Pacific Coast Bicycle Tour: Bikes & Gear
Excuse my lack of updates this past week. I’ve been running around with my head chopped off making sure I’ve got all of the loose ends tied up for my upcoming Pacific Coast Bike Tour, giving away a free two-night stay at Courtyard by Marriott, replying to an endless inbox of emails, planning for my trip to Miami & Key West in July, one last trip to REI, working on a freelance web project, and nursing my big toe due to an extremely painful ingrown toenail. OUCH! Talk about horrible timing on that last one!
Firstly, I want to introduce you to our trusty bikes that are just about as old as us…
1985 Trek 520
Meet Ochocinco, the 1985 Trek 520 sport-touring bike. I picked up this gem off of free agency back in January and he’s been on the sidelines ever since. Ochocinco is a veteran in the touring game and one of the most highly recommended touring bikes around. He’s got a strong, solid frame and he’s built to last. Ocho might not be the fastest bike on the road but he should have no problem getting me to my final destination with his reliability, his street smarts, and his overall swag.
1986 Fuji Palisade
Meet Will’s 1986 Fuji Palisade. He spent a few weeks searching high and low on Craigslist for a bike that the thought would be reliable enough to withstand a tour of the Pacific Coast.
About three weeks into his search, he stumbled upon this ol’ rebuilt Fuji. The only additions Will made to this bike is the blue leopard handlebar tape, two matching water bottle holders and a rear rack. This bike was built to rock n’ roll!
Our original plans were to go uber-budget and rig up a 14 gallon rugged tote storage bin to the rear racks of our bikes. I actually mounted the tote to my bike, loaded it up with all of my gear and took it for a spin with no issues at all.
While the idea would work perfectly for local commuting around the city, it just wasn’t the greatest idea to attempt to take this invention all the way out to the West Coast and hope that it’s still in one piece by the time we reach the border of Mexico.
Instead, we decided to go with the most recommended and reliable option on the market when it comes to panniers for long distance bicycle touring; Ortlieb Back Roller Classic Panniers.
Take a look at the next guy you see rollin’ through your city fully loaded. It’s more than likely that he’s running Ortlieb Panniers, just like ours.
Besides the rear panniers hanging from our racks, we’re also bringing waterproof bags that will sit on the top of our racks. Will has a waterproof duffel bag which he will use for any extra gear that doesn’t fit in his panniers. I’m using a 30L Sea to Summit Waterproof Sack that will hold my tent, sleeping bag, sleeping mat, and a few other small items.
Here’s a final look at what my bike looks like fully loaded…
The only other bag not shown in the photo above is the Avenir Raincity Handlebar Bag I picked up the other day at REI.
It was sitting on the shelf with no packaging, just the bag and the hardware needed to attach it to the handlebars. It was originally $80, marked down to $38! I thought that $38 was a steal until I got out to the car and checked out the receipt which showed that I was only charged $20.93 for it. SCORE!
(2) Long sleeve shirts
(1) Under Armour Hooded Sweatshirt
(1) Columbia Waterproof Jacket
(1) Pair of Frogg Toggs Waterproof Pants
(2) Pairs of Shorts
(2) Pairs of Boxer Briefs
(2) Pairs of Novara Padded Boxer Briefs
(3) Pairs of Socks
(1) New Balance Reflective Running Vest
(1) Tube of Chamois Butt’r
(3) Novara Tubes
(1) Novara Tube Patch Kit
(6) Tire Removers
(1) Bicycle Cable Lock
(1) G-Shock Watch
(1) Topeak Cargo Net
(1) Waterproof Notepad
(1) Biodegradable Body Wash
(1) Bowl w/ utensils
(1) Box of SOYJOY Bars
(1) Hand pump
Ready to Rock…
Well, that just about sums up the bikes and the gear. Tuesday May 1st is coming up fast! I still can’t believe we’re leaving in two days…