Silk Road Mountain Race with Hayden


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On my visit to Melbourne I met up with Hayden, Brand Manager at The Pedla, to talk about this huge bikepacking race he is about to compete in. He shares all his insights before going into a race that needs preparation well beyond a few fitness drills. This is absolute meticulous planning, from the Terra Nova cust9m sleeping bag to training for uphill laden bikepacking workouts!

The Silk Road Mountain Race is a fixed route, unsupported, single-stage cycling race through the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. The clock does not stop and there are no prizes. It follows gravel, single and double track and old soviet roads that have long been forgotten and fallen into disrepair. There is very little tarmac. There is some walking, and at times there is great distances between resupply points..

Show Notes

  1. Technical bike setup on his Curve GXR

  2. Custom bikepacking sleeping setup with Terra Nova

  3. Handmade bikepacking bags from Stealth in Wellington, New Zealand

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Bike setup

  • Curve Titanium GXR (med)

  • Sram Force 1 Groupset

  • 10-42 cassette

  • Absoluteblack 30T oval chainring

  • Shimano XT pedals

  • Thomson seat post, stem, bars (Dirt Drop 44cm)

  • Specialized Power Saddle

  • Nalac Squadra v2 bar tape

  • Curve Dirt Hoops carbon wheelset

    • DT350 rear hub, SP dynamo front hub

    • Vittoria Mezcal 27x2.1 tyres (tubeless)

    • Shimano centerlock rotor lock rings  

  • Arundel stainless steel cages x3 (with SIS 1L bidons)

  • Profile Designs TT bars with DIY bridge

  • Quad Lock Out Front mount (phone)

  • Garmin stem mount (garmin)

  • K-edge TT mount (go pro)

  • Generic go pro handlebar mount (front light)


  • Stealth Heaphy Harness

  • Stealth Pack Mule saddle bag

  • Stealth custom full frame bag- 2 zip

  • Stealth Top Loader top tube bag

  • Stealth Stem Pouch x2z


  • K-lite Bikepacker MTB dynamo light

  • K-lite switch and wiring

  • K-lite USB charger

  • Xiaomi 20,000mAh power bank

  • Black Diamond Storm head torch

  • Knog Mr Chips rear light

  • SPOT tracker- Gen 3

  • Iphone 7 in Lifeproof case with Quad Lock adhesive mount

  • Garmin Edge 820

  • Go Pro Hero 5

  • Assorted charging cables

  • Sennheiser earphones

  • Belkin rockstar adapter for Iphone

  • Spare AAA batteries


  • Pedla mesh base layer

  • Pedla LunaLUXE Jersey

  • Pedla FLYT Gilet

  • Pedla SuperFIT Knicks

  • Pedla arm warmers

  • Pedla leg warmers

  • Pedla Roubaix Neck Gaiter

  • Pedla AquaSHIELD gloves

  • Pedla Lightweight Socks

  • Waterproof socks (generic)

  • Lake MX237 MTB shoes

  • Neoprene toe covers (generic)

  • Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody

  • Macpac Prothermal Top

  • Macpac Prothermal Leggings

  • Macpac Hightail rain jacket

  • Macpac Hightail rain pants

  • Macpac merino liner gloves

  • Gore-tex ski mittens (generic)

  • Kask Vallegro helmet

  • Oakley Jawbreaker sunglasses

Sleep System

  • Terra Rosa Gear custom quilt- climashield apex fill, rated to 0*c

  • Terra Rosa Gear custom bivy- waterproof/breathable with bug screen

  • Terra Rosa Gear custom tent pole and pegs

  • Sea to Summit Ultralight Insulated sleeping mat

  • Sea to Summit pump sack

  • Sea to Summit 8L dry bag (doubles as a pillow)


  • Sea to Summit X-kettle

  • MSR Pocket Rocket

  • Bic lighter

  • 220g fuel canister (lasts 2hrs- enough for 20 meals)

  • Humangear Duo spork

  • Sawyer Mini Filter and 2L pouch with flushing plunger

  • 4x dehydrated meals

  • Sea to Summit Ultra-sil backpack (for extra food)

John Pears