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Gearlist for Bikepacking

How (and what to) Pack For A Bikepacking Trip!

I’ll sort this question into three categories: what you MUST pack, what you could pack aaaaand what you’ll definitely regret packing (but packed anyway).

☀️🚲 The MUST pack list requires a tidbit of soul-searching (and map checking). How far are you headed? Are there shops along the way? Cafés? How about any friends and family who might feed you? If the answer is: barely any of the above, pack this:

  1. Resilience. You’ll probably have packed too little food or water or maybe you left your warm sweater on the couch or your rain pants at home (“bUt tHe wEaThEr fOrEcAsT was fINe?!”). Maybe you’ll meet someone on the road, or find a trash bin that can save you. Most likely, you’ll be toughing this one out.
  2. Tent/Bivy bag/tarp. Sleeping bag. Sleeping mat. Camping cooker, stove, knife, spork, lighter, matches (for when the lighter gives up). Rain pants&poncho, jacket, sweater, shirt, long pants, at least two pairs of socks. Emergency-, repair-,hygiene kit. Headlamp, powerbank(s), cables, charger.

Wrap everything in drybags. Tie to frame. Done.

🌤🚲 The COULD pack list includes understandable indulgences that make your life easier, but won’t get you through an emergency. This often includes:

Pillows, extra clothes, superfluous snacks, a solar panel on a route well-known for its rain and clouds, a book for downtime, a big-ass camera setup, your drone, your second drone, your – ah, I’m wandering off into the next list:

⛈🚲 The WHY THE HECK DID I BRING THIS category.

These are the items I’ve met people with on the road that they’ve regretted bringing along. This includes: a chessboard, a ukulele, a (broken) guitar, a (leaky) can of pepper spray, an icebox filled with (melting) frozen fish, a laptop, an orange salt lamp (this was headed towards a festival, so maybe not regretted in the long run) and a moldy backpack filled with what once was soup. That last one was mine.

Check out this post on my Instagram to see if any other experiences bikepackers added something I missed!

And for your own trip, here’s a checklist for you to download: