Trail riding is one of the best ways to have an adventure with your bike while challenging yourself mentally and physically. It is not an easy fete, which is why you need to ensure you have everything you need before setting off. You may require a good number of things with you, but since you don’t want to make your bike heavy, it is mandatory to decide what is essential.
To some level, how well your trip goes depends on how well you pack your accessories. It also depends mainly on the trail you intend on taking. The rule of thumb is you should carry anything you won’t easily find on your way. You will be helpful so that you have a sense of order. Make a list and divide it into categories to make the job easier. The following is a detailed dirt bike tool checklist for everything you need when dirt bike riding.
Bags and Backpacks
Before you figure out what you must carry for your trip, you need to determine the bag to carry. This should accommodate everything you need, and the type you get will dictate how much you can bring along. One t you thing that you should know is that you can carry more than one bag, especially if you’re going on a long trip.
The different types of backpacks available for you include:
- Fender bag. As the name suggests, it is secured on your rear fender such that it is balanced and won’t affect your riding.
- Saddlebag. It hangs off your bag, similar to what happens on a horse hence the name. It is suitable if you have quite many things to carry and don’t need anything hindering your riding. However, they are not the best for trail riding.
- Fanny pack. It is not the most popular option since it doesn’t have a large capacity. However, it is an excellent option if you are not a fan of a backpack. It is easy to access since it is strapped around your waist, but it may take a bit of getting used to.
- Handlebar bag. This one goes on your crossbar, and because of this, it is not very big. This is why it would be a good option to replace a backpack since it gives you access to your stuff while riding.
- Hydration pack. This is worn just like a backpack, but it is mainly made for storing your water since it can accommodate a large capacity. They also have an extra-large space where you can keep all your tools or things you want to reach easily.
Choosing the Right Hydration Pack
Carrying a good backpack/hydration pack is recommended for trail riding since it is on your body, easy to carry, and well balanced. However, you may want to add another one, so you bring all that you need. The following are some great dirt bike riding options.
Escapist 24- Osprey
The Escapist 24 Osprey is a compact lightweight backpack that allows you to carry all your essentials, so you may not need an extra bag. It is quite comfortable since it is fully padded with hip and waist belts, so it is properly secured on your body. There is a sleeve outside that allows you to attach your hydration reservoir. While it is not water-resistant, it comes with a rain cover, so you don’t have to worry about getting your stuff wet.
The CamelBak Mule is a good hydration pack that is lightweight and allows you to store your water and refill easily. The extra storage space is limited, but it is adequate to keep the bare essentials. The back panel is well created to ensure that you experience no pains when carrying it for long durations.
Bike Tools and Repair Pack
When packing, you should start with the essential things, and your tools rank up there. It is common for your bike to need a little fixing even when it was in top-notch condition. The following are some of the tools that you must carry in your bag for storing tools on a dirt bike.
- Get a set of wrenches in different sizes. You know your bike well, so you’re in the best position to determine what you may need. However, some useful ones are the Allen sets.
- You can get one driver with interchangeable heads to reduce your load. Some that you may need include flathead, Philips, and Allen.
- Tire repair. If you can get a kit that includes everything you need to repair your tire, that is best. However, you should carry an extra tube if you have space and don’t forget the duct tape.
- Spark plug. This commonly fails while riding, so ensure to carry a spare.
- Zip ties. They’re useful in holding up stuff such as your waterproof covers.
- Socket set. Get a small box of between 8mm and 14mm.
- Master link. It is not very easy to break it, but if you do, it means bad news, so it helps to have an extra one.
- You will more likely than not need this, especially when on a rough road, so include a small one in your bag.
- Engine oil and coolant. It is safer to carry and not need than not having them completely.
- Even when on a familiar route, you will not ride in the same way, so have a backup just in case.
- Brake fluid and levers. The slightest mistake could make you need these.
- Tow ropes. You don’t want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere pushing your bike. It is easier to have the strap so you can be towed to get it fixed.
Things are usually rough when trail riding, so safety is of the utmost importance. You will wear many of these, so they won’t necessarily add to your load but save some space in your bag for a few requirements. That said, it only makes sense to invest in quality for the safety gear that you wear. Low-quality items are not only dangerous but may be heavier than needed. Also, it is better to wear something that you have had for a while. New gear can be quite tight and uncomfortable to keep for long periods. Here are some things to include in your dirt bike trip checklist.
- Pads/ braces. It would be best to have different pads for your knee and elbows, including a neck brace and full body armor. A helmet also falls here and carry a liner for those hot days. Remember that if you have a terrible fall, these will save your life literally.
- Riding jacket/shirt/trousers. Other than what you wear, you should include one or two more in your bag. While trail riding, it is not practical to change your clothes daily but having a fresh set ensures you’re not roughing it up too much.
- Get appropriate riding boots and ensure they’re broken into since they will be more comfortable that way.
- First aid kit. There are different types of biking first aid kits available online so check for one that has some important stuff. However, note that you require small and large bandages, antibiotic cream, gauze wrap, tape, alcohol and cotton pads, as well as some pain killers.
If you can access a motel while on your trip, then well and good. Otherwise, you will probably be camping between rides. This part of the stuff will probably take quite a bit of space, so you should rent what you can. Therefore, choose campsites with most of what you will need. However, these are some things you will need.
- Air bed. Rather than carrying a sleeping bag, an air bed is better since it requires less space and it is more comfortable to some level. Remember to bring the pump if it requires a specific one.
- Utility knife. This is essential when camping since you never know what you will need to cut up or need the rest of its tools.
- Lamp/torch/matches. Navigating in the dark is not fun, not to mention dangerous. Unless you want to start a fire using friction, it is easier to carry some matches. You could even squeeze in a compact camping stove just in case lighting wood fires might be harder than expected
- Pots, dishes, and cutlery. These are essential if you plan on preparing any meals when out there.
- Large water bottle. For fetching water for refilling your hydration pack and cooking.
- Wet wipes/ sanitizer- if you won’t shower at the campsite, these are essential to help freshen up.
- It may get chilly, and you must stay warm.
Whether or not you know the trail well, it is easy to get lost, so you need to ensure that doesn’t happen. You may also notice somewhere not in the initial plan where you may want to explore. The following are some of the things you will need.
- Satellite GPS. A satellite locator, even if it’s a watch with GPS, is not only useful in telling you where you are and where you’re going, but it can also assist in getting help. You can alert your emergency contact of your situation, and it will work as your tracker. This is important if anything happens and you are injured or lost, you will be found.
- While it is a very traditional way of navigating, it is effective since it doesn’t require power or batteries. However, ensure that you can read a map, so you don’t end up going in the wrong direction.
- This is great as a backup if you need directions or call for help, although it is only useful in good reception places. Remember to carry a charged power bank to ensure that it doesn’t switch off.
Food and Drink
It is best to carry something to eat while you ride, especially if your trail doesn’t have many shops or towns. However, don’t bring too much since you are bound to come across a filling station or small town where you can replenish what you’ve used. These are the most essential.
- Canned food. Whether you will cook or not, carrying some canned foods is the easiest way to ensure that you don’t starve.
- Strive to get some healthy snacks that will leave you feeling fuller for longer. Some energy bars are a great option and generally foods high in fiber.
- Depending on how much water you take, ensure that your reservoir can accommodate your needs. However, you can carry an extra bottle, so you distribute the weight.
- Energy drinks and soda. If you are a fan of caffeine and sugar, you should include a few cans for your consumption.
- While on the trail, don’t expect to have access to the best coffee. What matters most is that you get your dose of caffeine. Instant coffee is most practical in this case.
Besides your riding gear, you will need other clothes in your dirt bike packing list so you have something to wear when you are resting up for the night. What you carry largely depends on the season, so bring heavy or light items accordingly. These are some of the things you should include.
- A fresh pair of underwear will help keep you active, that is if you prefer wearing it. You can carry a couple for each day if you don’t plan on doing any washing.
- Comfortable cotton shirts are great for wearing under your gear. Ensure that the material is very breathable so your body can sweat without any issue.
- Leggings/shorts. This is mostly resting wear since it is essential to free up your body after a whole day of wearing full armor.
- A comfortable pair is great for keeping your feet well-rested in the riding boots. Don’t wear riding shoes without socks since it will be very uncomfortable, especially due to sweating.
- Warm sweater. If you are riding in the desert climate, it may get quite chilly at night, and you don’t want to catch a cold when riding.
This is a category of other must-haves for trail riding that may make you more comfortable, especially if you still have extra space in your bag.
- Toilet paper. You can use the wet wipes as toilet paper, so it is not a must-have depending on your preference. Since you will mostly need to relieve yourself in the wild, you should consider getting the biodegradable type. This is much kinder to the environment and especially the animals living there.
- It would be best to try as much as possible not to litter when riding or even camping. Get some small-sized bin bags that you can carry with you until you get to garbage bins where you can dispose them.
- This includes all your essentials for taking a bath, including toothpaste and a toothbrush. Ensure that you buy the small size of everything, so they take as little space as possible. You can always replace them when they run out.
- Earlier mentioned are some waterproof cases, but it may be essential to carry some rainproof clothes for added protection. You can get these anywhere, including online, but the most important is a raincoat and cover for your bike.
- You must carry some money since it will keep you from any funny situations that it can quickly solve. However, you can also carry your cards, but don’t rely on them solely because they may not be valid in some places.
- Isotonic mixes. You may sweat a lot when riding, which may prompt you to drink more water. However, you may have a limited reservoir, which is why you need an isotonic drink mix. These are great at replacing the fluids you have lost pretty fast.
- Other than painkillers, you may want to include other medications that you would commonly use. This includes anti-acid, antibiotics, antihistamines, and flu medication.
- Burner phone. Smartphones give you more options but many of them need excellent reception to work. Burner phones don’t have this requirement usually so it is a good choice for trail riding.
Remember that this is only a guide for some of the things you will need when trail riding. This means that you must not carry everything on this dirt bike list. If you were to include everything indicated above, you would probably need more than one dirt bike backpack and even an extra bike just for that.
Pick and choose what you find essential for your case. Take into consideration the number of days you will be out and whether a few things can be purchased along the way. This will ensure that you only take with you the most necessary items. Preparation is essential here, so take time before your trip to get ready. Order what you need in good time so you won’t need to make last-minute purchases.