9 Things to Pack for a Mountain Bike Ride

Mountain Biking in California

Mountain biking might seem pretty simple, if you know how to ride a bike you just hop on a trail and off you go, right?

If you are serious about mountain biking and want to make sure you are prepared for the trail, there are a few things that you need to bring along with you!

I’ve been biking seriously for about a year now, and I have learned that there are 9 essential items that I absolutely must bring in my backpack for any ride, even if it’s just a short ride.

Here are my recommendations of 9 things to pack for a mountain bike ride.

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Mountain Bike Riding in California

First things first, none of this is possible unless you have something to carry all of this in! I always bring my backpack on a ride no matter what. It’s a lot easier to load everything into one bag than to figure out how to fit all of this inside of multiple little bags that are somehow attached to my bike. The backpack I use is the Osprey Women’s Raven 10 Hydration Pack. It’s not the cheapest out there, but there are certain things that are worth spending a little more on, and this is definitely one of them. The quality of this backpack is amazing and I know it will last for years. Plus, it’s the perfect size and color for me! If you are serious about getting into mountain biking (or hiking), I highly recommend this one!

Once you have picked out the perfect backpack for you, go ahead and fill it with these essential items:

  1. Water

This is obvious, but I feel that it’s so important that it has to be included on my list. Do not go on a ride without bringing enough water! If you don’t want to carry a hydration pack like the one I use, you can add a water bottle cage to your bike and fill up a bottle instead.

  1. Snacks/Energy

You will most likely get hungry while burning all of that energy! There have been so many rides where I had to give up early because I was hungry. Even if you are not hungry and you are just going on a short ride you may as well bring something with just in case. There are a lot of options to choose from: granola bars, energy bars, energy gel, apples, bananas, crackers, etc.

  1. Toolkit

If something happens to go wrong with your bike, you don’t want to be stuck on the side of the trail, or walking back! You are going to need a toolkit. This one is a good option: Crank Brothers Multi Bicycle Tool.

  1. Spare Tube/s

Of course, this is the main thing you are going to need in case you get a flat, so don’t forget one of these. My husband manages to get flat tires a lot, one time he came home with both tires flat! We recently changed his bike over to “slime” tubes, and so far so good! You can find these here: Slime Self-Sealing Smart Tube. Just make sure you buy the right size for your wheel!

  1. Tire lever

Another tool you will need in case you get a flat. There are so many options to choose from and any should work fine. Here is just one option: Crank Brothers Tire Lever.

  1. Tire pump

Another very important item for fixing a flat! Some people use CO2 cartridges, but I prefer to just bring my mini pump: Blackburn Core Mini Pump. Sometimes CO2 cartridges are unreliable and you only have one chance to get it right, and if you don’t, you waste the whole cartridge.

  1. First aid

In the unfortunate event that you have a stumble, it’s a good idea to bring a few small first aid items. I use the Northbound Train First Aid Kit, and it fits inside of my backpack perfectly. You can also attach it to the outside of your backpack or even to your bike.

  1. Sunscreen

Since you will be outdoors for a while you shouldn’t forget to put on sunscreen! I always bring a travel size tube with me in case I forget, or someone in my group forgets.

  1. Chap-stick

I can’t stand riding with dry lips. I always make sure I have chap-stick in my backpack!

Mountain Biking in Big Bear, California

These 9 essential items should help you survive any ride with ease! What items do you like to pack for a mountain bike ride?


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4 thoughts on “9 Things to Pack for a Mountain Bike Ride”

  • Amazing blog you have here. Really well put together and great content. I am a keen biker over here in the UK, I agree with everything on the list. I also like to take a book so when I get to my destination off the beaten track I can chill and have a read…..

    • Hi John! Thanks so much for your comment, that really means a lot! It’s hard work putting a blog together and I am so happy to hear that you enjoy it. Bringing a book is a GREAT idea! One that I actually never thought of! I know the perfect place to take a break and read too…maybe on my next ride I will have to do it! What kind of bike do you ride?

    • Hi Shirin! I ALWAYS get hungry on a ride so I love taking a snack break once I reach the top that way I can enjoy these excellent California views! Enjoy your new Camelback!

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