My few days of summer vacation have finally arrived so I”m taking off on a 4 day solo trip in the Southern mountains and West Coast of South Korea. First things first, gear. What am I taking on this trip? Before I get into an extensive list of what I am taking I”d likely to quickly point out what I am not taking (but usually would) and what I am missing.
On a usual multi-day trip I would take cooking gear. Why not this time?
In the first couple of days I plan on doing as many mountain climbs as possible so weight does start to become an issue. Seeing as Korea is rife with little shops and restaurants I am choosing to eat out, or at least get a couple of boxes of fried chicken. This will also mean that I can cycle until dusk or beyond, whereas usually I would stop an hour or so before to allow time for cooking.
I am missing one very useful piece of equipment, my Crazy Creek. OK it”s not really necessary, but I do love sitting in it when the day is done.
I am also testing out a couple new gadgets on this trip:
Click-Stand (Read my post ride review here)
Been thinking about some sort of way to prop my bike up lately. Conventional stands don”t really cut it when it comes to loaded bikes so I decided to get custom made Click-Stand. It comes highly recommended from my New Zealand Friend Dave Collett (DC on a Bike) who just finished yet another cycle trip around NZ and is getting ready for his own big world cycle adventure. Looking forward to seeing how the Click-Stand “holds up.” Terrible humor I know.
Kodak Zx3 Camera
One of the biggest things I regret from the Eurasia ride was not filming more of the experiences. On that trip I used my canon compact camera which did a good job but was always an afterthought, so last month the was added to my cycling arsenal in the hopes that a piece of specific equipment will encourage me to film more. We”ll see.
Nomad 7m Goal Solar Panel Charger
A birthday present from my amazing girlfriend whom I wish was able to come on this trip with me. The Goal Nomad 7M replaces my Solio Charger which I broke in Germany.
Why carry solar panels?
As you will see from my long list of electronics below I require a lot of things to be recharged along the way in order to film, listen to music, and gather GPS data. Even though I carry spare batteries for these gadgets, I”m using this trip as a test to see the amount of charging the Nomad can produce for some much longer trips in the near future.
Here is the extensively anal gear list:
Types of Panniers I Use
The total weight the panniers will be carrying this trip is 17kgs/37lbs. This excludes daily snacks, food, and water (usually 2-3 liters on my bike)
Camping Gear in Back Bag (Weight 6.9kgs/15lbs)
I stow all my camping gear in my Crosso back bag for quick access at night. I like to know that if it”s dark that I can grab one bag and all the gear needed to set-up quickly is in one place including my headlamp. I found a great bungee cord at a local sports store which I use to secure the top bag. It is the same one that lasted for 6 months across Eurasia and has a strong plastic hook at each end making really simple to get on and off. Also works well as a clothes line.
Prolite Thermarest Sleeping bag
(large) – don”t travel without
To me, a good nights sleep is one of the most important thing when I”m on a trip, even if it”s only for a few hours. Therefore I do not scrimp when it comes to weight here, hence the Thermarest Pillow. Sure I could use my clothes, but this pillow has made for many a comfortable night in an uncomfortable place. The small version of this can be bought on Gmarket here in South Korea.
Bike Equipment On the Bike
I use an Ortlieb Handlebar bag (which I managed to buy here in South Korea from CityBikes) for easy access to snacks, camera and things like that, and a small Topeak under seat bag to store bike tools. On the Eurasian tour a front bag was a last minute purchase arriving a day before the trip and proved to be one of the best pieces of gear. It makes it very easy to store valuable items and detaches very easily meaning you can take it off your bike while in a restaurant or shop.
Garmin GPS –
Cateye Wireless speedo
2 Std Drink Bottles
Spare Zip Ties – for when you are in a bind. Mwahaha
Small adjustable wrench
Small Needle nose Pliers
Cotton work gloves (save getting oil/dirt on hands when fixing the bike)
Multi-Purpose tool set
Puncture Repair Kit / Bike pump / Spare Tube
La Crosse Anemometer affectionately named Bear Grylls – Weather tool measuring temp and wind speed. Why? Saw Bear Grylls use one on an episode of Man Vs Wild and thought it looked cool
Small Camping Knife
Ayup Front Light – designed to quickly attach to my Ortlieb Front Bag (see how)
Small pad for sitting on during breaks
Click-Stand (Read my post ride review here)
Not really much to be said here. I”m a gadget man and am trying out a few new things this trip.
2 Ayup Large Batteries
Nomad 7m Goal Solar Panel Charger 8 x AA rechargeable batteries
Nikon D90 DSLR Camera with AF-S DX VR Zoom-NIKKOR 18-200mm Lens
USB cords for GPS, phone, ipod and video camera
Motorola Motoroi Smart Phone
I generally travel with two sets of bike clothes, but when it comes to off the bike clothing I travel super light. I go by the theory that if I have have all my clothes on and am warm that is more than enough, anything leftover is not needed. Of course the amount of clothing is heavily dependent on the time of year and I am doing this trip in the middle of summer so only need the bare minimum.
For the Bike
2 Pair of Lycra Bike Shorts
Short Sleeve Bike Shirt
Sunglasses, Spare Lenses (Clear for night riding) & Take-a-look Mirror
Cycling Gloves and Headsweat
2 Pair of Ankle Socks
Storm Trooper Waterproof Shell Waterproof Pants
Clipless Bike Shoes
Off the Bike
One Pair of Quick Drying Shorts
One Marino Warm Top
One Pair of Underwear
Doosan bears cap
Toiletries & Medical Supplies
First Aid Kit
Even if it”s just a day ride I always make sure that at least one person has a small medical kit with the basics. On longer trips this becomes more comprehensive. Before the Eurasian trip all 4 members of the did an Emergency First Responders Course here in South Korea and even though we never had to use the skills learned it felt good to know that my other teamies had my back. I will be doing this again in the near future.
Magnesium Pills Salt (I often get cramps at the end of a long days ride)
Silicone Barrier cream (stops chaffing)
Imodium (you just never know, and cycling doesn”t stop for a case of the runs)
Couple of Spare Ziploc Bags
Stick of Deodorant
And that”s it. I”m sure there will be things I have forgotten and need along the way, but for now it”s time to ride.