I'm prepping my 26'' hardtail (merlin malt) for a bike tour of the Baltics. We're planning to take 10-12 days, with stopovers in Vilnius, Riga, Parnu and Tallinn. I'll have two panniers on the rack on the back and a bar bag too, for little things. I'll be using schwalbe marathon tyres.
The problem is with the gearing. I use 1x9 on my other bikes and I'm tempted to have the same on the merlin for the tour. A 36t chainring with a 11-32 cassette should be ok for 1-2 days riding. With the luggage, i doubt that we'll be topping 25km/h on the flat.
What are your bike tour experiences? Did you end up using only one chainring for the majority of the journey, or did you need the wider range?