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Long Rides - What to bring?

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
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Canaderp
Just curious, when you go out for an all day ride, what do you bring?

I am planning on doing a 40 mile trail ride next summer, with about 3500 feet of climbing throughout the day (lots of up and down). I'm planning on taking a day to do it, with no emphasis on speed or any sort of rush to get it over with.

Food is obvious, but what about parts? Should I just pack what I regularly bring (tube, shims, chain quick links, socks....)? I will definitely need a bigger hydration pack.

Any tips for poison ivy? I've never been inflicted by the stuff, but it is apparently all over the place. Is there any type of spray type crap that I can put on my legs?

@slyfink have you ever rode Ganaraska?
 

jonKranked

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Nov 10, 2005
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plenty of water. electrolyte tabs. super long rides i'll do patches and tubes, just in case. zip ties come in handy. i once rode with a guy who'd shove a spare spoke or 2 in his bag. he claimed they could be used to get a chain back together in a pinch (this was back before quick links were prevalent). he basically considered it a metal zip tie. shock pump might not be a bad idea.

small first aid kid.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
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plenty of water. electrolyte tabs. super long rides i'll do patches and tubes, just in case. zip ties come in handy. i once rode with a guy who'd shove a spare spoke or 2 in his bag. he claimed they could be used to get a chain back together in a pinch (this was back before quick links were prevalent). he basically considered it a metal zip tie. shock pump might not be a bad idea.

small first aid kid.
This will be a kid free trip.

Good call on the zipties. Now that you mention it, I'm not sure why I don't carry them right now. :imstupid:
 

TN

Hey baby, want a hot dog?
Jul 9, 2002
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candy.
when im pooped & I pop a couple of starbust (red & pink only plz) it helps my morale & helps me kick it back into gear.
 

jonKranked

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kit obviously.

maybe roll a bit of duct tape or electrical tape around something, just in case.

and like any long distance/duration excursion of this nature, make sure someone that isn't going with you knows where you'll be and estimated time you should be back.
 

Blown240

Monkey
Nov 19, 2013
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bring a couple dollar bills, in case you cut a sidewall, or want to buy something...
 

slyfink

Turbo Monkey
Sep 16, 2008
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2,744
Ottawa, Canada
@slyfink have you ever rode Ganaraska?
nope. only place in the GTA I've ridden is Albion Hills.

To add to others recommendations: if you're a ways from civilization, and there are no bailout options, I'd bring a spare derailleur, cable, and crimp (and derailleur hanger of course). In the grand scheme of things, they don't weigh too much and can really save the day.

re food, a friend of mine routinely makes "nutella joints" for long days in the saddle: flour tortillas with nutella smeared on and rolled tight. They take little space and are very tasty.
 

kickstand

Turbo Monkey
Sep 18, 2009
3,444
392
Fenton, MI
sandwich wraps are a must for me on long rides, easy to pack too.

You'll have to use a $5 bill, a loonie would just jingle around in your rim making noise
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
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In a van.... down by the river
Real food. Nothing sucks more than a day of shoveling down shitty cliff bars. Bagel sandwiches are my fav.
This. I carry a breakfast burrito for 2nd breakfast and pizza for lunch generally.

And out in our neck of the woods I've taken to carrying my Sawyer squeeze water filter and not carrying a $hitload of water (heavy as all hell). You have to know the route with regards to water stops for this, though...
Don't bring someone who fucking gives up once they get tired.
This is also very important. FullTrucker is an excellent example of someone with this "can-do" attitude.
Besides all the things already mentioned:

Toilet paper or a package of wet wipes. Maybe not the whole thing, but at least a couple. Especially in poison-leaf country.
I would *just* go with the wet wipes. They can serve multiple purposes. Also - a few small-ish ziploc bags for trash - 'cause you shouldn't leave the wipes out in the woods.
 
Last edited:

golgiaparatus

Out of my element
Aug 30, 2002
7,344
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Deep in the Jungles of Oklahoma
Bring food enough to eat about 100 calories every half hour. On long rides 5+ hours, its critical not only to bring food but remember to eat it at regular intervals, even it you aren't hungry. So make sure you have stuff you enjoy, no one feels motivated to eat a cliff bar... Some of my favorites include fried apple pies, rice crispy treats, and stinger waffles... and chocolate covered pecans (not anymore).

And enough water... Did 60 miles in 65 degree weather... emptied a 100oz camelbak and a 24oz bottle if that gives you any idea.

Some people bring a little ziplock baggie with a few salt pills. But of you aren't worried about pace, you probably wont be fighting cramps.

EDIT:
Forgot to mention the mechanical stuff, 2 tubes, a patch kit, a chain tool+links, zip ties... and maybe even a spare derailleur hanger.
 
Last edited:

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
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Besides all the things already mentioned:

Toilet paper or a package of wet wipes. Maybe not the whole thing, but at least a couple. Especially in poison-leaf country.
This even the begel part would have been of my recommendation.

Maybe a two chain rings in the front for some easy spinning uphill.
Eff that. 3 chainrings. And a 20-tooth granny. And if I could I'd have a 40-tooth on the cassette. :D
 

OGRipper

back alley ripper
Feb 3, 2004
10,156
593
NORCAL is the hizzle
Good advice here. Not clear if you have a bail out options or what kind of terrain you're talking about, but here are a few thoughts:

Bring a real pump, not just C02.

Wrap some duct tape around that pump. Good for all kinds of things, including first aid.

A tube is kind of obvious, but grab a patch kit too. Multiple flats happen, especially if you get tired/sloppy and start smashing into things.

I personally think it's overkill to bring a spare derailleur but a derailleur cable is light and easy to stash.

If your bike has one of those butter-soft derailleur hangars, pick up a spare or two and throw one in your pack.

This is also kind of obvious but do a thorough bike check about a week or so before the ride. Check yer brake pads, tires, drivetrain, etc., and replace what needs replacing. Top off your sealant too (if tubeless). Do this enough in advance that you'll have time to fix/replace the things that need attention.

A light of some kind, even just a camping headlamp, can be a lifesaver if you don't have bail-out options along the route.

Poison oak is evil. The oil that creates problems is invisible and tenacious. People usually don't show a rash for a couple of days, by which time it can get spread around to places you really don't want it. Learn to identify it and stay out of it as much as you can. If you get exposed, the key is to get the oil off of exposed skin as soon as you can. Technu is great but regular isopropyl alcohol works too, and it's cheaper. Alcohol wipes are great to have with you on longer rides - just rub down exposed skin mid-ride. I also keep paper towels and a bottle of isopropyl alcohol in my car so I can get that shit off me first thing at the end of a ride. It can get on your clothes too, so change as soon as you can.

Lastly, sorry if this sounds dickish but someone's got to say it: Depending on the terrain, 40 miles/3500 feet is not such a super huge mtb ride that it should require much more than a usual day on the bike. These are all good tips for pretty much any long ride.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
13,041
9,769
Canaderp
Good advice here. Not clear if you have a bail out options or what kind of terrain you're talking about, but here are a few thoughts:

Bring a real pump, not just C02.

Wrap some duct tape around that pump. Good for all kinds of things, including first aid.

A tube is kind of obvious, but grab a patch kit too. Multiple flats happen, especially if you get tired/sloppy and start smashing into things.

I personally think it's overkill to bring a spare derailleur but a derailleur cable is light and easy to stash.

If your bike has one of those butter-soft derailleur hangars, pick up a spare or two and throw one in your pack.

This is also kind of obvious but do a thorough bike check about a week or so before the ride. Check yer brake pads, tires, drivetrain, etc., and replace what needs replacing. Top off your sealant too (if tubeless). Do this enough in advance that you'll have time to fix/replace the things that need attention.

A light of some kind, even just a camping headlamp, can be a lifesaver if you don't have bail-out options along the route.

Poison oak is evil. The oil that creates problems is invisible and tenacious. People usually don't show a rash for a couple of days, by which time it can get spread around to places you really don't want it. Learn to identify it and stay out of it as much as you can. If you get exposed, the key is to get the oil off of exposed skin as soon as you can. Technu is great but regular isopropyl alcohol works too, and it's cheaper. Alcohol wipes are great to have with you on longer rides - just rub down exposed skin mid-ride. I also keep paper towels and a bottle of isopropyl alcohol in my car so I can get that shit off me first thing at the end of a ride. It can get on your clothes too, so change as soon as you can.

Lastly, sorry if this sounds dickish but someone's got to say it: Depending on the terrain, 40 miles/3500 feet is not such a super huge mtb ride that it should require much more than a usual day on the bike. These are all good tips for pretty much any long ride.

Good tips. Not sure why you think that'd sound dickish. This will be the longest bike ride that I've ever done in one sitting and that includes lapping lift serviced DH hills. I just don't want to miss something as simple as some TP or wet wipes and have to resort to scraping my ass with a pinecone or something. :panic:
 

CBJ

Turbo Monkey
Mar 19, 2002
11,537
1,714
Copenhagen, Denmark
Why aren't you in Interior BC again? Come on, man... do it for US!! :D
I have to strongly agree somebody needs to move.

So no climbing then 40 miles is really not a big deal except if you don't ride your bike regularly but even with two solid days of riding a week you can get in shape for that.
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
54,013
5,740
In a van.... down by the river
Good tips. Not sure why you think that'd sound dickish. This will be the longest bike ride that I've ever done in one sitting and that includes lapping lift serviced DH hills. I just don't want to miss something as simple as some TP or wet wipes and have to resort to scraping my ass with a pinecone or something. :panic:
Wipes are critical for preventing swampass on long rides.
 

jonKranked

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Nov 10, 2005
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Oh, a map is good (not just a trail map) if you're not familiar with the region.

And figure out a bail plan before you go.