My first tour is nearing (August), and I am beginning to think more concretely about details I must consider. There are many decisions to make, some of which I will put off until the last minute. Some of the things I will need to decide include: what kind of tires do I want to ride, what will my clothing strategy be, what electronics will I bring & how do I plan to charge/use them?
I have never been to the places the tour will travel and this leaves some uncertainty. I guess there is always some uncertainty so I won't dwell on that. I plan to stick to information gathered in research, past experience, and instinct.
What I'm thinking about a lot right now is clothing. I want to be prepared for extremes of hot and cold, but emphasize the middle ground. The obvious concepts of layers and appropriate fabrics will be easy to put into practice. I want to be comfortable on and off the bike. The decisions that feel important are about which shorts (wool, lycra, long/short, thick/thin padding), and how many? "How many" is a big question about everything. The tour is only 6 days long so it won't really matter if I go quite spare, this isn't a luxury tour. But there is a question about comfort. I've never ridden so much in a short period of time without the possibility of a thorough cleaning of my clothes. Rinsing may be the best I can expect.
As for electronics, the prospect of not being able to use my iPhone in the maner to which I have become accustomed, is too dreadful to think about. I am considering a solar charger, but I bought one a few years ago and was disappointed and returned it. I will probably check to see if the new ones are more promising.
As I continue to define my priorities and strategies, I will re-visit some of these topics. I would love input from others who have experience with some of the issues discussed here.