Bike Packing Denali NP on the Cheap

Joined
Aug 2, 2013
Messages
1,503
Location
Colorado
Bummer it didn't work out.... but 14k ft of climbing sounds absolutely miserable!
Nice looking gravel grinder. Not that you need any gear advice, but... with all those rack mounts, maybe the delay will keep you from having to pull a trailer next time around, if you can source some racks and bags in the interim. I've towed my kiddo trailer enough to find that I prefer to have stuff on the bike than tow it (personal preference, of course). My gravel rig has a carbon fork, which is nice for bumps, but doesn't allow me a front rack. I haven't taken it on any long tours, but I've done a number of longish day tours with my photo kit. I've settled on pulling my bottle cages out of the front triangle to fit a frame bag, and I have a rear rack for panniers (although most bikepackers seem to prefer the seat bags) and a top bag if needed. The panniers bounce a little on rough terrain, but they've never fallen off, even on light single track. Ortlieb makes a gravel specific set that includes an extra retaining clip (or you could just add one to a standard set, I'm sure).
 
Joined
Jan 3, 2014
Messages
6,107
Location
Mars
Bummer it didn't work out.... but 14k ft of climbing sounds absolutely miserable!
Nice looking gravel grinder. Not that you need any gear advice, but... with all those rack mounts, maybe the delay will keep you from having to pull a trailer next time around, if you can source some racks and bags in the interim. I've towed my kiddo trailer enough to find that I prefer to have stuff on the bike than tow it (personal preference, of course). My gravel rig has a carbon fork, which is nice for bumps, but doesn't allow me a front rack. I haven't taken it on any long tours, but I've done a number of longish day tours with my photo kit. I've settled on pulling my bottle cages out of the front triangle to fit a frame bag, and I have a rear rack for panniers (although most bikepackers seem to prefer the seat bags) and a top bag if needed. The panniers bounce a little on rough terrain, but they've never fallen off, even on light single track. Ortlieb makes a gravel specific set that includes an extra retaining clip (or you could just add one to a standard set, I'm sure).

I have all the bike packing bags and multiple panniers but I prefer the trailer over putting everything on the bike. Now the trailer I was going to take is my first two wheeled trailer and I am not sure I really like the way they pull and currently considering returning it. But one wheeled trailers are a different thing and I really like how they pull. My old one wheel trailer I had to retire because the mounting dropouts bent and since they are made of aluminum I don't really trust them after bending them back. That old trailer I have pulled on thousands of miles in the pacific northwest long before bike packing bags were invented. Wanted to get the new Burley Coho but there are no axels available for my bike, so I got the two wheel trailer photographed above. I will be getting the new Coho and think I may hang on to the Nomad, still thinking it through.
 

PeteS

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
May 18, 2021
Messages
91
Location
Tallahassee, FL
Real Name
Pete Staehling
I rode the Southern Tier with a guy who constantly had problems with the alloy dropouts on his bike pulling a BoB trailer. He had several breakdowns and hitched rides to dealers to get warranty support on what was a new bike. I was surprised he managed to get them to cover his issues and get him going three times. I don't recall the details but I think they wound up replacing derailleur hanger a couple times the rear wheel at least once, but maybe twice. He had to hitch hike way off route and waited for parts for a couple days in at least two towns. That said I met a bunch of people on the TA and lots of other tours pulling one wheeled trailers without issue on all sorts of bikes.

Personally I've always carried everything on the bike and these days after my early days of heavy touring I have gotten into a very minimalist packing style. I went coast to coast camping and cooking with a 14# base gear weight and have gone as low as 9# adapting my backpacking gear. I am not sure I can bring myself to ever carry too much photo gear again. One body and two lenses is probably my limit these days and for most trips I use the cell phone camera.

Any way your trip plan sounds awesome other than that there is no way I'd haul all that stuff for that much climbing myself (maybe if I was young again). Do you think you will try again next year?
 

jimr.pdx

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Dec 5, 2010
Messages
779
Location
~1hr north of Portland OR
Real Name
Jim R
I visited my brother in Anchorage back in the 70s, we got over halfway to Denali when we pulled over and i heaved all my ho, then spent a feverish few days on their couch. Such timing. Easy enough to see from Anchorage, but such a massive peek and its satellites should be seen up close.
 

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