We received the following email from reader JP:
I am preparing for a four-day, mid-October trip on the C & O/GAP from DC to Pittsburgh. I'll be with 7 or 8 others who are all staying in hotels. I'll be riding my Cannondale F29 2. I have a few questions that I would love if anyone could answer.
1. If I decided to camp, how painful is hauling a tent, sleeping bag, etc?
2. What pannier, saddle bag, handle bar bags are best for this kind of trip? I like Revelate Designs bags but their expensive. I have also been considering Topeak's seat post mounted panniers since Cannondale's frames are so uniquely shaped. Cheaper but may not be so sturdy.
3. Any other tips welcome.
It just so happens that I rode a good way down this very pathway and I recounted my camping experiences in an 8 part series. My biggest piece of advice is to ditch a tent and go with a hammock.
The path mentioned has lots of trees, but even if there are not any trees, you can use a hammock like a tent.
The Hennessy Hammock web site has all sorts of details. Below is my series from 2010, but reader comments on camping tips are welcome.
Bike Hacks Camping Series from Summer of 2010