Luggage & What to Pack

Seven days on the road … what do I need to take? Ah, now there’s a question that has as many answers as there are people to ask. Everyone has their own needs and philosophy regarding what to bring and what to leave behind. You’ll have to develop a list and get a container that’s right for you. But here are some guidelines and requirements that will help you put your kit together.

Here are the requirements/restrictions you have to work with:

  • No more than 2 bags per registered rider of 35 pounds or less each.  We will be monitoring bag weight and will weigh your bags if necessary.
  • You may not load your own bag(s) on to the luggage truck.  Please bring your bags to the truck and they will be loaded for you.
  • Do not pack in trash bags, plastic bins, or external-frame backpacks, and don’t bring a luggage cart/buggy
  • Items may not be tied on the outside of your luggage
  • Leave hazardous or flammable materials at home
  • Avoid fragile or breakable items or pack them well

How much?  Most folks manage the week with an amount of gear that would fit in a standard army duffel bag; that’s roughly 20″ x 36″; a little over 10,000 cubic inches. Some people bring more, many bring less. Remember that you have to be able to lift your bag and carry it to and from the luggage truck each morning and evening.

What should I pack? Check Nickie’s Packing List 2.0 and the FAQ section of this web site for an exhaustive list of potential items to bring. Remember, we won’t be traveling through wilderness. There will be stores in the communities we pass through where you can purchase most items you might need other than cycling or camping-specific items. So you don’t need to bring everything.  Some folks get by with a single change of clothes and sleeping gear, washing their riding gear each night for use the next day. Others bring fresh riding clothes for each day and camp clothes, camp chairs, queen-size inflatable mattresses and more (just remember you have to carry all of this and load it in the truck!). You’ll develop a list that’s right for you.

How should I pack? It’s best to pack everything in plastic bags, even if your duffel is waterproof.  Bags are unloaded each day and, depending on the weather, may be rained on or may be unloaded in a damp area.  Lining your duffel with a trash bag, or a heavier trash compacter bag, provides added protection.  Zip-lock bags in all sizes were surely developed with the event cyclist in mind. Bring along a few extra bags to replace those that may be damaged during the week. Though a standard army duffel will generally hold all of the clothing and camping gear a single rider will need for the week, many riders elect to have two bags; one with their camping gear and another with their clothing and other items.  Regardless of the bag or bags you elect to bring along, it’s best to make them easy to identify by selecting brightly colored duffels or painting a unique design on your bags. It can be difficult to find a single olive-drab duffel in a sea of 1,000 or more bags!

DISCLAIMER: You knew this was coming? Freewheel Inc. nor any of the volunteers are responsible in any way for items lost, stolen, broken, or otherwise damaged. Bags are piled in the truck and are tossed out of the truck at each campsite … select duffels and pack with this in mind!