Craig Wisner

No Cars Necessary. (Overnight Bikepack, 11/14-11/15)

I’ve been trying to explore more close to home, to take advantage of the resources at hand.  Trying to save money, weary of driving, always driving, my time has been increasingly spent riding, hiking, and running to my destinations outdoors.  It’s brought about a new mindset, or perhaps I should say I’m trying to develop this new mindset, of trying to do more with less, to simplify and increase the frequency of my outings, and learn to be content within my home range.  There are so many quality, quiet mountain refuges right on my doorstep.  I’m very fortunate that a brief escape by a stream can be had in literally minutes by bike or foot from my front door, that the trails of the front range of the San Gabriel Mountains quickly branch in every direction, opening so many possibilities.  It’s almost preposterous that isolation in a streamside trail camp can be found so quickly outside of Los Angeles and all of its people.  For all of the gear being sold, the mountains are conspicuously empty, especially if you know how to pick your peaks, canyons, and trails.

Michael has been good company in forgoing the car and exploring, joining me on Saturday after a morning of trains and biking, riding up from the southern coast.  In twenty minutes of pedaling from my house we’re on dirt, an hour and a half later we’re finishing our climb and descending into a local, fairly untraveled canyon, making camp in the same spot I was alone in last weekend.  Campfire, sweat, sake, good food, and two ticks (you can’t always win).

I feel like I’ve figured out how to live here.

Downtown Los Angeles in the distance.

Downtown Los Angeles in the distance.  Josh, your Fargo likes its new home.

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Perfecting the soft-boiled egg...

Perfecting the soft-boiled egg…

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My current mountain rig: Gary Fisher Aquilla, full rigid 26

I sold my fancy suspension bike a while ago…just too much bike.  My current mountain rig: Gary Fisher Aquilla, full rigid 26″ old-timey steel.  It’s simple and it works.  And it only cost $120.  I’ll “upgrade” parts when they stop working, but if a shifter shifts, I’ve never understood how another shifter is “better”.  So it’s still pretty much stock.  Thus far I’ve stayed away from racks and frame bags, opting for a very light pack on my back.  For short stuff, it’s all you need.  I’m currently designing and patterning a frame bag and underseat bag for the longer trips.

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One response

  1. michael

    bike or back, packing always seems to be a mixed bag. what carries you on one trip is a load the next.

    November 16, 2015 at 8:55 am

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