Our 12 Most Popular Articles of 2018

It’s been a great year for bikepacking. In case you missed them, or if you want to have another look, here are the 12 most popular posts we published on the site in 2018…

With 389 original articles and bikepacking routes published on the site this year, not to mention hundreds of events added to the bikepacking events calendar, it’s been our biggest year to date. To celebrate, we looked back and tracked down the most popular articles published in 2018. Here are the top dozen:

12. 1Q5V Tool Kits

By Lucas Winzenburg
The tool kit is one of most important parts of any bikepacking kit, and something that should be carefully considered before setting out on a multi-day trip, be it to the backcountry or beyond the boundaries of your home country. In our second edition of One Question, Five Voices, we asked our panel to give us a peek at their tool and repair kits and to tell us a little bit about their choices.

bikepacking spares tool wrap

11. Make Your Own Stem Bag

By Neža Peterca
In this tutorial, Neža documented the process of making a stem bag (aka feed bag) from scratch. While there are a few necessary materials and tools, the beauty of making a small bag such as this one is that it can be fabricated with leftover materials. In this case, from a repurposed, leaky inflatable air mattress.

Make Your Own Stem Bag, Feed Bag, DIY bikepacking Bag

10. Virginia’s Salsa Deadwood

By Virginia Krabill and Logan Watts
For our trip to the Republic of Georgia, Virginia decided to give her Salsa Deadwood a makeover, one that included 29 x 2.6″ ‘wide trail’ tires, Jones Loop handlebars, and a new saddle. After five years of trial and error, she may have finally nailed her ideal dirt-touring rig setup. We documented the process and her thoughts on comfort in this article.

Salsa Deadwood Jones Bars

9. Logan’s Timberjack Ti

By Logan Watts
With a Niner carbon fork and Ibis hoops, I9 hubs, a Shimano/Wolf Tooth wide-range 1x drivetrain, and 29×2.6″ rubber, Logan dialed in his Salsa Timberjack Ti for ultralight adventure. This post outlined why he picked this frame and the cast of components that make it his dream bikepacking build.

Salsa Timberjack Ti Review

8. The Low Down on 29+ Tires

By Logan Watts
As part of our Low Down gear guides series, we created a comprehensive list of 29+ tire options with weights, specifications, and our take on each one that we’ve tested.

29+ Tires List, 29 plus tire options

7. Norco Search XR Review

By Miles Arbour
Norco revamped its Search XR Carbon with the latest standards, meaty 27.5 x 2.1” tires, and mounts to carry up to five water bottles. Miles was one of the first to get his hands on one and took it on the Fool’s Loop to see what a top-of-the-line ‘adventure-road’ bike can do.

Norco Search XR Review

6. 700c to 650B Conversion

By Logan Watts
With the promise of bigger, dirt-friendly tires and a more supple ride, there are plenty of reasons to be interested in converting your 700C bike into a 650B gravel bikepacking rig. For this article, Logan and Virginia took an Advocate Lorax, made the switch, and documented everything there is to know about the process.

700C to 650b conversion, Advocate Lorax, compass tires

5. Kona Sutra LTD Review

By Logan Watts and Ryan Sigsbey
While the Kona Sutra LTD wasn’t new for 2018, it was the first time we had a chance to check it out. Ryan and Logan teamed up to write and photograph a thorough review of this bike while gravel grinding, trail riding, and bikepacking in the Appalachian Mountains.

Kona Sutra LTD Review

4. Trek 1120 Review

By Logan Watts and Ryan Sigsbey
As one of the most interesting bikes of 2018, Trek’s 1120 debuted a unique rear rack and harness system, as well as its own spin on the idea of a front rando rack.

Trek 1120 Review, Bikepacking

3. Panniers vs Bikepacking Bags

By Franzi Wernsig
A hot debate: traditional bike touring panniers vs. bikepacking bags. Franzi and Jona put together this article to illustrate how they converted from a four-pannier setup mid-trip during their around-the-world journey. Plenty of comments and discussion ensued. Either way, it’s a great article to check out for insight into transforming from a bike touring kit to a streamlined bikepacking setup and why you might consider such a metamorphosis.

Panniers vs Bikepacking Bags

2. Comfort Mountain Bike Handlebars

By Cass Gilbert
For those looking at alternatives to their stock handlebars, we collated our favorite ‘comfort mountain bike bars’, for want of a better term. By ‘comfort mtb’, we’re referring to handlebars that are suited to riding challenging terrain, be it on trails or dirt roads. Namely, bars with more backsweep, more rise, or more width. The list features a ton of bars with a 15˚ backsweep or more.

Oddity Razorbar ti

1. Rigs of the 2018 Tour Divide

By Logan Watts
Continuing the tradition started by Neil and Lindsay at Bikepacker, we put together a big list of the riders and rigs of the 2018 Tour Divide, which commenced on the second Friday in June. Thanks to the passionate group of 85 participants for sending in a photo, bike details, and a brief kit list for aspiring Dividers to peruse!

Tour Divide Rigs, 2018



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