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Thomas Frischknecht on what to bring bikepacking

Someone recently asked Thomas Frischknecht what to bring on a multi-day bikepacking trip. Seeing as he just did such an adventure from Switzerland to Italy, he has some ideas. Here he advises us in both words and images on what to bring bikepacking.

Words by Wendy Booher

Not long ago someone asked Thomas Frischknecht what to bring on a multi-day bikepacking trip, to which he replied, “As little as possible.” Not one for verbosity, instead of telling us, Frischknecht, or “Frischi,” showed us what he packed for his 6-stage, 840 km bikepacking trip from his home near Zurich, Switzerland to Siena, Italy. It should be noted that Frischi opted for lodging along the way instead of camping, which had an impact on his gear load. Check out the image further down for Frischi’s visual packing list, or just check out the list below the image.

Thomas Frischknecht’s Ritchey P-21


Before anything else though, there’s the matter of the bike. Frischi chose his Ritchey P-21 for this trip, which featured a few sobering climbs: the first one to pass through Switzerland, and then another one to cross over into Italy. If you’re not an Olympic medalist and/or world champion, then components selection becomes even more critical. But Frischi isn’t going to waste his time or energy either; pedaling efficiency is key to bikepacking. Here’s how he kitted out his P-21 for the trip:

  • Frame: Ritchey P-21, 20“
  • Handlebars, stem, headset, seatpost, and saddle: Ritchey WCS
  • Fork: RockShox SID
  • Wheels: DT Swiss 1501
  • Tires: Maxxis Pace 2.1 EXO
  • Drivetrain: SRAM XO1 38x 10-50, 12-speed
  • Brakes: Avid Level ULT
  • Bottle cage: Topeak 
  • Bike Rack: Tubus

What to pack for a multi-day bikepacking trip


Once the bike is dialed, next up is to strike a balance between what to pack and how much you can carry. This is how Frischi managed that challenge; here’s what he packed in his Topeak Backloader saddlebag and Toploader:

To wear off the bike

  • Oakley Sutro Kokoro glasses
  • Odlo Concord long sleeve merino shirt
  • Odlo shorts
  • Scott Sports Merino T- Shirt
  • Odlo Zeroweight rain jacket
  • Tom’s slippers


  • Sponser Sport Food electrolytes and High Energy bars

Repair kit

  • Multi-tool, Fly Paper, Mini Rocket Pump, Mega Red Light
  • Maxxis spare tube


  • Garmin Edge 1030
  • toothpaste and brush
  • Sportusal sunscreen
  • soft cleansing paper
  • Triggerdinger mobility tool
  • charger cables
  • face mask
  • Scott Sports rubber strap
  • iPhone 11

Route links, Feldbach, Switzerland – Siena, Italy

You can follow Frischi’s route stage-by-stage by clicking on the links below:Day 1: Feldbach, CH – St. Gotthard Pass, CH

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