Gravel bikes can take us anywhere: sandy paths, gravel, soil, dirt roads and asphalt. If we want to go far and explore new places, we need to be prepared for anything with the right equipment. Let’s discover the most useful accessories for a gravel bike.
Always ready for long journeys
When we cycle, the accessories we carry, our food supplies and the kinds of clothes we wear essentially depend on two factors: where we are going and the distance we are thinking of traveling. Specifically, this means what terrains we’re going to encounter on our gravel bike and how many hours our ride will last. Additionally, we must also keep the weather in mind. By combining these factors, we need to be capable of deciding what to bring with us. If we’re planning for a short, perhaps not too difficult trip, we can pack light for food, clothing and accessories. On the other hand, if we aim to travel a long distance, we need to be prepared for anything, especially in case of fickle weather.
Let’s see what the most important gravel bike accessories are. We have categorized them into three groups: fundamental, very useful and useful.
This is the gear which you absolutely both for short trips and long journeys and in any atmospheric condition.
- Water bottle and bottle holder are definitely among the first accessories that a gravel bike needs. We recommend you get a light, yet resistant holder and a bottle that can hold a good amount of water.
- A bike bag or a bag pack are without a doubt essential to store the inner tube repair kit, food, or an extra tank or technical t-shirt. A bag pack, which usually is more spacious, can contain larger items. Whether you choose a bike bag or a bag pack, we suggest that you get a waterproof one.
- Where would we go without a bike computer? Perhaps nowhere. Of course, in reality, we can cycle without one, but modern bike computers can keep track of the distance travelled, speed, climb as well as the map and itinerary that we are following. With a bike computer on a gravel bike we can monitor all our trip data and, above all things, not get lost.
- Two decidedly important elements are the tires. It might seem trivial, but we need to know which ones are the most suitable to use. On a gravel bike, you will travel along any type of path, so it’s vital to have tires with a heavy-duty tread, designed for maximum traction on all terrains.
- Another couple of accessories you may take for granted are the pedals. Which ones should you choose? We suggest you opt for an aluminium pedal which is both light and robust, with a wide platform for comfort and durability.
- Finally, the previously mentioned inner tube repair kit in case of a flat tire: a new inner tube (two are even better), pump and levers to easily remove the tire and inner tube. These are the fundamentals.
Very useful accessories
These accessories can become fundamental under specific conditions but aren’t necessary for every outing.
- If you bike at night, or when the light conditions are low, it is important to be equipped with front and tail lights. Choose lights with sufficient intensity to illuminate any type of path and great lasting power. This is necessary to see and be seen, preserving our safety as well as others’.
- If your journey is long, you could definitely benefit from a handlebar bag or a frame bag to carry accessories, food or a change of clothing. In both cases, choose waterproof ones.
Sometimes they can be seen as a superfluous whim, but in truth these accessories can certainly prove useful in particular situations.
- Handlebar tape can be a great idea especially if your gravel bike journey is long and demanding. This is because the tape can improve comfort and make steering more fluid, softening the pressure on the handlebar.
- A bike multi-tool can be much more useful than it seems, although it is mostly recommended for long journeys which take you far away from civilization, making it difficult to reach a mechanic if there are any technical issues. A multi-tool is a sort of a Swiss army knife for cyclists: it allows you to adjust the screws and the various parts of your gravel bike.
It doesn’t matter how fast or how slowly you go, or the distance you travel. It doesn’t matter on what terrains you ride or how long your trips are. Every time you take your gravel bike out for a spin on a new adventure, whether in your neighborhood or atop a mountain, you must always be well-equipped with the most appropriate gear. Not too many or too few, just the right amount. Bring along what you truly know could come in handy and, when purchasing, choose quality accessories. Finally, if you have a hard time installing the accessories on your gravel bike, ask your local mechanic for a hand: this way, you can rest assured that you’re riding safely and enjoy your trip even more.