As I started my central Asian section of the ride I really wanted to push lightweight touring even further and drop the panniers completely.
I have my Apidura bar bag, Apidura frame bag and I have now added the Apidura saddle pack. Sadly I failed and I also have two part filled panniers. I could take one but the bike would be out of balance and in the Kazakh and Uzbek desert I will need to carry up to 8l of water and a few days food so that is why they stay.
Here is a close up of the awesome Apidura saddle pack in action, so far I don’t have a bad word to say about it. Fits well, stays stable when riding and fits stuff in it like a tardis.
So bag by bag here is my current kit list for central Asia:
Apidura bar bag contains:
Sleeping Bag – Mountain Hardware phantom 15,
waterproof jacket and pants – Goretex paclite Berghaus,
Inflatable Pillow and 3 pairs of M&S cotton socks,
The Apidura frame bag contains:
Five spare tubes and three patch kits! They’re hard to find here!
Spork, penknife, nail scissors and multi tool from Topeak
Headlamp and rear light
Spare brake pads, spare G+B cables , bolts, chain links, spd cleat, spare spokes, spoke tool, tyre patches, tyre levers
Spare go pro and DSLR batteries
Spare food and toothbrush/paste squeezes in too!
Tent poles fit under the frame too
The Apidura saddle pack fits lots of bulky kit:
Tent – Terra Nova solar competition
sleeping matt -Decathalon Forclaz
Stove and titanium pan – MSR Dragonfly
Down jacket and fleece
Bike lock cable
The back panniers are quite empty:
The first one is empty bar a filter bottle then space for a water container
The second is also pretty empty:
Morvelo T Shirt, trekking trousers, pants and merino thermal
First aid kit
Spare bike liner shorts
Go pro mounts
Finally this is my normal riding kit, I now have just one Morvelo kit, its going to smell bad but it’s light!
I also have the same Ortleib camera bag on the bars for my DSLR and lens.
I really couldn’t decide whether I should just lose the panniers and squeeze it all in but being on my own the spare space is nice. After the Uzbek desert I will need warm clothing for the high mountains, so the water space will be used up with thermals. It also gives me a plan ‘b’ if a bag breaks in the middle of nowhere.
I swapped our 2.3kg 2 man tent for 900 gram solo tent. Carrying stove and first aid kit from marion add weight. No longer have the spare Morvelo kit nor spare T Shirt nor the Gillet. I have Marion’s epicly warm and lighter Mountain Hardware sleeping bag. The new sleeping mat is heavier than the Karrimor X Lite but it still holds air unlike the Karrimor! I lost the big camera tripod and some extra batteries, I also ditched the solar panel to save weight.
With Marion gone and no one to share kit with the weight I am carrying still feels pretty good, I have ditched kit but not sacrificed on safety as I head into some remote and unknown countries and landscapes. It is going to be an interesting adventure that’s for sure!!