Pedalshift Project 053 testing new bicycle touring gear

The Pedalshift Project 053: Testing new bicycle touring gear… and again with the rear tire?

We are in the thick of bicycle touring season, so it’s high time I start testing new bicycle touring gear, right? Also a report on my semi-successful C&O ride (sigh… the rear tire… because of course) my Grand Canyon ride and much, much, more.

pedalshift project 053 testing new bicycle touring gearHey it’s the direct download link: The Pedalshift Project 053: Testing new bicycle touring gear (mp3)

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The Journal

C&O Ride

  • Ahh bicycle touring… it giveth and it taketh away.
  • The train.
  • The mud.
  • The people – had great conversations from the first night at the Y to the groups that I paralleled and ran into in camps. First time ever I ran into more women than men on the trail, and that’s awesome to see.
  • Campsite reviews – they’re coming! I have decent footage of every site from Cumberland to Harpers Ferry and intend to get that up as soon as possible, along with the ratings system.
  • Bonus: doing some work on swimming spots on the C&O based on feedback from a group I hung out with at a couple of campsites. Look for those soon.
  • The tire fail. More on it in gear talk, but here’s what happened.
  • The train back and the plan for completing the ride July 9/10.

Follow up on the summer tours I’m following

Michael Riscica @biketouring999   – got some sweet Waffle House arm shades and is making great miles across the plains and into Colorado. Check him out.

Patience @biker_girl_pay – biked through my hometown Fairport, NY on the Erie Canalway (check out Pedalshift Tour Journals Vol. 3 for my ride last year!)

3 Girls on a Bike –  hitting the humidity in Missouri but got to camp riverside listening to the fireworks in the background while swinging on hammocks near the Missouri river… not a bad way to celebrate the 4th! Follow the blog.

Gear Talk

Tires and tubes

  • Still a fan of Schwalbe tires but I 100% intend on replacing them every couple of years if they are the Supremes or any other tire with weaker sidewalls. The Plus line and others are burlier on the sides, but aren’t as good on pavement, which is where I do most of my rolling. Because this seems to be a warranty issue, I’ve submitted the images for review — MJ and others have had good response from Schwalbe on matters like this, so we’ll see. Love the tires, despite this fail.
  • Test your tubes. Carry at least one. I’m going to always do that before I leave and also check my patch kits to make sure I have multiple patches. Riding Schwalbes made me pretty complacent – a good thing and a bad thing!
  • DEET dissolves patch kit glue, so if you’re getting bombed by mosquitoes while you change a flat, wash your hands or use gloves.
  • Be patient and try to get a fix in the moment rather than hack and roll. Last time this happened a few years ago (different tire brand) I didn’t spend enough time on a boot and it failed. This time, I was too impatient with mosquitos buzzing and biting, and that caused the DEET issue.
  • Carrying a spare tire? Probably won’t do that. A boot should handle most issues and I think I’ll be much more aggressive with new tires every 2 seasons or as needed. By the time they wear “enough” I’m finding it’s already too late.
Schwalbe Marathon Supreme bead tear
Schwalbe Marathon Supreme bead tear
Schwalbe Marathon Supreme... normally does not do this!
Schwalbe Marathon Supreme… normally does not do this!

Testing new bicycle touring gear

Etekcity Ultralight Portable Outdoor Backpacking Camping Stoves with Piezo Ignition (Orange) – Love. Lightweight and fires up like a dragon from GOT. The big one that Dany rides. I mean, I hear… I hear she rides it. I’m unfamiliar with this program. [footnote]lie[/footnote]

Headsweats hat – Lightweight and sweat wicking. All my Syracuse and Bills hats are sweat-stained and gross… no more!

Brita Sport Water Bottle – because tasting iodine in your water is for suckers. Note, this isn’t a true filter for backwoods use. Probably should have said that on the pod. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

“Faux Pro” – Hey I can take videos without using my phone now! Check out the two I did (special thanks to Pedalshift Plus and Pedalshift Society people for making this happen)…

Aaaand a quick reminder those links are affiliate links… if you’re into these things and get them from Amazon, you help support the show. I paid for and tried em all myself and thought you might like them too!


Thanks for checking in! You can always reach out at or hit me up in the comments section or on social media.
Another 5-star review from Christopher!

Pedalshift Society

A big thank you to all of the monthly supporters of the show! If you like what you hear, you can help me keep the show listener-supported while expanding the offerings (like the new C&O online guide!). A buck, two bucks or even 5 helps with the costs of hosting the podcast and the website, plus the  Pedalshift Society allows me to do cool new things I’ll be rolling out in future shows. Check it out and join at

If you’re interested in one-shot support, consider something over at Pedalshift Plus and get something cool in return! If the C&O talk is interesting, consider Pedalshift Tour Journals Vol. 2: DC – PGH with multiple daily podcasts chronicling my ride in 2015. You can get that at Pedalshift Plus. On to the Society!

  • Ethan Georgi
  • Matt Buker
  • Kimberly Wilson
  • Caleb Jenkinson
  • Cameron Lien
  • Andrew MacGregor
  • Jonathan Martin
  • Michael Hart
  • Johnny K

Thank you for supporting the show!


The Pedalshift Project theme is America courtesy of Jason Kent off his self-titled solo album. Check out his band Sunfields‘ album, Habitat, wherever cool music resides.  I heard Jason’s new album in January and it is AWESOME. More info when that drops!