Packing and Getting Ready for Cycle Oregon

moving6pfIt is hard to believe that Cycle Oregon is just around the corner. It is. You can — and probably should — check out “The Big List.” This list is the one the Cycle Oregon recommends. In my opinion, it is overkill. If you took all the stuff listed, you’d probably go over your allotted weight limit for baggage.

Keep in mind that this ride is really well supported. Mechanics can be found in camp and on the road. There is no need to carry a giant tool kit, chain lube, etc. Similarly, food and water are plentiful on the rides and in camp. Two water bottles *should* be enough for most days, but if you are a heavy drinker, you might want to have a hydration pack as well. There is also a medical tent so you don’t need to go overboard with first aid kits, etc.

It is highly recommended that you segment your things in multiple large Ziplock bags to help keep them organized and dry. I also put some things like my sleeping bag and a few other odds and ends inside a river-runner’s dry bag inside my duffel. I have a hard plastic “shoe box” that I keep breakable or small things in so they aren’t crushed in transit.

Plan for your duffel to be sitting in a puddle in the rain at some point even if it never happens. Your duffel should also be marked on the ends for easy identification. When you arrive in camp, they are in a huge pile and they all look similar. If you have riding clothes for each day, then cool. If not, you’ll need to hand wash. Fun, fun, fun. Bring stuff for hand washing if that is your bag.

Keep the clean clothes you plan to wear home in your car rather than drag them along with you all week. There will be showers at the parking lot.

Below is the checklist I use:

Bike Stuff
Bike + tools, repair stuff, pumps, etc. Include your front wheel.
Bike shorts
Knee and arm warmers
Cold weather/rain gear (booties, jacket, long tights, etc.)
Bike shoes
Water bottles (3). Hydration pack if you use one regularly (water on road is plentiful)
Gels or energy drink stuff (there is plenty to eat/drink on the road)
Non-riding clothes
A few changes of warm weather/cool weather clothes (undies, pants, socks, shirts)
Jacket for rain and jacket for warmth
Synthetic long johns (at the very least for sleeping in the very cold)
Winter hat (also for sleeping in the very cold)
Baseball hat
Shoes and sandals
Camp Stuff
Tent w rain fly
Sleeping bag (I also take a liner in case it is really hot or really cold)
Pillow (optional – you can also use jackets and stuff)
Big  huge air mattress with battery-powered pump
Ground cloth
Headlamp (or flashlight)
Hard plastic “shoe box” to keep things in that might be crushed when packed in a duffel bag
Pee bottle (Gatorade bottle – avoid midnight trips to the blue room)
Bike stand
Sponge (to clean out tent or soak up spills)
You should be clever enough to figure out the basics (toothbrush, etc.)
Chamois lube
Prescription meds
Benadryl (use as a sleep aid – very helpful)
Baby wipes (keeping your junk clean between showers is a very good idea)
Desitin Creamy Zinc Oxide or Bag Balm (for healing your ’tain’t)
Chap stick
Sun block if you use it
Something to charge it all with
Pen and paper
Flask and whiskey

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13 Responses to “Packing and Getting Ready for Cycle Oregon”

  1. Kris says:

    Desitin Creamy Zinc Oxide Ointment – helps your butt after back-to-back days of riding.

    Hefty OneZip Storage Bag, Gallon size – I packed 6 of these total. Each bag had shorts (with chamois lube already applied), a jersey, and a pair of socks. In the morning, I just grab a new bag and have everything I need then in the afternoon, I just put the dirties back in the bag and seal it.

  2. admin says:

    Pre-lubed chamois just seems nasty. Not sure why.

  3. Kris says:

    The cream just gets absorbed. It works man… doesn’t need to be a “fresh coat”. 🙂 Otherwise you can just apply it the morning of but it’s pretty freakin cold sometimes so it can be a little harder to apply.

  4. admin says:

    Cold goop on your naughty bits does a lot to wake you up though.

  5. michele says:

    cold goop with menthol. mentos for nether regions. it’s the freshmaker!

    i am up for less to do on a morning where i need to break down a tent, eat bacon, pack up then bike. it’s gonna be busy.

    how do i get a picture icon on here? :/

  6. admin says:

    Hey Joel, good news, your wife is going to break down the tent!

    It doesn’t matter how or when you lube your junk, so long as it gets lubed I suppose.

    You can’t get the picture icon on here. To get a picture icon that will appear here, you need to create an account/profile on WordPress (you either do this on or — I forget which). Then, whenever you leave a comment on ANY WordPress blog, your photo wil just magically appear. Then everyone will know you are one of the cool kids.

  7. Robert says:

    No bum cream for me – thank goodness. 🙂 Great list though. I have learned over the last three week CO’s and three Weekend CO’s that many things simply just don’t get used – especially snacks. Lots of food on CO and it is more fun to buy little snacks from the local folks. A great camp towel to bring are the REI backpacking ones. Like a chamois and they dry very quickly. Wouldn’t bring a big cotton towel…. it will never dry out.

  8. Carls2u says:

    Wait to make final decision on the clothes based on the 10 day weather for the areas you will be in. I shipped 1/2 the list above back 1/2 way through for lack of packing and weight. Remember the 65 lb rule…. Snacks…. no, no. stores available-they will cost the same, and truely you won’t need them. If you cant ride 15 miles without a snack something is wrong, you should see a dr! Generally I can use a pair of shorts a second day if it is only a 40-50 mile day. Or they do have an area to wash your clothes, if it is nice enough to dry them. Bring liquid laundry soap. Check your own hygene, see if that is possible to cut back on stuff. Chamois butter, Hammers seat saver-really nice and Calmoseptine….for the repair if necessary. Find Calmoseptine at the RX dept, just ask the Pharmacist, they keep it in the back. Excellent topical ointment that will heal quickly. Hospitals use it! compartmentalize is definitely a good idea in your duffle. And…. GET UP and use the BLUE ROOMMM… GROSS YOU GUYS! Sometimes it is a nice refreshing walk. A nice tent light of some sort, rechargeable or solar is great. Also, if you can find a unique blinking light to put on your tent so you can find it again, that is kind of handy if you do have to return in the dark. We got a Magnum size Waterproof duffle from Cabela’s. Looks like we can fit everything and not have to lay on it sideways to close it! Get a HUGE duffle…. too big is good. Plan on picking up stuff to bring home too…. Remember the 65 lb rule…..

  9. Carls2u says:

    There is a full bike shop and repair station-thanks to the bike gallery too, so if you need something, or fogot something, make sure you don’t wait till the middle of the week, it will be gone. Do a tune up BEFORE you go, new tires, tubes etc. BEFORE. Don’t bring extra tires… they will have them. I, again shipped most of that stuff BACK. Cost me $50 to ship from Waitsburg! 🙂 Inspect your bike every night like you are doing an event ride in the AM. Check your tires etc. for glass, thorns, whatever. This is the best ride in the world, you will love every minute after you get over the initial “Why the heck would I pay this much money to work this hard and get up this early on a ‘vacation’?”

  10. apk says:

    cold goop with menthol. mentos for nether regions. it’s the freshmaker!

    i am up for less to do on a morning where i need to break down a tent, eat bacon, pack up then bike. it’s gonna be busy.

  11. Pdxbiker says:

    I always bring a floor pump with me. We usually ride as a group of 4 or 5, so having a pump in the morning to get all the tires inflated right is very convenient.

  12. Pdxbiker says:

    I also bring a beach bag with lots of pockets to take to the shower. I can hang it up, separate the dirty from the clean and have all my toiletries sorted in the pockets. Works great and easy to many in the big duffle bag.

  13. masko says:

    Cold goop on your naughty bits does a lot to wake you up though.

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