Preparing for the Ride of our Lives – Cycling Across Australia
It has taken more than a month to get the bikes and the rest of the necessary gear together and with a week to go it’s still not all here.
We started on the bike specs while back in Kenya in the 2nd week of June. Elite Racing Cycles in Perth were able to interpret my spreadsheet and get the bikes and custom add-ons ordered and start to put them together before we even touched down on home soil.
We probably could have bought the frames and components on-line a bit cheaper and put them together when got home BUT the expertise and service the guys at the bike shop contributed was well worth any savings we might have made. It also meant I could pick up my bike on the second day after we arrived and Tim could get his the following week.
We basically had to start from scratch with almost everything we were going to take with us. Our old tent didn’t look like it could take anything more than sunny days and minimal winds so we had to get a new one of those. Our sleeping mats we destroyed on our previous travels and our gas burner was safely packed away in a storage container in Brisbane. Add to that all the peripherals required on the bike like panniers, racks, tool kits and spares and we were up for some serious cash. We definitely wanted to do it as cheaply as possible but are firmly of the belief that sometimes value for money doesn’t mean buying the cheapest option.
When I finally do the totals I’ll post a spreadsheet of equipment, specs and our suppliers. Hopefully all the research we’ve done (based on other bloggers I might add) will save someone else a lot of work.
The thing that really seems to be lacking at the moment is riding practice. The weather in Perth has been less than brilliant since we arrived in early August and we’ve both been flat out; Tim working and me sorting the logistics of the trip. Other cyclists we’ve met along the way assure us that we will ride ourselves fit….I’m sure that doesn’t mean without a lot of discomfort in the first month or so but I’m really just a little bit nervous of hitting the first hill with a fully laden bike. I’ll be sure to detail that experience in full colour and surround sound!
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