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Bolivia Bhutan Georgien Kyrgistan Baikal Winter
Tenerife Island
Kawa Karpo
TozeKangri Kilimanjaro

Our bikes

Current touring bikes

Andy's bike
Name: "Westwind"
Waltraud's bike
Name: "Dunkle Schneewolke"

frame: steel frame from Rotor Bikes, based on the model 'Komet'
front suspension: Mazorchi MX Comp ETA suspension forks
seat post: Airwings Evolution suspended seat post
gearing system: Rohloff Speedhub (17er Ritzel, 44er Kettenblatt)
crankset: initially Shimano Hollowtech II, then changed to Truvativ GPX "Black Box" and Stylo 1.1G Single
chain: Rohloff SLT99
rims: initially Mavic EX 721 CD - not reccommended! We have now changed to Rigida Sputnik rims
spokes: DT Competition
tires: Schwalbe Marathon XR or Schwalbe Black Jack
brakes: Shimano LX V-brakes
front rack: Faiv Hoogar or Faiv Hoogar Plus
rear rack: Tubus Logo Expedition
panniers: Ortlieb front roller and back roller, side pockets, Ultima 3 handle bar bag, saddle bag; rack-pack XL for the trailer
bottle cages: two bottle cages for water bottles, one bottle cage for fuel bottle

bike trailers: BOB ibex, Extrawheel

Things that broke

This front rack did not survive the trip to Mongolia. It broke at the joint and we fixed it with some rope.

This front rack also did not survive the Mongolian roads - we traveled with self-made ones afterwards, and now use the Faiv Hoogar in combination with suspension forks.

The original tire of the early editions of the BOB Yak trailer. The profile was gone already after 500 km in Mongolia... A lot of inventive mending was necessary.

Flat tires - there are a few on almost every tour, usually not a big deal. However, in the Mongolian steppe we had 4-at-a-time (small hard thorny seeds of some plant).

Rim Mavic 517 - not suitable for touring. After 4000 km through Namibia and Botswana the spokes ripped out of the rim.

Rim Mavic EX721 - it cracked open after 2000km (Tibet). We managed to tape it and it was good for 700 km, then it cracked on the oppoite side as well - more tape then...

Bike packing strategies

Bike-packing setup: Front roll, saddle bag plus small back pack

Georgia, 2015
Front and rear panniers plus rack-pack on both bikes

Greenland, 1992

Patagonia, 1995

Morokko, 2009, 2013
This is the classic way of bike packing. Its advantages are that the bicycle remains flexible and easier to carry. Depending on the amount of stuff added on top of the rear rack, riding stability may suffer. And, well, this is how we went before we knew the trailers...
Front and rear panniers for one bike,
front panniers and trailer for the other bike

Norway, 2003
A modification of the "classic" way, which adds the trailer instead of rear panniers to one of the bikes. The combination of front panniers and trailer is quite nice, as the low center of gravity results in a very good riding stability also on small trails and mountains.

Slovenia, 2004
Front and rear panniers plus rack pack for one bike,
front and rear panniers and trailer for the other bike

Mongolia, 1996

Tunisia, 2001

Kamchatka, 2002
The trailer increases the capacity of stuff that can be taken along, while the center of gravity of the loaded bike remains lower than with huge stacks on the rear rack. This system is of advantage when traveling to places where not much food or water is available.
Front and rear panniers plus a trailer on each bike

Namibia, 1998

Australia, 2001

Tibet, 2005 & 2007
This is for long trips to regions where lots of water or food needs to be transported