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  1. #1
    Member Dano's Avatar
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    Type of bag for adventure touring

    Hi I'm planning doing a cycle Holliday in august around Holland maybe into France then back home ,

    Only planning on taking the essentials ie a lightweight 1 mana tent ,sleeping bag, a little gas burner for brews and a change of undies and my toiletries bag and that's more or less it , will buy food as i need to on the go .

    What would be the best way to carry it ? In a rucksack on my back or a long seat bag or handlebar pack ?

    Going to cycle from east coast of Scotland to Newcastle and jump on the ferry and take it from there, combining my 2 fav things camping and cycling
    Last edited by Dano; 20th June 2017 at 1:03 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member coolboarder's Avatar
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    This is hardly adventure touring - I envisaged cycling across North Africa or the like!

    However I would forget a rucksack, too heavy and uncomfortable. I used to tour with 2 panniers and a rack top or saddle bag. I had a brief flirtation with a bar bag but didn't like the way it affected handling so save your bars for a map holder and GPS. I camped with a friend so I would carry the tent and him the poles or vice-versa and split the cooking utensils as well as we bought food and cooked all our meals but we still only had a single burner Camping Gaz stove. We carried our own inflatable mattress and sleeping bag and they took up a lot of space but equipment is so much lighter and efficient these days so I can't see a problem carrying it all yourself easily. What won't fit in the bags you may be able to strap on top - I used the carry the tent and my waterproofs on top of the pannier rack.

    Like any packing exercise you will start out with far too much but you need to be ruthless in deciding what is not absolutely essential. Spend some money on merino undies and they will probably not even need washing but most things can be washed overnight and ready for the next day and buy a trekking towel and flannel plus a mini first aid kit. And don't forget to carry your essential kit in dry bags or at the least in plastic bin liners, even the most waterproof bags will let in eventually.

    Top tip: make sure your rear wheel is sound and the spokes are properly tensioned for all that extra weight but still carry some spare spokes and a cassette tool - its always the rear drive-side spokes that break! My mate used to carry a heavy wrench to turn the tool but you can usually beg, borrow or steal one of those from someone whereas they're unlikely to have a cassette tool. That said mind you it is Holland and everyone cycles there so there must be a bike shop in every town. Things are bit different in France with a much lower population density, towns and villages are 3 times as far apart in rural France as in the UK.
    Last edited by coolboarder; 20th June 2017 at 3:21 PM. Reason: typo
    It doesn't matter how many times you fall down, its how times many you get back up that count.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by coolboarder View Post
    This hardly adventure touring - I envisaged cycling across North Africa or the like!
    I dont know, I dare say there are parts of Newcastle that are pretty wild!
    "If you act like you know what you are doing, you can do anything you want- except neurosurgery"- Sharon Stone

  4. #4
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    The Tour Divide started on 9th June. This is adventure cycling!! Banff in Canada to the Mexican border, racing unsupported. A review of some of the rigs used can be seen here: http://bikepacker.com/2017-tour-divide-rigs/

    You can find more about it here: http://tourdivide.org

    And if you want to follow the race, http://trackleaders.com/tourdivide17 should help you.

  5. #5
    Senior Member coolboarder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Conway View Post
    The Tour Divide started on 9th June. This is adventure cycling!!
    True but still in relative civilisation where rescue is a probability.
    Quote Originally Posted by John Conway View Post
    A review of some of the rigs used can be seen here:
    I realise these are designed for off road but you see road touring bikes packed like this as well. I can't see how having frame bags doesn't interfere with your legs and what is the aversion to a pannier rack and bags?, it is the most practical and stable way to carry heavy loads. Why have that daft bag sticking out like a dinosaur tail from the saddle? It puts a lot of extra strain on the seat pin and its not advisable to use them with carbon seat pins anyway.
    It doesn't matter how many times you fall down, its how times many you get back up that count.

  6. #6
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    I have no real concern either way. I certainly am not passionate about any particular rig. i still use my trusty Carradice with a saddle bag support on the road/touring bike, but I have panniers on the gravel bike and for when I have to carry a laptop.

    I am not a Taylorist. There is no one best way. Horses for courses.

    It is interesting to look at rigs used in the recent TAW. A much more prosaic event than the Tour Divide, but still challenging. See here on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/transatlanticwayrace/ or http://www.transatlanticway.com/2017...2-live-update/ More akin to what the OP has in mind.

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