Equipment to Bring on the Stuart Highway in Australia for your Long Distance Biking Trip
By Fernando Candido

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For your Bike

  • Pump
  • Bike gloves
  • Reflective vest
  • Tool kit for bikes: You may want to also bring a separate key to take the pedals out.
  • Extra screws
  • A tool to fix your chain if it breaks. (I never carried an extra chain. You may want to consider it)
  • Chain lubricant
  • A repair kit for flats: Bring plenty of patches they are light.
  • glue
  • matches.
  • Spare tire: a folded one works well
  • Spare tubes for your spare tire and a spare tube for the road tires that are on your bike if they are not the same. Confused?
  • Spokes: I usually carry about ten.
  • Night light: for emergency in case you do not make it to your destination during the day. (it is too dangerous to travel at night. Reasons: roadtrains do not like to see cyclists at night, a lot of road kill spread out on the highway you can trip and crash, It is very dark in the outback at night.)
  • Gel seat
  • Spring under your seat. Some seat bars that you buy individually have a spring. It saves you from sore bums.
  • Speedometer.
  • Bike bags for the front and the back
  • Water bottles
  • Mirror, very important to see if there is any vehicle coming behind you so you can move out of the way. Sometimes you can not hear them because of the wind noise thus a mirror is needed.

    Eating Equipment

  • Small cooking stove
  • White gas also called camping fuel
    . I usually carry one bottle of about 375 ml. It lasted me almost for the whole trip.
  • Pots: one small and on large (They must be very light.)
  • Pot holder (shaped like a pair of pliers)
  • One fork
  • One spoon
  • One pocket knife more practical for the outback
  • One plate the lid of the pot should be used as your plate. Some cooking sets allow that.
  • One coffee filter and a cup. There is a set in Canadian Tire. The cup and the filter are one. Very compact and light. It makes good coffee better than instant coffee.
  • Few leaves of aluminum.
    Can be used to cook, reflector in case of emergency and for lid.(Once along the highway some girls were stranded by the road because they had lost their radiator lid. I gave them some aluminum paper and they tied it with wire and they were ready to go to a gas station.)
  • Spices put 3 or 4 spices mixed together if you want to save space.
  • Food. it is your choice. Dry and light stuff is preferable. Here's a great tip if you want eat a great meal. Buy frozen meat in the morning and put in a tight plastic bag and by the time you are ready to cook it in the evening it will still be cold but unthawed.
    Buy as much of your food at the large superstores in bigger towns such as Darwin, Alice Springs and Kathrine. It is is 2 or 3 times cheaper. One time I bought a whole bag of about 15 kiwis at the city market for $1.50 but they were almost one dollar a piece in the outback.
  • Steel wool to scrub pots
  • Rag to dry dishes (I never brought one but it would not be a bad idea.)

    Camping Equipment

  • Mattress (light and self-inflatable). If there is not enough air you can blow some more . It is also good to lay on the beach.
  • Small tent mine was only 5 pounds from the MEC store in Canada. Good for 2 skinny people.
  • Flashlight you can use your bike light as I did for reading. My bike light could also be put in the flashing mode to warn cars and trucks.
  • Sleeping bag. It should be good for 0 degrees Celsius. It can get quite cold at night, below 0, in the winter in the outback.
  • Water proof canoe bag. Very good to keep your sleeping bag dry if it does not fit in your bike bags. They are also very tough and they do not tear easily.
  • Inflatable pillow. Actually I use an inflatable safety kayak bag for paddles as the pillow. They are tough, light and large enough. They work well.

    Entertainment


  • Book
  • Telescopic fishing rod/hooks/etc.
  • Radio. Very practical. At night you can catch stations and learn about the culture, weather reports and listen to music. I prefer that to a walkman. You don't have to carry a bunch of cd's. My radio was very small and light.
  • Camera and equipment. I brought a 35 mm. Heavier but tougher.

    Clothing and Shoewear

    I guess it is your choice what you bring.
  • Bike pants are important because they are padded and they are comfortable. You can also use them for swimsuit.
  • Pants that can also be unzipped and made in to shorts are also very practical.
  • Fleeces are practical to use to sleep and when it's cold while you are travelling.
  • Helmet
  • A toque for the cold nights and mornings
  • Raingear must be very light. You won't need it much in the Northern Territory but in South Australia there is some rainstorms.
  • Gloves.
  • Running shoes
  • Light sandals for the camping or for the beach

    Toilet Accessories and Other

    It is important that you buy small items.Obviously if you are a woman, you will need different items.
  • Toilet paper
  • Soap (I use it also to wash clothes and as shaving cream)
  • Pain killers ( very important. I had awful back pains one day. I could barely moved and there was still 20 km to go to the next roadhouse in the outback of Australia. I took some pain killers and I felt great. I was able to resume my journey.)
  • Gravol pills
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Shampoo (I use it also to wash the dishes.)
  • Vaseline for burns and rashes (also good to start fires when mixed with newspapers or toilet paper.
  • Razor blades
  • Sunscreen (use it or you will regret it)
  • Sunglasses
  • Bug juice
  • Snake bite kit (I looked for one while I was in Darwin but did not find any. Remember most snakes hibernate during the winter in the outback but not in the tropical areas in the Northern territory)
  • Ear plugs (practical when you happen to camp near highway)
  • First aid kit
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