While David and I were hanging out with Specialized in Morgan Hill last year, his USB hub failed and he asked to use one of mine. I grabbed my Crumpler and pulled out a hub and also had at my diposable most anything else a traveling bike blogger would need. If NORAD goes down or the cable in the room or anything else, I’m ready for that too.
David hadn’t seen such a devotion to packing – I learned most of this from Mark V – and suggested I write about it. Going into Twenty Ten, I’m carrying a DSLR now and even more gear. I upgraded to a photographer-specific Sinking Barge Deluxe that holds the Macbook Air and camera, along with the proven
- Samsonsite Hardside Spinner – bombproof, huge capacity, 4 casters to kick across the tarmac. Ignore the ridiculous prices on Samsonite’s site. These retail for a couple hundred.
- Eagle Creek sacs – cords, adaptors, card readers
- S&S Hardcase – folding and coupled bikes.
With the Crumpler and Eagle Creek bags, I’ve got more pockets than a Wall Street banker and they’re stuffed with all the computer/photo gear. I compartmentalize the gear by category and frequency of use: iPhone cord is in the most accessible bag and location; shockproof recovery hardrive is in the least accessibly bag and location. Snacks and shades in the sidepockets, etc.
The Perfect Pack
The evolution of the perfect pack happened over the past few years. It started with a backpack instead of a messenger bag and then the hardshell spinner suitcase. I got the S&S case with the Modal Travel Bike and now use it for the Brompton and Dahons too.
The achievement shown in that photo is getting shoes and helmet into the S&S case and keeping it under 50 pounds – that’s no easy task and takes lots of practice and prepack drills. You don’t just do that the day of, or have to pre-fold your shirts like Clooney in Up in the Air, but you do need to be ready to go.
The boyscout prepardness comes from traveling abroad, where we’re working and make sure we have what we need to get the job done. Now, when we’re on vacation and just touring with the bikes, that’s all downsized into a Carradice quick release saddle bag like this.
So far in Twenty Ten, we’ve got Amsterdam, Vancouver for the Olympics, and Austin for SXSW planned. After that, don’t know yet, but we’re ready when it gets booked.
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