Travel rations

We’re off on our travels again on Saturday.

It’s one of our long trips south to visit friends and family in mid north coast New South Wales, a distance of about 1320kms (820 miles) one way. But this time, we’re doing it on the bike. We’re taking in a bike rally in Toowoomba on the way home; there’ll be hundreds of ST1300 and 1100 owners and their bikes, talking, bragging, riding, eating, drinking and generally catching up over 3 days. It’s going to be a loooooong trip; it’s already a long way, but Toowoomba adds several hundred extra kms. But you know, I’m really looking forward to it! Firstly, because I’m going to be spending time with people I love, secondly because the whole motorbike thing is heaps of fun (think hundreds of middle-aged people reliving their youth), and thirdly because we’re going south, into cooler weather.  We’ve also had the bike seat reupholstered with more padding, so hopefully the numb-bum syndrome we experienced on the last long trip will be kept at bay.

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Packing space for two people for 10 days, plus spares and tools…

Packing is always tricky when you’re away for a while and you’re travelling by bike. There are 4 containers: 2 panniers, a top box and a tank pack, which sits in front of the driver on top of the fuel tank. We’re away for 10 days. We need clothes, washkit, wet weather gear, laptops, camera, toolkit, spares – and in my case, travel rations.

Most of the time, I can accommodate my gluten (and now lactose) free diet with a little creative thinking, but there are always going to be those remote country pubs or small towns where a request for gluten free food produces the ‘duh?’ response, and I need to be able to carry something for those times. It’s got to be something that doesn’t need to be kept cold, won’t melt, get stale quickly or fall apart if you look at it. It’s got to be small, nutritionally dense, portionable, and last but by no means least, tasty. Quite an ask. Good job I’ve got something that fits the bill.

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Pepitas, almond meal, coconut, peanut butter, honey, dates, prunes, pecans and flaked almonds… Looks dull, tastes anything but!

You’ve seen this before, only last time it had chocolate on it. That’s a no-no for this purpose (think melted chocolate all over your clean clothes, or worse still, the camera…), but the basic bar is still completely yummy, and I’ve added a few extras to the mix, including prunes, pecans and flaked almonds. Wrapped tightly in foil, the portions will take very little space, last well and fill the gap when there’s nothing else around that I can eat. Which sadly happens with monotonous regularity…

Right, I’m off to work out how few pairs of socks I can get away with and where I can squeeze in my hexie sewing kit…


29 thoughts on “Travel rations

  1. so well-organised, very impressive. drive carefully and have a great time. loving the idea of middle-aged bikers 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      We’re always careful, we want to keep doing it a long time! There’s a massive market for motorbikes amongst the grey population here, it’s such a great way to explore Australia…

  2. tialys says:

    Lordy! It’s bad enough having to pack what I need for a long weekend keeping to a budget airline’s cabin bag size restrictions let alone in the hidey holes of a bike.
    I love your recipe for those snack bars – I’ve made them a couple of times now – but I must say that the chocolate topping does it for me so I’d miss that but the last thing you want is melted chocolate all over your hexies!

    • katechiconi says:

      I’m certainly not going to be taking the hairdryer or anything other than jeans and tshirts. I was strongly tempted to add cocoa powder to the recipe but held back this time. Maybe next time – I’ll let you know how it works out. Last time we were on the bike the temperature hit 39C, and proper chocolate wouldn’t have survived 2 minutes…

  3. The physics and geometry involved in compressing all you need into such a small space boggles my mind. I hope you’ll have a fabulous time, and come home safe and happy.

    • katechiconi says:

      I’ve become an origami master with folding our clothes, things go into plastic ziploc bags and have the air squeezed out, and we share most of our toiletries, saves heaps of space. Still 4 more days to go before we’re off, and I’ll be packing and repacking several times to try and work it all out! One of these days we’ll knuckle under and buy a bike trailer!

  4. ordinarygood says:

    Safe and happy travels!

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Sounds like lots of fun! But 800 miles on a bike? Not even sure biking shorts (padding in all the right places) would get me through that!

    • katechiconi says:

      The motorbike seat is actually pretty comfortable, and now that it’s been reupholstered, it’s lovely! We make a point of stopping every couple of hours, and not travelling past the point of fatigue. So far, it’s worked pretty well. It is going to be huge fun, but I quite see it’s not for everyone!

  6. dayphoto says:

    Have ever so much fun! A biking road trip…now how cool is that?

    Linda ★★

  7. Magpie Sue says:

    wow. My husband would love for us to do something like that I bet. The fumes would kill me. So much fun though! I’m confident you’ll find a way to squeeze that hexie kit in there somewhere. Who needs another T-shirt anyway? ;- )

    • katechiconi says:

      I’m thinking the hexie kit may have to squeeze into my shoulder bag – I’ve earmarked almost every other inch of space for something else… By the time I go, I hope to have all the actual hexies made up, so it’s just a question of assembling the flowers.

  8. EllaDee says:

    I can feel myself turning an interesting shade of envy-green as I read this! Sigh. But what a great ride you will have 🙂 Our next trip up isn’t until Easter, quickly followed by ANZAC weekend. Both of which I hope will be good riding weather, and opportunity for a day out on 2 for us at least.
    Your slice is good traveling food, regardless of 2 wheels or 4. We always pack something, as you say sometimes options are limited, and you never know if you’ll get held up in traffic.

    • katechiconi says:

      One day, we’ll get to ride together….Now THAT would be awesome fun.
      Do you guys have that ultimate bike luxury, helmet intercom? We resisted spending the money, and once we had it, wondered how we’d ever managed before. It makes long trips like this much, much easier.
      The great thing about the slice is that it packs a good nutritional punch for its size and keeps well. Shame about the chocolate, though…

      • EllaDee says:

        I’m looking forward to it 🙂 No intercom yet… still waving and hand signals. Primitive but effective and the G.O. gets some peace!

  9. Conor Bofin says:

    Enjoy the trip. Nice bike BTW.

    • katechiconi says:

      She is, isn’t she? I get the feeling this trip’s going to be enjoyed more in retrospect than at the time; it’s an awfully long way. That said, it’s an adventure and I want to do it before the arthritis prevents…

  10. Nanette says:

    Geese and pigs on your lap? I’ll make sure I have something suitable for morning tea so no ‘duh’ here. Our farmer’s markets are doing some great ‘value added’ products from their farm produce and are really catering to the food allergy/sensitivity crowd…most is organic so even better. I can send you on your way with a full tummy 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      That’ll be wonderful! We’re overnighting in the north of Brisbane, so I imagine it’ll be late morning tea sort of time of day, but I’ll give you a call when we leave – Google Maps reckons it’s only a couple of hours, but we’ll see what Bne traffic has to say about that!

      • Nanette says:

        Shouldn’t be too bad, most of the traffic will be going the other way. Gateway might be the only problem, and I think there are road works still at Nerang that might hold you up. Whenever you arrive will be fine, I promise to be ready for you and dressed this time *)

      • katechiconi says:

        Oooer, people will think you answered the door in your birthday suit last time! It was a very fetching sarong, and I feel it qualified as fully dressed. We’ll check the traffic report before we set out. Look out for a big red bike with a couple of Martians aboard.

  11. Jen Gardener says:

    Oh wow, travel rations indeed! Enjoy your trip!

  12. That list of ingredients sounds anything but dull. It sounds delicious! I look at a jammy doughnut and feel queasy. I look at that and think yum!

    • katechiconi says:

      I did some sampling of this batch, and I have to say, it’s absolutely delicious! Moist, chewy, slightly sweet, slightly salty, nutty and solid enough to let you know you’ve had something. In other words, perfect for what I need it for!

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