One of the beauties of overnighters is that they don’t require much gear. In fact, it really boils down to just riding and overnight gear. It becomes even simpler if you only wish to do the trip if the weather is good.
That was a luxury we had on our Idaho Overnighter. The forecast was good, so I chose to bring an Alpkit Hunka XL bivy sack as shelter. I also decided I’d flirt with a shiver bivy by not bringing a sleeping bag, and just seeing if my overnight clothes (spare socks, boxers, nylon pants, long-sleeved synthetic top, windbreaker, puffy jacket, and fleece cap) would suffice. Let’s just say that Papa Bear was a bit chilly that night, and anxiously awaited the rising sun. That said, I lived, and when either too hot or too cold, I’m fond of the expression “It let’s you know you’re alive.”
This was the first time I’ve carried a water bladder in the frame bag, but it won’t be the last. I found it quite convenient and it let me get away with the lightweight backpack.
Of course, the gear list for this trip was complicated ever so slightly by the incorporation of some fly-fishing into the trip. My personal setup was a fly vest with the necessary widgets (tippet, nippers, forceps, flybox, and line), a tenkara rod from Tenkara USA, and small net (which unfortunately proved entirely unnecessary on this occasion!).
Rod, net, two lines, flybox, spare tippet, nippers, forceps, polarized glasses, and readers for my 'getting old' eyes...
For those unfamiliar with tenkara fishing, it is of Japanese origin and utilizes just a rod, line, and fly. Unlike Western fly-fishing, there is no reel. Most tenkara rods collapse to extremely short lengths, and the gear is so minimal, lightweight, and simple that I think it offers an incredible opportunity for cyclists. Perhaps a good way of relating tenkara to cyclists is to describe it as the singlespeed of fly-fishing. Mind you, a tenkara rod is designed for fly-fishing, and not for chucking a bobber and worms, or heavier lures.
Alas, a tenkara caught Wisconsin trout...Idaho, I will be back...
If you want to learn more about tenkara, here are a few links to helpful websites.
While I got shutdown by the trout of Bitch Creek during our video trip, I had some luck on the other days we spent in Idaho. That luck wasn’t just found in the streams and rivers though.
Wildflowers in abundance...
On this trip (my first) to Idaho, I discovered what an incredibly special place it is. The riding is varied and awesome, the scenery spectacular, and the people friendly. In fact, I’m hoping to get back to Idaho again next year because it was honestly that good.
T-Race rippin' some rippin' singletrack...
Many thanks to the good folks at Fitzgerald’s Bike Shop in Victor, Idaho for all their help during our days there. Thanks also to Salsa sponsored riders Tracey and Jay Petervary for their time and assistance as well. You all live in a truly special place.
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I love being outside. I prefer to ride on dirt. Or snow. If I was born a hundred years earlier I might have been a polar explorer. There's a great natural world out there to see, smell, taste, listen to, and experience. Life slows down out there and the distractions we've created will disappear if you let them. Give me a backpack and let me go.