HT550 2018 Prologue

So here I was, in the Ben Doran hotel looking at my bike and wondering how I still hadn’t managed to get it packed in advance. Various things breaking on my original bike choice had led to me taking along my newly minted fat bike for the HT550.  I had just built up some 29er wheels for it rather than go full fat, so figured it should be quick enough, although going from full suspension 26er to rigid 29er was a fair shift in philosophy. A midweek trip for work had left me with no time to sort out the first choice bike, so it was time to give my wheel building skills the ultimate test!

Mostly ready at 1am

I’d arrived in Tyndrum straight from work, unfortunately too late to join in with the beers down by the river. I’d checked in, wheeled the bike into my room via the open fire escape and got myself a nice dinner and beer at the Real Food Cafe before going back and getting packed. I’d been planning to keep my gear to a minimum and the stunning weather forecast looked like backing that choice!

The Bike

  • Ritchey Commando frame and fork
  • Novatech fatbike hubs laced to Stan’s Flow 29er rims
  • Bontrager XR2 Team Issue 29×2.35″ tyres
  • Ti seatpost and Brooks Cambium saddle borrowed from road bike
  • On-One OG bars
  • Avid SD7 levers
  • Avid BB7 brakes

Luggage

  • RockGeist Barjam HarnessBirzman pump.
  • Rockgeist Apogee Harness Feedbag.
  • Rockgeist Foxglove saddlebag.
  • Alpkit Stemcell x2

Equipment

  • Borah Gear Snowyside eVent Bivy
  • Thermarest NeoAir original
  • Western Mountaineering Summerlite sleeping bag
  • Alpkit 8l drybag for harness
  • Midge net
  • Spare inner tube
  • Tyre boot
  • Tubeless tyre repair kit
  • Topeak Ratchet Rocket Lite
  • On-one chain breaker
  • Leatherman Squirt PS2
  • Valve core tool
  • SRAM 11 speed quicklink
  • Gear cable
  • Brake Cable
  • 2 pairs of Avid BB7 Brake pads
  • Gorilla tape, zip ties
  • Hiplock Z-lock
  • Birzman pump
  • 750 ml water bottle
  • Monkey Cage
  • Spot Tracker
  • Garmin Edge 1000
  • Apple iPhone 7
  • Exposure Joystick Mk10
  • Topeak Tail Lux rear light
  • Petzl E+ Lite
  • Anker 10000mAh battery pack
  • Xiaomi 10000mAH battery pack
  • 4x Lithium AAA spares
  • Mu USB charger

Toiletries

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Wet wipes
  • Toilet Paper
  • Buttonhole chamois cream
  • Sudocrem
  • Ibuprofen
  • Paracetamol
  • Sun cream
  • DEET insect repellent
  • SiS Electrolyte tablets

Clothing

  • Castelli Endurance X2 bibshorts
  • Howies Cadence short sleeve jersey
  • Smartwool trail running socks
  • Adidas Terrex Trail Cross SL shoes
  • Endura MT500 II gloves
  • Castelli A/C cycling cap
  • Kask Mojito helmet
  • Rapha Brevet insulated gilet
  • Adidas Terrex Tracerocker hooded fleece
  • Buff
  • Castelli Nanoflex kneewarmers
  • Freestyle waterproof shorts
  • Castelli Idro waterproof jacket
  • Montane Featherlite trousers

Looks like a lot of gear, but it all went in, with plenty of space for extra food as I went along. I threw in a couple of Trek bars and some shortbread from the hotel room before finally getting to bed after 1am I’d pop into the shop on my way to the start for the rest. At least the 0900 start gave me time for some sleep…

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