Philip Benningfield
Great Divide
The Luddite goes Neanderthal The attraction to bikepacking is simplicity! Forget all the gadgets and phone. GPS too if you are lucky enough to know your way along a route. That is what I go after when I ride on the Great Divide Route. Having the route out my backdoor, through terrain I am familiar with, I can leave with only the basic survival kit for a number of days.

I do not need to constantly check my mileage on a GPS, I certainly do not need to get any calls, and I only require a warm sleeping bag, rain jacket, and dry gloves and socks. This allows total focus on the goal at hand.

The goal is complete immersion in the faraway places. Quiet, obscure roads filled with endless mountains and meadows and, if you are lucky, fleeting sights of black bears, elk herds, and soaring raptors. The goal far outweights searing lungs, swollen quads, and a multitude of aches and pains.

- IMAGES OF THE ROAD -

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Philip Benningfield

Gear List

- MY BLACKBURN GEAR -

- BIKE SPECS -

- PERSONAL ITEMS -

- TECHNOLOGY -

- CAMPING GEAR -

- MY CLOTHING -

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Philip Benningfield
  • What was the genesis moment or inspiration for your upcoming adventure? Have your traveled by bike in the past? My motivation comes from some instinctual need to see what lies over the next mountain pass, to see a pristine meadow flushed with wildflowers or filled with stoic elk, or follow a never-ending ranch fence line in as obscure a place as possible.
  • What is your goal for the route? What do you hope to get out of this journey? Any undertaking along the GDR is tempered with as little expectations as possible. I find no need to try and experience the trip beforehand as the actual ride far surpasses any expectation. The goal each and every time is to get away from the busy world and witness, with as minimal a kit as I can survive with, the peace found out in the middle of nowhere!

MY MUST HAVES

  • Tattered warm Pearlizumi gloves
  • Sleeping Bag Feathered Friends Hummingbird 20-degree sleeping bag
  • Marmot 650-fill down coat
  • Jagged Edge skullcap

- Great Divide Milestones -