Cycle tour preparation

It’s only 17 days until I depart on what was a Brisbane – Bathurst bike ride but is now a Brisbane – Sydney via Bathurst cycle tour. I am excited to be setting off on another cycle tour. I haven’t done one since Hungary in July 2015. And, to be honest I have missed traveling by bicycle.

This trip will be different to my previous cycle tours because I am going to be largely self-sufficient. On previous tours I’ve bought food along the way and largely stayed in formal accommodation, whether camping grounds or hotels. But this time I am departing from my front door and traveling in a country where I am familiar with the landscape, laws and customs. So I have prepared a route based on the WikiCamps AU app, which shows the location of formal and informal camping areas in Australia. This means I have been able to find a good mix of bush and formal camping areas. I need formal ones sometimes for power recharge and shower. But I am excited to be doing some more remote bush camping too.

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I’ll be traveling light, carrying just:

  • bivy
  • sleeping bag
  • liner
  • sleeping mat
  • ground sheet
  • small lantern
  • hiking gas stove
  • gas canister (or two)
  • spoon
  • knife
  • cooking pot
  • food rehydration jar (plastic peanut butter jar)
  • laptop (for work)
  • mobile phone
  • charger cable for laptop and phone
  • charger blocks for phone
  • hand pump
  • tyre levers
  • tube patches
  • multitool
  • spare folding tyre
  • zip off pants x 2 (wear one, carry one)
  • long sleeved shirts x 2 (wear one, carry one)
  • lightweight thermal top
  • soft shell jacket
  • t-shirt (for at night)
  • underwear x 4 (wear one, carry three)
  • socks x 3 (wear one, carry two)
  • beanie
  • toothbrush
  • toothpaste
  • soap
  • microfiber towel
  • Scrubber washing bag
  • small bag washing powder
  • water
  • food.

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I’m also bringing most of my own food. This will allow me the flexibility to wild camp, save me from carrying heavy fresh foods that I find in shops along the way and ensure I stick to the healthy eating plan I’m on right now. I have a dehydrator so this makes it possible to carry plenty of good tasty and healthy foods without carrying weight. Here’s a rough list of foods I’ll be carrying:

Breakfasts

  • semolina with sultanas (semolina, powdered milk, sultanas)
  • dehydrated baked beans (red kidney beans, onion, home made tomato sauce, freeze dried shop-bought Parmesan cheese)
  • oats with sultanas & banana (oats, powdered milk, sultanas, dehydrated bananas)

Lunches

  • dehydrated pumpkin & sweet potato soup
  • pasta with tomato and mushroom (pasta, dehydrated tomato, capsicum and mushroom)
  • noodles with vegetables & eggs (rice noodles, dehydrated zucchini and carrot, powdered eggs)
  • some bought lunches

Dinners

  • dehydrated chili con carne with corn chips
  • Thai chicken with rice noodles & vegetables (rice noodles, dehydrated Thai chicken mince, dehydrated zucchini, beans & carrot)
  • sweet & sour beef with vegetables (rice noodles, dehydrated beef mince, pineapple, sweet potato & pumpkin)
  • spaghetti bolognaise (pasta, dehydrated beef mince, home made tomato sauce, mushrooms & freeze dried shop-bought Parmesan cheese)
  • chicken curry with noodles (rice noodles, coconut milk powder, curry powder, dehydrated chicken mince, sweet potato & pumpkin)
  • chicken & bacon pasta (pasta, dehydrated chicken & bacon, home made tomato sauce, zucchini and carrot)

Deserts

  • custard with fruit (custard powder, powdered milk, sugar & dehydrated strawberries)
  • chocolate pudding (cocoa, cornflour, sugar, powdered milk)
  • stewed fruits (fresh fruits from shops along the way)

While the food looks like a huge list, it’s amazing what dehydration does. For example, three sweet potatoes fill just 1/3 of a sandwich bag, 7 tomatoes & 10 mushrooms fill just 1/2 a sandwich bag, and 8 serves of home-made tomato sauce dehydrated as a bark fill just one sandwich bag.

I’ll be having a shakedown ride next Friday. It’ll be on the fat bike but will use the same bikepacking kit as I will use on my tour.

 

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