Count Down

Well the countdown is on. It’s November and in a few weeks I’ll be setting out from Vancouver. I’ve been busily gathering my kit and supplies as well as assembling the various components for my bike. Chris, one of our amazing mechanics at Cap’s, is building the Surly Big Dummy with me. We’ve got it half way there. There’s just a few last items to arrive. I’m crossing my fingers that the rims arrive soon so we can build the wheels (not the easiest to find good 36 hole, 26 inch rims with sidewalls for rim brakes).

Building the Big Dummy

Working on the Dummy - Gord (Cap's owner), Chris (mechanic) and Brek

Studded Tires

Winter Marathons and Schwalbe Snows

I’ve been gathering camping gear as well.  So many different opinions on the best materials to use for the potential minus 40 degree (or worse) temps.  To go with down or synthetic seems to be the big question for the sleeping bags.  In the end I have gone with a minus 30 down bag with a down overbag that adds about 10 degrees, plus my minus 10 degree synthetic bag for the first leg of the trip.  I also have a vapor barrier which I am praying I’ll never need to use (it essentially means jumping naked into a plastic bag so that you don’t sweat into the down which would result in the bag losing its loft).

Testing out sleeping bags

Serious about testing out my sleeping bags

I have also been meeting with various people who can help with raising the money for and the logistics of sending a container of bikes to Africa.

The more that gets done, the more I realize that this is actually happening – scary and exciting!


2 thoughts on “Count Down

  1. I have shipped over sixty contaniers of bikes to cuba over a five year period before I retired. Storing them until I had a container full was a challange. Packing them tight with extra tires and tubes made a big difference and I mean hundreds of them. We got about six hundred bikes in parts and about two to four hundred whole in a container. The packing was important cause if anything can move it will so packing it completely full of bikes and parts (in four x four x four foot plywood boxes). The boxes were designed to fit tight and fill the bottom half of the container and the built bikes, partially dissembled filled the top half, with all the loose tubes and tires jammed into every little space. Duffles of sports equipment also were used to tighten things up and the schools loved to recieve the used soccer or baseball equipment. The boxes were reused by the Min of Ed. for desk tops and the plywood was donated to us by the movie industry. Unions sponsored a lot of the costs as well helped set up the bike shops there.

    the bike rental guy.

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