Gearing Up & Packing for 1st (Mini) Touring Adventure

bicycle seat

My beloved bike seat gets a little zesty facelift!

First things first, I feel the need to get everything I own (bike related) out and displayed so I can evaluate what I have and don’t have.   Oh man, I think (I know) I have way too much for this trip.  It is only a one night overnight.  First off, I am reminded of how heavy locks are!  Am I really going to bring my U-lock and cable?  I got away without one for 4 months solo in Europe.  Surely I can last a day.  My tent is darn heavy too.  Do I really need it for one night?  I just checked the weather and there is 0% chance of rain!  I think that bad boy might stay behind.  Maybe instead I will bring my lock since we are heading to an bike event, but the tent is staying.  I’ll aim to sleep under the stars!


I attempted to put my new front rack for my mountain bike, but it does not fit.  That’s okay for this run.  I may not use front panniers at all.  I once did a 6 week tour without front bags.  Maybe I don’t need them after –certainly not for this this trip.


Where are my biking gloves?  Totally missing!  I biked to the only bike store in Pacifica only to find that they are out of all biking gloves except men’s XL, and they totally don’t carry any GU or other energy supplements.  Then I got lucky.  I went to say Hello to a friend, who just got out of the hospital, and wouldn’t you know, his wife recently found a pair of small women’s riding gloves.  They were in their Goodwill pile just waiting for me! Score!


I bought some new waterproof Orlieb panniers, but I have already decided to take them back.  I’ve dreamt of them for years, but I just can’t justify the expense right now.  I’ll bring garbage bags to put stuff in should it rain.  Plus, less risk of theft with old gear, and  my old ones are still hanging in there.  They are purple too…shucks.


I have to laugh that I am now excited about putting a big orange flag on the back of my bike.  As a kid, I made such a fuss about how uncool a flag was, and pleaded to remove mine.   After seeing countless people hit on bikes around San Francisco, I am just fine with a flag.  In fact, I think a “flag making happy hour” gathering might be good fun at some point.


I’m dying to try solar batteries to charge stuff, but I have not gotten there yet.  I shall bring my phone and charger, although I have not idea where I might charge it up.  I will also print directions. This does point up my desire to bring a separate camera.  I think I will.  Plus I got this nifty little tripod I can wrap around my handlebars.


Okay…so things I want to try out for this trip:  a never used (many year old) cook stove, butane hand warmer, itty-bitty “surf” towel, and my new $6 men’s camo wristwatch with compass.  Will I actually use the darn thing?  By days end, I set up my stove, but I really don’t need it for this trip.  The other items I intend to bring and try though.


I’m going to bed early and I ate a good dinner, but I am completely nervous.  I am very much questioning whether I have it in me to bike the 5 hours to the state park, plus another 10 miles to Biketoberfest and then back to camp.  My cold is better but it seems to have shifted from my head to my chest.  So frustrating as I have not had a bug in well over a year.  Alright enough moaning…here’s my pack list for this trip:



Trip 1 Pack List:


  • tangerines
  • plumbs
  • granola bars
  • chocolate “reward bar”
  • nut mix, and
  • a bag of Tuna (my friend says it’s good…I’m skeptical).  I plan to eat food at the festival.


  • Hand warmer (filled with Butane before leaving)
  • Phone (GPS)
  • Charger
  • Camera? & tripod? (probably not)
  • ID & credit card & some case
  • Little nylon backpack
  • Headlamp
  • Extra batteries
  • Cheap watch with compass

Bike Gear

  • GT Mountain Bike (Old school, but souped up with new shifters, tires, etc)
  • Lube
  • Tire
  • Tire levers
  • Repair kit
  • Pump
  • Multi tool- very heavy – I think I can fix a train
  • 2 water bottles
  • 2 panniers
  • Front handlebar bag
  • Handlebar mirror


  • Helmet
  • First Aid kit (need to get asprin)
  • Front & rear light
  • Safety vest
  • Flag
  • Lock & cable (made it all through Europe with out, but…)
  • Cycling glasses
  • Gloves
  • Condoms (Ha! Ha! JK)

Cooking Gear

  • Stove – where is it? (pass this time)
  • Fuel (pass this time)
  • Lighter
  • Pots & Pans (pass this time – much heavier than I recall)
  • Cutting board
  • Knife (swiss army)
  • Cork screw (Swiss Army)
  • Can opener
  • Fork & Spoon
  • Spice (pass this time)
  • Plate & Cup
  • Storage containers (baggies0
  • Soap & scrubber

Sleeping Gear

  • Sleeping bag
  • Tent (awfully heavy – may try without in future if weather is good)
  • Sleeping pad
  • Camp pillow


  • Tooth paste (smaller?) & brush (need cap)
  • Contacts & solution
  • Brush (need smaller)
  • Towel
  • Soap, conditioner
  • Razor
  • Sunscreen
  • Lotion


  • Tevas
  • Socks x 2 pairs
  • Warm Jacket for night
  • Waterproof Wind breaker (wash)
  • Fleece
  • Leggings x2
  • Bike shorts
  • Shorts & top for after ride


  • Guitar (leaving behind this trip)
  • Art supplies (leaving behind)
  • Book (not this time)

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