As winter drags on here in the Canadian Southwest, the dirt gets too soggy, the roads too wet, and the will to adventure dwindles slightly. This causes most people to either sit on their indoor trainers or just get on the couch and daydream about summer adventures. The team here at Bicycle Broker have been planning and scheming about some bike packing trips and all the fun gear that goes along with it. We have come up with a list of must haves for your summer trips. Some of these items are necessities and others are creature comforts that you will wonder why you never brought them on a bike trip in the past. Take a look at some of our favorite items and we hope you find them as useful as we do!
- HMPL mini stuff straps – These are the absolute best way to attach bags to your handlebars or a fishing rod to your bike frame or put almost anything onto something else. We never leave home without them and they can also be used in non-traditional ways such as first aid or fixing broken gear.
- The Bag Buddy – From a new Canadian startup, Outdoor Cycling Essetials has created a small mount to keep your handlebar bags from scratching your frame and to clean up your bike’s cockpit. Designed and made in Canada, by cyclists and for cyclists.
- Sea To Summit Ultra Sil Backpack – As much as we dislike wearing a backpack when riding, this is a must have for any bike packer. It stuffs down so small you will forget it is in your bag, but when you need a little extra capacity for food stops, pulling this bag out to carry your stash is a game changer. And you will be extra happy when you have that extra bag of chips you almost didn’t buy at the store.
- Wacaco Picopresso – This is a luxury if nothing else. A tiny, portable, manual espresso machine. For the coffee lover, there can’t be much better than a perfectly brewed espresso in the morning light to get you ready for a day of bikes and adventure. It’s not the lightest piece of equipment but it is tiny and worth it when you pull it out and over your friends’ cappuccinos.
- Jack Rack – This is especially important for the smaller cyclists out there who have a hard time finding clearance food front bags. The Jack Rack fits almost any bike without the need for any special mounts allowing any bike to carry more stuff without fear of wheel rub.
- Packable Wind Shell – Even on the hottest days, a small packable windshell can save your day in an emergency or even just a quick change in weather. We love the options from 7Mesh and Patagonia but there are many out there.
- Long Spork – Everyone knows about the amazing camping utensil that is the SPORK. Part spoon, part fork, all awesome. But have you ever been eating your pre-packaged dehydrated meal and your sport just isn’t long enough to get the delicious bits atthe bottom of the bag? That’s where the long spork comes in handy. We love this titanium version from Snow Peak but there are many others out there.
- Sunscreen Stick – Sunscreen is a no-brainer on any outdoor adventure but the normal bottles and sprays can leave your hands greasy and that can be an issue when riding a bike. A sunscreen stick makes sure you are protected from the sun but also ensures your hands stay dry, clean, and grippy. We love this version from Sun Bum.
- Insurance for Cyclists – This may not keep you dry, save you from flat tires or go nicely with a morning coffee, but should anything happen while you are adventuring, you can be sure you, and your bike, are well protected with insurance from Bicycle Broker. From loss and damage, to evacuation and liability coverage, there is a plan for all types of riders.