Clifton Suspension Bridge, Bristol

My bike all packed and ready to go

My bike all packed & ready to go

LEJOG / JOGLE Equipment list

My bike all packed and ready to go

My bike all packed & ready to go

Some people manage to travel lightly whenever they go away - I'm not one of them! I'm not quite at the point of packing the espresso machine but having to carry all your belongings on a bike for over 1,000 miles - and up hills - certainly makes you think about what you really need.

The list below details all the gear I took to hopefully give you some inspiration for your kit list. As it turned out there's not much that I took which I didn't end up needing at one point or another, although with hindsight I could have cut back a little. I've added comments against each item to help you decide if you think you'd need it.

Of course though, if you have the luxury of a support vehicle, then you can get away with taking a lot more equipment anyway!

If there's anything missing from this kit list that you found useful, or anything you couldn't live without, then please do let us know through the comments section at the bottom of the page.

Jump to topic:


Bike & bags

Bike
Genesis Tour De Fer 10

Genesis Tour De Fer 10

The main thing to focus on with a bike is getting one that's comfortable for you. The Genesis Tour De Fer 10 was great for me (especially as I prefer straight handlebars), although I'd advise changing the rear wheel for a stronger rim and spokes.

It can also be worth checking out this great guide (may cost) to expedition bikes. It's written by Tom Allen, a cyclist who's been travelling the world by bike for over 10 years and knows a thing or two about bikes.

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Panniers
Ortlieb Rear Roller Pro Plus QL2.1

Ortlieb panniers

Ortlieb are the most popular pannier brand and with good reason - they're great quality and 100% waterproof. I opted for the larger ones (the "Pro" range) to be able to pack more stuff in; as I said I'm not a light packer! (although I had loads of spare room)

Buy from:
Cycle Surgery* (smaller classic version)

Handlebar bag
Ortlieb Ultimate 6 Classic handlebar bag (large)

Ortlieb handlebar bag

This handlebar bag was spacious enough to store all the gear I needed easy access to such as my phone, camera, spare battery pack, wallet, inhalers, and suncream. It helped to counterbalance the weight of the rear panniers somewhat, and being quick release with a shoulder strap meant I could take my valuables with me if I left the bike somewhere.

Buy from: Amazon*

Top bar bag
Bontrager Pro Speed Box

Bontrager top bar bag

I used this bag, which easily attached to my top tube & seemed to be fully waterproof, to keep energy gels in for easy access throughout the day.

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Saddle bag
Topeak Aero Wedge Saddle Bag (medium)

Topeak saddle bag

This saddle bag was used for storing all my bike tools (and spare inner tube); it was the perfect size and easy to access when needed.

Rucksack
Camelbak Mule NV Hydration Pack

Camelbak Mule rucksack

My rucksack contained a 3 litre water bladder (although I never filled it that full), as well as my jacket for quick access on days when it looked like it might rain (on other days my jacket was packed away in my panniers).

If you prefer cycling without a rucksack (and relying on your water bottles instead of a bladder), then as an alternative this frame-mounted bag looks as if it'd be great for storing your rainjacket with easy access.

Buy from: Amazon*

Pedals
DMR V8 Magnesium Pedal

DMR V8 Magnesium bike pedals

These replaced both the original pedals that came with the bike (which were very basic), and the Meetlocks pedals I initially used but which snapped mid-ride. These pedals however were great, giving large surface area for the feet and good grip. Many people prefer clip-in (cleat) pedals but it's years since I've used those and I didn't have time to re-learn them.

Kickstand
BV Rugged Adjustable Kickstand

Heavy duty kickstand

A kickstand was really useful as it meant I didn't need to keep putting my (very heavy) bike down on the floor. This particular kickstand is a heavy duty one, capable of supporting heavily-laden touring bikes.

Buy from: Amazon*

Water bottles

Water bottle

My bike had attachments for 3 water bottles although generally I only ever had two filled at a time; one with just water and one with an energy powder mixed in.

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Laptop
Microsoft Surface Pro 4

Microsoft Surface Pro

I took a laptop with me to be able to do route planning on the go as well as other work in the evening (obviously not everyone takes a laptop though!). The Surface Pro 4 was ideal as it's small and incredibly lightweight - even with the charger it's still under 1kg.

Buy from: Amazon*

Navigation
Garmin Edge 1000

Garmin Edge 1000

I would have been quite literally lost without this. See here for how to upload route files to it.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Trip recording
Garmin Edge 520

Garmin Edge 520

Having two Garmin's was admittedly a luxury, but whilst I kept my Edge 1000 on the map display, I used this one to permanently display various details such as my speed and distance, as well as to record the day's cycling.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Battery pack
Innergie PocketCell Plus

Spare battery pack

The spare battery pack I had proved crucial for powering my GPS when I once forgot to recharge it, and was also really useful for keeping my phone battery topped up during the day too. There's loads of battery packs available; this one has a high capacity (6000mAh giving me about 3 charges of my iPhone), is lightweight, and has a fast output to boot.

Buy from: Amazon*

USB plug adaptor
Avantree Multi USB Wall Charger

Multi USB charger

This was a brilliant weight & space saving piece of kit! It enabled me to fast-charge 5 USB devices at once (eg any combination of all my bike lights, my phone, my camera batteries, and both Garmins) without having the weight of carrying several plugs. Highly highly recommended!

Buy from: Amazon*

Camera
Sony RX100 IV

Sony RX100 IV

I love my photography but taking my full SLR kit would have been a bit much. This camera (which took all the landscape photos on this website) is small yet brilliant quality and takes RAW format images too. Don't forget to pack a spare battery and memory card too, as well as any cables or units for charging the batteries.

Buy from: Amazon*

Safety & security

Helmet

Cycle helmet

No explanation needed!

Buy from:
Cycle Surgery
*

Mirror
Mirrycle Mountain Bike Mirror

Cycle mirror

This mirror is something I won't be without now; it was incredibly useful. This particular one was very stable even over rough ground and could be angled around, enabling me to see what was behind at a glance.

Buy from: Amazon*

Lights
SeeSense Icon+

SeeSense Icon+ bike lights

The SeeSense Icon+ lights were extremely bright and useful for ensuring drivers could see me when it was raining, flashing more frequently as cars approached. The battery life was over 2 days.

Lights
Moon Nebula

Moon Nebula bike light

I took this as a backup to my SeeSense rear light, as well as to increase my visibility from other angles. Again this is incredibly bright.

Buy from: Amazon*

Bike D-lock
Abus Granit X-Plus 540

Abus Granit X-Plus 540

As far as D-locks go this seemed to be the best one out there as a balance between weight and security. I got the version that included the EazyKF bracket which worked great for mounting it on my bike.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Bike cable lock
Kryptonite Kryptoflex 7 Foot Cable Lock

Kryptonite Kryptoflex 7 Foot Cable Lock

I took this in addition to a D-lock so I that could secure my bike to almost anything. I was glad I had it, although I rarely used it as my bike was always undercover overnight and I never left it for long during the day.

Bike cable lock
Kryptonite Kryptoflex Seatsaver

Kryptonite Kryptoflex Seatsaver

This short lightweight cable was useful for helping to secure my panniers to my bike, although the level of security was minimal (thieves could have simply cut the fabric handles of the panniers). See the Safety & Security page for more details.

Survival bag
BCB CL044 Emergency Survival Sleeping Bag

Survival bag

I took this in case of any extreme situation where I was stranded in remote Scotland (call me paranoid!). As it happened I was never far from a road so could have flagged down help if needed; I don't think I'd take one again.

Buy from: Amazon*

First aid kit
Plusinno 31 Pieces Mini First Aid Kit

First aid kit

This kit was a little bigger than I expected when it arrived but very light; luckily I never needed it.

Buy from: Amazon*

Whistle
Bushcraft BCB Distress Whistle

Emergency survival whistle

Again I bought this in case of an extreme situation where I was stranded in a remote place. Even though my route never did take me anywhere too remote I'd still take it again as it weighs nothing.

Buy from: Amazon*

Antiseptic wipes
Boots Antiseptic Wipes - 48 Wipes

Antiseptic wipes

I kept these in my handlebar bag where they were useful for cleaning hands, for example after any fiddling with my bike chain. These ones from Boots are antiseptic as well, useful for cleaning any cuts (eg whenever I bashed my shins against my pedals!)

Buy from: Boots

Medical supplies

In addition I packed a few other lightweight medical supplies, including:

  • Suncream
  • Antihistamines
  • Ibuprofen
  • Lemsip tablets
  • Inhalers
  • Antiseptic cream

Clothes & comfort

Jacket
AeroTech Designs Rain Jacket

AeroTech Designs cycling rain jacket

This was superb jacket - not only was it a rare large jacket that I could find that would fit me, it was also lightweight yet warm, windproof, & totally waterproof. My only regret was that it was yellow - a colour that I discovered attracts flies!

Gloves
Endura FS260 Pro Aerogel Mitt II

Endura FS260 Pro Aerogel Mitt II cycle gloves

Gloves are gloves! There was nothing special about these ones except they fit me well and were padded.

Arm warmers
Revolution arm warmers

Revolution cycling arm warmers

I only wore these a couple of times but they were useful on days where it wasn't cold enough for my jacket but when I still wanted some more warmth. They were also useful when passing through areas of lots of flies for keeping the critters off my arms.

Waterproof shoes
The North Face Hedgehog Gore-Tex Hiking Shoe

The North Face Hedgehog Gore-Tex Hiking Shoe

These shoes were another of the items that I was so glad of taking. If you use cleated pedals then your choice of shoes might be a little more limited, however having some that were waterproof was great for light rain showers as there was no need to keep stopping to put my waterproof shoe covers on. The danger of waterproof shoes is that your feet might sweat more but I didn't find this was the case with these ones.

Buy from: Blacks

Waterproof shoe covers
Endura Luminite II overshoe

Endura Luminite II overshoe

I took these for times when the rain was a full-on downpour, when I thought that even my waterproof trainers might struggle. I have huge feet (size 13) and these were about the only overshoes I could find that would fit, and even then it was tight.

Unfortunately though these proved useless - both days I wore them my feet ended up sat in a lagoon; I wouldn't have been surprised if any tadpoles came out when I took my shoes off at the end of the day! I never did work out how the water was getting in as they seemed waterproof and were tight (and scratchy) at the back against the calves, however next time I think I'd be better without these ones. An alternative choice could be to opt for waterproof socks instead.

Compression bags
Packmate roll-up space saver bags (medium)

Packmate roll-up space saver compression bags

These are just genius! They'll make your clothes take up less room (simply zip them up & roll to squeeze the air out), keep them dry should your panniers leak, and help keep clothes sorted (eg 1 bag for dirties, one for still-damp washed clothes, etc). These made unpacking & repacking my bags every night so much easier.

Buy from: Wilko

Helmet rain cover
BTR Helmet Cover

Cycle helmet rain cover

I was extremely grateful for this when it rained heavily, helping keep my head dry and warm. It even fits helmets with sun-visor peaks.

Buy from: Amazon*

Chamois butter
Chamois Butt'r Original

Chamois Butt'r Original

This is a cyclist's secret weapon. Sore bums go with the territory of cycling but this helps avoid chafing in sensitive areas.

Buy from: Amazon*

Sunglasses

Sunglasses

These were useful for pretending that I was Tom Cruise. And for keeping the sun out of my eyes.

Cycling clothes

Some cycle tourists manage to get by on just 2 t-shirts and sets of underwear; I found 4 sets much easier:

  • Cycle shorts (x1)
  • Waterproof hiking trousers (x1)
  • Cycle t-shirts (x2 short sleeve, x2 long sleeve)
  • Underwear (x4)
  • Handwash liquid

I tried washing clothes every evening but found that items didn't always fully dry out overnight (unless the B&B had a heated towel rail). In those cases I was grateful for an extra set of clothes to give the damp stuff an extra 24hrs to dry. I also got a bit lazy some evenings and just couldn't be bothered doing any washing! The handwash liquid was useful though I could have saved weight by using shower gels instead.

In addition I visited a couple of launderette's en-route too for a thorough wash, even though they took a couple of hours out of the day.

One tip I learnt regarding choice of clothes though - always test any of your waterproof gear before you set off! I didn't and it seems my once waterproof hiking trousers (a few years old) had lost their water repelling abilities! Even washing with re-waterproofer stuff during my halfway stopover at home in Leeds didn't seem to have much effect; with more planning I should have bought some new ones.

Evening clothes

Bringing evening wear was a luxury that some people may choose not to do, however I didn't want to spend weeks being in my cycling gear the whole time!

  • Spare shoes
  • Jeans
  • T-shirt

The jeans were a luxury and I should really have taken lightweight hiking trousers instead, whilst my spare trainers (which I was especially grateful for on the really wet days when my cycling shoes needed drying out) did take up a lot of room. If I do the ride again I'll look for some slim pumps instead.

Toiletries

Other smaller toiletry items I packed as well included:

  • Toothbrush/paste
  • Travel shower gel / shampoo
  • Hand cream
  • Shaver & shaving cream
  • Mini deodorant

Tools

Multitool
Topeak X-Tool

Cyclists multitool

Multitools are something no cyclist should be without! Allen keys, flat & Phillips head screwdrivers, and a couple of other tools, are things you'll need several times on your trip. This particular multitool from Topeak was lightweight for its size.

Allen keys
Hex Key Set 2mm-8mm

Allen keys

Whilst the multitool had some allen keys I still prefer dedicated ones since they're better for getting at awkwardly located bolts. This set also came with a large 8mm size key, not generally found in multitools, which was needed for occasionally tightening my kickstand.

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Adjustable wrench
Stanley 150mm MaxSteel Adjustable Wrench

Adjustable wrench

Instead of a full set of spanners I took this small adjustable wrench for use on any bolts that might need tightening. I used it to tighten my spoke nipples when they came loose, although with them being so small a dedicated nipple tool would have been much easier.

Buy from: Amazon*

Chain tool
Topeak Super Chain Breaker Tool

Chaintool

Fingers crossed this is a tool you'll never need, however if you ever snap a chain you'll be glad you brought it. This one had a dedicated hook to hold both ends of the chain in place while you repair the links.

Spare chain links
9 Speed Bike Chain Split Links (Pack of 3)

Spare cycle chainlinks

Fortunately I never needed these - these fall into the category of emergency "get me home" kit that help temporarily replace any links in your chain that may break. Make sure you get the correct type / size for the number of gears your bike has.

Buy from: Amazon*

Bike pump
Topeak mini dual pump with gauge

Topeak mini-pump with gauge

This is another basic piece of kit that needs no explanation! It has a mount for easily attaching it to your frame next to the water bottle holder.

Spare inner tube

Tyre innertube

It's much easier to quickly swap inner tubes rather than faffing around by the road fixing the puncture - leave that until when it's easier. Obviously make sure you get the right tube - diameter, width, and valve.

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Puncture repair kit

Puncture repair kit

Does what it says on the tin!

Buy from: Evans Cycles*

Tyre levers
Topeak Shuttle 1.1 Tyre Levers

Topeak Shuttle 1.1 Tyre Levers

The tyre levers that come with puncture repair kits are often (in my experience) nasty ones; it's worth making sure you have some good ones on hand for when you need them.

Chain lube
Finish Line Dry Teflon Lube

Finish Line Dry Teflon Lube

Keeping your chain running smoothly is certainly a good idea when cycling 1000 miles! I made sure to get a bottle with a secure screw lid so that it wouldn't leak; some bottles just have a clip-on lid which are probably only intended for storing on upright on shelves.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Cable ties

Cable ties

I brought these to help attach my rear light to the bike (long story) but they can be useful in other situations too, eg to secure any loose cables or help tie things down when transporting your bike.

Buy from: Amazon*

Gaffer tape

Gaffer tape

I'd read a tip somewhere that gaffer tape could be useful - and so it proved! I used it to secure my trouser ankles & stop them catching in the chain before I could buy some trouser clips, as well as securing parts of the bike when transporting it. If you wrap some tape around a very narrow tube (eg an old biro tube) then it doesn't need to take up much room and is very light.

Buy from: Amazon*

Energy

These energy gels and powders can add a lot of weight quite quickly; it's best to buy only a few days worth at a time and re-stock from bike shops as you go.

Energy gels
Torq gels

Torq gel

I've sworn by Torq gels for years, especially for hiking. I've tried other brands but always come back to these - they taste great, are relatively compact, and you really can feel the difference they make.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Electrolyte tablets
SiS

SiS Electrolyte tablets

I put a couple of these in my Camelbak each day to help my body absorb the water, as well as giving it a bit of flavour.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Energy powders
SiS GO powders

SiS GO powders

These were useful to give my body a quick energy boost in the morning; I'd put one into one of my water bottles and shake it up to dissolve. Again I could feel the difference these made.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Recovery
SiS ReGO powders

SiS ReGO powders

In all honesty I have no idea if these worked or not! You're meant to mix one sachet with water & drink it as soon as you finish exercising for the day. They contain carbohydrates to replenish your body stores, as well as protein to help your muscles recover. I don't know whether they did any good or not, but as I have never cycled so far before I figured my body needed all the help it could get so why not.

Buy from: Wiggle*

Is there anything else I wish I'd taken?

I think I actually did pretty well with taking everything I needed for my LEJOG trip yet not carrying anything majorly excessive. In hindsight though there are a couple of things that I didn't take but wish I had done:

Trousers clips

Trouserclips

I did quickly buy a pair of these, making do with gaffer tape initially, to stop the bottom of my trousers from catching in the chain.

Spoke nipple tool

Spoke nipple tool

Whilst my adjustable wrench did the job, a dedicated tool would have made it much easier and quicker to adjust my wheel spokes.

Cassette removal tool

Cassette removal tool

These aren't particularly light and it was a conscious decision not to take one as I didn't think I'd need one. And whilst I did manage without, that was just due to luck at being able to find a bike shop nearby when my spokes broke (to get at the rear spokes you need to remove the cassette).

There are novel lightweight tools that will remove cassettes too, such as the "Next Best Thing 2" (NBT"), available from Spa cycles.

Cycling Gilet

Cycling gilet

No not a razor but a lightweight cycling vest. I wanted one of these but couldn't find any that fit my size; manufacturers obviously think only slim people want to stay warm! There were some days where it wasn't cold enough to need my full jacket yet I could still have benefitted from a little warmth or extra wind protection from a gilet.

Full fingered waterproof gloves

Full fingered waterproof gloves

Luckily it never got truly cold for me, although there were a couple of days where long fingered gloves (especially waterproof ones!) would have been nice to have.


Join the discussion!

What tools do you use? Have you got any tips to pass on to others? Let us know here!


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