Anker PowerCore+ 26800

The Anker PowerCore+ 26800 is Garry’s latest acquisition.

It’s an ultra-high capacity power pack that is compatible with iPhones, Android phones, GoPro’s and most other USB-charged devices!

the search

After looking around at the various power packs that are on the market. Garry came upon the Anker power pack range and the Anker PowerCore+ 26800 in particular.

Anker PowerCore+ 26800
Three charging oulets

After reading some favourable reviews and its ability to charge different USB items at the same time with its triple outlets. Along with the number of times it’s able to charge! Before needing a recharge itself, Garry just had to buy one!

The Anker PowerCore+ 26800 coupled with the Anker quick-charge wall charger means it charges twice as fast. Garry’s first charge took 8hrs. And its Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0: Using Qualcomm’s advanced Quick Charge 3.0 technology, PowerCore+ allows compatible devices to charge 85% faster! It also has a bank of lights allowing you to know how much charge is in the unit.

It’s a bit bulky measuring in at 180x80x24mm and a bit heavy weighing 590g, but with all these power hungry items that we all seem to need these days it’s charging abilities far out way its weight and size! And should come in very handy on Garry’s next tour particularly if he ends up camping wild!

field test

To test the Anker PowerCore+ 26800 out Garry decided to take it on a little tour.

Garry was camping for three nights and four days in some pretty cold conditions! But the Anker PowerCore+ 26800 performed better than expected, bearing in mind the cold temperature! In that time Garry managed to keep his phone, which was in constant use and his GoPro which was also being used to film the tour completely topped up.

He even charged them both from the Anker PowerCore+ 26800 on his return home to see if he could run it out! But the very useful led display was still showing more than half of its power left!

Anker PowerCore+ 26800
LED’s display how much charge is left

A very useful piece of kit and Garry can’t wait to take it on a longer tour. Knowing that he will always have plenty of power to keep everything fully charged.

youtube video

Samsung Xcover 4

Garry’s newest phone is the Samsung Xcover 4.

Samsung Xcover 4 phone
The Samsung Xcover 4

After Garry’s old phone packed up, he needed a new one. So he started to look at the different Samsung phones around. (Garry’s had a Samsung for several years now and wanted stick with them!) After looking around, he quickly realised that most new phones have built-in batteries that can’t be changed by the operator! Garry had a separate battery and charger for his old phone and perceived not having a separate battery on a new phone as a bit of a pain!

Having a separate battery and charger allowed Garry to leave the battery on charge, be it in a hotel room, campsite toilets or from the Busch & Müller IQ2 charger on his bike, and still meant he was able to use his phone. He remembered what it was like before having a spare battery! Leaving the phone in campsite toilets to charge, where he then worried as to whether it would still be there when he returned!

The search

Garry looked at several different models including the new Samsung Galaxy X9, but with Garry’s lifestyle that seemed to be a bit too fragile! There was one phone however that stood out and seemed to suit most of Garry’s needs, the Samsung Xcover 4!

The Xcover 4 has a water and dust-resistant body. And is designed to stand up to everything from high and low temperatures! To mechanical shock, rain, ice and sand! And it has a changeable battery!

Samsung Xcover 4 keys
The front keys that allow for easy operation when wearing gloves

The Xcover 4 also has several hard keys on the front. Making it easy to use when wearing gloves or if you have wet hands. A double tap on one of the keys opens the camera. Very useful when Garry’s cycling along and wants to take a photo! Another key on the side operates a torch!

The Xcover 4 isn’t one of Samsungs latest models it’s about a year old! But as previously said it suits Garry’s need!

Rab Down Jacket

Rab logo

Last December I acquired the [amazon_textlink asin=’B07G5HW3W2′ text=’Rab Microlite down Jacket’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’travelsonabik-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’033d7155-a1ca-4b10-89de-ec290a096e74′] which was perfect for winter cycle touring. It’s lightweight weighing in at a mere 430g, packs down small and is showerproof.

Jacket
Rab jacket with hood

But after taking it on a couple of camping trips, I found it annoying! The hood would rub on the inside of the tent, causing drops of condensation to drip in, or even worse drip down my back if the hood was down!

Yes, it was nice to be able to pull the hood up over my head on those cold winter nights. But the hood was just too annoying, whether I had it up or down, it would just rub on the inner tent!

To resolve the problem, I acquired the very same jacket, but without the hood!

Jacket
Rab jacket without hood

I now use the hooded jacket for day rides at home and take the hoodless jacket with me when I go away touring. It’s so light and compact. I even take it in the summer! It can get pretty chilly at night when you’re just sitting around camp!

MSR Hubba Tour 2

MSR Hubba Tour 2 bag

 

The MSR Hubba Tour 2 is one of MSR’s new tents for 2017, and it reminds Garry a lot of his old MSR “Velo” it’s what Garry has been searching for ever since his old MSR “Velo” simply wore out!

MSR Hubba Tour 2
MSR Hubba Tour 2

Garry see’s this new MSR Hubba Tour 2 as an updated version of the old MSR Velo with some significant improvements!

One major improvement is the ability to pitch the tent with the inner tent attached allowing the inner tent to stay dry even in the heaviest of downpours!

It must also be one of the lightest tents for its size weighing in at only 2.74 kilos.

The exoskeleton pole system on the MSR Hubba Tour 2
The exoskeleton pole system

The setup of the tent is also swift with MSR’s exoskeleton pole system, although Garry’s still not convinced of the longevity of these (time will tell!)

Pitching the tent is a case of pegging out the four corners assembling the exoskeleton poles, inserting the poles into the four corners, clipping the flysheet to the poles, assemble the single pole for the vestibule, inserting that into its sleeve and peg out, that’s the basic setup complete!

Watch Garry’s YouTube video

 

Because of the Hubba Tour 2’s lightweight, everything feels a bit delicate, the guy ropes are just like pieces of string, and the flysheet is very thin! So, to test the tent out Garry set off to the Isle of Wight for the night fully loaded as if he was going away on tour.

Thorn bike all ready and loaded to go away
All ready and packed to go away

It was a rather blustery day with the wind blowing at a steady 22 mph. Once at the campsite Garry was unable to find a sheltered pitch and was forced to camp in a rather exposed pitch at the top of a hill!

Setting the tent up in the wind wasn’t a problem, and as Garry has already said it is a quick setup. Because it was so windy, Garry put out all the guy ropes to add stability which as we all know you’re meant to do each time you camp, but do we if moving pitch each night?

Inside The Tent

Once the tent was up Garry unloaded his bike and found that there was plenty of room for both him and all his panniers.

Inside the MSR Hubba Tour 2
Plenty of room inside for both gear and people

Having the large vestibule means that if it has been raining and all your gear is wet, you can put everything in the lobby and keep the inner tent completely dry. It also allows you to get out of wet gear before entering the inner tent. It also provides somewhere to cook if the weather is a bit inclement outside, providing there is plenty of ventilation of course!

Cooking inside the MSR Hubba Tour 2
Cooking inside in inclement weather

The inner tent is an ample size with good headroom, and the two doors provide each person with an entrance, or if the wind changes direction in the night the other door can be used.

As This is the two-man version there is loads of room; however, for two people, it could be a bit cosy! (But as we all know if your cycle touring it’s always best to have a two-man tent for one and a three-person tent for two)

On the night, Garry was trying out the tent for the first time the wind got up and was gusting at more than 30 mph, but the MSR Hubba Tour withstood this and was unscathed in the morning, although Garry didn’t get too much sleep, at least the tent was ok!

MSR Hubba Tour 2
The MSR the morning after
Summary

In summary the MSR Hubba Tour 2 suits all the requirements of a cycle tourist! It has a fast setup, which can be setup while raining and still maintain a dry inner tent. There’s plenty of room to store panniers and bags. It has a square footprint which from experience is better for wild camping as it enables you to tuck away out of site more easily and it’s very light!
Now that Garry has found the MSR Hubba Tour 2 he’s looking forward to more adventure cycling and cycle touring in the coming months!

Now that Garry has found the MSR Hubba Tour 2 he’s looking forward to more adventure cycling and cycle touring in the coming months!

Read Garry’s latest review of the MSR Hubba Tour 2.

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