Jeff (previously identified on here as possibly the most genuine person I know) had the great idea of striking out for some bike camping. So bikamping is not a new piece of furniture from IKEA…it’s bike camping. Just like bloasting ™ is a mix of blogging and boasting.
We were planning on going self contained, for 9 guys. I wanted to bring my MSR tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, a change of clothes, extra layers, and some GF/DF food. And possibly some bourbon. And a set of lights for night riding. And a spare tube, tools, CO2, pump, camping lantern, pillow, kitchen sink, etc. Normal stuff.
I was asked to bring a stove, so I busted out the MSR Whisperlite International and a tank of fuel. Cooking dehydrated food for 9, I also wanted to bring several gallons of water (MSR Dromedary bags FTW. Notice the MSR trend? I like gear that works). Can’t forget pots and pans, sparks, and eating bits and pieces. And maybe some snacks for the ride.
It was turning out to be quite a pile of gear to bring with…which prompted the inevitable question of what bike to ride. The route was 1/2 gravel 1/2 paved…so maybe the Vaya + Tubus rack? On the other hand, with all of that gear, the bike that really makes sense is the Big Dummy.
Having decided that the Dummy was the most sensible ride, I of course opted to ride the Mukluk. Why? Because it’s ridiculously fun. Outrageously fun. And comfortable. And if you’re already pushing a ton of bike and 4.7″ wide tires, what’s the big deal to add 50 pounds of water and gear?
I will soon do a review on some of the Porcelain Rocket kit that I have (great stuff), but here’s the bike as ridden:
Salsa anything cages on the fork, with 5L OR dry bags, Porcelain Rocket handlebar bags (Mission Control) and top tube bag, two Deuter panniers, and a large OR dry bag on the back. The Mission Control housed sleeping pad, clothes, gloves, hat, and food. The anything cages housed stove and some food supplies. Deuters housed more clothes, more cooking equipment, lights, sleeping bag, 2 MSR Dromedaries (one per side) etc. The dry bag housed the tent and more. With the mix of riding, I had the tires at 20psi in the rear and about 17 in the front.
Here’s the whole group, pre-ride.
That’s Peter, Jeff, Chad (Hand of Midas), RATG, Tobie, Gumby, Mudge and Ross, outside NCC.
While the forecast started by claiming a 40% chance of rain for the afternoon/evening, we departed DeKalb under sunny skies and ideal conditions.
After some inevitable cat-calling from the fraternity houses at NIU, we made our way out of town, and headed west in search of gravel.
Mudge, bathed in golden sunlight…
Man…I feel weird just typing that.
Obligatory ‘artsy into the sun’ shot:
And finally, into the woods.
Tent set up with the last little bit of daylight.
Not so sure this hammock setup will work…
Camp Kitchen #1:
Camp Kitchen #2:
We had a selection of freeze dried foods that QBP is now carrying. I tried the Pad Thai, which was GF/DF and surprisingly good. Boil water, add to pack, let sit 20 minutes, stir, eat.
Once it was good and dark, we mounted up headlights, stripped off panniers, and headed deeper into the woods.
That’s Tobie’s Surly Ogre, all kitted out. I think he magnetized the frame and then rode it down an aisle full of racks.
Chad was sporting the Demo Salsa Spearfish from NCC.
Trails conquered, we loaded up on some legal firewood and headed back to camp.
This morning, we headed back into town under a headwind, heavy fog and light mist.
Fun time was had by all. We returned back to DeKalb without incident, and I spent a few minutes at NCC ogling a new El Mariachi…
And a long line of Fargos, Vayas, Rumblefish, etc.
Later this week, I’ll post up my thoughts on The Porcelain Rocket stuff (as promised above), and also on the Salsa Anything Cages. That’s enough for now.