Mountain biking is a fantastic sport, nothing but you, your mates, your bike, the trails, and dirt, dust mud or whatever else mother nature throws at you. But what if you find yourself a few K’s from your car and break down? Let me show you what you should carry.
It might quickly turn the ultimate ride into an epic failure…..not to mention getting home hours later that planned and having to explain it…
Today, I want talk to you about the gear that you should carry when you go for a ride.
Now this varies quite a bit depending on where you’re going and how long you’re planning to ride for.
What To Pack For A Short Ride
I’m fortunate enough to have a small mountain bike park that has been built by a couple of great community groups, the local mountain bike club and the local council. It is mainly single track and about five kilometers in length and has been built on the side of playing fields and an old quarry. It’s fantastic. And it’s only about ten minutes from my house.
Great for a quick early morning or an afternoon ride.
If you are riding at a place like this you should carry –
bottle of water or hydration pack,
and a small kit of tools.That kit of tools will consist of –
set of tire levers,
multi-tool, which has a whole range of tools on it that include different-sized Allan keys or Hex keys, different-sized screwdrivers and spoke key
couple of cable ties,
small pair of pliers,
You might also like to carry –
puncture repair kit and a spare tube because you never know if someone else may need some help to repair a flat tyre.
As I am running tubeless tyres with Stans NoGaps I no longer need to worry as much about carrying spare tubes in case of a puncture for shorter rides.
All that gear can fit in a bag under the seat with your pump mounted onto your bike frame or as I prefer, in a small backpack.
On a ride like this if I have a major breakdown, I’ll walk home or I could call someone for a lift.
So that’s all okay.
However, you are going on a longer ride, and now I’m talking about a few hours or a full day – an adventure ride out in the state forests, discovering some new trails in areas you haven’t been before, you want to really, prepare yourself well.
First and foremost, you should do a bit of research about the area, to understand –
where it is that you’re parking,
where are you riding from and to,
what the conditions are like.
And then before you leave tell someone where you’re going and how long you expect to be.
It’s so important. If you have an accident, or you get lost, at least someone like family or friends knows where you are, and what area to start looking if you don’t arrive home.
Also, that sort of ride, you should never go on alone. Always ride with a mate or a group of riders. Again, same reason, if you have an accident and you’re hurt, there’s someone there to organize and help you. Or even if you have a serious breakdown, someone there to give you some support, and help you get back on the ride again.
What To Pack For A Long Ride
The gear that you should take on a long ride would be –
a hydration system that carries more water than a bottle, and I’m thinking now, perhaps two liters of water,
and also some food and light snacks.
It is so important on longer rides, you’re going be burning a lot of energy. And in order to keep your energy levels up, keep your concentration going, you need t to have a few snacks along the way.
I typically take with me a bit of fruit, might be a banana, or two, and some mixed nuts, and a sports drink with a high glycemic index carbohydrate.
set of tire levers,
multi-tool, which has a whole range of tools on it that include different-sized metric Allan keys or Hex keys, different-sized screwdrivers and a spoke key
a small pair of pliers,
a spare tube to suit a 27.5 inch tyre as in an emergency this will fit both 26 and 29 inch tyres,
tyre repair kit,
first aid kit,
spare chain links,
rear derailleur hanger,
a couple of cable ties,
and a roll of good old kitchen cling wrap…that’s right cling wrap. In case of a bite from a snake to a serious graze there is nothing better than to wrap the area in cling wrap. Keeps the area dry, clean, if wrapped tightly provides compression and when medical help arrives they can see the extent of the injury.
and that’s about it.
You might take a few other things such as –
slightly warmer top in case it gets cool.
So there you go guys, a few pointers, on what you should take for a short ride or a long ride.
Hope to see you on the trails. Cheers!
About The Author
Rod Bucton, mountain bike fanatic from Mid North Coast, New South Wales Australia…discover the shortcuts to mountain biking for beginners and while you’re at it follow Rod on Facebook or Instagram.
Like any sport, bicycling involves risk of injury and damage. By choosing to ride a bicycle, you assume the responsibility for that risk, so you need to know — and to practice — the rules of safe and responsible riding and of proper use and maintenance. Proper use and maintenance of your bicycle reduces risk of injury.