Outwell 5mm Self Inflating Matress. 200cm x 60cm x 5 cm – for a comfortable nights sleep.
matress is still a big size when rolled up but sits behind the saddle while on the road and is very comfortable , also makes a great sun bed !
Vango – Self Inflating Pillow 50cm x 32cm.
buy one , you won’t regret it

Gelert freedom 300 DL sleeping bag 3 seasons( tried and tested) with ultra light travel sheet liner.
old faithful
Petzl head torch – When I need a pee in the middle of the night I can see where im hitting:), oh and a spare wide neck plastic bottle!!
Another brilliant buy you won’t regret .

Cooking – Trangia 25-6 cook set I’ve also bought the Gas conversion kit so I have the choice of running it on Meths , or gas canisters. I’ve had no problems locating gas for the Triangia , it’s by far the best thing I’ve bought for this trip . Light , small , big enough . Gas conversion is superb . No need to use meths . Can’t speak highly enough of it 🙂
I’ve gone for the larger size set as I intend to do most of my own cooking, and will have a very healthy appetite at the end of the day. Eating wise, I’ve got 2 x Spork (spoon and fork in one). I’m a good cook so most of my food will be rice/ pasta based,and very high energy meals. I make a mean mushroom risotto so will be eating lots of those kind of things , and the full cooked breakfast on my days off.Also taking small selection of spices to mix it up. I do intend to eat the local cuisine as well while away as whats the point in travelling if you’re not going to absorb the culture of the countries your visiting. Also taking one Ortlieb folding bowl to wash up in,carry water to tent etc.
5 litre capacity proved invaluable to me , water carrier , washing bowl for dishes and clothes folds away to tiny size . Great investment .

Clothes 3 x Altura high Airstream short sleeve Jersey’s. High wicking quick dry fabric, 1 x own t- shirts, 1 x pairs of casual shorts, cycling shorts just don’t fit me!**( ** Ive found a pair made by Altura ,with removable inners with padding built in, to keep my bum happy!!) 1 pair of long Altura trousers 1 x swimming trunks, 2 pair of cycling gloves, fingerless,and full cover, 1 helmet , 1 x pair of zip off trousers. 1 x long sleeve shirt, fleece, 3 pair of pants, 4 pairs of socks. 1 x set of waterproofs, wind/waterproof high viz jacket, 1 pair sandles One lightweight fleece, 1 x Micro towel(med size!) , bathroom stuff, and toilet roll, (top tip I got, take the middle out and put the roll in the middle of a zip lock bag) first aid kit ,
Ive brought to many clothes and sent some back after two weeks the Altura airstream tops are brilliant , as are the shorts , micro towel is superb , and DO NOT FORGET TOILET ROLL Not all sites have it !!

Tool kit – Topeak Morph pump, 2 x spare tubes, puncture repair kit, Topeak multi tool (16 bit) spanners, various spare nuts and bolts, cable ties, duct tape, Proofide, batteries for lights, small pair of scissors. (more still to add)

As Im Travelling through Europe, anything I dont have I can get along the way.

Keeping in touch- Ive bought a Apple iphone 4s along with a wireless Apple keypad. See more post for further information.
expensive yes , would I buy it again ? Without hesitation . I love it superb piece of kit . HIGHLY RECOMMEND .

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