Originally hailing from Atlanta, GA, Jon Woodroof is an ex-bikeshop owner who has been traveling consistently with his bikes for going on 15 years. Based in Amsterdam since 2013 and running his cycling PR agency: Twotone Consulting for nearly as long. His latest trip was to Morocco for the Atlas Mountain Race and was his first time flying with the Transfer Case (150L)
I’m a bit of a procrastinator when it comes to packing. I go over the pack list in my mind for weeks and pile what I need in some corner of the house or office but still wait till the night before to make it happen. Ironically, I was actually particularly pumped to try out the Transfer Case because, though I do have a handmade mechanical disc-equipped S&S CX bike made by Aaron of 611 Bicycle Co., it isn’t always the perfect bike for every trip and traveling with any other of my bikes has always meant dusting off one of my mega full-size bike boxes. Historically, this meant a hassle, fees and originally, my motivation to even build an S&S frame, to begin with.
But my made in Amsterdam, Lester Cycles is my bikepacking bike. It has all the extra braze-on’s that I need for mega trips like the Silk Road Mountain Race and this year’s Atlas Mountain Race. Per standard operating procedure, I waiting until the night before my Marrakech flight to pack my bike.
Knowing how petite even the large size of the Transfer Case was, and the fact that I had to remove my fork, I was expecting a more complicated packing procedure like the full-on build breakdown that I do for my S&S case. But with tidy compartments for the wheels, included pads for the top, steer and down tubes + a handy cover for the crankset; getting my bike into the Transfer Case was pretty effortless. Post’s helpful videos ensured I was doing it as intended AND my 45c front and 2.1 rear sized tires fit as well. I have a front rack on this bike too and it fit fine. I left shoes and other tools that I knew I could carry on to keep weight down.
When I checked it in at the KLM counter at Schiphol airport, it was 17kg (37.5lbs) and the staff didn’t even ask what the luggage was. On my return flight, the same experience but with a different airline: Euro Wings. Going two for two on flying without fees with a bike that had always meant I’d pay a premium to bring it was a wonderful feeling. The painless packing, confidence in the case’s ability to protect my bike and ease of traveling with it (several handles, wheels, and collapsibility when empty) all brought a smile to my sunburned face.
I know, I know enough about the case, man! What about the race?
I wrote more about that on the Radavist and will publish a bit more of a recap someday but I’ll say that Morocco was amazing and the Atlas Mountain Race was a great balance of beauty and brutality. I’m very fortunate to have had the chance to compete in this 1st edition of the race. I reveled in the week-long remote endeavor to push myself and find myself in lengthy bouts of solitude but also make many new friends along those rocky paths. Sometimes you doubt why you do this kind of thing at all but I think most people reading these words knows why. And to find that thing, sometimes you and your bike need to fly. Thank you for the chance to share my experience, Post!
@jonwoodroof of @twotoneams
Bike: Lester Cycles 56cm
Transfer Case 150L
Photos by: Tom Jamieson (@tom__jamieson)