Personal setups » Walkurtalk’s Set Up For 2011 AZ 300



My first crack at serious bikepacking. I will be doing two test runs of 3 days each. One in late February, the other in early March. Here is what I am rolling with on the first run and I fully expected to revise this many times before now and April:

Bike: 2010 Gary Fisher Superfly 100 Full Suspension

Front Tire: Kenda Nevegal 29×2.2

Rear Tire: Kenda Small Block 8 29×2.1 (not pictured)

**Set of Maxxis Ikon 29×2.2’s on order, which is what I will most likely use for 2nd test run and race.

Frame Bag: Modified a used Epic Designs Bag to fit my Superfly frame

Seatpost Bag: Sea Line Dry Bag and strategic strap placement.

**I have ridden 3 rides with the Sea Line Bag full and other than rubbing against my left leg which I fixed with some adjustments, the bag did not sag or sway, which was a worry for me when making my decision to go with it.

In the Sea Line Bag:

Montbell UL Super Spiral  Down Hugger #3 sleeping bag

Mountain Hardware Goretex Raingear (jacket and pants)

Pearl Izumi Leg Warmers

4oz Emergency Bivvy (to be used as primary bivvy and groundcloth)

Extra pair of Merino wool socks/extra underwear

MSR Hyperflow Water Filter

Repair Kit including:

Selected Allen wrenches, Tire boot, 2 oz bottle of Stans, 2 29er tubes, tire levers, patch kit, bit of duct tape, tiny sewing kit, small hand pump, small homemade bike lock, 2 oz bottle of chain lube, zip ties

**Thought about putting the repair kit in the frame bag, but I need the space for things to which I am going to need quicker and easier access (powerbars, gloves, sunscreen, camera, etc) and if I need that repair kit I am going to be stopped for a while, so opening the Sea Line bag will be no big deal.

 In the Frame Bag:

Bottom pouch: Butt’r, sunscreen, extra hair ties (I lose them constantly),cell phone, some toilet paper in a ziploc, tiny toothbrush and toothpaste

Top pouch: gloves, maps, lighter and firestarter (need quick access), First Aid kit, iPod, Camera, NightRider MiNewt Light, Black Diamond Headlamp

In Backpack (GoLite Rush):

Hydration Bladder, SPOT, food, light fleece jacket, space for when clothing layers aren’t needed, balaclava

On me:

Giro Helmet, headsweat/skull cap, Under Armour Base Layer, Jersey, NorthFace Apex jacket, GoLite Thermal tights, Pearl Izumi Bike shorts, Merino wool socks, Pearl Izumi X-Alp Enduro II Shoes, cleats for Time pedals

Mounted on handlebars: Garmin eTrex Vista HCx, Garmin Forerunner 310xt with HR strap

 Top-tube bag (not pictured): Hammer Gel, Honey Stinger Energy Chews, Peanut Butter M&M’s, Jelly Bellies, mileage cue notes, etc

I decided against a handlebar bag because I am not taking a sleeping pad and really don’t want the weight or bulkiness. I am the type of person that can fall asleep anywhere and have slept comfortably many, many nights out in the wilderness without a sleeping pad. I also decided to not bring a chain tool or extra link. Why? I guess I am trying to wisely play the odds….the likliehood of me, a 127 lb woman breaking my chain is nill…Is this a safe bet? Or should I take them?

So there it is….what have I carelessly overlooked? I will put a better picture up soon, this one is old. Tear it apart, guys. I really love feedback…Thanks!!

Comments (20)

Tony MasonFebruary 10th, 2011 at 11:26 pm

Nice set up. Way to improvise.

I like the use of the Sea Line dry bag for your seat post bag. I have used a similar set up and it works great. Definitely lighter, cheaper and waterproof compared to “offical” seat post bags. What volume is the sea line?

I would consider packing a chain tool and link. While you are unlikely to break a chain, a broken deraileur is a possibility and a chain tool would be needed to convert to a single speed to keep you rolling.

I’d consider leaving the filter at home and bringing Aqua Mira drops to save some weight (off set that darn chain tool)

You might think of putting some heavy items from you repair kit in the bottom of your frame bag for better weight distribution.

I envy you for being able to sleep and stay warm at night without a pad. I have a hard enought time even with an insulated inflatable pad.

All in all, looks great. Have fun!!!

MarshalFebruary 10th, 2011 at 11:33 pm

My 1st glance ‘gut’ reaction/feedback—or some things to think about during your trial runs—the trial runs will truly answer all—-

Maxxis Ikon’s seem a bit XC light for the AZ desert

Weather forecast permitting leave the Mountain Hardware Goretex Raingear pants home

Extra pair of Merino wool socks/extra underwear—leave them home—you will be dirty and smelly with or with out these extra items so why carry them?

MSR Hyperflow Water Filter-leave home –study/know where potable water can be found on the 300 and carry some chem. Tabs for just in case

2 oz bottle of Stans –have you ever tried to field re-inflate a repaired tire with stans and a small pump? It can be tricky—you might think about starting with stans in the tires but carry 2 tubes with a patch kit . note: a tire boot does not work very well with just stans—you need a tube to press on the boot to hold it in place

small homemade bike lock –maybe-if it makes you feel secure but where will you need really this on the AZ300?

You thought about putting the repair kit in the frame bag—do so—in the bottom pocket of the frame bag. Low center of gravity –out of the way and still accessible without unpacking-repacking the seat bag. The bottom of the seat bag should contain light stuff you only need during camp-the top might contain a down jacket and warm gloves. Note:You do have the right idea about keeping certain items handy—use jersey pockets top frame pocket and a small tank bag for those.

Maps?? Why take maps with a GPS? The AZ 300 route does not lend itself to maps.

light fleece jacket—replace with light down vest—lighter-warmer-more packable and dries faster if it gets wet

balaclava-over kill for the AZ 300—your style scull cap plus-when needed a wide headband that can slip over the ears plus will be more than warm enough
On You– Giro Helmet, headsweat/skull cap, Under Armour Base Layer, Jersey, arm warmers, (your Mountain Hardware Goretex Jacket when cold + down vest if truly hypothermia/freezing), Pearl Izumi Bike shorts, knee or leg warmers, Merino wool socks, Pearl Izumi X-Alp Enduro II Shoes, cleats for Time pedal
Garmin Forerunner 310xt with HR strap—why take an extra GPS?– unless you want to ‘record’ your hr?
I decided against a handlebar bag because I am not taking a sleeping pad and really don’t want the weight or bulkiness. I am the type of person that can fall asleep anywhere and have slept comfortably many, many nights out in the wilderness without a sleeping pad. I disagree with this but you would know best—during a race the pad is to keep you warmer for better recovery not comfort-a trimmed windscreen is a not really bulky and about 4 oz -I would recommend at least a wind screen

I also decided to not bring a chain tool or extra link. Why? I guess I am trying to wisely play the odds….the likliehood of me, a 127 lb woman breaking my chain is nill…Is this a safe bet? Or should I take them—Ahhh please take them—chains break /kink from mud and missed shifts more than macho power/watts

MarshalFebruary 10th, 2011 at 11:37 pm

Opps use the word Windshield Screen (sun screen) not windscreen

walkurtalkFebruary 11th, 2011 at 12:38 pm

Thanks, guys, for all the suggestions. Tony-The Sea Line Bag is a 10L.

Great things to think about and very helpful to make the adjustment from riding in cold Colorado weather (hence all the warm clothes packed along) to riding in AZ. Liking the idea of the vest. The lock was more for stopping to buy food at a store than on the trail. Not really paranoid about getting my bike jacked but thinking a small lock would allow me to at least take my eyes off it while inside.

Chain tool is in. Definitely can rethink the necessity of some of the things I have listed (like maps and GPS, duh) Good call, Marshal.

My water filter is so light and so fast and easy to use, that one will be hard for me to give up. I need to study the route more as far as water sources.

Excellent point I never really considered the effectiveness of using the repair kit to lower the center of gravity.

Learned a lot from this….um, so now….what about scorpions? 🙂

Tim McCabeFebruary 11th, 2011 at 5:03 pm

Still to cold for most creepy crawly things shouldn’t be an issue.

A couple of comments first I would get that set up on some real down hill trail before committing to having the seat bag up so high. Even if you don’t use a sleeping pad I would try to move some stuff to the bars for better balance.

I also carry a very small lock only really used it once last year when shopping in Tucson. And then only at the super market not as much of a necessity for fast food or convenience stores.

As far as maps go most won’t help you on the trail at all but it wouldn’t hurt to have copies of the right pages out of the Gazetteer map book. Not for use on the route but so you at least have a clue where you are and to navigate off course if need be. Even if you have a base map on the GPS it’s easier to figure out where to go on paper just in case.

While not everyone bothers with sleeping in the race and you might get by fine without a pad but this isn’t CO you won’t find a lot of soft stuff to sleep on. Even with a pad I always check the ground for sharpies and rocks. I met a hiker from CA who never used a pad I ran into him late in the day and we decided to camp together. In a wash that was his game plan nice soft sand he said. I made him promise to not sleep in washes if it looked at all like rain.

FredFebruary 12th, 2011 at 11:20 pm

I’m surprised no one mentioned what struck me as the biggest worry. Three days riding off road with carbon stays rubbing against tight nylon would cause me some worry.

How tight is your frame bag on your seat stays? The proximity (and apparent tightness) of the straps above and below makes it look like the bag is constantly rubbing the stays. Maybe you’ve taken steps to protect them. Maybe the pictured bag is just to plan packing for a custom bag later. It’s something I’d put some thought into.

Beyond that, I’d offer support for the water filter. You can easily ride the AZT route without one, but there are so many water sources that are probably more appealing with one. Obviously a bigger deal to different people.

Good luck out there. Actually getting out and trying everything really is the best way to figure your setup out.


Jefe BranhamFebruary 13th, 2011 at 8:28 am

I wouls say as far as water goes there are enough Tap type water sources on the 300 course to just use those, as long as you can carry it and move reasonably fast, that way just bring a few chemical tabs to treat anything else. Much Lighter, but bit more muling too. I also think if you are a good sleeper and resourceful a sleeping pad isn’t all that needed on the AZT, but then again I am a bit of a freak there, I found sandy washes/waterbars make nice beds, and yes, not while it’s raining!!! Jefe Best of luck, I think the AZT 300 is just a wonderful bit of racing/slice of southern AZ.

WalkurtalkFebruary 13th, 2011 at 12:18 pm

I, too, am a bit of a freak on the sleep thing. The plan is to move at a good, but sustainable pace and utilize a few well-timed naps. Thanks, Jefe! I am excited to get a feel for AZ.

Tell me more about the issue with the seat stays? I double checked and the bag isn’t very tight against them…Very curious to know more, however…

Jefe BranhamFebruary 13th, 2011 at 12:44 pm

I think Fred’s refering to chafing, which could wear the clearcoat off the carbon with enough shaking. It is amazing how much a tiny bit of movement will rub paint, anodozation right off, I have a King headset that was once pink and is now mostly silver due to handlebar bags moving around. Granted it is only 300 miles, but a rough 300 miles could potentially rub your frame raw. Best not to ruin your fancy carbon!

FredFebruary 13th, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Yes. My worry would be that the movement of the seatstays will create a sawing effect from the fabric. If the fabric isn’t rubbing, then it should be fine. It might be worthwhile to put something on the stays for protection just in case. I use a clear frame protector tape on my (carbon) frame near housing and hoses. I don’t know the name of the product, but it’s similar to what comes on most bike’s chainstays.

WalkurtalkFebruary 13th, 2011 at 4:47 pm

Excellent information. Never thought that the fabric could do that. I have looked very seriously at a product called Shelter in the past:

Going to really look that over to see if it could potentially rub. Sounds like it may be time to give this a try!

OurManInTheNorthFebruary 19th, 2011 at 4:32 am

Regarding the rubbing, I think it’s as much as soon as you get dust/mud onto the frame or the bag, it’s that that starts to act as a really fine grained sandpaper between the two! With every movement of the suspension, which must be a hundred a minute or so, you get a nice automatic sandpapering action wearing through the paint and then carbon… As Jefe says, I’ve got a few thousand miles on my bikepacking setup now and have lost paint and anodising on the headset, stem, headtube etc, and these were all places where the bags etc were strapped pretty tightly down so very little movement should have occurred… Nothing too deep or serious, but your carbon protection tape would probably be worthwhile where there will definitely be movement!

LyndaWFebruary 28th, 2011 at 10:12 pm

You can buy a custom Frameskin kit for SuperFly 100’s

WalkurtalkMarch 1st, 2011 at 9:01 am

Lynda-Thanks for the links! Like the Frameskin 🙂

Test run #1 went pretty well.

#2 Starts Sunday 🙂

KruzMarch 10th, 2011 at 7:17 am

the past coulple comments are why I will never ever buy a carbon framed bike they are to expensive brittle and people care too much about light weight I hate when people freak out over a couple ounces what is wrong with steel or aluminum the only real use I see for carbon is XC racing Stricly for the pros

kcMarch 11th, 2011 at 7:34 pm

how did u make the bag with your fully

walkurtalkApril 6th, 2011 at 12:24 pm

KC-are you talking about the frame bag? I bought it used and made some strategic cuts to fit my frame.

DgoMomAugust 7th, 2012 at 7:00 am

Just curious…what size is this bike frame? I have a small 2011 Superfly and am doing a hut trip in a few weeks, but having trouble finding a set up that still gives me 4 inches of travel on my rear shock.

gregon2whlsMarch 6th, 2014 at 1:33 pm

I use electrical tape as a protector under zipties etc. and replace it as necessary.

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