Tuesday, 1 May 2012

From Barcelona to Tehran


April 28, 2012

In April 2011, on a Sunday evening, when I was leisurely going through the travel section of Indigo on Yonge and Eglington, I saw a book titled, “Cycling home from Siberia”. It was about an English young man who cycled to England from Siberia on a loaded bicycle on his own. It brought a lot of my cycling memories back. In an instance, I decided to start traveling by bicycle again. Now, exactly a year after, I am doing my first long cycling trip. 
Tentative Map of the Route 

After thinking about different routes, I finally decided to start from Spain and go toward Iran covering southern European countries. I did a lot of preparation for this trip—from getting my equipment to thinking about my accommodation on my way. Every little unimportant thing could stop or seriously affect the trip. For example, not being able to box the bicycle for air flight would limit me to only one or two airlines and that meant one or two flights and cities. So for months, I was preparing.

The Equipment

Below is the equipment I am taking with me on this trip.

·         Two pairs of cycling shorts
·         A pair of padded underwear
·         Two pairs of cycling shorts
·         One pair of long johns
·         One long sleeved T-shirt
·         One shirt
·         One buff
·         One scarf
·         Helmet
·         Spare glasses
·         Sunglasses
·         Shower towel
·         One bandana
·         Two pairs of shorts
·         Two pairs of cycling gloves
·         One pair of thin wind-proof gloves
·         One pair of cargo pants
·         One pair of cycling shoes
·         One pair of flip flops
·         One warm long-sleeved T-shirt
·         One Gore-Tex rain jacket
·         One pair of rain pants
·         One pair of rain shoe cover
Cycling rain shoe cover 

 Cook Ware 
 A set of pots (two) with a frying pan
 Spoon + fork + mug
Cutting board
Premus Multifuel stove and its wind shield plus it’s repair kit
Camp soap and sponge 

Bicycle Tools and Spare Parts
·         Bike; a Surly LHT
·         One folding tire
·         Two spare tubes
·         4 panniers and one handle bar bag
·         Lube and grease
·         Allen key and spare cables and break pads
·         Multitool (Leatherman Wave 2)
·         GPS and a bike computer

Camping Equipment
·         A two-man tent
·         Air mattress
·         Sleeping bag
·         Cotton liner
·         Pillow
·         Tarp
·         Waterproof bag for tent
·         8 extra rechargeable batteries charger
·         Converter
·         Lenovo X130e laptop
·         Folding compact MEC day knapsack
·         First aid kit
·         Sun screen cream
·         Mosquito repellant
·         Needle and tread
·         Nail clipper
·         Camera (Fuji X10 and charger plus extra battery
·         Mosquito net
·         Shampoo and soap
·         Razors


  1. When I travel, I usually go on my folding bike - it can still be tricky on the planes, but for buses and trains, it's the best.

    1. Yes, but for a long trip like mine and with a full load, I guess you need to have a strong bike to put your life on it. You are absolutely right about folding bikes when visiting cities.

  2. My goodness Mansour, how are you able to carry all these things. The thought of packing all of this is distressing to me.

  3. Judging From your choice of words, I think you are Sre. Hope all is well with you and your cute baby.
    How I carry it, I cannot carry the stuff if I didn't have a bicycle. It helps a lot. And with the help of gears, it is not that hard. The weight just slows you down terribly. That's all.