A short guide and a few items I love that make life on the road a bit easier.
I love life on the road, riding my bike in the sun, showing people around, going to new places. I ride with people from all backgrounds, super fit endurance racers to families with young enthusiastic kids and riders with varying skills and fitness, all are welcome. I might be out on the bike for two to three hours or all day for days on end, high speed and slow speed, wind, rain and blistering heat. I need good, reliable kit, I also need some creature comforts and to know I’m not going to be let down.
It’s great when people see what I do and the products I rely on and I’m in a great position to advise. After my bike’s loaded up my go to essentials are easy. I’m not going to list everything but just a hand full of favourites, the no-brainers and small explanation of why.
The first is my Wahoo Elemnt, it’s been a year and had a full season of use. I was sceptical mainly because I saw it as a training tool not a navigation one. Matt Porter at Wahoo convinced me to try it after my Garmin failed numerous times. I make no secret, I’m a total technotard and I still don’t use this to it’s full potential. Syncing it up with my phone took all of about a minute, the same goes for my power metre, Strava, Ride with GPS and Open Runner mapping accounts, setting up the screens was so quick and the mapping crystal clear. I can’t fault it, it’s never failed, the battery life is incredible and it’s a bargain compared to Garmin. Wahoo constantly update and improve it with more features, I’m way behind but I love it.
My camera, a Fuji XT-20. I love this, rarely ride without it. My rides and trips are about creating memories and taking photo’s is a massive part of that. Sharing moments, capturing people’s achievements, if only I really knew how to use it properly. It’s light, easy to use just let down by the man pressing the buttons.
Then there is a choice between two bits of kit from Q36.5, my gilet and rain jacket. The gilet has a temperature range like nothing else, it’s the first item of clothing to get packed, August is probably the only month of the year it doesn’t get used, it’s a real all rounder. The rain jacket from Q36.5 is light 163 grms, and packs up into a rear jersey pocket, it breathes so there’s no overheating and the fit is perfect.
Not kit, but essentials are my aeropress and grinder. Freshly ground good coffee on a French roadside makes those ten plus hours of driving bearable and don’t get me started on hotel coffee. Thanks to G!RO cycles, Workshop, Lindfield coffee works and Espresso Mafia for the beans and helping to maintain my sanity….ish.
My shoes, hand made in Italy designed in Germany, E-vers. Six months in and thousands of KM’s, they still look great, a testament to their durability, a truly innovative product in a crowded market. Johannes the owner of the brand said trust him and I’m glad I did, like Luigi at Q36.5 he designs products that are made to be used and last, function first and like Luigi, Jo has created something that works and fits perfectly.
All the above are staples, that I rarely travel without. I’ve relied upon them all and they’ve never let me down. Whether keeping me caffeinated, warm, comfortable each and every one of them are no-brainers. If you haven’t tried them then, take it form me, you should.
Ian Walton, James Norwood and myself.