I like one of those.
These days, with my bike camping packing play so nearly complete and dialed, I find myself messing around for the sake of mixing it up. Just funkin around. For fun.
I was reluctant to pull the other Salsa Minimalist rack offa it's current berth on the fat bike, so I put the Pletscher rear rack on the Ogre, and loaded up some panniers with warm clothes, Kelly Kettle, Ti coffee press and cup, breakfast food, cans of beer, etc. Old school. Then I put a 100oz bladder on top (in the grey OR bag).
Well, that will be among the last of the funking around for fun with panniers, unless it be for quickly diminishing food supplies on long backcountry tours. The ride quality really does suffer compared to a frame pack. Really and for real. And the Pletscher, well, it did wiggle. The goofball Thermarest off the front? No problem except for ridiculousness, and we are past caring on that front. It did puncture, and me without a patchkit pushes me into loving a non-inflatable sleep pad. Not a whole lot to go wrong is alright.
Surprise! The 29+ Knard on a 50mm Rabbit Hole fits in the Ogre fork just fine, and the ride is better not all jacked up by the taller Krampus fork.
Rides like a bike.
Mr. P was the driving force behind a sneaky mid-week campout. On account of he just built a new bike. The All City (Macho Man?) turned out swell. Of course, Mr. P has made multiple mistakes on gear selection and in life; chief among them is the Revelate designs Viscacha seat bag. Or, as it might be known, the Revelate Designs Asscatcher. While I admire and use several fine products from Revelate, that one is dumb. If you aren't riding anything technical, OK. But if you are, then nope, you aren't. Because how are you getting behind the saddle with that all up in your business? Anyhow, his bike came out real nice. He even got meticulously busy with the drillium:
I am jealous! After it is ridden some, those little holes will set in so nice. I will be a copy cat, for sure.
So. In the beaten way of things, we loafed- bullshitted and drank beers- until we were well past our intended start and getting food for dinner (it's easier than cooking, and all the kids want the quick and easy) was going to eat up too much of our little remaining sunlight. Then I remembered that my rack was rubbing on the front tire because of the careless fork swap. So that ended up taking up too much of our remaining sunlight, instead. Dinner? Cliff bars and sunflower seeds for all my friends!
We did make it out and onto dirt before dark; even if it was only just. We arrived at the spot and set our gear down so as to ride a little in the unencumbered dark:
What is it about riding in the dark? As before, it is the mystery. Familiar trails become new and exciting; sometimes new and exciting enough to make you crash. All kinds of good noises are in the woods at night. The owls were getting after it with an old time hootenanny, and that is a party I enjoy. The moon was only 30%, but it was a waxing 30% and capable of casting shadows. We appreciated it even more because the night was warm (a rarity here on the coast) and we could see the tall bank of fog waiting in the wings and smothering the lights of town while we had gloriously clear skies above, right up until bed time.
That is the type of situation that could have been sub-optimal or even downright sucky (I have had one of the wettest and rottenest campouts ever in that very spot), but was elevated by the very same possibility of failure into a great success. I say it regularly: the best adventures are that because they require the real possibility of the worst (you know, aside from, like, sharks, explosions, and stuff) be faced. But, the only people who ever hear it are already out there with me. Someone choosing to stay in and watch their 32nd favorite rebroadcast TV show doesn't hear it.
No tents brung. No tents required.
Morning in the woods.
I had to get to work, and singletrack was on the way there.