Thursday, July 9, 2009

Summer is Icky

In So Cal where I live, summer means hot, brown, dry, prickly, sandy, and loose. Oh...smoggy sometimes. So really, I get less excited about riding under those conditions and that means less fitness and that means less interest in epic stuff and that means less fun in riding and that means less interest in riding and that means....see where this is going?

I still have not gotten out to try the bikepacking gear and that is beating me up emotionally. Every time I have it planned, I end up getting pulled away in another direction. Hopefully at the end of this month I will get out and try the set-up for the first time. I have been debating the tent VS. tarp dealie and that has me stymied a bit. I think I will try my UL tent for the first trip without the storm flap...summer ya chance of rain here. We ain't the Rockies. Or I may try it with the poles, footprint, and storm fly only, quite like a mock tarp shelter.

I want to start doing some simple overnighters to test stuff out to sort through packing and gear issues before I go out for real. Actually I am quite looking forward to the little quicky overnighters. There are a couple of options from my doorstep and of course way more if I want to truck myself to some beginning point. There is no water where I ride at this time of year...well practically that does limit epic stuff without planning in advance for resupply. Still, one night is easy to carry water for.

I have a brand new sleeping bag that I need to test. It is a Deuter Dreamlight 500 as in 500 grams weight. It nearly packs into a large water bottle and easily fits into my seat pack with room to spare. I know this thing will not be so great for cooler to cold nights with out a support bivvy, but I bet it will be killer for summer around here (rated to 50* or so). Once I actually get to use it, I will write up a report and post it on The Cyclist.

Tonite I plan on getting out on the new Jabber and see how the changes I made feel. I went back to a traditional h-bar from the Groovy Luv Handles and changed to a Mtn King front/Race King rear tire combo to better handle the loose and sandy local conditions. Temps have been quite mild for July but I have my lights standing by for apres-sun workouts.

So, I have plenty of reasons to gear to test, lights to extend the ride time - if it were only Fall and not the Icky Days of Summer I would be ON IT!

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