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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #31  
Old 8 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maximondo View Post
hahaha thats just as funny as my toilet brush!
I'd have to disagree there. When I read that you had a toilet brush with you I nearly fell of my chair (toilet?) laughing! Sorry.

For the record, I took a CD. Not to listen to, but to do morse code SOS to passing planes/helicopters should I have been stranded in the Sahara....

...On my RTW I never went to the Sahara and I don't know how to do morse code...

Chris
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  #32  
Old 8 Apr 2011
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Genuinely. I would not take my DSLR and all the associated nonsense again. Too much weight, too much dust on the road to get on your CCD when changing lenses. The tripod is really only of any use for shooting pics of youself riding off into the sunset, which is a bit egocentric! (Find a low wall!)

I took a pannier full of photo gear on the way to Iran thinking it was all 'necessary' - hangover from being a pro, I suppose. It wasn't necessary, anything but - it was a pain in the arse and a constant worry. I came back with a few nice photos but actually, most of the time I didn't have it with me because it was too much hassle to carry around - and that's when the really nice shots always appear!

Instead i would take a high quality compact like my Canon G10, one of those tiny, tiny tripods for egocentric shots, a compact flash gun and a few 4GB cards - and that's it.

I have found subsequently I get better, more personal, shots from the G10 simply because I always have it with me.

Seriously, unless you think you're going to make your living from it or amatuer photography is your life - leave the DSLR at home!

It's the photographer that makes the photo - not the camera!

Matt
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  #33  
Old 9 Apr 2011
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Don't Lonely Planet now sell their guides as PDF's. Not bringing any books. Still thinking about a 7" tablet, but probably won't. Good touch phone will suffice for all tech needs.

I'm definitely bringing a stool. Walkstools are the dogs nuts. I'm going to try and turn it into a trail stand for tyre changing. They're definitely strong enough. Light too. Soft luggage all the way, so no panniers to sit on.

The average trip would be about 25k km? New bearings should last that, surely.

I'm working with the principle that if I don't take it on a week trip or long weekend I won't bring it on a long trip. Only things you may add is some types of clothing to accommodate circumstances beyond the weather forecast.

With bead buddy's you only need 1 tyre lever. And this can be a spanner as well. Terra X chain tool is small enough to bring. Never broke a link yet, but it sucks to end up having to work out a way to remove a pin to put a new link in on the road. Off course you may have to deal with a broken crank case.
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  #34  
Old 9 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmotten View Post
Don't Lonely Planet now sell their guides as PDF's. Not bringing any books. Still thinking about a 7" tablet, but probably won't. Good touch phone will suffice for all tech needs.
That they do...

I have THEM ALL..

PM me for "details"
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  #35  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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changed it to...what I would take!

so ive swopped the thread to suit my answer!

because the other is just too difficult as it varies from country to country and continent to continent as some spares are essential to carry in some and not in others and so on...I could create a whole book...but not going to just yet! :-)

what I wish I had taken from the begining!!
...after 6 years i got so fed up with sitting on the ground. My aching old bones jsut couldnt stand another day after a tough day off-road. I needed to sit! so we take a kermit chair with us...and oh boy! I just love it.

infact..its quite possible I would leave my husband at home and take the kermit chair instead!

oh dear...hes just seen my answer!
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  #36  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by Lisa Thomas View Post
so ive swopped the thread to suit my answer!
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...-items-your-13
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  #37  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by chris View Post
For the record, I took a CD. Not to listen to, but to do morse code SOS to passing planes/helicopters should I have been stranded in the Sahara....
My Heliograph CD had velcro on the back so it would stay in the top of the pannier

They don't even have a use stopping the stand sinking into soft ground

Andy
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  #38  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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you live and learn!

thanks Chris...never even knew that thread existed.
I'll make sure I put up a list at some point!

I dont think Id bother with my digital watch...I still wear it out of habit, but hardly look at the time let alone the day! I never know when its a weekend and anyway, weekends can change depending on the country you are in.
I should really just take it off.....but old habits die hard!

:-)
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  #39  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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Kermit

i agree Lisa we just bought our Kermit chairs!! Sara
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  #40  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
Axe - Totally pointless (you can break dry wood with your boots)
Chain Breaker - A well fitted chain will not break - Bring a snap link.
Camp stool - They last about 5 mins & are crippling. Sit on a plastic bag.
Spare tyres - You can buy or post them anywhere.
Lonley planet - All the info is wrong or out of date.
Tent peg mallet - Not once have I failed to find a stone etc.
Lonely Planet has always been essential on our trips - we would have made a myriad of missteps and missed oh-so-many fabulous sites on our Eastern Europe, Scotland and Northern France trips without it.

Our camp stools are awesome - one is 10 years old and one is seven years old. As a person with awful knees, sitting on the ground every day for weeks/months isn't an option.

Small Axe - has been fantastic on trips both to cut wood and as a hammer.

As for what I wouldn't bring on the next long trip: I tend to bring too many socks...
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  #41  
Old 10 Apr 2011
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Another person who would strongly resist taking an LP guide again!

Fisteen to twenty years ago I thought they were great, about ten years ago I started noticing little innacuracies creeping in - not out of date stuff - stuff that was just plain wrong. I went to Croatia in 2009 and the guide was just riddled with mistakes - I decided to try Rough Guides.

Just back from Belize with a RG and I've found a different problem. The info seemed accurate enough but there was just a lack of really useful stuff. Lots of history and stuff but not much hard traveller info. To be honest, I can get all the history I need from guides, pamphlets, signs etc when I get there.

The driving section was terrible. Very little useful info at all - even down to which side of the road they drive on (I know this is pretty obvious when you get there, but still!). Biggest ommision was the Belizean rules on turning left off a road where there is traffic in both directions, which are different from anywhere else I've been. This is just an example.

Problem is, a good guidebook is a very useful piece of kit and can hold vital information when thngs go wrong - so I tend to get one regardless, just in case. Still looking for a really good guidebook publisher...

Having said that, I don't bother with guidebooks in Europe - maybe because I'm more comfortable here. Perhaps buying a guidebook is just a sign of my insecurity and I should not bother when I'm out of Europe either!

Matt

PS - If you have a thermarest, the thermarest chair doohickeys are nothing short of amazing!
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  #42  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by Matt Cartney View Post
Another person who would strongly resist taking an LP guide again!
+1

I have two main problems with LP guides:
1) Take up too much bloody space!
2) You end up staying in places that are full of people travelling by LP guide alone, where the stories tend to be the same. I ended up in one place in Northern UZ and was massively surprised at the numbers of westerners in there - they were all there because it was in their LP. This also seemed to have prevented them from having much interaction with the locals apart from market haggling as they could rely on meeting people who spoke English/French/german the next night.
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  #43  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
That they do...

I have THEM ALL..

PM me for "details"
Well that explains why you have such a bad time with them - they're all out of date if they're the batch of PDFs that were ripped off the servers last year.

You can get the PDFs for £2 odd on lonelyplanet.com (up to date ones) - up to about £6 for the very large chapters. I'd rather pay the money for an up to date copy.

Lonely Planet also sell the guides as epubs for tablets and as apps - the apps are totally up to date and have the very latest information from the authors on the ground (300+ authors on the road at any particular time).

You gets what you pays for.

BTW - I used to work for Lonely Planet and I can tell you right now Ted I hate the fact that you're stealing the work of the authors, the editors and the tech heads like myself who are just trying to make the whole travel thing that little bit easier. I'm heading to your website now Ted to find your best photographs and then I'm going to pop them into a book and sell it - that's cool right? Must be.
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  #44  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Sorry, off topic alert, but I'm curious.

Matt Cartney - the Belizean rules on turning left off a road where there is traffic in both directions, which are different from anywhere else I've been.

Errrrr..... can you explain?
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  #45  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Hi

Despite being on 4 wheels not two, I would definitely not take a DSLR, lenses and tripod again.
I forked out for a new shiny one, and a long zoom, to go with a 12-24mm and more normal zoom for this trip. I also got an Olympus tough compact thingy. The Olympus is always with us, and takes good enough pics although a viewfinder really would be a good thing! Even if I just take the SLR and one lens its still too heavy, obvious and cumbersome to carry round, and it shouts "tourist with money!!!" as soon as you get it out.

I would possibly still take it with the wide lens, as it does take lovely pics, the amount of light it lets in mean sunsets etc are cool, and the camera has enough pixels to crop down for a more normal shot.

The dust/drop/waterproofness of the Olympus has paid for itself, but next time I'd get a dark coloured one for more unobtrusive snapping. A mirror finish in the sun is not cool!

Shoes I've not worn in pre trip (and now given away!), mini chess computer is so small I can't see the screen without getting a headache, oil for two changes is a wee bit overkill (even if it was a bargain!), CD multichanger stopped at the first decent bump, and I tried sleeping in my hammock last night for the first time, rather than just an afternoon snooze, and I can't be doing that again!! I also got a trucker style steering wheel nob for easy turning, but it bashes me in the stomach every time it goes round so that didn't last long! If I can't give it away I'll try it on my bike when I get back for easier U-turns?!

Since a vast portion of most travel guides is outdated rubbish, but a decent hotel won't generally move much with time, second hand guides on Amazon have to be a good plan? Newer versions often seem to home in on the 1 week destinations more and more, leaving out smaller less travelled areas entirely, so why pay more for a new one that may cater to your needs less than a ten year old one?! You don't mind tearing out chunks that aren't relevant or where you've been already if it was only a quid

As for protecting the rights of the people who generate the guide info, the Bradt guide to Iceland 2008 is 424 pages and £14.99. Not too bad but still pricey IMHO. The Bradt guide to the Faroe Islands 2008 is 168 pages and £15.99!

Buying online pdfs would be really good if all the old info was there too, and you could pay for only where you were going, not the entire country with detailed descriptions of every bit of architecture interesting to the author, but no mention of campsites.

We have so many books we need a pre-trip several month holiday to digest it all!

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