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7 April 2009 No Comment

I have been looking at things I would like to take with me, for both practical and comfort reasons, and I have come up with a wishlist for the trip.

Photography - One of my regrets from the previous trip is the quality of photos. I took over 3,000 photos but due to storage constraints, the majority of them were taken in 640×480 format. I think my camera was 2 mega pixel, and to be honest it did a good job. I only had a 128mb card to store photos on though, so I always used the smallest setting available.

Every time I browse through the photos of Latin America I wish I had taken larger photos, as the size of the photos do not do justice to of the places I visited. I have decided that for the next trip I want to concentrate more on taking quality photos, and am willing to buy a better camera to do the job. Storage is now not so much of an issue as memory cards are very cheap - probably only a few pounds per gb. As 1gb will store about 200 photos (assuming 5mb per photo), and blank DVD’s are only a few pence,there isn’y any need to worry about storing photos.

As for the camera, I would like something of a better quality, and having read about the entry level digital SLR cameras being of a very good standard, I have decided to add a Nikon D40 SLR camera to the wishlist, as it is a decent price, and has some good reviews.

I reckon a tripod would come in handy, and the JOBY GorillaPodseems a nifty little bit of kit, but is fairly expensive. I have added to the wishlist as a maybe!

Computer - travelling with a laptop - potential disaster! I am in two minds about this one, I think it would make updating the website a lot easier, as I could organise photos and write entries whenever I like, then just cut and paste the words and upload the photos wherever I can access internet. I wouldn’t need anything too fancy, so at first I thought about a simple word-processor, however the advent of netbooks, and in particular the Acer Aspire Onehave me almost convinced, and consequently I have added one to the wishlist!

Camping Equipment - The choices are endless. I picked one brand Vango and plan to buy the tent, sleeping bag and sleeping mattress from the same place. I picked Vango because their equipment looks decent, is widely available, comes with a lifetime guarantee and isn’t as expensive as some of the other names in the industry.

Tent - If you actually start looking at tents, you’ll soon discover there are literally thousands to choose from. After deciding to get everything from one brand, the Vango Omega 250stood out as it is is under 100, seems to be good quality and has a big storage area.

Sleeping Bag - Onto the wishlist goes the Vango Summit 3000as it in the higher spec range, with a guide usage of -7 to 18C, and at about 60 pounds won’t break the bank.

Ground mat - The Vango Adventurerange seem a decent enough bet, therefore one of the standard models has been added to the wishlist.

Stove and cookwear - The M.S.R.range seems cool. Multifuel is the way forward I reckon.

The Bike - The bike is going to be the most important bit of kit. But they are REALLY expensive! A new Dawes Galaxy costs about £600 and that is not what I want to spend! I am pretty open to any kind of bike, and I have been reding up a LOT on frames and wheel sizes so I’ll keep looking on eBay to see if any bargain pops up. I will write an entry about this separately a a later date.

Saddle - Cyclists spend a lot of time sitting on these things, so I want it to be comfortable! Brooks have developed a reputation as the best in the industry, and are widely available on eBay, so I will be keeping my eye out for any bargains in the coming months.

Tyres - These are (hopefully!) the only thing that comes into contact with the road. The roads being of potentially poor standard, combined with the risk of riding over the odd sharp object, lead me to think that investing in an extra strength tyre will prove to be a wise decision in the long run. Schwalbeare supposed to be the daddy when it comes to tough tyres, so they are added to the wishlist.

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