Monthly Archives: August 2017

Personal Items for my CO GAP Bike Tour

Personal Items CO GAP 2017


This post I will discuss the personal items for my first bike tour. This is first aid,  nutrition, hydration, clothing.

First Aid

I’ve made a mini first aid bag to carry. This has tape, bandaids, alcohol pads, gauze bandages, sting kills (for bee stings), diphenhydramine for allergic reactions, Tylenol, Tums, Imodium AD. I’m a former ultra runner so this is similar to what I would carry for an ultra.  This is not that I am anticipating an injury, but this could help out someone else on the trail.

First Aid in Vehicle-I will also have a bigger kit in the vehicle, mainly because I can have it, full of more miscellaneous first aid items.


This is probably the less thought out portion of my daily ride. I tend to not remember to eat while biking. There doesn’t seem to be that many places to easily get food without going off the trail, so I want to make sure I have food. This is where ultra running history comes into play.

I will probably carry a sandwich with me, along with various foods to nibble on, such as crackers, cookies, foods with a high caloric count.


I have Tailwind left over from my last training days as a runner. I’m going to carry a bottle of Tailwind powder to dump into my water supply.  This has electrolytes and calories in it.


Ultragen is a recovery supplement. I just bought a new vat of it, yummy Orange Cream flavor-tastes like Orange Creamsickle! I’m planning on having a serving of this daily as soon as I finish biking for the day.


My clothes are pretty simple. Bike shorts and running tops. I have normal socks. I don’t have to worry about washing clothes on tour, I have enough clothes where I can just discard into the dirty clothes pillow case for the day.  Well, I do have to wear my bike shorts for two days in a row, I don’t have enough to go around.

Waterproof Clothing

I will have available my good Marmot Precip jacket, which I won’t carry unless it looks like rain in the forecast. I will carry my emergency poncho with me.  I don’t have waterproof pants that currently fit.  I am biking in August, it should not be that big of a deal.  Of course, having the SAG wagon lets me bring more clothes items, like long sleeves and pants if needed.


Of course there are electronics! I will be carrying my camera, phone, and Zune. I like to take pictures with my camera. The phone is more of a communication device (I know, call me crazy) to keep in touch with my husband, not to surf Facebook or post pictures on Facebook or Instagram.  The Zune is my old MP3 player, to listen to when I want on long stretches on the towpath. I have bought a little portable speaker called a Boombotix

(Affiliate link, it will take you to Amazon where I get a few pennies if you buy one) that I have not used on a bike ride yet, but if I am all by myself I may play some music out loud.


This is my first bike tour, so it’s all an experiment of one!

Any items I am forgetting?

Bike Gear for my CO GAP Bike Tour

Bike Gear for CO GAP 2017


I’m bringing my bike! It’s the only bike I have. It’s a Specialized Myka hybrid bike.

Myka Bika

Mile 77 on the GAP Trail, my recon in June

Bike  Stuff

(there are affiliate links below. If you click on a pic, it will take you to an Amazon link for the item, where I may earn a small amount of money, just need to let you know!)

I bought Ortleib waterproof panniers for the rear bike. When I was shopping, I thought I was doing the camp-hotel-camp routine, so I was planning on carrying much more stuff.

I needed something to mount the panniers to, I bought a Top Peak Bike Rack:


I needed a water bottle mount, similar to this one:

There is the bike repair stuff:

The bike pump. I have finally figured out how to use it

My multi tool:

A spare inner tube:

Bike Tire Levers to get the tire on and off. I will carry three with me.

Spare Shimano Cleat Screws-I’ve already used!

I will also carry some zipties and duct tape. Also the number of bike shops on or near the towpath on the section of trail that I am on.

Bike Bag I have a smaller version of a bag like this for my front handlebars. It will hold my camera and cell phone

I have another smaller bag to affix to the down bar. Being that I have a female bike, I don’t have the long pole to hang other things on. I may wear my SPI Belt to keep my money and ID in, so I don’t forget to take it with me when I hop off the bike.

Bike Lock-I will take a bike lock with me, it’s not quite a six foot long one like this I hope where I am going bike security won’t be that big of a problem. I’m not planning on stopping long on my bike tour.

Another note: my husband will be driving the SAG wagon, (support and gear) where I will meet up at the end of each day. This gives me the luxury of having spare items in the vehicle for further back up.

What did I miss? What did you carry for a supported daily tour?

Biking the Wheeling Heritage Trail

I wanted to get one long last ride in before my CO Gap Adventure. I decided to travel to Wheeling West Virginia to ride on the Wheeling Heritage Trail.

Wheeling Heritage Trail

Wheeling Heritage Trail

The Wheeling Heritage  Trail consists of two trails, the Wheeling Creek Trail and the River Trail. I parked at Elm Grove, an easy to get to lot, and started biking west. The trail is right beside the highway, a bit noisy.

Wheeling Creek Trail

There are signs telling you what section of Wheeling you are travelling through.


The tunnel was pretty cool to bike through. hempfieldtunnel On the other side of the tunnel,  you end up in South Wheeling. This is a poor neighborhood.  The trail just merges on to the streets.

There is poor signage through here. The only signage is a bike and the words “BIKE LANE” stenciled on the street. Most of these are very faded. As I bike through this sketchy neighborhood, I keep looking for these stencils.

I get to the downtown area and the stencils have disappeared. I know the bike trail continues as the “River Trail” so I take a leap of faith and just bike to the riverfront area. Now there is an asphalt bike trail again.

River Trail



If you are riding the River Trail, I wouldn’t recommend biking south, unless you need to get the miles in. It is an industrial area and not very attractive. You do go by the Mailpouch Factory, which explained the Snuff Building.  Snuff BuildingYou don’t see that every day.

It’s only a few miles south and I reach mile 0.0. MileZero




I bike past  the little downtown riverfront. There are not many people around. Mini rant: It must be a thing in this area not to say hello or acknowledge a human being. In passing or encountering people, I always say hello.  I would guess I got an acknowledgment of about one person in thirty. It was like I was invisible. 


The River Trail was much better to bike on. It alternated between a semblance of rural and then biking right beside a road, then four lane highway.


I did pass the Pike Island Dam and  Lock. I guess there is no unfettered traffic on the Ohio River.

The highlight of the bike? The deer encounter. I rode right up on her. I starting calling to her, wanting to scare her left back into the woods rather than out on the road.


Success! She’s safe for this hour! Yay deer!

The RIver Trail ends with no fan fare, there is no signage up at the north end of the trail. The  Brook County Trail begins. This is a 7 mile trail which will end in Wellsburg. I don’t go that far, when my watch clicks off 20 miles I decide to turn around. I will end up with about 40 miles.



Gear Crisis Averted

I’ve been having trouble clipping out of my right shoe. I stop and take the shoe off. For the third time, I’ve  lost a screw and now the cleat is sideways.

Success! I have brought my spare cleats AND the hex key to use. I center the cleat, use a  new screw, crisis averted! Bring your tools and equipment on every ride!

Back in the downtown area, I again follow the almost non existent bike stencils past the now open soup kitchen. The signs completely disappear, but I remember the funeral home on the corner and make the correct turn.


Things I learned today

Mailpouch was made in Wheeling.

There are locks on the Ohio River.

Other than this, I see no reason for a revisit for the Wheeling Heritage Trail. I did get in about 37 miles, my last long ride before CO GAP 2017!