I didn’t plan to get too hung up on gear and it was the last thing I sorted out, but with some gentle persuasion (ahem. Thanks Dad…) I caved in and bought a couple of extravagent purchases.

For those that like this sort of stuff, here’s a selection of kit I’m taking with me. I’ve included brands and models where I can remember them:

Bike – Thorn Raven
Specialist steel touring frame builders Thorn Bikes, based down in Bridgewater built this beast of a bike up for me. This is the Rohloff Hub (internal geared) version of their second most rugged touring range.

Selected Highlights:

  • 26″ wheels
  • Rohloff 14 speed internal geared hub
  • Asymetrical bottom bracket to keep the chain a good tension
  • 3 (Three!) Bottle cages
  • Proper Solid Reynolds steel frame tubing
  • Brooks Saddle (Finally broken in!)
  • Flat bar handlebars, with Ergon grips on the ends
  • The world’s largest headtube


  • Ortlieb Backpacker Classic rear panniers
  • Orlieb Front Roller Classic front panniers
  • Altura Dryline bar bag
  • Exped Drybag 
  • Berghaus 65L expedition rucksack for the TCT Volunteering
  • Loads of bungees
  • A whole heap of mental baggage 

Camping Gear

Mostly standard stuff I had knocking about, but I purchased:

  • MSR Whisperlight stove, which can burn practically any fuel going 
  • MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2 Man Tent, lightweight but also big enough for me + gear
  • Grayl water filter bottle

In terms of sleeping equipment:

  • Sleeping Bag (Mountain Equipment Frostline 500)
  • Inflatable roll mat (Mountain Equipment Helium)
  • Bivvy Bag (Alpkit Hunka)
  • Sleeping bag liner
  • Mosquito net
  • Tarp

All these combine to mean I can sleep practically anywhere, although I’m yet to decide whether the weight penalty is worth it for this versatility.


Again mostly what I already had. I bought a down jacket whose price tag still makes me wince, some thermal leggings and a ridiculous wide brimmed sun hat. 

Because it’s 2017, I need the following:

  • Smartphone (LG G5) does most of the digital heavy lifting
  • Sony point and shoot camera to give the phone a rest
  • Cheap backup smartphone for emergencies
  • Kindle, because 100 books are weighty
  • SanDisk Clip Jam mp3 player – podcasts and audiobooks aplenty
  • Arteck bluetooth keyboard – because typing on a phone is tedious
  • Anker Power packs x 2
  • Anker Solar Charger to charge all of the above (not so useful in the UK)


A whole host of other kit, not mentioned above. Off the top of my head:

  • Multi-tool, 4 & 5mm Allen keys, bottom bracket tool, spare spokes
  • Toiletries – Mostly Sudocream
  • First Aid Kit

When it’s all on the bike, it looks like this…