Back to New York: more equipment to pickup

Posted: November 1, 2012 by Ben Weber in English, Equipment
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Back to New York

Just less than three months to go before our British winter cycle tour so not long.  I will be going to New York this coming weekend to meet Kirk, who was mountaineering with us in Bolivia, and also to pick up a load of equipment – hopefully the city will have recovered from Hurricane Sandy, which is tearing its way through the area as I write. Chatted with Kirk earlier today and he is alright, outside the city. His place looks to be outside of the flooded area (at the moment at least), and hopefully it will stay like that.

VE25 – Being put to good use…

On the kit side, as well as a new Mac to work on the editing side, and a new camera for photography and video filming, camping equipment is primary on the list. We are getting a North Face VE 25 four season, three-person, tent that has exceptional reviews and is frequently used in high mountain expeditions as well as polar expeditions. Also some -40C sleeping bags: will be a bit hot for the UK, though at least when you are warm, you can open up the zippers to stay cooler, though if you are too cold, it is much harder to get warmer. The difference in price is ridiculous… here in Brazil at one place we saw 0C sleeping bags for R$2,000… about US$1,000…! It doesn’t take much research to see that this is pretty extortionate in comparison to the costs of sleeping bags in the UK or US.

With the wintry conditions, we are fully expecting days where we will be rained on constantly, and that there will be some tough winds, so water/windproof layers are all ready to pack, as are base and mid layers to help us keep warm when the temperatures are low.

With the further training equipment – the Polar RS800CX watch will be useful to help us monitor our progress training, as will the Garmin Edge bike computer. And then of course the bikes and bike equipment… one decision to make is whether to get baggage racks with panniers, or a trailer….

BOB Yak trailer

Ortlieb Back Rollers are the options we are looking at for panniers: they can take a good amount of weight and are nice and easy to get on and off; BOB Ibex Plus and BOB Yak Plus trailers look to be interesting options – and price-wise it might make sense; they come with dry sacks, you can fit lots of cargo into them, and they are extremely stable. Problem will be getting them into the bags in New York, though they should fit into the large duffle bags… hopefully. Also trailers give us heavier loads to carry – the Yaks, 13lbs (5.89kg) and Ibex, 17lbs (7.71kg) – though the Ibex have suspension systems which would help on the rougher roads. Choices choices…

Aside from this, strong back and front lights not just to see in low light conditions, but to also help car drivers see us – especially important when visibility is low and the roads are curvy. The lights we are getting are Planet Bike Blaze – nice strong lights which can be seen  a mile away, just a problem of limited battery life at their strongest settings. And of course: the helmets. Definitely can’t be forgotten!

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