The first time I participated in a Farm To Fork Fondo event also was the first time I travelled for a bike ride. Sure, we’d hauled our cruisers to the beach for casual family rides, but those packing lists focused more on beach towels and sand buckets than cycling gear. Being prepared for a few hours of riding requires a lot more thought—and a bit more equipment. Here’s what I suggest you put on your packing list for a fun-filled Farm To Fork Fondo weekend.
Meet The Farmers Dinner
If you registered for the Meet The Farmers Dinner (and if your schedule permits, you should!), you will want to pack an outfit suitable for an elegant meal in a rustic setting. There’s no official dress code, but I felt comfortable in a casual dress and my husband wore a polo-style shirt and khakis. I’m sure there were people dressed more formally and more casually than we were—but I didn’t see anyone in a cycling kit!
For the ride itself, you will want to wear a tried-and-true cycling kit. If you love the Farm To Fork Fondo gear as much as I do, it’s a good idea to order yours in advance [link to shop] so you can test it out on training rides. It’s not likely to happen, but you don’t want to find out that the jersey rubs you the wrong way or the padding in the shorts isn’t quite right when you’re 20 miles down the road.
Here’s the cycling gear I’ll be packing:
· Helmet (all riders must wear a helmet!)
· Cycling kit (jersey and shorts)
· Cycling shoes
· Cycling gloves
· Extra socks :-)
· Lightweight rain jacket/windbreaker
· Garmin/Bike Computer + Charger
· Phone + Charger
· Chamois cream
Even if the weather forecast is clear, I plan to bring a lightweight rain jacket or windbreaker just in case. If the forecast calls for rain, I will also bring shoe covers, wool socks, waterproof gloves, and plastic bags of various sizes to protect my gear.
If you’re allergic to bees, you might want to consider wearing a cycling cap under your helmet. I started doing that after this little guy flew into one of the vents of my helmet and stung me on the head while I was cruising along rolling hills with no safe shoulder to stop on.
With all the fantastic rest stops, you may think you don’t need to bring fuel, but I suggest bringing something just in case. Sometimes you just need an energy gel to get up that last hill!
I’ll be bringing:
· Water bottle(s)
· Electrolyte tabs
As with your cycling kit, you don’t want to be relying on anything new, so if you usually carry plain water and gummy bears, bring that along instead of electrolyte tabs and gels.
Mark [has shared/is share] his tips for getting your bike ready for a ride, but I suggest you bring at least the following in your saddle bag:
· Spare tubes
· Tire changing tool
· Small pump or CO2 cartridges
If you forget any of these essentials, you may be able to buy them from a vendor at packet pick-up.
For the Farm To Fork Barbecue
Most riders collect their medals, rack their bikes, and head right over to the Farm To Fork Barbecue, but if you plan to hang around and enjoy the live music, you might want to bring a change of clothes so you can relax in comfort. If you have a long drive home after the ride like I do, you definitely will appreciate having a full set of fresh clothes to wear. A package of body wipes or baby wipes also can help you freshen up if you don’t have immediate access to a shower.
For ater the ride, I’ll pack:
· Comfortable clothes
· Body wipes
· Baby wipes
Of course, you should make your own packing list based on your personal preferences, but hopefully sharing mine gives you some ideas of what you might want to pack for the perfect ride.