Everything Ryan Wilson Packed for His Turkish Bike Tour and Six New Favorite Pieces of Gear

Narrowing down my setup for Turkey was a bit tricky compared to some of my previous trips. In particular, because half of my gear that I was using in Central Asia was stranded in Nepal on lockdown, I’d have to try to piece together a rig using older equipment I had lying around as well as a handful of new additions to round it out.

To start, I picked up a Surly Bridge Club.  I originally had intended only to have it as a do-it-all bike while I was home, but when I found out I was heading to Turkey, I was intrigued to see how an off-the-shelf $1150 bike with entry-level components would fare compared to higher-end setups like my 44 Bikes Marauder and Tumbleweed Prospector. I’ll post my full thoughts on the Bridge Club soon, but in the meantime, here is my full kit list along with six pieces of gear that stood out in the Taurus Mountains.

The Bike:       
2020 Surly Bridge Club Size XL
SRAM SX Eagle 32t chainring (stock)
SRAM Eagle 11/50t Cassette (stock)
SRAM SX Eagle 12 speed chain (stock)
SRAM SX Eagle Rear Derailleur (stock)
SRAM Power Spline BB (stock)
WTB STPi29 TSC rims (stock – converted to tubeless)
Novatec, 32h, QR hubs (stock)
Promax and Seatposts (stock)
Tektro HD-M275 Hydraulic Brakes (stock)
Sycip JJJ Handlebar
Thomson Stem
Ergon GP1 BioCork Grips
Brooks C17 Cambium All-Weather
Vittoria Mezcal Anthracite G2.0 27.5×2.6 Tires
OneUp Composite Pedals
Tumbleweed T-Rack
Widefoot CargoMount
King Cage ManyThing cages (2)
Widefoot LiterCages (2)
Loads of Voile Straps

The Bags:
Bags By Bird Goldback Medium Handlebar Bag
Tortuga Outbacker Daypack – Collapsable backpack (Inside handlebar bag)
Porcelain Rocket Mr. Fusion Seatpack (Large)
Porcelain Rocket Orbiter Framebag
Apidura Fork Bags
Outer Shell Stem Caddy
Lowepro Toploader Zoom 50 AW II
REI Top Tube bag
Tarptent PolePouch


1.5L Nalgenes (2) in Widefoot Liter Cages
1L Nalgene
1.9L Klean Kanteen Insulated mounted on a Widefoot CargoMount
MSR 10L Gravity Filter (Doubles as a shower in a pinch)


Mission Workshop Merino LS shirt
Smartwool Merino LS shirt
Mission Workshop Stahl Shorts
Outlier Climber Pants
Ringtail Camp Pants
North Face Down jacket
Marmot PreCip Rain Jacket
Mission Workshop Interval wind jacket
Smartwool Merino underwear (3)
Smartwool Merino socks (2… 3 during chilly season)
Bedrock Sandals
North Face Hedgehog Fastpack GoreTex shoes
Mountain Equipment Randonee Gloves
Merino Neck Gaiter
Small Camp towel
Black Diamond Merino Beanie
Ombraz Sunglasses

Sleep System:

Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo Tent
Sea to Summit Etherlight XT Insulated sleeping pad
Sea to Summit Aeros Premium inflatable Pillow
Western Mountaineering MegaLite Sleeping bag
Sea to Summit liner
Goosefeet down socks



12” Macbook
Fuji X-T4 (Not pictured)
Fuji 18-135mm Lens (Not pictured)
Fuji 35mm 1.4 prime (Not pictured)
Mefoto Backpacker Air Tripod
Zoom H1N Recorder
RAVpower 25600mah power bank
Anker 20000mah power bank
Goal Zero Nomad 10 Solar panel
iPhone XR
Quadlock Case w/bikemount
Garmin InReach Mini Satellite communicator
Fenix LM50R Headlamp
Too many SSD’s, SD cards, cables, chargers, and cleaning bits to name.


Cook Kit:

Snow Peak stove
Highrock 10 folding windscreen
GSI 1.1L Pot
Quecua Fork and Spoon
Opinel Folding Knife
16oz Nalgene Tupperware for leftovers or food storage
Occasionally olive oil in a small container
Various spices

Repair Kit:

Etsy Dyneema Bag
(2X) 27.5+ Tubolito tubes w/ Patchkit
4oz bottle Orange sealant
Rim Tape
Tire boots
Repair Tape (For air mattress, tent, clothes, etc)
Spare tent zips and shock cord
Spare bolts, nuts, and straps
Lezyne Micro Floor Drive High Volume Pump wrapped with spare Gorilla Tape
Lezyne multitool
Gerber Mini Multitool w/pliers
Wolf Tooth Pack Pliers
Spare chain links
Tire Levers
Spare Tubeless valves (2)
Spare Spokes
Zip Ties
Gorilla Glue
Curved Needle and nylon thread (For tire surgery)
Small Human Repair Kit (First Aid)


Washkit (Toothbrush, etc)
Smith Venture Helmet
Bell Cable Lock
Dyneema Passport Wallet
Hand Sanitizer
SPF Chapstik
50ft Nylon cord for bear/boar hang (using Backpack)


Six New Favorite Items

While I’ve got my kit down to a pretty good science at this point, I did make some changes to suit this particular trip.  The following are a few new-to-me pieces of gear that stood out during my time in Turkey.

Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo Tent – Not only does this 1.5 person tent tip the scales at a scant 800 grams or so, but it’s also the most packable tent I’ve ever used. This was the main draw of the Lunar Solo for me. Easily stuff-able in my 4L Apidura fork pack with room to spare, it disappears in your bags compared to other tents with this kind of living space. Yes, the single-wall construction does force you to be mindful of avoiding the dreaded touch of condensation in the mornings, but this is the case with any single-wall tent.  For very wet environments, you may want to stick with a double-wall, but if you’re tight on space, the Lunar Solo is hard to beat.

Tumbleweed T-Rack – While it can be nice to go rack-less and save a few grams, I like the extra flexibility that having a lightweight rack provides. Whenever the weather is agreeable I prefer to ditch the shoes and ride in Bedrock Sandals, but it’s always tricky to find a place to store bulky shoes. The T-Rack and a large Voile strap solve that issue. Need a little more water capacity? Put those shoes on your feet and stash a durable water bladder on top! 3-bolt mounts give plenty of options for mounting cargo or additional water.

Apidura Expedition Fork Packs – Conveniently sized to perfectly fit my Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo tent (plus a small wind jacket or gloves) in one and my 4” thick Sea to Summit Etherlight insulated sleeping pad in the other, these were super solid. Water-tight, and easy to mount to my King Cage Anything Cages with no additional hardware. One big reason I decided to run these Fork Packs for this trip is that I wanted a derailleur-saver on the rear of the bike in the event that it toppled over at some point. I’ve still got trauma from my days in South America with that derailleur so exposed all the time. These bags took a couple of tough blows for the team and kept on going.

Ombraz Sunglasses – Yeah, I’m on the Ombraz hype train. As a licensed and board-certified Frequent Glasses Breaker™, I am happy to announce that these lasted an entire tour and I didn’t snap a single-arm (probably because there are none)! I find them to be super comfortable, and love that they lay flat on my chest under a jacket when the weather takes a turn. It’s pretty tough to put them on while riding, but stopping for a second is a small price to pay.

Vittoria Mezcal TNT G2.0 Tires – At 27.5 x 2.6”, these are a touch smaller than the 3” Maxxis Chronicles I’m used to riding. However, the terrain in Turkey would be a bit more mixed than what I’m used to in places like Bolivia or Tajikistan, so I found them well suited for the route.  The WTB Nano-esque tread profile of these Mezcals, with the nearly-continuous center tread was probably the fastest tire I’ve used around this size, providing a nice break from the overpowering road buzz of the Chronicles. Plus, while I do try to be careful when riding in remote regions where quality tires are difficult to source, I had no durability issues with these on even the roughest tracks in the Taurus Mountains.  In fact, I’d be confident to take them anywhere I’ve ridden over the last 5 years.  If only Vittoria would get them back in stock!

Klean Kanteen TKWide Insulated 64oz (1.9L) Bottle– I know what you’re gonna say… ”Damn, Ryan, 836 grams is a lot for a water bottle!”, but hear me out. When it’s a thousand degrees outside and you’ve been riding all day under the scorching Mediterranean sun, busting out a huge bottle of cold water while your other bottles have turned to molten lava is pretty clutch. I wouldn’t bring this everywhere, but in Turkey, it was worth it. I try to rationalize that on previous tours I would have used two bottles to equal this much capacity. Am I out of my mind? You be the judge.

Questions, comments, or suggestions?  Let me know in the comments.