Duct Tape1 of 11
Duct tape can fix almost anything—and it's easy to carry, too. Just wrap a few pieces around one or two of your water bottles. Here are a few ways you might be able to use it on the bike:
-Waterproof your shoes during an unexpected downpour.
-Patch an inner tube.
-Stabilize a wrist sprain.
-Hold a broken saddle together until you get home.
Valve Extender2 of 11
You may have long valves for your deep-dish aero wheels, but how long is the valve stem on your spare inner tube, or the one you've had to borrow from your training partner? For those "just in case" moments, an extra valve extender in your jersey pocket can make the difference between being stranded and easily airing up a flat tire roadside.
Emergency Contact Information3 of 11
Out on the road, there's a lot that can go wrong. For those most unfortunate situations, carrying your emergency contact information can help you get the help you need as fast as possible. Two convenient options are Road ID and ICEDOT, which can be worn either on your wrist or helmet for easy access to essential information following a crash.
Insurance Card4 of 11
Take it from someone who's had to go to the hospital a few times following a crash. Carrying an insurance card is just as important as your driver's license and can speed things along if you have to make a trip to the emergency room.
Baby Wipes5 of 11
Replacing a broken chain link or changing a flat tire can leave your hands a mess. Instead of having to finish your ride with dirty, greasy hands, a baby wipe or two in a sandwich bag can keep you and your handlebars clean and happy.
An Empty Gel Wrapper6 of 11
A patch kit won't do much to repair a torn sidewall. In a pinch, try an empty gel or energy bar wrapper to protect your inner tube until you can make it home and replace your tire. And if you've got duct tape (see slide 1), two layers of protection will do the trick just fine.
Pepper Spray7 of 11
Never say never. Whether it's a stray dog, an aggressive driver or a wild coyote, pepper spray could be your last line of defense. Here's to hoping you never actually have to use it.
Newspaper8 of 11
Back in the day, cyclists didn't have lightweight windbreakers at their disposal for chilly descents. Instead, they used newspaper to shield the wind by stuffing it inside their jersey across their chest to block the wind. This method is still useful today, especially if you don't want to get stuck carrying a jacket for the entire ride. Folded newspaper takes up barely any room in your jersey pocket and can be disposed of when you don't need it any more.
Spare Screws9 of 11
A missing screw in your cleat or bottle cage can make things tricky during a ride. Since bottle cage and cleat screws are often the same size, carry an extra one in your saddlebag to avoid making your ride more difficult than it has to be.
Money10 of 11
Refueling stops, a taxi or a cell phone that's out of range are just a few reasons you might need a little cash while you're out on your ride. And if you happen to gash your tire, a dollar bill (or the duct tape) could be used to keep your inner tube from bubbling out.