cycling, hiking, travel

My NEW Touring Bicycle

Due to the pandemic, it’s very difficult to TEST RIDE bikes. Shops simply don’t have much inventory.

I knew that the Trek Checkpoint line were often included in lists of top Gravel Bikes for All Terrain.

I was looking for something more rugged and with more carrying capacity than my otherwise excellent Ghost.

I ended up with the Checkpoint ALR 4 … mainly because I lucked into finding one in stock at West Point Cycles in Vancouver. Still — it took over 4 months to get the accessories I wanted.

This bike is Aluminum, not steel, so it’s relatively light at 10.26 kg / 22.62 lbs. Carbon fork.

It’s got a ton of attachments. I special ordered the deluxe BONTRAGER racks front and back. I’ll load up with 4 full size panniers for longer trips.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I bought an inexpensive (CAD $43) 25 litre rear top pannier bag for those trips I want even MORE capacity.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I upgraded the tires to BONTAGER HARD-CASE editions. That should mean fewer flats. Just in case, I have a saddle bag basic repair kit.

After considering wearing bike shoes, I’m happy to have decided on flashy flats with adjustable straps. Deftrap nylon platform pedals.

I’ve hidden an AirTag so can locate the bike with the FindMy app.

Internal cables are tidier.

I now have the option to use drop bar grips — but I normally prefer flat bars. Happily, I can switch between several handlebar positions on this rig.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I put a quad lock for my phone central on the Blendr Stem. It has two attachments, normally my light and GoPro.


Once in a while I’ll take off the saddlebags and use it like a mountain bike.

Click PLAY or see it action on YouTube.


What is the Rule of 430?

… a formula that demonstrates replacing about 430 driving miles with 430 riding miles can offset the carbon cost of your new bike. Anything above 430 miles, and your bike is now carbon-negative.

Future BIG bikepacking trips I’m considering include:

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