Took my first stab at bikepacking. Went with two friends from Clear Lake (top of McKenzie River Trail) east along the north side of the Mt. Washington Wilderness to Big Lake and back.
It was a great time and a good lesson.
1) I packed WAY too much stuff. Threw everything into a borrowed Bob trailer the morning of departure and did not prioritize what I really needed. This turned out to be a challenge when the trail became much more sandy than we anticipated. The only one with smooth sailing at that point was the friend with the Pugsley with 4.0 tires. Seemed like he could float over anything!
2) I made do with what I had (such as a sleeping bag the size of a large suitcase when stuffed in its sack). Yes, it is good that we are all on the quest for the perfect gear and the ideal setup. But I am becoming more of a believer in "get out and try it" than in "read about it and plan for it and maybe someday do it".
3). Gear that worked well: the Jetboil stove and the Mountain Hardwear PCT2 tent. Things that were a challenge: a 1x10 drivetrain and the Bob trailer in loose, shifty soil.
Anyway, we all had a great time and I learned a lot. I now see some frame bags and a Surly Ogre in my near future!
Here are some photos:
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