How to pack all the essentials for a bike ride

Imagine, you’re on the road 10 kilometres from home and you get a flat tyre.

You scramble for a spare tyre, only to realise you didn’t pack one. Avoid this situation by packing all the essentials for a bike ride. Packing the right tools and educating yourself on how to use them will make the job easier and get you back on the bike quicker.

Essentials for a bike ride

  • Small pump or Co2 canisters: Fixed to the frame or in a saddlebag. Co2 canisters are costly and less environmentally friendly but are quick and fuss-free.
  • Puncture repair kit and tyre levers: New versions have glue-less patches that act like a band-aid.
  • Spare tube(s): Rolled up and in the saddlebag or spare bidon (tool carrier)
  • A multi-tool: Fits in your saddlebag and has almost everything for the quick fix mechanical problems
  • Water (bottle or camelback)
  • Nutrition (Snacks): None perishable items are the best and treats for extra motivation work well with the young ones.
  • Cash and phone for emergencies
  • Sun protection
  • Medications
  • Emergency details (ID)

Carry these essentials in your jersey pockets or a small backpack.

If you’re commuting to work, going for a much longer ride, or you just don’t like the feeling of heavy backpacks and/or pockets, you may like to carry your belongings on the bike as opposed to on the person.

On the bike‘ refers to devices that put the weight of your items on the bike, which means that your body is free to move without being weighed down.

Pannier bags stay on your bike in a fixed position whilst frame bags (also called bento bags) are fixed to the frame.

Other handy items

  • Lightweight spray jacket: Packs neatly
  • Bike lights: White on the front, red on the back
  • Spare socks
  • Wet wipes: After you change a flat, put the chain back on or stop for a lunch date.
  • Bike lock

You’ll need to work out what type of riding you will be doing and cater the needs of your pack to that type or riding. Experiment with different methods and talk with other cyclists to get your packing skills just right.

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