Going On A Bike Trip: Equipment You Must Take

The choice of equipment for cycling directly depends on its format, and there are many options: overnight trips, weekend trips, or months of cycling trips, with overnight stays in hostels and hotels or in tents, in areas with developed infrastructure and semi-autonomous. And for each trip, there is a different set of perfect equipment. 

Bivouac Equipment

At first, it may seem that choosing bivouac equipment is as random as playing online roulette because there is no bivouac equipment designed specifically for the needs of bicycle tourists. Around the world, cycling enthusiasts ride with the same equipment as hikers. But their priorities when choosing a particular tent, mat, or sleeping bag may differ markedly.

The key difference lies in the relationship to the weight of the equipment. If the hiker carries all the weight on his shoulders and feels every extra kilogram in his backpack, for the cyclist the increase in weight of bags by a couple of kilograms will not be particularly felt. Only a radical drop in the basic weight of the equipment can help.

For example, when using a tent or awning weighing up to 1 kg, an ultralight mat and sleeping bag also weighing less than 1 kg, a minimum of removable clothing and auxiliary equipment and a very accurately calculated, lightweight food layout.

At the forefront for the cyclist, is compact bivouac equipment comes, the volume of which is up to half of all camping equipment. Large backpack is better suited for packing bulky equipment – a large sleeping bag or long segments of the tent frame. What can not be said about the bike bags with their relatively small volume and limited space of bicycle luggage?



Cyclists don’t have to chase ultra-light equipment. And if you don’t set yourself the goal of maximum lightweight equipment, you can safely use tents weighing about 2.5-3 kg. So you can save money, but at the same time get a more comfortable and spacious tent, which is better adapted to the conditions of bad weather than its ultralight analogs from the same manufacturer.


Large vestibules offer many advantages for bicycle tourers. First, there is a place to store bike bags, as they usually occupy even more space than a large tourist backpack. And the vestibules of a simple camping tent are sometimes not big enough, or they turn out to be completely crammed with equipment. In this case, the big vestibule will be easier to undress, cook on the stove, or dry things inside the tent in case of bad weather. So, camping tents with a large vestibule are often positioned as “bicycle tents” or recommended for cyclists.

Don’t look for a tent with a huge vestibule, inside which fits a bicycle. Its storage inside is not much of a benefit, but the weight and size of the tent will increase by 2 to 3 times. A huge vestibule, in this case, it’s easier to replace the ultralight tent.

Sleeping Bag

When choosing a sleeping bag, the most important thing is to make sure its temperature rating matches the worst expected weather conditions on your route. It doesn’t matter what the sleeping bag is made of or how much it costs or weighs, if you freeze in it you won’t be able to sleep and rest.


The beginner cyclist will do ordinary foam, but normally you can fix it only on the trunk. In this case, sleeping on such a karemat will be uncomfortable. Warm and soft foam, which are good at hiding surface irregularities, roll up into a voluminous roll, and finding him a place on the bike is extremely difficult and sometimes impossible.


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    Auxiliary Equipment

    Personal Hygiene

    Here it’s simple: toothbrush, toothpaste, towel, soap, and sunscreen. Shampoo, skin, and nail care products are optional. Try not to take too much and use the compact gear. It’s better to replace the usual towel with a microfiber towel – it’s much lighter, smaller in size, and dries many times faster.

    Detergents, creams, and toothpaste are better to buy in small packages of 30-50 ml. or pour into small bottles and tubes. All of these items of hygiene should be carried in a separate carrier. So there is less risk that you’ll lose something, and things themselves will be kept clean.

    First Aid Kit

    If you’re going to pack your first aid kit, it’s better to consult a doctor, and also by taking into account your personal tolerance of certain medicines and your own chronic diseases. Here’s a little checklist:

    • Sunscreen. The face and hands of almost all cyclists are constantly in the sun, and burns without cream can not be avoided. Take only formulations with SPF 30-50.
    • Means for rehydration. While riding a bicycle, the body inevitably loses a lot of moisture and salts, which makes it necessary to restore the balance of electrolytes in the blood.
    • Hydrogen peroxide. For cleaning scratches and abrasions.
    • Antacid remedies. Used in cases of gastritis, colitis, and peptic ulcers.
    • Enterosorbents. Useful for indigestion or flatulence.
    • Antihistamines. For allergic reactions or to relieve swelling.

    To pack all the above items in a compact and organized way, use a special first aid kit bag. It’s easy to find in a backpack or bike bag, and all medications and bandaging supplies will be clearly structured inside.

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