By Nathaniel Wu
When going on any sort of trip, planning is one of the most important things to do. For beginning mountain bikers, they may not know what to bring. Fortunately, this blog will detail the essential and recommended items to make every trip a fun one! Please note that all items are geared for general trail riding.
Mountain biking can have many issues come along, so this list of essentials will avoid and solve potential problems on the trails.
This may seem obvious, but bike quality is of utmost importance
Do a drop test, where you pick up the bike by the handlebar and drop it a few inches. This checks for anything loose or hanging on the bike
Be sure the tires are inflated correctly and within the recommended PSI
Be sure all components are secure on the bike
Be sure that the gears can shift smoothly
Be sure that you’re comfortable on the bike
Head protection is especially necessary on trails
MIPS protects against rotational forces, which may be useful
Check out the MIPS website for more information!
Be sure that the helmet fits comfortably, feels snug, but isn’t too tight
A bike multitool often has Allen Keys (hex shaped) and other tools
The Allen Keys can fix most mechanical problems
Going without a multitool is risky
Pumps vary, but generally go for compact ones
Most important thing is to have the correct valve type included
Schrader Valves are thick and appear on mountain bikes
Presta Valves are thin and appear on road bikes
Track pumps put in lots of air quickly, but are often bulky
Mini pumps are convenient to take around, but take longer to pump
It is recommended to bring spare tire tubes in case of a puncture
Bring tire levers to change the tubes if needed
You’ll need to stay hydrated during a ride
Bring extra in case but don’t overload yourself with water
Consider buying a water bottle holder for convenience
Although the following items aren’t necessary, they make the riding experience much more safe and pleasant.
The best gloves are breathable but still offer protection
Gloves protect hands from getting calluses from the handle
Gloves also protect hands from getting cut on the trail
Make sure that the clothing isn't too thick
Long pants/sleeves protect the arms and legs from cuts and scrapes
During hotter weather, this may not be as practical
Despite all precautions, injuries may still occur
The most useful things are Band-Aids for cuts and scrapes
Consider bringing disinfectant wipes and bigger bandages
Make sure the first aid kid is compact
A mountain biking trip, while extremely fun, can quickly go haywire. Luckily, the end to a trip can often be mitigated through ample preparation. Happy shredding!