A few weeks ago I published my 2015 Bike Tour Packing List here on the website at Bicycle Touring Pro. Almost immediately, the comments and emails started flooding in…
- I notice you’ve no dishes, pots or stove in your list.
- Have you always toured without a stove? Don’t like the sound of packing up and moving on without at least a cup of tea or coffee.
- Hey Darren, no cooking equipment?? You carry the things I would like to travel with but I’ve been bringing a stove and dinner food… I’m always worried I’ll get caught in some remote place where I can’t get to a restaurant or convenient store.
- Interesting: no pots, dishes, or stove.
- You don’t include a stove or any other cook gear than a spork & folding knife. Do you buy all of your main meals (other than simple lunches/snacks)? While I’m sure this would make for wonderful experiences with the people & cultures along your routes isn’t it expensive?
I received so many emails about the lack of a stove, cook pot and/or dishes of any kind in my equipment list that I thought I would make a short video to explain why, for the last 7 years or so, I have been traveling around the world without the traditional camp stove, fuel canister and cook pot that accompany so many traditional bicycle tourists.
Watch the video above for the answer… or read my three main points below:
- Remember that every bike tour is different. The gear you pack is going to depend on where you choose to travel in the world, how long you plan to be on the road, the type of roads you choose to travel on, any personal goals you might have for your bicycle tour, and a whole lot more. So there is no one, single, correct way of packing for a bike tour.
- Choosing whether or not to bring a camp stove with you on your travels is a matter of personal preference. It is not 100% necessary. It’s a nice thing to have in some situations, but you’d be surprised just how easy it is to find a warm meal almost anywhere in the world. And if you can’t get a warm meal, you can survive by eating cold, picnic-style foods. It might be a break from what you’re used to, but yes, you can survive!
- For the last 7 years, the only items in my kitchen have been a simple folding knife, a plastic or titanium spork, and a small mini lighter. If you plan to eat on the road (and occasionally make a campfire), these are the only three things you really need. For some bike tours (where you might be eating at hotels or restaurants for every meal), you don’t need any of these items.