John Sieber

Adventure Gear Checklist for Bike Overnights

Small, lightweight backpacking gear is ideal for a bike overnight. If this is your first time though, don’t get wrapped up in shopping for gear right away. Make do with what you have on your first couple of trips, or borrow from a friend. You’ll start to recognize what new pieces you may want to purchase to improve your experience in the future.  

There are lots of different opinions on the best weekend bicycle adventure gear! Of course, some of it is dependent on the season and weather. Here's our simplified bicycle adventure gear list.

Basic Adventure Gear for Biking

  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Small tent, bivy sack, or camp hammock
  • Food (or a nearby dining establishment)
  • Personal items: toiletries, etc
  • Tire levers and patch kit
  • Spare tube
  • Mini-pump
  • Allen wrenches
  • Clothing layers

Bike Travel Weekend is the first weekend in June.
Register now to lead a group ride!

Deluxe Adventure Gear List

Perhaps you’re not a minimalist. Just remember: everything you bring adds weight to your bike. If you have much hill climbing or a lot of mileage planned, you may want to reconsider how much gear you take along on your bike overnight.

Deluxe Camping Gear List

  • Route map(s)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Thick sleeping pad or air mattress
  • Small tent, bivy sack, or camp hammock
  • Camp pillow or stuff sack
  • Cooking equipment (small stove, cookware, utensils) including food
  • Camp chair
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Pocketknife
  • Waterproof matches

Deluxe Personal Gear List

  • Toiletries
  • Two sets of bike clothes
  • Two sets of off-the-bike clothes
  • Raingear
  • Cold weather gear
  • Shoes/sandals
  • Bathing suit
  • Towel

Other Possible Bike Overnight Gear

  • Books
  • Camera
  • Playing cards
  • Sports equipment
  • Fishing gear
  • Radio/iPod/MP3 player
  • And more!

Related Reading


Jacki November 26, 2019, 7:08 AM

Hello Rachel,

Not sure if you found the right candidate for your incredible bike giveaway yet but I just stumbled across this site because I'm looking to buy a bike to travel from Pittsburgh to DC to start and then eventually a cross country trip. I am also starting a fundraiser in the spring where my family, coworkers, and I bike a certain number of miles dependent upon donations for breast cancer research as I am a 30 year old who just went through breast cancer at the age of 29. I have one surgery left in a few weeks but I have already have been biking again at any chance I get. If your still looking for a home for your bike and gear, I would love to be considered.

Ride friend and survivor,


Rachel May 11, 2019, 5:11 PM


i am a solo woman adventurer and you might be able to help me.

i want to give away my 46cm 2011 Surly Long Haul Trucker to a FIRST TIME female cross-country rider!

Once upon a time i bought a bicycle and rode from Chinook, WA to Rehoboth Beach, DE. Since then this bicycle has ridden through all 50 United States and clocked over 7,000 miles! Eight years, later i want to give someone else this amazing opportunity.

In my dream of dreams this bicycle will travel the world, trek over 100,000 miles and have at least a dozen different riders. Truly a gift that keeps giving/going!

i am looking for that star crossed cyclist that is ready to take on a new adventure and needs great gear to do it (giving away my bicycle with panniers). i am reaching out to other woman cyclers and blog people and other platforms to get the word out in hopes that the right woman will get in contact with me.

If you know someone or have any ideas of how to reach that right candidate...i am all ears!

Thanks for all your consideration :)

Tsipora Hacker September 18, 2019, 8:23 AM

Hi Rachel,

First of all, I love that you want to share your love for cycling and adventuring with other women. It's awesome :)

I am 22 years old, and just graduated from college. I love commuting around Philadelphia on my bike, and I also love camping...I would LOVE to combine these two amazing activities and go bikecamping and adventure cycling! I have a great tent and sleeping bag, but I don't have a touring bike or panniers or bags to go with it. If you haven't found the right person yet, I'd love to be considered :)

Good luck with your search!

Ami June 4, 2019, 10:18 PM

Hi Rachel, Last year I changed jobs, divorced after 30 years, and put 4,000 miles on my 33 y/o Miyata 610. Tonight I am putting on a new set of tires (was down to the canvas), chain, and rebuilding the rear derailleur. I ordered a Trek 520 small (48cm) but it is back ordered till August or later, uncertain with the trade war. I am 59 this summer and want to take my first tour, solo, of the MRT Minnesota to Louisiana. And my second tour of Lake Superior! I am open to suggestions as what other bike would be right for me. Your bikeshare is awesome and I hope the recipient is a young person and that it will change her life.

Amanda Gold May 27, 2019, 11:08 PM

Hello!! What a beautiful, generous gift you're offering. If you haven't chosen someone yet, I'm planning my first bike tour and I'm so excited. I used to hop freight trains and it's been a long time since I've been on a proper adventure. I'm celebrating finally graduating from college and five years sober. Life is amazing and I'm so ready to get out there and live it even more fully. Would love to chat more, and if you've already found someone let me just say how cool that was of you and high five. ?? all the best, Amanda

Natalie May 12, 2019, 3:15 AM

Hi Rachel. I'd love to talk to you about this! I'm currently planning my first cycle adventure. How can I get in touch?



Arthurv L. Foley April 26, 2019, 2:18 PM

Am a recumbent trike rider, am in the process of planning on a journey from - basically Glenwood, iowa to Seattle, Washington; and was wondering which route would be best - as ell as what equipment should be brought along?

Ken Milby April 19, 2019, 1:40 PM

Thank you very much. I am a permanently disabled man and my nightmare began back on 8,25 of 1985. I was only 25 and it was only because I was so strong and healthy according to the doctors that I survived my motorcycle run off. A lady friend got me started with a "bikecentennial " addition. I was hooked and joined up. I thank you all so very much for helping me to dream again. I live very near the northern tear route in Illinois, Buda. Back in 1976 I was working in a gas station in Sheffield when the riders came through. It was the beginning of your companies future ! Pretty cool isn't it ?

Adventure Cycling April 19, 2019, 1:54 PM

Very cool, Ken! We love hearing stories about how bicycle touring has changed lives. Thanks so much for sharing.

Log in to post a comment

Forgot Password?

Enter your email address and we'll send you an email that will allow you to reset it. If you no longer have access to the email address call our memberships department at (800) 755-2453 or email us at

Not Registered? Create Account Now.