What do you pack for a 545 mile bike ride? My ALC packing journey!

I’m so excited/nervous/terrified/pumped to embark on a 545 mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles the first week of June. The full ride is 7 days and takes you down the coast of California to raise money and awareness for HIV/AIDS. Each of the more than 2,500 riders raises at least $3,000 and many hit $10,000! It’s a fully supported ride with rest stops ever 15-20 miles and close to 1,000 volunteers helping along the way!

So of course my biggest stress point? What to wear! More on that later. Next biggest?

What to pack?!

I’ve been talking to people, watching packing videos, and reading blogs to create my list and here are some of the things I bought that I wouldn’t have thought of before embarking on this ride!

(disclaimer: most of this stuff i’ve never used before & have no idea if i’ll actually need it or how well it’ll work- wait for the post-ride recap for details on that! also i am using amazon affiliate links so i’ll get a commission if you buy something using my link but please feel free to shop around for the best price out there!)

Jump to the bottom for a quick table of the things i got!

this i LOVE. Enzo’s ButtonHole is the BOMB! i use it all the time for every ride & it is fantastic. it’s a bit thicker than other creams- you scoop it out of the tub. and it’s got a nice little tingle to it, like hoo ha ride glide. i’m a big fan. But it’s not super portable for mid-day use so i’m bringing a bunch of the Zealios Betwixt for portable chamois cream. Both are vegan and not tested on animals.

Word on the street is wet ones will be used constantly for everything. so i bought a ten pack or something ridiculous so i’ll have a pack for each day of the ride.

Padded cycling undies to wear under my red dress day skirt. because who wants to bike 45 miles without padding? Not this girl!

I tested out this bag on one long ride and it was… challenging. It is big so the sides of my legs rub it when i’m standing up and it toppled over a bunch BUT once i tightened everything up it stayed upright much better. i like that it has the top clear cover so i can at least see my phone while i’m riding (can’t use it bc the home button on my iphone doesn’t work through the plastic) and also have an option to put my solar powered charger up there all day to charge it up while i ride! double whammy! plus it’s huge so it holds a ton.

i got this charger just in case my 75 portable chargers aren’t cutting it. that way i can go to the charging tent & charge up ALL my devices without taking up more than one outlet. and can share with any cute single straight boys that happen to be doing the ride. or ya know, make friends.

this bag is for the front of my bike and i’m pumped to have it now for all my rides!! it’s HUGE and can hold a jacket so that way if it rains on the ride i can put a rain coat in there to bring with. or food. or a hand pump. or anything really. 

this is a quick drying towel that was recommended because after you shower you want your towel to get dry before you pack it back into your bag, right? but you don’t have a lot of time! you can’t leave it hanging out overnight. so it’ll be nice to have something that dries quickly!

And i got binder clips to hang my towel outside my tent to dry. pro tip i got from some of the guys that have done the ride before!

rain coat just in case. plus i wanted a pink rain coat. stop judging me.

this air mattress will hopefully not annoy me… it takes about 5 minutes of pumping to get it fully inflated but i know it’ll make sleeping a LOT more comfortable! but you have to basically stomp on it for 5 minutes straight to get it to inflate and after 100 miles of riding i’m not sure how much stomping i’m gonna want to do!

a great tip i got was to put all your kits for each day in a ziplock baggie & then put them back in once you’re done with them. saves room in your bag, keeps you organized, and keeps your sweaty nasty smelling clothes separate from other stuff!

let’s all hope i don’t need this bike pump but if i do, it’ll be good to have just in case!!! i am the WORST at co2 cartridges so a backup will be good!

 

this is the bag i’m gonna use- it has to hold my air mattress, sleeping bag, clothes, and everything else i’m packing but be under 50 pounds for flying and all. so hopefully it’ll all work! it’s a really good size and has wheels because, well, i’m not gonna be carrying a huge suitcase after biking all day!

I’ll also be packing dryer sheets & garbage bags- dryer sheets to keep my bag smelling fresh and garbage bags just in case i don’t have room in my tent for something i can put it in the garbage bag and leave it outside the tent & it won’t get all dewey from the morning moisture.

Summary:

Link to BuyWhy I Got It
Enzo's Buttonhole Chamois Creamhelps keep your hoo ha & booty comfortable for 545 miles
Wet OnesKeeping your hands clean throughout the ride. Post meal, snack, port-a-potty etc
Cycling UndiesWho doesn't want a little extra padding?!
Top tube bagSee my phone, charge my solar charger, and store all the goodies
Outlet Expander/Chargerturns one outlet into many!
Bike BagHolds even more stuff than the top tube bag
Quick Drying TowelWe won't have lots of time to dry our towels before stuffing them back in our bags
Binder ClipsTo hang towels & things to dry on the side of the tent
Rain CoatBecause who doesn't need a pink rain coat?
Air MattressNo electricity needed to pump it up & it folds down nice and small
Ziplock BagsOne for each day's clothes to keep everything organized
The BagThe bag that will hold it all! Sleeping bag, air mattress, and everything i need for 545 miles
Hand bike pumpbecause i suck at co2