To bring or not to bring...the gear list
The Erie Canal End-to-End Expedition (ECE3) was a good way for us to test the capacity limits of our bike trailer (a Radical Design Cyclone IV with a 100L capacity). On the ECE3, we brought 2 sleeping bags and inflatable sleeping pads, 2 towels, 2 backpacks with our personal items (and more clothes than we needed), toiletries (including 2Toms and Chamois Butt’r), and some food and snacks. We also carried a tire pump, bike tools, Garmin, helmet, gloves, hats, lights, and my laptop. Once the trailer was packed we had absolutely no room for anything else. I struggled to close the damn thing. If I picked up food or drinks, I had to fasten everything to the top of the trailer. It’s great that the trailer is equipped with plenty of straps, but it was tough when it rained since the rain-cover is a very snug fit. Needless to say, we learned a lot on the ECE3 and have made a few changes in our packing strategy for the upcoming East Coast Greenway Expedition.
We traded the bulky backpacks for ripstop stuff sacks since they weigh less and will be easier to smoosh into the trailer.
Sleeping bags take up too much real estate. We'll use lightweight camping blankets and tiny sleeping mats. Altogether the blankets and mats take up less space than 1 sleeping bag.
Shan was right; I definitely brought too much food on our ECE3 (not my usual m.o. by the way; my friend, Tricia, can attest to that). There will be plenty of stores along the East Coast Greenway, so I will leave the pounds of bars, gels, and chews at home (maybe I'll just bring a few?).
We could have brought a lot less clothing. Since we will spend the majority of our time either in-motion or sleeping, we will pack mostly running/cycling clothes.
We added 2 things to our gear list: a power bank to charge the laptop and a mobile hotspot so I can keep up with work without interruption.
Our updated gear list -
Cannondale SuperSix EVO 105 road bike
Radical Design Cyclone IV trailer
Liv cycling shoes
Rudy Project helmet
Altra running shoes
Kelty Late-Start 2-person tent
PowerLix sleeping pads
Wise Owl Outfitters camp towels
Tiny cook set (Snow Peak titanium)
MSR pocket rocket
We each have 4 exercise outfits and our critical items (toiletries, 2Toms, bandaids, Chamois Butt'r) as well as 1 extra outfit, rain gear, and puffy jacket in case of chilly nights. We also have lights, a Garmin Edge, a Suunto watch, 2 power banks, my laptop, and a Skyroam Solis mobile hotspot. Everything fits in the trailer with some room to spare!
Note: The above trailer photos were taken before my Ridley (my baby and adventure companion for 11 years), had to retire due to frame damage. I replaced it with an equally beautiful and awesome bike - the Cannondale SuperSix EVO. It was a bittersweet transition, but I am slowly coming to terms with it. I'm grateful for the memories I have with the Ridley, and I look forward to making many more with the EVO. As you can see in the photo, she is ready for adventure.