packraft testing and more

We have a trip planned for this coming weekend and it was time to pack things up and test some things out with the packraft setup.  My raft was recently in Utah with deathrider and Tim but I had only had time to do very minor trips to test things out.  Besides that, Kim's new raft and paddle hadn't even arrived until last week.  At least I had the bikes done...  mine is a 2010 Flash carbon and her's a Fargo.  There will be some tweaks to the setup on the bikes, but as-shown things worked pretty well.  We have a 2 man tent, sleeping pads, sleeping bags, cook kit, both rafts etc. etc. on the bikes in those pictures.

From that location we dropped down into the woods.  The descent required both hands on the bars working the brakes while walking...  'bikepacking' technique, eh?  About 20 minutes later and some major creativity (this was the first try to mount a bike) we were looking good, even if the water was looking awful fast!

As soon as we were in the water we both just had huge smiles on our faces.  Navigating the fast moving river's riffles and turns while dodging downed trees was much easier than expected and just super fun.  The 3.5 mile trip was simply not long enough!

One thing I definitely got right...  mounting the GPS where it works for both river and bike mode!

Awesome to expand the horizon of great things to do right in the city!

Wish us luck up in the Eagle River area this weekend-  we are going with minimal planning and information.  Just the way I usually go...  don't tell Kim I plan on having no plan, please.  Here are quick maps that represent the general directions I plan on heading...

Day 1 (me alone, one small rafting section that will require bushwacking...  will likely wander a bit more than this)

Day 2/3 (together, ride up to far East end, raft to a place to sleep, wake up and raft until it's time to finish things off on the bike, hope we aren't far from the road at that time)

Sort of on the back-burner, but still smoldering has been my trying to build up some sprinting fitness.  I have made it to a crit of some kind each week now for about a month.  At first I didn't have the 'pop', but things are starting to look better.  

Last week in Des Moines' field sprint-

Tuesday Night World's field sprint-

 Neither were played just right.  One I was forced to go early based on the riders around me and the other I went late, but in both cases it was obvious that I'm starting to redevelop some speed.

The weather has sucked for mountain biking.  I rode my mountain bike 40 miles today on gravel, that is the state of the trails with all this moisture.  Races are coming up fast.


  1. Planning a long bikerafting trip this summer on my cross bike. How did the setup with the raft/paddle strapped to your aero bars work out? was it stable? did it really affect the handling? I've never seen it mounted in the direction of the frame vs across the bars.

    Trying to figure out how to best mount the raft with the drop bars on my bike.



  2. How did this setup work for you? i'm planning a long bikeraft tour on my cyclecross bike and am looking for advice on mounting the raft to my drop bars. how did it work having them attached longways to your aerobars?

    thanks for any advice you can provide.

  3. I have been happy with the raft in either orientation on my bars. Always carry the paddle strapped into the seat bag now. Good luck!