What do you carry in your saddle pack?


I had a mishap last weekend. A flat. I was 40+ km away from the house but was prepared to fix it. After all, I carried a spare tube, tire irons and a CO2 cartridge.

On the way back, I couldn’t help but wonder what I would do if I had another flat. It has never happened before. Two flats during a single ride. But it could. And, I wasn’t prepared. I would have to call for help, and I doubt if I would get a warm reception from friends or family. They are usually busy with other things when I take long weekend, solo rides.

I thought about this a lot. There is a simple solution. Prepare for at least two flats. I have added a second CO2 cartridge and a patch kit. So, this is what I now carry on the road bikes –

  1. tire irons
  2. spare tube
  3. patch kit
  4. 2 CO2 cartridges, and
  5. a multi tool

What happens if IΒ have a 3rd flat, you ask. I could carry a pump but I find them large, and relatively ineffective. I suppose I will have to resort to stuffing the tire with grass πŸ™‚

17 thoughts on “What do you carry in your saddle pack?

  1. On my “good bike” I carry similar gear to you in my saddle bag, although I wedge in a third CO2 cartridge, a couple of cable ties and a small length of rag. On the commuter bike I also have Lezyne frame pump and I keep my spares in a cage pod so it’s totally watertight.

  2. I fit a mini pump in my small saddlebag. Just. Does the job. Two inner tubes for rides over 50 miles. One tube for short rides. Always, always some patches. Never had two punctures but I did once have one puncture and then a broken valve.

      • Aye maybe, the Topeak small. Think there’s a size down from this too. I don’t get why some riders refuse to put saddlebags on their bikes and prefer to carry stuff in their rear jersey pockets. Aesthetics I guess. Even though they can’t see the bag but they feel the tools in their jersey for the entire ride!

      • I couldn’t agree more. I don’t need tools on my back. I use the Fi’zi:k small bag on my road bikes. They make a larger size. I might look into it.

  3. I’ve only ever once suffered 2 punctures on a ride,and way up on my local hills,in the midst of a sleet blizzard,true.
    I only had 1 tube but luckily a repair kit as well. From then on in I always carry 2 spare tubes and repair kit.
    Spare chain links,zip ties,torch,whistle,spare gloves and a leather man tool,none of which I’ve ever needed..but don’t take em and you know what will happenπŸ˜‰

    • In a sleet blizzard no less πŸ™‚

      I don’t generally carry a spare chain link but it makes sense. One thing I carry on my commuter and when touring is duct tape. It can repair anything πŸ™‚

  4. Yup, I carry the same stuff except for a mini pump instead of the CO2 and I carry an extra link ever since my chain broke on me! And also a tiny container of cornstarch if I get the tube sticky when I am fixing it. Most of the time when I bike I have a pannier as well so I usually just stuff the saddlebag in there.

    And to think that just one year ago I didn’t carry any of this stuff with me. I didn’t even know how to change tubes!

  5. I carry a wee pump rather than CO2, plus 2 tubes, too many hedge cuttings round here. Otherwise similar but with a cheap super light jacket for our changeable conditions, not often used but invaluable at times.

  6. I can’t abide a saddle bag on my bike as it ruins the lines of the machine in my opinion (we’ll ignore the overall effect of my ‘snake that’s just eaten a pig’ body profile on the lean racing lines of my Wilier). Lezyne sell a wallet that slips neatly into a pocket and into which fits tyre levers, self adhesive patches, a CO2 bottle, spare cash, and a mini-tool. I also carry a small pump after the deflating (see what I did there) experience of releasing the contents of my CO2 cannister into the atmosphere instead of the tyre one cold, cold February morning.

    • I used to feel the same way. A few years I was given one of the Fi’zi:k bags that clip onto the underside of a Fi’zi:k saddle. I don’t mind it so much and know that I always have the necessary tools with me. Previously, there were times I forgot to put the tools in my pocket, and guess what … I like the idea of this wallet and will have a look. Thanks.

      I’ve done that with a canister too πŸ™‚

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