Our on the road and get a puncture? Miles away from anywhere and get a mechanical? Bonk while out riding? Get locked out of your house when you get home from a ride. While everyone has their own personal "Cyclist's Survival Kit" I thought I would publish mine here. These are all the items that I never leave home without.
Pump - You always need a way to inflate your inner tube if you get a puncture. I prefer this over CO2 cartridges. I used CO2 cartridges for about two months then got two punctures in one ride and had to walk my bike to the nearest bike shop. So I switched back to the trusty old environmentally friendly and zero carbon foot print pump.
Inner tube – Never leave home without one of these too. If you get a puncture you’ll need one to repair it. Make sure that you have one that doesn’t have any holes in it too! I went for a ride once, got a puncture only to find that my replacement inner tube was faulty too. Oops. Used the mobile phone to get out of that one.
Tyres leavers – If you are having problems getting your tyre off then you’ll need these too. I always carry a set with me.
Mini cycle tool – I very rarely use this tool but it’s great if I need to do a quick adjustment to my bike while out on the road. This is a simple one I picked up from Kathmandu on special for a few dollars.
House key – Very important to take something that will help get you back into the house after your ride.
Mobile Phone – There are three really important things about a mobile phone. The first is that if you get in to serious trouble or have an accident you can use it to call someone or an ambulance, or both. You can also use it to record photographs of the scene of the accident for use later on. Finally, you can store a contact in it saved as “ICE” (in case of emergency). This contact is usually a close family member that the medical people can call if you are unable to speak for yourself.
Mobile phone plastic bag – I train in all weather and sometimes it rains. Water and electronics don’t mix so I always carry my mobile phone in a plastic bag. I use to use a zip lock bag for years but last year I picked a more robust version that was being thrown out of a car in the convoy that follows the Tour Down Under.
ID card – Very useful and used for the same reason as item three in the mobile phone uses. BAKPocket has one in every one that they sell so it’s important that you complete it so that you can be identified.
Food – If I’m going out for a rider longer than two hours I always take food with me. Nothing worst than bonking on a ride. I prefer a low GI carbohydrate like the Shotz energy bar to help with my metabolic efficiency training.
BAKPocket – You need something to put this stuff in. I use the BAKPocket but you could use a saddlebag or a special drink bottle that is designed to carry your survival kit.
Money – Mostly used for the coffee stop at the end of the ride but also can be used in case of emergency to buy extra food, a train ride home or a new inner tube. It can also be used to temporary repair a big gash in your tyre by placing it between your inner tube and the inside of your tyre. This stops the inner tube from poking through the tyre and puncturing your replacement inner tube only a few more km’s down the road.
So here is how it looks when it's all packed. I've also added two other very important items - Drink bottles. Thanks Lexus of Brighton for supplying our riders with these. I never leave home without at least one of these.
So the phone goes into the waterproof plastic bag. The money, inner tube, tyre leavers, house key, ID card and cycle tool all go in the BAKPocket. The food goes into one of the pockets. Pump goes on the bike, drink bottles in their cages.
And here is how I pack it. Mobile phone in left pocket, BAKPocket in centre pocket and food in right pocket. In the rain I'll swap the BAKPocket from the centre to the right pocket to save it from the wheel spray.
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