Katadyn Mini Water Filter Review

I don’t do any marketing for Katadyn but if I did I think ‘water so good the eels want it back’ might be a winner.

Having a way to purify water, especially when you’re unfamiliar with where you’ll be travelling, is essential. The average person can survive weeks without food. You can still feel safe from mortal danger if you have to skip the odd meal or two but the same cannot be said about water. Without water you’ll be lucky to last more than 3 days.

There is a helpful rule to remember these limits called ‘The Rule of Threes’. You can survive three minutes without air, three hours without shelter (in a dangerously cold environment), three days without water and three weeks without food.

Continue reading Katadyn Mini Water Filter Review

Thorn Sherpa Review – Steel Frame Touring Bicycle

I’ve been collecting my thoughts for this Thorn Sherpa review since I first built the bike in my grandad’s shed. I built it in the middle of winter four years ago. I had attempted to build up my new Thorn Sherpa frame in my garage, but at a fun dampening -2°C I received a better offer from my grandad who told me I could use his quintessential English ‘shed at the bottom of the garden’, fitted with a cast iron multi-burner.

Thorn Sherpa review.
Thorn Sherpa attachment points.

I took my tools, stacked up in front of a small fan heater, and hauled the Thorn Sherpa frame and components up the road to a balmy 22°C Costa-del-English-Shed and had a fun couple of days tuning the gears and perfecting the cabling, sweat gently beading on my forehead. Thanks grandad! Continue reading Thorn Sherpa Review – Steel Frame Touring Bicycle

Bicycle Saddlebags – You Don’t Need Saddlebags Anymore!

I’ve always had a love hate relationship with bicycle saddlebags. I love that they can carry my tools, that they are quite light and sit out of the way when I’m cycling. But I hate that they’re too small to carry a snack or micro-sized pump, are difficult and often fiddly to access and they are very heavy in relationship to what they can hold. In other words, when you look at the overall weight of your bicycle saddlebag, complete with multi-tool, spare innertube and patches, the bag actually accounts for a significant percentage of that overall weight. How inefficient!

Until recently there wasn’t really any alternative to the bicycle saddlebag. The new innovation that I’ve come to prefer has recently trickled in from the bike-packing or mountain bike touring movement. In an effort to find ways to carry luggage on bikes that have no business carrying luggage, bicycle product designers came up with the top bar bag. Continue reading Bicycle Saddlebags – You Don’t Need Saddlebags Anymore!

Cycle Touring In New Zealand. What’s It Like?

I hadn’t done any research about cycle touring in New Zealand before I arrived here. I didn’t really know much about this beautiful and remote country at all.

First let me tell you the problems I’ve faced, then I’ll tell you what’s good so you’ll be able to make your own conclusion.

New Zealand’s Road Infrastructure

New Zealand, almost uniquely for a developed country, is a hard place to assess from the saddle of a bicycle because Continue reading Cycle Touring In New Zealand. What’s It Like?

Top Cycle Touring Blogs 2014

Here are some of my favorite cycle touring blogs I’ve been reading this year. Some of them I have followed for many years, others are recent discoveries but all of them have something to offer a cyclist. Whether that be inspirational stories, useful information or beautiful photographs you’ll find what you’re looking for in the links below.

Ultralight Cycle Touring Blogs

I mention ultralight cycle touring blogs separately as they have been my special interest since arriving in New Zealand. Continue reading Top Cycle Touring Blogs 2014

Ultralight Cycle Touring and Fully Loaded Bicycle Travel