Like any other hike, a bike tour means that all the things you take with you will have to be transported (carried and carried) entirely on your own. While you won’t have to carry a backpack on your back, it’s important to take only what you really need and what will help you enjoy the journey.
What to take with you on a bicycle tour?
What to take with you, and what to leave behind in your homeland – this question is often the cause of lively discussions, both among experienced tourists and newcomers. Too much stuff – obviously bad, too little – also not good. As always, the truth is somewhere in the middle, and you should try to take with you something that will allow you to create the minimum necessary comfort during the movement and in parking lots, and at the same time will not make you overpay for overweight luggage at the airport.
So, let’s get started. We’ve compiled a list of items and gear you’ll need on your bicycle trip. For convenience, all things are divided into four groups.
MUST-have – this is a must-have for everyone
RECOMMENDED – we strongly advise you to have this with you.
UNREQUIRED – something you can get along just fine without, but if you really want to take it, you’re welcome to.
Unnecessary – best left at home.
- Passport photocopy
- Airline tickets – Print out the itinerary and additionally save it in your phone, mail.
- Cell phone – Don’t forget a charger to it. If you have a powerbank – take it, it can help you out on days when there are no outlets.
- Money – If possible, take a bank card as well. Check with your bank in advance for the conversion rate when withdrawing money from an ATM, it can be not quite favorable.
- Place in a tent – If you don’t have a tent, we will help you to cooperate with other participants who have one, or rent a tent.
- Karemat (mat) – If you are still sleeping on an ordinary Izhevsk karemat, then we, as adherents of comfort, strongly recommend you to try special self-inflating mats, they are more compact and on them you sleep better, they swallow all the bumps and stones. If you want to try, but do not dare to buy one yet, you can understand their advantages by renting one from us.
- Sleeping bag – The optimal comfort temperature is +3..+5.
- Bicycle – consult in advance and in detail about the necessary technical characteristics of the bicycle that you will use during the whole hike. Remember that you will not be able to change your bike during the hike, and a malfunction or inconvenience in use can greatly spoil your vacation!
Also, before the hike should be sure to check the condition of your iron horse: wear pads (no more than 50% for disc brakes), smoothness of gear shifting, carriage backlash, liveliness of hubs, the state of the rims and rubber, twist and unscrew pedals, run-in the chain.
- Bicycle case (bicycle bag)
- Bike rack
- Front and rear lights
- Cable with lock
- Sneakers – Take already worn pair, in which you are comfortable pedaling and walking.
- Sport pants
- Bike shorts
- T-shirts – 2-3 pieces are enough, preferably moisture-wicking and made of synthetics, because clothes made of cotton fabric are much heavier and, in addition, takes longer to dry.
- Thermal underwear – It should not constrict movements and be as comfortable as possible to the body, the top of thermal underwear – a jacket with long sleeves.
- Fleece jacket or sweater – You need to take a warm fleece jacket with a fabric density of 100 g/m² (an ordinary sweater will not be as warm and will be much heavier).
- Windbreaker jacket – You can take an ordinary raincoat made of oilcloth, but it is very hot and it can tear quickly (you need to take several). There are also variants of raincoats-ponchos, which are put on you together with the backpack. But, of course, it is better to buy a membrane jacket (entry level – from 5000 mm).
- Headgear (panama, cap)
- Cycling gloves – for comfortable riding
- Socks (3-4 pairs)
- Headlamp (+ spare batteries) – makes it easier to move around the camp in the dark. Don’t forget spare batteries.
- Flask or plastic bottle (volume – minimum 1.5 liters) – Minimum volume – 1.5 liters; also for convenience we advise you to take a drinking system.
- Mug, spoon, bowl – Preferably not plastic (poorly washable and can break). Metal ones are better.
- Sunscreen – In the mountains at altitude you can quickly and imperceptibly burn, so take care of your skin, so as not to spoil your further vacation with sunburns.
- Sunglasses – Pay attention to models with UV protection to protect your eyes from negative UV radiation, which increases in the mountains at altitude.
- Band-aids – Both rolled band-aids and disposable band-aids in packs will work.
The repair kit is individualized:
- spare camera (1)
- patches and glue
- hex set
- Cycling helmet
- Cycling gloves
- A small backpack (for things you need quick access to) or a large belt bag.
- A wristwatch – This will actually be very handy for you personally. And the instructor himself would really like you to know how long you have left to rest at the next rest stop.
- Hygienic lipstick – In the mountains at altitude your lips often get weathered or burned. Hygienic lipstick will save you from unpleasant feelings.
- Swimwear – California has amazing beaches, you can’t go without itJ
- Toothbrush and toothpaste – It’s best to have your toothbrush in an individual case, and take toothpaste for 2-3 people (per tent), or in a mini tube. Remember, we need to minimize the weight of the luggageJ
- Soap – In a zipper lock bag. You don’t need a soap dish – it’s extra weight and bulk
- Toilet paper – Always in a cellophane bag.
- Changing shoes (sandals or flip flops) – Changing shoes should be as lightweight as possible. Do not take sneakers as a change of shoes.
- Camera or camera phone
- Bike bag
- Tourist knife
- Tourist seat – karepop
- Power bank
- Charger for phone/photo camera
- Bike headlamp
- Personal mini first aid kit
- Mp3 player
- Wet wipes
- Cards (playing cards)
- Lighter (matches)
- Nuts, dried fruits, candies (for individual snacks) – at will, but be sure that the ration will be sufficient for the trek.
- Photo tripod
- Saw (axe)
- Kettle – general equipment, will be per group
- Burner – general equipment, will be for the group.
- Soap dish
- Shoe boots (leggings)
- Waterproof pants
- We will also have a communal kit (per group) that you can use as needed. It is important to remember: having a public kit does not release you from the necessity to bring an individual kit (its composition see above, in the MUST section).
The general cycling kit will contain:
- spare tire
- spare tube
- spatulas, patches and glue
- hexagon set
- 15 mm wrench
- chain extractor
- connecting rod puller
- chain grease
Of course, the list can be adjusted depending on your desires and needs. But experience shows that even a backpack that seemed weightless in the first few days of a bicycle tour may seem unbearable by the end of the tour, and the things you took “in reserve”, you will be ready to throw away at the nearest garbage can.
Properly packed things will provide you not only bright impressions from the cycling tour, but also quality rest in the evening by the fire and the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the island without overloading yourself with unnecessary luggage.