The equipment I brought with me during this adventure changed while I was travelling. With time I lost bags, racks and got rid of things I found myself not using anymore
This is a short list of what I had with me in the last days:
After my prospect bike sponsor Bellitanner disappeared with my down payment, I asked to Vitor Peixoto at Rcycla Lisboa to build me a bike at the very last minute, allowing me to finally start my adventure.
It's an old mountain bike, steel frame; judging by its shape I assume it's from the 90's
I asked Vitor to prepare a sturdy bike for me and paint it matte black to minimize being seen while stealth-camping, where it's scratched you can see the purple paint below.
For long bikepacking tours like this one I suggest using a solid mountain-bike over a shiny nice new model: being able to cross rocky mountain paths, muddy fields and abandoned military bases covered in shards of metal beats using any kind of ultralight, full-carbon race bike.
I have started my trip with a 21€ WARpenaz 2 tent from Quechua.
It is a really nice shelter, freestanding and can survive the harshest climates; pity it weights more than 2kg.
I substituted this tent with a much lighter alternative, a 0.8kg Sintesi 1 tent from Ferrino which has proven to be a complete disaster: lots of condensation, leaking during rainstorms and faulty tent poles.
What I settled down with for the last third of my trip was a simple 3x3mt gardening tarpaulin, pitched with 3 stakes and two cheap bungee cords
This lightweight setup allowed me to camp everywhere I wanted and to be part of the outdoors in a very different way than what I was used to.
I started my trip carrying way too many things, and clothes have been the first to go
At the end of my trip all the clothes i had, including those on my person, where:
- Särmä Merino wool cap
- Särmä Merino wool underwear
- Särmä Merino wool socks
- Särmä Merino wool tshirt
- Mil-Tec neoprene gloves, for those extra icy mornings
- Teesar ECWCS Level 5 Soft Shell trousers, rain resistant and warm when cycling
- Berg Barfish sailing shoes, lightweight and drain rain fast
- Domyos running shorts bought at Decathlon, they dry really fast, can also be used as swimwear
- LIDL fleece, cozy and ok for colder nights
- LIDL hardshell jacket, 101% rain-proof
- LIDL bike jacket, used once only but saved me from hibernation
During the first part of this Lisbon to Istanbul adventure I did not cook as much as I wanted: I'd find a spot where to camp very late in the evening and usually I'd eat cold sardine sandwiches and beans straight from the can, trying to hit the bed as soon as possible.
When the cold, shorter days started, i found myself wanting warm food and hot soups, so I built myself a tiny alchool stove using scavenged materials (two cans, some metal wire, a ball of cotton stolen from a plantation).
My cooking set consisted of:
- Czechoslovakian Army mess kit from Varusteleka; it weights a ton around 600g, but allows you to boil water and stir fry ingredients - also double works as a blunt weapon against bears
- Plastic spoon with the handle sawed in half
- A sturdy knife
- A can stove
- 95% alchool fuel
- Pot holder
- Tiny bottle of oil
The trick during these long runs is to stay as clean as possible while minimizing weight and effort.
My toiletries set during this trip consisted of:
- Baking soda
- Sawed-off meme toothbrush
- 20x20cm quick-dry rag used as a towel
- Bar of soap
- Wet wipes
- Toilet paper from LIDL
- Nail clipper, also good for trimming down bike cables
- Cut down razor, unused
- Imodium and ibuprofen pills
- My beloved LIDL multitool
- Phone for taking pics and videos, reading offline maps from MAPS.ME, reading books, checking websites and updating my online presence
- Short USB/microUSB cable
- MicroUSB wall adapter
- Solar panel
- Backup battery-pack
- Carinthia Defence 1 sleeping bag from Varusteleka
- Tiny foam mat cut down from a camping mat
- Plastic bag for frozen food, used as insulation below mat