I had been forced to put this particular step off due to some reason or the other. Last night I got into a ‘come what may the Gear shall be packed’ mode. SPARTA!
On the face of it, the Motorcycle Gear list seems like we’re carrying a ton. But not so when it comes down to packing. The bulkiest and in a strange way the most delicate of items is the Helmet. Bulky in it being awkward to carry or pack. I am a member of a few Motorcycle forums and groups. General consensus is that the Helmet, ideally, should not be packed into a Hold luggage. If there’s a real need to do, the Helmet needs to be wrapped and re-wrapped in blankets or similar material. It’s a Helmet, you might say. Why treat it with kid gloves? Well, the Helmet is made of an outer shell. The integrity and performance of this shell is compromised and weakened if there is strong impact on the shell. It is common knowledge that Baggage Handlers do not really treat luggage passing through their hands with much respect or care. During this ‘journey’ the Helmet can suffer many impacts that can compromise it’s shell. The Helmet will thus travel as cabin baggage along with my Backpack.
This leaves the Jacket, Pants and Boots; The Jacket and Pants that I have are of good GoreTex material, but lighter than they look. The bulky parts of the Jacket and Pant is the protective armor. Again the armor used here is the latest technology called D3O Evo. It is light and quite malleable. But on impact, in a microsecond, it becomes a tough dense barrier protecting the body. The armor is placed on shoulders, elbows and the back on the Jacket and the hips (side) and the nknees on the Pants. With these pieces of armor in place, folding the apparel was clumsy. And when packed tight, I didn’t want to damage or compromise the armor in any way. The armor is removable – kept in place by strong industrial grade velcro. I removed the armor and labeled each item. They are quite easy to identify without labeling, but we just have just a day on ground before we ride and labeling them now, replacing in a rush at the time, will be easy and quick. Removing the armor made the packing quick, easy and the folds more compact and space saving.
I have a case which as a bottom hard bottom compartment and a soft compartment sits on top this.
The hard bottom section is the Motorcycle Gear Section. The Jacket folded like a blazer or suit jacket. Folded in half, with one sleeve tucked inside the other sleep and the ‘single’ sleeve then laid over and folded in thirds. The pants went old style. Crease aligned and folded tightly thirds. The bottom of the case – the grooves were packed with the armor, socks, base layer, Buff, late addition of the the Balaclava for the potential cold temps and the Gloves. Jacket and Pant next and the space in between was just right for the Boots, individually packed in plastic bags. Quite a good fit.
Next the soft compartment is packed with the Non-Motorcycle items. All soft items like T-shirts, pants folded and then rolled up) Topped off with the light Hiking Shoes and with a pull of the zip. The Pack is complete! Just the Toiletries to be packed – which will probably be on the night before I leave. That and the Photography Gear, which will mainly travel with me in my Backpack. Various related hardware like clamps etc will go into the Hold bag. Rest travel with me!