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The story of how I saved money, quit my job, sold my possessions, and set off to endlessly travel by bike around the world. My Plan

My 3 Books
I write, self publish and sell books about touring

Picture Gallery
Travel Plan

My Books
About Me
Media/Press Room


Photo Use Info

Read Sample Letter
Continue My Travels

Places I have been
How can I afford this?)

India and Neighbors
May 2010 to present

Alaska / Canada / USA
May 2008 to April 2010

New Zealand
Sept 2007 to May 2008

Sept 2006 to Sept 2007

SE Asia / China
Nov 2004 to Sept 2006

South America
June 2003 to June 2004

AZ, Mexico, and Central America
March 2002 to April 2003

How I started
The 5 years before I left

*Help Support this Web Site and Continue My Travels.

Equipment Pages Index

How Much to Bring and Weight
Some Advice About Advice
A Note to Perspective Sponsors and Gear Suppliers
(See more about Sponsorship)

START HERE for Touring Bikes and Commuting Bicycles
Custom Touring Bicycles and Bike Upgrade Buyers Guide
Bicycle Touring Frames 
The Steel Repair Myth.
Steel and Aluminum Derailleur Hanger Repair.
Bicycle Touring Wheels
Phil Wood: The Best Bicycle Hubs

Panniers / Bike Bags
Cargo Trailers Vs Panniers
Tires for Bike Tours..
Bicycle Touring Saddles.
Women's Specific Bike Touring Saddles
Brooks Leather Touring Bicycle Saddle Care and Conditioning
Bike Computer
Touring Handlebars, Bar Ends, Adjustable Stems, and Padded Grips.
Sealed Cartridge Headsets

How to prevent flat tires
Bike Route Trails and Maps

Buying Camping Equipment
Tent and Ground Cloth
Sleeping Bag
Sleeping Pad
Camp Stove
Pots and Pans
Water Filter
First Aide Kits
Solar Power for Camp

Bike Touring Shorts

Short-wave Radio
Bicycle touring lights

Packing list
Pictures of Equipment Failures

See My Videos Here

(see all 3 book)

Ortlieb Panniers, Briefcases, Book Bags for Bicycle Commuting, Bike To Work, Urban Cycling, City Riding, and Utilitarian  Bicycling.

Shop and Compare Ortlieb at REI

Ortlieb at CycloCamping

Start here:  Bicycle touring panniers - my experience with Ortlieb - handlebar bags - luggage racks - equipment index -  sponsorship

Ortlieb Office Computer Bag

A waterproof office briefcase made with PVC-free fabric, the Ortlieb Office Bag QL2.1 pannier transitions easily from bike commute to cubicle.

Finally a waterproof briefcase that mounts on your bike--and looks smart at the office and on campus! Polyurethane-coated, heavy-duty Cordura® nylon and Roll'n'Snap closure system keep contents of bag completely dry. Features Ortlieb's QLR2 diagonal mounting system that gives more legroom while cycling. Padded handle and detachable, anatomically curved shoulder strap give you plenty of comfortable carrying options off the bike. Studded feet protect bottom of bag from wear and tear when you put it on the ground. May be mounted on either the left or right side of the rack, thanks to the reversible mounting rail. Two sub-divided inner compartments help keep contents organized. Two 3M® Scotchlite™ reflectors increase your visibility to others

Shop for  Ortlieb Office Bag QL2.1 Pannier - Single

 Ortlieb Bike Shopper

Comes with a combination adjustable shoulder strap/carry handle made of strong nylon webbing; just take the bag off the rack and start shopping. Includes fore and aft reflector patches and a tube of lubricant to keep the quick-seal closure working smoothly. Large-volume bag goes on and off your rack quickly, freeing you of the need to dangle your grocery bags precariously off the handlebars. Or let it work as a commuter bag, carrying your change of clothes for work, including shoes. Pack closes tight and secure with a locking slider--think of it as an industrial-size and -strength food baggie. Removable, zippered, interior pocket keeps small items handy. Sells as a single bag. The waterproof Ortlieb Bike Shopper bag mounts to your rear rack like a single pannier yet comes off for your shopping convenience! Welded seams and coated fabric further ensure your valuables stay dry in a rainfall.

Shop for  Ortlieb Bike Shopper

 Ortlieb Velocity Messenger Pack

This messenger-style daypack features a roll-closure top for complete waterproofness. Tough, polyurethane-coated Cordura® nylon is windproof and waterproof. Features a zippered removable inner pocket, padded foam back anatomically shaped shoulder straps with sternum strap and a waist strap. Makes a great school backpack.

Shop for  Ortlieb Velocity Messenger Pack


Ortlieb Commuter Bag
Got stuff to do downtown? The Ortlieb Downtown pannier looks good, withstands abuse and ensures all your gear arrives safe and protected.

  • Downtown offers plenty of space for files, books, tunes and lunch; there's room for files and laptops up to 15.4 in.

  • Water-resistant, briefcase-style bag with a flap closure is compatible with standard bike racks up to 16mm diameter; bag can be carried on either side of the bike

  • Made of tough, long-lasting waterproof polyester fabric; includes a removable, padded shoulder strap

  • Quick-Lock2 hook rail allows quick and single-handed placement and removal of the pannier from bike rack (sold separately); hooks are removable

  • 2 large inner compartments, 1 zippered and multiple organizer slot pockets and key clip

  • Reflective highlights improve nighttime profile

  • Includes a carry handle

  • Protects against water spray (maximum 60% to vertical) and may allow slight penetration of dust

Shop for  Ortlieb Commuter Bag


My favorite big rear Panniers
Ortlieb Bike Packer Plus Rear Panniers

If you are going to be living out of just a few bags you need big. durable and rain proof ones.  I have used these bags for years and still can not find anything better on the market.

These spacious bags are some of the largest around for extended trips.

  • Polyurethane-coated Cordura® nylon makes panniers durable and waterproof

  • Zippered outside mesh pockets hold wet gear or allow easy-access to essential gear

  • Large reflectors make you visible to motorists in poor light

  • Contents are held secure with two buckle closures and compression straps

  • Convenient handle on top for easy carrying

  • QL2 mounting system makes mounting and un-mounting panniers a snap

Shop for Ortlieb Bike Packer Plus Rear Panniers

Most common Front Panniers
Ortlieb Front Roller

My travel partners usually carry less than me and use these bags on the front for quicker steering with a lighter load

Waterproof panniers with a unique roll-top closure. Symmetrical shape allows more leg room. Not only ideal for use on long cycle tours; they are also suitable for everyday use as a shopping bag or shoulder bag. Can be used with the carrying system as a daypack.

Absolutely waterproof, special 3D welding constructed bicycle panniers--for front rack mounting, small bag rear rack mounting or children's bikes

  • 3D welding is a special overlapping technique that uses no thread or adhesives

  • Roll-over style closures keep water out and are able to expand with your load

  • Attaches with the Ortlieb QLR-System: a strong, fast, quick-releasing system that locks tightly into place; easy unlocked by lifting up on the handle

  • QLR-hooks are replaceable and adjustable; will fit racks with tube diameter of up to 10 mm; 14 mm hooks available separately; will fit low-rider racks

  • Made of heavy-duty, double polyurethane coated polyester

Shop for Ortlieb Front Roller Panniers

Larger Front (my pick) or Smaller Rear Panniers
Ortlieb Backroller

I am always thinking outside of the box but on my long trip packing light was not an option for me so I used these traditional rear bags on my front low rifer rack on a bike with smaller wheels.

Waterproof panniers with a unique roll-top closure and constructed of an exclusive Cordura material that is completely watertight and welded. Utilizes Ortlieb's QL 2 Mounting System. Its symmetrical shape allows more leg room. Not only ideal for use on long cycle tours; they are also suitable for everyday use as a shopping bag or shoulder bag. Can be used with the carrying system as a daypack.

Made of durable Cordura(R) nylon with polyester; coated with PVC for water resistance

With 3D welded seams, these panniers will keep your gear dry on rainy rides. Constructed with welded seams for strength. Designed with an easy access, roll-top closure. Replaceable, adjustable, quick-release security catches mount panniers quickly and easily on racks--also removed easily. Lifting on pannier carrying strap automatically releases the QL1 system security catches, while releasing the strap causes latches to lock in place. Please note: This item is sold as a pair.

  • Constructed with welded seams for strength

  • Designed with an easy access, roll-top closure

  • Replaceable, adjustable, quick-release security catches mount panniers quickly and easily on racks--also removed easily

  • Lifting on pannier carrying strap automatically releases the QLR-system security catches, while releasing the strap causes latches to lock in place

Shop for Ortlieb Backroller

Convert a saddle bag to a backpack
Ortlieb Panniers Backpack System

You will be surprised how often you use this. 

The Ortlieb Pannier Carrying system turns selected Ortlieb panniers (sold separately) into a backpack, so you don't have to bring a separate backpack along.

  • Foam construction offers carrying comfort

  • Quickly converts a pannier into a backpack; rolls up small for easy transport when not in use

  • Padded ventilated back support is made from fold-resistant foam

  • Adjustable, anatomically-shaped straps feature reflective yarn; equipped with a chest strap and carrying handle

  • Fits Ortlieb bike panniers: BackRoller, FrontRoller, BikePacker, BikeShopper, all sold separately; also fits SportPacker and BikeTourer, not included

Shop for Ortlieb Panniers Backpack System

I keep my emergency tools ready to use
Ortlieb Micro Seat Bag

When I get a flat tire or need a quick adjustment having these tools available in a waterproof seat bag, not buried at the bottom of a pannier, is a great idea.  If you are tired of looking like you are having a travelers yard sale with all your gear dumped on the side of the road just because you need a tube and lire levers put them in a seat bag.

Waterproof and ultra light, the Ortlieb Micro Seat Bag with rolltop closure secures on-the-bike essentials with watertight, low-profile design.

shop for Ortlieb Micro Seat Bag

Good choice if you don't like a roll top system
Ortlieb Sport Packer Plus Panniers

I have used these in the past. At first I wasn't sure about the flap closure but ended up appreciating it. I would have no problem using these again.

Features 3M Scotchlite™ reflectors to increase your visibility in poor light. Made to mount on low-rider front racks or rear racks, these feature snug-fitting lids that allow for higher load capacity. Outer mesh pockets are spacious and feature zippers to hold contents secure. QL2 suspension system holds bags secure and is easy to load and unload. Surrounding compression straps allow size of panniers to be altered. These panniers are the perfect size for your daily commute, or to strap on to children's bikes.

shop for Ortlieb Sport Packer Plus Panniers


My Next Handlebar bag (if my old one ever gets lost)
Ortlieb Ultimate6 M Pro E Handlebar Bag

I have an older (no longer available) version of this bag but with all the extra features I am very tempted to upgrade anyway.  This is the bag with my camera, Blue Tooth Speaker and wallet so you can bet it is coming off the bike and with me into stores and campground offices to keep important stuff with me. 

 Built tough with waterproof protection from the elements, the top-notch Ortlieb Ultimate6 M Pro E Handlebar Bag features a transparent lid for use with smartphones or electronic navigation devices.


  • - Made of coated nylon, the pack is rated to protect against splashes from all directions
    - Features a lockable mounting system and lockable lid closure, keys included
    - Touch screen of your devices can be operated through the lid of the bag
    - Internal zip pocket, key clip and removable internal dividers help keep contents secure and organized
    - Includes shoulder strap, inner pocket, internal dividers, lockable mounting kit, 2 keys
    - Ortlieb Ultimate6 M Pro E Handlebar Bag is designed to fit handlebars with a diameter up to 31.8mm
    - Compatible with Rixen & Kaul KLICKfix system (not included); not for use with carbon handlebars
    - Reflector on front of bag; large front mesh pocket

Shop for Ortlieb Ultimate6 M Pro E Handlebar Bag

Ortlieb Ultimate 6 S Plus Handlebar Bag

 If you are traveling light or are a smaller rider you may want less weight on the handlebars    This bag is smaller, lighter but smarter because you can ride all day without fatigue from wrestling with poorly weighted heavy steering all day

Shop for Ortlieb Ultimate 6 S Plus Handlebar Bag

Ortlieb Ultimate Map Case

Mapcase for all Ortlieb Ultimate (L or M) Handlebar Bags with removable mapcase feature. New version: won't turn yellow over time.  The Ortlieb Ultimate map case is a waterproof, universal map case with a roll-top closure. It affixes to your Ultimate handlebar bag or can be worn around your neck for ease of use while hiking.

Shop for Ortlieb Ultimate Map Case

Ortlieb GPS Cover / Case for Handlebar Bag - Horizontal Model

Details Have your GPS or PDA within the field of vision, and still know it is protected from moisture, dirt and dust. The ORTLIEB GPS cover is also a contemporary transport solution on the bike for your mobile phone or communicator.

Shop for Ortlieb Handlebar Bags and Accessories

Start here:  Bicycle touring panniers - my experience with Ortlieb - handlebar bags - luggage racks - equipment index -  sponsorship


Shop and Compare Ortlieb at REI

Ortlieb at CycloCamping

See More Ortlieb Bicycle Products

The bikes below are sold online and shipped to your address.  Online bikes are a very good value but hard to find so I have rounded up my favorites.
Shop All Touring Bicycles Here

This is the type of bike I have done most of my traveling on.  Great for road and off road with an agile geometry and accepts wide or narrow tires.

REI brand Touring and Trekking Bikes

This is the bike I am buying next. I am tall and recently bought a mountain bike with 29er wheels and really like how it rides and would like to try this in my next touring bike.

Salsa Fargo

If comfort is your first priority check out these great bikes.  I have never toured this light but I know a ton of cyclist who like this style of bike.

Salsa Marrakes


The new breed of off road bike packing and snow bicycle. I have never owned a bike like this but I bet someday I do.

Fat Bikes


Seasonal - Surly bikes are not always available on line but they are a great deal. 

Surly LHT touring bicycle


Bicycle Touring
Tips & Advice

- Bike Stuff
- Camping

Touring Bicycles

Tools and Spares

Sleeping Bags
Camping Mattress
Camp Stove
Water Filter
Pots and Pans
First Aide Kits
Solar Power
Bike Maps
Preventing Flat Tires

Bike Computer
Cargo Trailers
Kick Stands
Commuting Bikes

Camp Shower/Toiletry Bag


Bike Shoes
Bike Touring Shorts

Stealth/Free Camp

What I Have Learned On The Road

Dreaming of Endless Travel

Injustice of Poverty

Much MORE Gear Here!

Sponsors (how?)

Cycle Touring Racks

Tents and ground cloths
Sleeping Bags
Camping Mattress Pads

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