Saturday, May 25, 2013

Winding Down....Tick-Tock, Tick-Tock...

I feel very fortunate going into the Tour Divide knowing that I have so many great friends and family behind me.  I have been hearing a lot of encouraging words from everyone I see and it's great!  Not to mention all the support towards my fundraising.  So far, we have raised $1,575 for Trips for Kids WNC!  Thanks so much for all your support!  If you haven't donated yet and feel like it's something you would like to do head over to my donation page at
Part of the Support Crew
The race is getting close! My wife and I are flying to Canada on June 8 which is 2 weeks from today.  From there we'll spend a week relaxing and celebrating our 1 Year Anniversary of being married!  Last year we went to Banff for our honeymoon so it will be a nice chance to spend some time together before I embark on my journey.

I'm continuing to ride as much as possible and still dialing in my setup.  I'm not sure if this will ever end until I actually "start" the race.  Things seem to be falling into place and I am trying my best to just let things be.  I can only prepare so much for the unknown.  I recently have gotten things slimmed down a bit and no longer will be taking a Camelbak.  My tent has been tested through high winds (one time actually blowing over since I was too lazy to get out and tighten it down, but once it was tight, it held up great) and an all night down pour leaving me and all my things nice a dry.  I think it will be nice having a tent on the journey.  I can't imaging being inside a small bivy sack during that heavy rain.

Thanks again for all the support!  It's time for a bike ride!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

My Bikepacking and Tour Divide Setup

Some of you may be wondering how I'll be carrying everything I need for a 2745 mile unsupported mountain bike race, how on earth will it all fit on my mountain bike AND with all the washboard, gravel, rocky, narly off road riding, will it even stay attached to my bike???

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Well hopefully I have it figured out!  I have been testing out my setup for several months and have everything pretty dialed in.  Thanks to a few companies out there for making some amazing gear that makes this possible.
Revelate Designs Bikepacking Bags
All the items listed below will end up in one of the many bags I am using that are made by Revelate Designs, a small company based out of Alaska with a true passion for bikepacking.  There are probably a few things here I am forgetting but hopefully when I am lining up at the start, they will be with me somewhere!  Ok, here's the nitty gritty details...

Sleeping System:
-Small Tent - Zpacks Hexamid
-Sleeping Bag - Mountain Hardware Phantom 32 degree
-Therma-Rest - NeoAir

Rain Gear:
-Jacket - Outdoor Research Helium
-Pants - GORE Gore-tex Rain Pants
-Socks - GORE Gore-tex Socks
-Overmitts - Zpacks Custom Lobster Claw Mitts

Other Clothing:
-Insulated Jacket - Patagonia Nanopuff
-Windproof Jacket - Patagonia Houdini 
-Long Sleeve Jersey - Magic Cylces
-Arm Warmers - Defeet Wool
-Knee Warmers - Defeet Wool
-Warm Hat - Giro Wool Cap
-Warm Gloves - Pearl Izumi
-Underlayer - Icebreaker Wool

Stuff on the Bike:
-Spot Tracker
-GPS - Garmin eTrex 20
-Front Light - Fenix LD 20
-Rear Light - Planet Bike
-Aerobars - Profile Design T1+
-Bike Computer
-Waterbottle/Cage - 33 oz. Magnum Bottle

Other Miscellaneous:
-MSR 4 Liter Bladder w/ Hose
-Bike Repair Kit
-Spare Tubes
-Patch Kit/Tire Plug
-Chain Lube/Rag
-Water Treatment - AquaMira
-Spare Batteries
-Cell Phone/Charger
-Cue Sheets/Waterproof Case
-GDMBR Maps (debating on bringing these)
-Bear Spray! (Andi says I have to bring it)
-Headlamp - Black Diamond Spot
-Camelbak Charge w/ 2 Liter Bladder

Personal Hygene:

-Chamois Butter
-First Aid Kit

Whoa, thats a lotta stuff!