Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Final preparations

Thanks to Mike, who's also competing, our 2 liter boxes have arrived in Cape Town and will hopefully end up at the correct support stations. The boxes have the following in:
Race food / drink
Restocks of soap / chamois cream
Restocks of my emergency food
and a few other secret ingredients.

There are no bike spares in the boxes this time - I decided to carry everything that I might need from the start, but there's not too much stuff for the singlespeed - brake pads, spare cleats and a seatpost bolt.

Last year I gathered spares along the route, and probably had 2kg's more equipment at the end than the start (finished with 2 bicycle chains). Everything in this year's boxes can be dumped if not used, so I will know my pack contents from day 1.

Also made a map board this weekend, mmm... well my dad put most of it together - I just did the design. I'll put some pics on the blog when we're back, with comments about how well it worked. I modified my maps to work in conjunction with the board (I hope).

Other than the bike, a major change in equipment has been in the lighting department - the big handlebar lights were really fantastic last year, but they took too long to recharge, and as a result I had to ride using only a small headlamp on some nights. I have split my risk this year by getting a better headlamp, and downgrading the handlebar lights to a smaller unit with a quick recharge time. The handelbar light runs for 7hrs before it needs recharging, and the headlights have replaceable batteries, but does not last as long, so I think I have all my bases covered.

So now its down to the final packing - I'm really trying to go with the minimalist technique inspired by Cornel (Freedom Ride record holder). I think I can get my bike and kit to less than 20kg, which will make the many portages more bearable (also keeping in mind that I will probably need to walk more with the singlespeed). Of course I won't be dumping any critical clothing / kit, but I've seriously considered all non-essential and luxury items.

So now its just wait, wait wait until we hit the road in 2 weeks time. Once I've finalised my backpack I'll put more up about the kit I will be taking.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Andre

Hope all goes well, bike looks thanks to me! lol let's hope it stands the test and you succeed. still think you are crazy. All the guys in our box will be monitoring your progress! Good luck with your last bits.
love sis

12:55 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home