So you’ve decided to take up mountain biking. You’ve got the bike – tick. You’ve found the perfect trail – Tick. And you’re off. Wait, not so fast. There are a few more essential pieces of gear you need to tick off your checklist.

 

Mountain biking gets the adrenaline pumping and takes you off the beaten track. But there are precautions you need to take in order to make your ride as smooth as possible – unlike the bike tracks you’re on. You need to make sure you’re wearing a kit that will protect you and that you are carrying tools to keep your bike running. 

 

These are the 8 essential mountain bike accessories you should never leave home without:

 

1.    Helmet

Use your head and keep it safe by buying the best helmet you can afford. Look out for ones with MIPS. That’s Multi-directional Impact Protection System. Choose a helmet that fits snugly. If it’s too loose, it won’t protect your head correctly, and if it’s too tight, you’re going to get a headache. Ventilation is also essential to control sweating.

 

2.    Protective glasses

There is nothing worse than getting a face full of leaves, so get yourself a pair of protective glasses. These can double as sunglasses allowing you to ride in all kinds of lighting conditions.

 

3.    Gloves

Gloves not only protect your hands from the ground if you fall, but also prevent blisters and sores from handlebars.

 

4.    Riding shorts

It may be tempting to wear any old pair of shorts for a ride, but specifically-designed bike shorts go a long way in protecting your thighs from chaffing and keeping your backside comfortable.

 

5.    A hydration system

Water is essential when mountain biking to keep you refreshed and hydrated. Most bikes have a fitting to hold a bottle, but you’ll probably need more water than that if you’re pushing yourself hard or riding for a long time. A hydration pack will hold enough water to keep you going for longer and doubles as storage for other essential items.

 

6.    Tyre repair kit

You need a hand-held pump and ideally two spare tubes if you’re heading out on a long or particularly rough ride.

 

7.    A multi-tool

Get one with a range of Allen keys, star and flat screwdrivers. That will give you what you need to fix most mechanical problems. If you can afford it, splurge on a multi-tool with a chain-breaker to cover all the bases.

 

8.    First aid kit

You may have limited space, but a first aid kit can be a life-saver, literally!. Make sure your kit has the basics: gauze, wipes, bandages and plasters. Other items you could include are iodine, hand sanitiser and a phone charge pack for emergencies. 

 

If you’re planning a one off ride or mountain bike regularly, talk to the experts at Bikes.com.au, who will help you with all your bicycle needs.