Bikepacking Checklist and Essentials – Everything You Need

bikepacking gear list

For many people, bikepacking is a new word. Bike-what? Bike-Packing! Bikepacking is the act of biking while backpacking – carrying all you need for your overnight stay on your mountain bike or in some cases, just the basics like water and snacks.

Bikepackers are often self-sufficient, so they don’t rely on services at campgrounds to get by. This bikepacking gear list will help you decide what to bring on your next mountain bike adventure!

Bikepacking Packs

Instead of carrying things on your back like in backpacking or hiking, you don’t want to have a lot of weight on your back when biking. So if possible, you should not wear a backpack. The most important thing is that the majority of the weight should be placed as low as possible onto your bike frame for better stability and riding comfort.

  • Seat Pack
SaleBestseller No. 2
BV Bicycle Strap-On Bike Saddle Bag/Seat...
BV Bicycle Strap-On Bike Saddle Bag/Seat...
For a safety ride - 3M Scotchlite reflective trim & Taillight hanger; Perfect size for all your essential items with Mesh pocket and key clip
$18.99 −$3.00 $15.99
SaleBestseller No. 3
  • Frame Pack
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  • Water Bottle Cage
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Helmet

Your head is the most impact-prone part of your body. So, it’s important to protect yourself with a helmet when you ride your bike even though it may cause some neck soreness when riding for long distances.

A good modern bike helmet consists of a lightweight outer shell and protective liner made from polystyrene foam that absorbs impacts.

With more coverage, mountain bike helmets come with more features. They are highly ventilated and can offer face protection, and also have visors to help protect your eyes from the sun when riding high in the mountains.

Bestseller No. 1
Giro Fixture MIPS Bike Helmet - Matte Black,One...
Giro Fixture MIPS Bike Helmet - Matte Black,One...
MARKET-LEADING PROTECTION: Engineered in Giro’s category-leading helmet test lab.; VENTILATION: 18 Wind Tunnel vents with internal channeling.
$44.95
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Lights

When you’re out riding and want to set up camp for the night, using a high-output bike light that is mounted on handlebars is essential. The brightness of these lights can easily complement any headlamp. So when it’s time to find some wood for the fire, see if there are any food sources nearby such as berries, or crawl under rocks looking through crevices in search of insects like ants.

  • Bike Light
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NiteRider Lumina 1200 Boost USB Rechargeable Bike...
NiteRider Lumina 1200 Boost USB Rechargeable Bike...
Important: the Lumina 1200 boost is set to lock mode at the Factory. Unlock before use.; All new collimator lens, Distributes a generous even widespread beam pattern
$124.99 −$57.00 $67.99

GPS Tracker

Dedicated bikepackers often use stem-mounted GPS systems called cycling computers to navigate and track their distance and location. Athletes and most people, however, prefer using a smartwatch that can also monitor heart rate and other physical data points as well as tell you where exactly you are located at any given moment.

  • Wristwatch
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  • Cycling Computer
SaleBestseller No. 1
Garmin Edge 1030, 3.5' GPS Cycling/Bike Computer...
Garmin Edge 1030, 3.5" GPS Cycling/Bike Computer...
Preloaded Garmin cycle map provides turn-by-turn directions and new navigation alerts; New rider-to-rider Messaging lets you stay in contact with other cyclists in your group
$269.99 −$40.00 $229.99
SaleBestseller No. 2
Garmin Edge Explore - Touchscreen Touring Bike...
Garmin Edge Explore - Touchscreen Touring Bike...
Built-in GPS tracks how far, how fast, how high and where you ride
$108.49 −$8.50 $99.99

Sleeping Gear

bikepacking essentials

One of the most important things to consider when planning for a bikepacking trip is what kind of shelter you want. Many options are available, including tents, tarps, and bivies or hammocks if that’s your preferred style. You may even be fortunate enough to find an established tent site with two trees at just the right distance apart!

And instead of an air mattress, buy a quality down sleeping bag or quilt. These are lighter and more compact than foam pads that require bulky space in the pack. Foam pads, on the other hand, can be used for desert touring where it is hot during day time but cold at night when you’re resting up to begin your next cycling leg due to its insulating properties.

  • Tent
SaleBestseller No. 2
Coleman 4-Person Cabin Tent with Instant Setup |...
Coleman 4-Person Cabin Tent with Instant Setup |...
WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry; Rugged Polyguard 2X double-thick fabric for reliable, long-lasting use
$184.99 −$53.22 $131.77
SaleBestseller No. 3
Coleman WeatherMaster 6-Person Tent with Screen...
Coleman WeatherMaster 6-Person Tent with Screen...
Separate floorless screen room offers bug-free lounging; WeatherTec system with patented welded floors and inverted seams to keep you dry
$379.99 −$131.00 $248.99
  • Bivy
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  • Tarp
Bestseller No. 1
REDCAMP Hammock Rain Fly Camping Tarp Waterproof,...
REDCAMP Hammock Rain Fly Camping Tarp Waterproof,...
WATERPROOF: The waterproof tent tarp is made of 210T polyester ripstop PU2000mm
$21.99
Bestseller No. 2
Amazon Basics Waterproof Camping Tarp - 10 x 12...
Amazon Basics Waterproof Camping Tarp - 10 x 12...
Multi-purpose outdoor tarp is great for covering items or placement under a camping tent; Rugged rust-resistant grommets along the outer edge for securely tying down the tarp
$15.99
  • Sleeping Bag
Bestseller No. 1
Camping Sleeping Bag, Outdoor Envelope Sleeping...
Camping Sleeping Bag, Outdoor Envelope Sleeping...

The sleeping bag can be unzipped and opened flat for use as a blanket

;

Easy to roll up into the compressing sack

$38.97
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  • Sleeping Pad
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Coleman Self-Inflating Camping Pad with Pillow ,...
Coleman Self-Inflating Camping Pad with Pillow ,...
Inflatable sleeping pad provides extra cushioning on camping trips; Self-inflating design; free-flow valve inflates the pad with no air pump required
$59.99 −$13.10 $46.89

Clothing

Wearing the right clothes is important when riding a bike. It will be necessary to have biking gloves, shorts, jerseys, socks, mountain bike shoes, and rain protective gear for camping after you’re done biking with your friends.

  • Athletic Wicking Jersey
Bestseller No. 1
Joe's USA Men's Moisture Wicking Mesh Athletic...
Joe's USA Men's Moisture Wicking Mesh Athletic...
3.5-ounce, 100% cationic polyester mesh; White mesh reverse
$21.99
Bestseller No. 3
ANNIKA by Cutter & Buck Women's Moisture Wicking...
ANNIKA by Cutter & Buck Women's Moisture Wicking...
Front slash pockets; Quick dry and UPF 50; Welded single welt back pocket and welded tape hem
  • Padded Shorts
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  • Cycling Tights
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  • Sports Bra
SaleBestseller No. 1
Hanes Sport Women's Compression Racerback Sports...
Hanes Sport Women's Compression Racerback Sports...
KEEP COOL – Cool Comfort fabric rapidly wicks for maximum comfort.; RACERBACK STYLING – Racerback bras improve your range of motion.
$21.00 −$8.01 $12.99
SaleBestseller No. 2
Champion Infinity Racerback, Moisture-Wicking...
Champion Infinity Racerback, Moisture-Wicking...
ICONIC 'C' LOGO- Iconic 'C' logo sits on the wearer's band; QUALITY FABRIC - This comfortable racerback sports bra is made of a nylon/spandex blend.
$25.00 −$6.25 $18.75
SaleBestseller No. 3
  • Socks
  • Mountain Bike Shoes
SaleBestseller No. 1
Five Ten Freerider Mountain Bike Shoes
Five Ten Freerider Mountain Bike Shoes
Classic do-it-all flat pedal mountain bike shoes; DOTTY TREAD: Classic Dotty tread for superior pedal traction.
$100.00 −$41.25 $58.75
SaleBestseller No. 2
Five Ten Adidas Kestrel Lace Mountain Bike Shoes...
Five Ten Adidas Kestrel Lace Mountain Bike Shoes...
Durable lightweight EVA midsole; Imported
$150.00 −$84.97 $65.03
SaleBestseller No. 3
Five Ten Trailcross LT Mountain Bike Shoes Men's,...
Five Ten Trailcross LT Mountain Bike Shoes Men's,...
Breathable mesh upper; Imported; Lace closure
$140.00 −$79.31 $60.69
  • Bike Gloves
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Giro DND Mens Mountain Cycling Gloves - Black...
Giro DND Mens Mountain Cycling Gloves - Black...
PROTECTION: 2mm EVA crash pads.
$25.00 −$13.03 $11.97
  • Rain Jacket
SaleBestseller No. 1
Columbia Men's Watertight II Front-Zip Hooded Rain...
Columbia Men's Watertight II Front-Zip Hooded Rain...
Omni-tech waterproof/breathable fully seam sealed; Attached, adjustable storm hood; Drawcord adjustable hem
$90.00 −$30.91 $59.09
SaleBestseller No. 2
Columbia Men's Glennaker Lake Rain Jacket,...
Columbia Men's Glennaker Lake Rain Jacket,...
Omni-shield advanced repellency; Stow-away hood; Zip-closed pockets; Drawcord adjustable hem
$60.00 −$10.10 $49.90
SaleBestseller No. 3
Champion mens Stadium Packable , Left Chest Script...
Champion mens Stadium Packable , Left Chest Script...
FABRIC TO FEEL GOOD ABOUT - 100% recycled polyester is a good idea.; EASY MACHINE CARE - Toss it in the washing machine.
$50.00 −$5.00 $45.00
  • Rain Pants
  • Warm Hat
Bestseller No. 1
Carhartt Men's Knit Cuffed Beanie, Dark...
Carhartt Men's Knit Cuffed Beanie, Dark...
Carhartt label sewn on front; Prev. Name: Acrylic Watch Hat
$19.99
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  • Travel Towel
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  • Sunglasses
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Cooking and Nutrition

Always be prepared and pack food and snacks for your hike. Also, you won’t want to forget your stove, fuel, lighter, and spork. You’ll need a mug for hot drinks too! What you bring along will depend on how long of a trip it is, but here are some recommendations to get you started.

  • Portable Stove
Bestseller No. 2
Jetboil MiniMo Camping and Backpacking Stove...
Jetboil MiniMo Camping and Backpacking Stove...
Measures 5.0 inches W, 5.5 inches H (12.7 cm x 14 cm); weighs 14.6 oz (415 g).; Only use outdoors in a well-ventilated area.
$164.95
Bestseller No. 3
Jetboil Flash Camping and Backpacking Stove...
Jetboil Flash Camping and Backpacking Stove...
Bottom cup doubles as a measuring cup and a bowl.; Measures 4.1 in W x 7.1 in H (104 mm x 180 mm); weighs 13.1 oz (371 g).
$124.59
  • Fuel
Bestseller No. 2
GasOne Camping Fuel Blend Isobutane Fuel Canister...
GasOne Camping Fuel Blend Isobutane Fuel Canister...
4 Pack - Comes 4 pc of Gas One's Isobutane fuel
$29.99
  • Lighter
Bestseller No. 1
2 PCS Rechargeable Waterproof Lighter,Arc...
2 PCS Rechargeable Waterproof Lighter,Arc...
You Will Get: 2X camouflage waterproof lighter, manual, 2X survival lanyard ️
$24.99
SaleBestseller No. 2
LcFun Waterproof Lighter Outdoor Windproof Lighter...
LcFun Waterproof Lighter Outdoor Windproof Lighter...
Warning: Do not use it with metal products.
$24.99 −$10.00 $14.99
  • Mug
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Collapsible Cups with Lid for Traveling -...
Collapsible Cups with Lid for Traveling -...
Silicone cup is perfect Christmas gift
$13.99
  • Nutrition Bars
SaleBestseller No. 1
ZonePerfect Protein Bars, 19 Vitamins & Minerals,...
ZonePerfect Protein Bars, 19 Vitamins & Minerals,...
MANAGE HUNGER: 14g protein to help manage hunger; MADE FOR TASTE: Delicious flavor and nutrition you need to make the most of your day
$22.87 −$7.20 $15.67
Bestseller No. 2
Zone Perfect Protein Bars, Dark Chocolate Almond,...
Zone Perfect Protein Bars, Dark Chocolate Almond,...
MANAGE HUNGER: 12g protein to help manage hunger; MADE FOR TASTE: Delicious flavor and nutrition you need to make the most of your day
  • Bowl
SaleBestseller No. 2
Bestseller No. 3
Camco Life is Better at the Campsite Nesting Bowl...
Camco Life is Better at the Campsite Nesting Bowl...
Unique Design: Multi-colored bowls include a fun camping design; Durable Construction: Made of durable melamine with plastic lids for simple food storage
$44.99
  • Camping Food
Bestseller No. 1
Mountain House Creamy Macaroni & Cheese | Freeze...
Mountain House Creamy Macaroni & Cheese | Freeze...
RECYCLABLE - Recycled used packaging with TerraCycle to reduce waste.
$9.99
Bestseller No. 2
Mountain House Chicken Fried Rice | Freeze Dried...
Mountain House Chicken Fried Rice | Freeze Dried...
RECYCLABLE - Recycled used packaging with TerraCycle to reduce waste.
$9.97
Bestseller No. 3
Mountain House Breakfast Skillet | Freeze Dried...
Mountain House Breakfast Skillet | Freeze Dried...
RECYCLABLE - Recycled used packaging with TerraCycle to reduce waste
$14.99
  • Can Opener
Bestseller No. 1
Coghlan's G.I. Can Opener, Pair
Coghlan's G.I. Can Opener, Pair
Lightweight, versatile tool for camping, backpacking, backcountry trekking, and more; Made of nickel-plated, hardened steel that won't rust; will stay sharp for years
$3.49
SaleBestseller No. 2
Chef Craft Select Butterfly Can Opener, 4 inches,...
Chef Craft Select Butterfly Can Opener, 4 inches,...
Only four inches in length, it is easy to store even in a full drawer; Small size is great for camping or to take with a lunch
$6.99 −$2.89 $4.10
Bestseller No. 3
Chef Craft Set of 2 Compact Butterfly Mini Size...
Chef Craft Set of 2 Compact Butterfly Mini Size...
4" Compact size; Small and easy to store; Nickel plated steel; Bottle opener on handle; Set includes 2 can openers
$8.70
  • Dishwashing Soap
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Sierra Dawn Campsuds Biodegradable Soap with...
Sierra Dawn Campsuds Biodegradable Soap with...
All the cleaning power of Original Campsuds. Smells great too!
$8.97
Bestseller No. 3
Campsuds 16oz
Campsuds 16oz
All purpose liquid cleaner; Use for personal hygiene, laundry or dishes; Works in hot, cold or salt water
$23.65

Water

This is not an option. You have to carry H2O with you when hiking, even though it’s inconvenient because at the end of the day, your pack will be much heavier than before, and drinking lots of fluid can lead to needing more pit stops along the way.

If you are planning to hike in a remote location, make sure that before your trip starts you have packed the necessary water filtration system.

  • Water Bottle
  • Water Filtration System
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Safety, Hygiene, and Toiletries

bikepacking checklist

When packing for the trip, remember that you can only bring as many hygiene and toiletry items. You shouldn’t pack more than what is needed to reduce how heavy your bag will be at the end of every day.

  • First-Aid Supplies
Bestseller No. 2
First Aid Only 298 Piece All-Purpose First Aid...
First Aid Only 298 Piece All-Purpose First Aid...
First Aid Care Ideal For: First aid care for home, travel, and on the go use
$20.50
  • Shampoo
SaleBestseller No. 1
McKesson Shampoo and Body Wash, Rinse-Free, Light...
McKesson Shampoo and Body Wash, Rinse-Free, Light...
Formulated to thoroughly clean hair and skin without water; Convenient way to bathe anyone confined to a bed who cannot get to a shower or bathtub
$6.00 −$1.05 $4.95
Bestseller No. 2
Pharma-C-Wipes Foaming Rinse Free Shampoo & Body...
Pharma-C-Wipes Foaming Rinse Free Shampoo & Body...
Easy to use and requires no water.; Excellent for all types of hair and skin.; Gentle, no-rinse formula is pH balanced and alcohol free
$24.95
Bestseller No. 3
Medline Remedy with Phytoplex Hydrating Cleansing...
Medline Remedy with Phytoplex Hydrating Cleansing...
Gentle application - Convenient pump bottle easily dispenses smooth gel
$11.99
  • Toothbrush, Toothpaste Kit
SaleBestseller No. 1
Colgate Max Fresh Wisp Disposable Mini Travel...
Colgate Max Fresh Wisp Disposable Mini Travel...
Brush Your Teeth on the Go, Anytime, Anywhere; Mini Prepasted Toothbrush, No Rinsing Necessary
$31.96 −$14.88 $17.08
Bestseller No. 2
Colgate Max Fresh Wisp Disposable Mini Toothbrush,...
Colgate Max Fresh Wisp Disposable Mini Toothbrush,...
Just brushed clean anytime anywhere; Clean and Freshens on the go; Single use travel toothbrush
$17.20
SaleBestseller No. 3
Crest Scope | Mini Brushes--Disposable...
Crest Scope | Mini Brushes--Disposable...
No water necessary; Travel-sized; 6 Sets of 2; Not to be used with toothpaste
$19.95 −$7.95 $12.00
  • Face Surgical Masks
SaleBestseller No. 1
MAVINA Surgical Face Mask 3-ply EcoGuard B with...
MAVINA Surgical Face Mask 3-ply EcoGuard B with...
Model Number: EC001
$29.99 −$12.00 $17.99
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Disposable Face Mask, 100 PCS Black Masks, 3 Ply...
Disposable Face Mask, 100 PCS Black Masks, 3 Ply...
Masks made of 3 layers of high-quality non-woven fabric which is more breathable; Our disposable face masks are suitable for adults and teenagers
$14.99 −$3.00 $11.99
  • Hand Sanitizer and Antibacterial Wipes
SaleBestseller No. 1
Wet Ones Antibacterial Hand Wipes, Fresh Scent, 20...
Wet Ones Antibacterial Hand Wipes, Fresh Scent, 20...
KILLS 99.99% OF GERMS — while wiping away dirt and messes; MOISTURIZING ALOE FORMULA that won't dry or irritate your hands like hand sanitizers can
$22.99 −$7.30 $15.69
Bestseller No. 3
EO Hand Cleansing Wipes, 10 Wipes (Pack of 6),...
EO Hand Cleansing Wipes, 10 Wipes (Pack of 6),...
Allergen information: gluten_free; Skin type: Normal
$23.94
  • Insect Repellent
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OFF! Deep Woods Insect Repellent Aerosol, Dry,...
OFF! Deep Woods Insect Repellent Aerosol, Dry,...
DEET mosquito repellent formulated with 25% DEET; Repels mosquitoes that may carry the Zika, Dengue, or West Nile viruses
$13.46 −$1.47 $11.99
SaleBestseller No. 3
  • Common or Prescription Medications
  • Sunscreen
Bestseller No. 1
Banana Boat Sunscreen Sport Performance Broad...
Banana Boat Sunscreen Sport Performance Broad...
4 - 1 Ounce tubes; Sport performance sunscreen lotion; Water resistant; SPF 30; Broad UVA/UVB protection
$7.20
Bestseller No. 3
Banana Boat Sport Ultra, Reef Friendly, Broad...
Banana Boat Sport Ultra, Reef Friendly, Broad...
CLINICALLY PROVEN - broad spectrum protection protects you from UVA/UVB rays.; LIGHTWEIGHT, OIL-FREE FORMULA - non-greasy feel won't weigh you down.
$7.18
  • Toilet paper
Bestseller No. 1
Coghlan's Packable Camp Toilet Tissue, 2-Rolls
Coghlan's Packable Camp Toilet Tissue, 2-Rolls
Coreless rolls take up less space in your pack; 140 single-ply sheets per roll
$5.99
SaleBestseller No. 2

Bike Repair Kit

Bikepackers should bring some basic bike maintenance tools like a tire-repair kit. Add to that list chain lube/pins/links along with spare cables for your bike in case anything breaks during extended trips. You could even carry a lightweight lock when stopping into towns to resupply yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions

bike packing equipment

What Type of Bike Do You Use for Bikepacking?

If you plan to bikepack, adventure-ready gravel mountain bikes like hardtail (front suspension fork), full suspension, and fat-tired mountain bikes are our main recommendations.

How Much Weight Should I Take Bikepacking?

You should pack your bag depending on the length of time you will be traveling, weather conditions, and how much weight your bike can handle. Generally speaking, aim for under 20 lbs without the weight of the bicycle itself.

What Is the Difference Between Bikepacking and Bike Touring?

When it comes to long-distance traveling via roads, people usually refer to “bike touring”. This is when you go from one destination and return home without going off-road through trails or other difficult terrains. In contrast, the term for adventuring on mostly non-paved surfaces is “bikepacking”.

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Price last updated on 2023-02-04. Links & images are from Amazon Product Advertising API. Our editors independently research, test and recommend the best products and services. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article at no additional cost to you.

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