The most beautiful season for mountain biking has begun and between the cold, the terrain that might be slippery, or perhaps a flat tire, only two fundamental words come to mind: “Prepare properly”!
Although mountain biking, compared to enduro and downhill, may seem softer and easier, there are many precautions to take into account, first and foremost the equipment. Let’s start with the rucksack: there are so many, aren’t there? Which one should I choose and why? First of all, we advise you to consider carefully the size of your backpack, depending on the activity you are going to do. Are you going to be outside all day? Perhaps an 18 liter is a good choice! If you’re only going on short hikes, you could also opt for something smaller or even a pouch. Let’s not forget optional features such as a water bag. There are hundreds of evaluations to make, but we recommend that you first focus on what you will fit in and what you cannot do without!
The first point to consider on two wheels is always and only safety. A helmet and goggles are your two best friends and will save your life and eyesight even in the most extreme situations. Another item that is being used more and more is a watch with GPS tracking, which will help you find your way home, even in places with poor connection.
Fundamental items to have with you at all times: a pump or Co2 tank, tire hunting levers, and a spare inner tube. More times than you might expect, a tire will blow out or go flat, and you will need to be ready to repair it. Imagine that you still have 10km of the road ahead, and doing it on a repaired bike will be better than doing it on foot, right? In addition, at some points before a descent, it is advisable to slightly deflate the wheels to get more grip, but in case of a further climb, it is better to re-inflate them.
Water and food obviously should not be missing from your set, there are countless flasks you can try, even those with the quick release with the magnet, the only important thing is to always have it, maybe even with sugars or vitamins. As for food, it’s always better to have a gel or bars with you so that you don’t get stuck in the mountains with an unexpected sugar crash.
A multi-tool on your bike is your best friend and, given its low weight, we recommend that you always have it with you. There are hundreds of models, but surely there is one with the most suitable screws for your bike, so depending on your needs, you know what to look for. Along with the multitool we recommend a a replacement rollerchain, which will save you every time your chain might break.
One aspect that is often overlooked in these evaluations is clothing, but in truth, there is nothing more essential. A cape and a down jacket, such as the Rewoolution Rigel, are two items you should always carry in your rucksack. We also recommend that you consider thermal merino wool underwear, which will help you to dry easily after long climbs, but also keep you warm on steep descents. Also, never forget a spare garment in case of rain or a bad fall and gloves, perhaps with palm protectors.