2004-03-16

Equipment

My bike is a VSF T900. A high quality but classic trekking bike. Nothing fancy about it. I figure KISS (keep it simple stupid) is a good motto if you want to keep repairs down to a minimum and want to be able to do them yourself without having to be a trained mechanic. It's a 28" CrMo frame, built for smooth straight sailing to the horizon. Lots of bicycle travellers prefer sporty 26" mountainbike frames nowadays, which do have some advantages, but I enjoy that sturdy chopper feel of mine. Only thing I would have liked to test and try is a Rohloff Speedhub which is a bit out of my price range unfortunately. As it is, the bike details are:
Magura HS33 hydraulic brakes
Tubus lowrider and rear carrier
Shimano dual pedals (SPD click system and bear claw)
Shimano XT group, except for the front derailleur which is LX
Fizik Nisene saddle
B&M D-Toplight Led plus including standing light
B&M Lumotec oval frontlight
Rigida Xplorer rims
Schwalbe Marathon XR mantle
... and so on. Who cares anyway?
The picture above is from the catalogue. Mine naturally looks a bit different ;-)

Buying a tent is something of an art. There are tons of guidelines to follow and tips to account for. I settled for a Rubens Goldfinch Dome. The deciding factor for me was it's relatively cheap price and great features. It's primary disadvantage being it's weight of 4.5kg, which is very heavy compared to other modern tents. It's free standing not needing any lines or pegs. It's storm proof because of it's igloo form and three strong alloy poles. It's inconspicuously colored. The apsis is roomy and doesn't let any rain into the inner tent even if left open. The inner and outer tents are set up together in one go, so it doesn't get wet when setting up in the rain. You don't have to fiddle the poles through channels, but just click them in. It's easy to set up alone. All in all I'm very happy with it so far. And it has already seen heavy rain, strong winds, snow and ice, direct sunlight and toughest of all challenges: a Rock am Ring festival weekend. Strong survivor!