I recently went on a bike packing trip around the Isle of Wight. This is only my second bike packing trip, but the first with all my own gear that wasn’t a rental trip. This blog post is to just list the gear I used and possibly give you an idea of what you may need to pack on a similar trip.
Firstly, the bags I used to carry all the gear on this trip.
All the bags were carried on my old road bike, a carbon fibre, 2013 Specialized Tarmac with classic v-brakes. This certainly isn’t a touring/gravel bike. The frame size is a large (56cm) for reference.
Firstly let’s look at the bags (listed above). In addition to those bags, I had a generic top tube bag, a couple of water bottles, a few lights, a Garmin 810 and the GoPro session. All the contents in the bags and shown in the photos are as they came out of the bags, at the end of the trip. Some things started in different places and moved about throughout the ride.
Inside the podsac handlebar bag was my sleeping bag, a small towel, some ear plugs, a tub of vaseline (to make the ear plugs water tight if going swimming), a pillow, a technical tshirt and some technical base-layer shorts.
Inside the top tube bag, I had a couple of snack bars, a few allen keys to service the bike, a spare camera battery and my phone. Not in the photo, but also in the bag at times was the camera (in use to take this photo) and my wallet.
The frame bag was the Podsacs medium frame bag, this is the larger of the two frame bags on offer from PlanetX, and on my bike with the large water bottles, I really couldn’t bill the bag up properly as it was in the way of the bottles. I didn’t store a lot of in this bag, some tooth paste, a tooth brush, some more snack bars, a GoPro Max and a neck scarf/buff/snood (Corona virus, you need a mask for public transport like the ferry and inside shops).
Finally we have the saddle bag. This is the biggest bag used in the trip, and it had a lot stuffed into it. From top left we have a gas bottle, a small dry bag (which contained a power bank, a usb cable and a spare camera battery), a couple of inner tubes, toilet roll, tyre levers, hand sanitiser, a travel spade, a small active jacket, a bag of sweets, a titanium mug, a pair of shorts, a bivvy bag and a sleeping mat. The flip-flops were stored under the saddle bag in an elastic strap and the small orange drybag was stored under the bungee straps on top of the bag.
Finally, the mug in the saddle bag had several things packed inside of it. There was a couple of sponges (for cleaning water out after use), a head torch, sun cream, lip balm, a few tea bags (wrapped in cling film to keep clean and dry) and a foldable spork. All stored within it’s own mesh bag.
For those wondering. The PlanetX bags worked perfectly for me on this trip. The only problem I noticed is where I have traditional V brakes, there was a little tear on the saddle bag, where it rubbed against the brake cable. I also found the bag knocking bag against the cable knocked my brakes a bit and forced one side of the pads against the wheel. Also the handlebar bag, depending on how you pack it, and how tight you strap it to the handle bars / around any cables, you might find shifting gears a bit funky (or the bag in the way of the gear levers).