I notice in many threads, people ask about a bike for touring, and the immediate response is "put a rack and mudguards on it, and it will be great". Why mudguards? I don't think I've ever had a bike with them, and don't think I've ever wanted them. Although I've ridden in ridiculously heavy rain (at one point wearing full ski gear, including goggles ) I've never had to tour in it. Yes, your gear gets muddy. Yes, you can get sprayed a bit - but is avoiding that minor inconvenience really worth the weight, cost, rattliness, reduced toe clearance etc?
I'm trying to reduce the number of accessories to buy for my bike. If I get talked back into them, so be it.
(I suspect I'm biased against mudguards because I always associate them with rusty old city bikes, going clang-clang every time they hit a pothole...)