Bicycle Travel > Gear Talk

Good non essential items

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What items have you brought on a tour that weren't essential, but make your trip a whole lot more pleasant?

The two things I bring with me.. my solar power hand crank coleman radio.  I also never tour without my stuffed jackalop, hence my name.  When touring solo the Jackalope keeps me great company and is a fun conversation starter when I pull into a town.  And I can not live without music, so the radio has become essential.  

Hmm... of those small, keychain sized thermometers, and a frisbee.

I started carrying a small Bible with me when I was a missionary to Russia, biking from village to village. I never stopped. I also carry a Daiwa Silvercast collapsible rod, reel and a few ultra-light lures, all in their own case. Finally, I usually have a book to read. In the past couple years I have read Undaunted Courage, The Journals of Lewis and Clark, Fire on the Mountain, Doctor on Everest, The First Big Ride, Miles From Nowhere and several other biking and wilderness books while bikepacking. This year I have Against the Wind,  Above the Circle and am waiting for the July publication of Twenty-Nine Hills A Great Divide Mountain Bike Epic, all by Marty Basch, as my books for this season. (No, I don't carry more than one at a time.)

Ride safe,

Hans Erdman, WEMT
Backcountry Trail Patrol

A camp chair.  My mascot is a pelican, but I would never consider that nonessential.  I gave up on the radio due to its poor reception and expensive battery habit.

Does a large tent count?  Afterall, I could always travel with a smaller tent.

What about items you thought were necessary but eventually stopped carrying?  I dropped my flashlight after I realized I was never awake after dark.


a bottle opener, antibacterial hand cleaner, toilet paper


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