Happy New Year!

It’s the first day of the year and we are still moving ahead with our planning and preparations. Family and friends have all been made aware of the trip plans over holidays and they know to expect us on some random day this summer when we are passing through.

Jesse still doesn’t have a bike.  Just a minor detail… he’s holding out for a black 58cm Surly LHT. The local bike shop here in Montreal was able to get him an older model 58cm Surly LHT at a reduced price, however it was blue – the same as mine and apparently Jesse doesn’t want to match.

We will also be getting a new tent. We’ve tried a few – we were using the MEC Tarn 3 for quite a while, however it is heavier than some of the newer models available now. So next we tried Six Moon’s Lunar Duo tent. This one is very lightweight and works well for shorter trips when weight really is an issue, but you do have to be careful not to touch the roof since there is no separate fly and touching the roof will cause any water or dew to come in. Given the amount of time we will spend in the tent on a 5-6 month trip, it seems worthwhile to carry a bit more weight and have a bit more comfort in our temporary home. Now we are looking at the MSR Hubba Hubba tent – a classic, tested tent.

We still need some other gear items, and soon will have to decide if we get front rollers for one or both of our bikes as well. Given we will need to be prepared for a variety of weather this may be a necessity.  Another choice we will need to make is if we bring all our gear with us on the plane, or if we send some ahead with Amtrak and pick it up once we arrive.  Jesse has read that sending things with Amtrak may be a cheaper and better option, but that also has it’s own potential complications.