Mountain biking can be a great deal of fun. Like every other sport though, there is an element of risk that comes along with it. Being prepared for any situation is the best defense. There are a few items that every bicyclist (really any outdoor enthusiast) should have. It’s a good rule of thumb that the farther you travel from home, the more supplies you should have with you.
As a bicyclist you should have a first aid kit, a bicycle tool kit, a cell phone and food and water. These items will make sure that in the event of an emergency you will be safe and get home as soon as possible. A cell phone is incredibly important so that you can call for help in an emergency. You may find however that you are in an area without service. If that occurs, you will need to depend on your other supplies.
In case of an accident, a small first aid kit will help treat minor wounds such as cuts and scratches.
You can carry a regular first aid kit or find bicyclist specific kits. Make sure that they include the following: band-aids, antiseptic, tweezers, pain reliever, tensor bandages and moleskin. If you have any known allergies such as bee stings, be sure to carry an epee pen. Likewise, if you are asthmatic, you should also carry your inhaler.
You should also purchase a bike specific tool kit. Minor repairs may need to be done while on your route, having the appropriate tools will save time and headaches. In addition to tools, you may want to carry and extra bike chain. As any seasoned biker can tell you, it is very easy to bust a bike chain while you are riding. A spare can be easily switched out and you will be back on the road in no time. Finally, an air pump and other tools for fixing a flat tire are great tools to have on your journey.
These kits include lightweight tools that will fit easily on your bike. Make sure it includes and Allan key or small wrench, a chain breaker, a tire gauge, a Swiss army knife, and some strong tape.
One last thought, though no less important, is water and a small snack. In case you are stranded, having water and something to keep your energy up is imperative. Try an energy bar or something else that includes protein and complex carbohydrates. Being prepared will ensure a fun, safe experience.
Sydney Garrison is an avid cyclist and sports enthusiast. She is also a partner in an online bike carrier store.