[helpful tips for strapping things to your bike at the bottom of the page]
Your fat bike of course! Tires will have to be a minumum of 3.7"
Helmet - do not be caught riding your bike without one
Bike Lights - one white and one red light up front and one red light in the rear. Try your best to keep them on for your entire ride. Bring spare batteries or a way to charge them. Our cabins do have some electricity. *Bring a headlamp!* You may decide not use it while riding, but it's good to have around camp and in the dark.
Sleeping Bag - most ultras require a 0 or -20 degree bag. Most folks riding out there carry a -40 or a -60 degree bag! We're not picky but it should be noted that the rating of a sleeping bag is not reflective of the comfort level and you might be cold. We won't be far from your car and our cabins have basic heaters, so there's that, but please plan accordingly. For our shakedown you only need a bag. Any bag. Don't stress, we got you.
Camp stove, pot, & fuel source - we will practice melting snow!
Waterproof matches, a lighter, or something to start a fire.
Insulated water container - an insulated hydration pack counts, but so does an insulated water bottle. Some events will require you to have at least 64 oz of an insulated water carrier. Again, we're not too picky, we'll have some water for you, but not a lot & it's always great to practice! Fair warning: the insulated purist bottles don't fair too well in constant cold - but we'll practice keeping them from freezing, so bring what you've got!
10 square inches of reflective material. On you or on your bike.
Flat repair kit - bring at least one but preferably two spare tubes. A hand pump and a valve core tool.
Eating utensils. We'll feed you and provide plates and such, but bring something to get the food to your face! Don't forget to pack it on your bike. *hint hint*
Extra snacks. Seriously, bring snacks. We'll have some great food but your body craves extra calories in the cold! Bring some food to share, make sure you're going home with extra food, strap a jar of peanut butter on your rig for fun - it's fun, we promise! Great practice!!
Insulated sleeping pad - this is typically an item on the mandatory gear list, but since we all have mattresses on our bunks they're not 100% necessary. Bring one if you've got it though because we can talk about the different ways to strap a pad on to your bike, and they're useful if you want to sit on the ground.
Bivy - you won't need it in your cabin, but we'll practice setting it up.
Warm footwear - don't try to wear a bootie cover over your mountain bike shoe, consider boots designed for fat bike riding like the 45nrth Wolvhammer or Wolfgar, or look into a winter mountaineering boot.
Pogies. Warm gloves, mittens, lobster claws.
Your bike computer or GPS - the course will be marked and luckily it's easy to see tire tracks in the snow! We'll pass out cue sheets and promise that it's nice to know that you're on track.
Puffy coat - what a nice thing to put on if you have to stop to melt snow or fix a mechanical!
Layers on layers on layers, bring some extra clothes if you need! Leave them in your car or cabin if you have to. Remember, this weekend is about dialing in what works and ditching what doesn't.
Spare socks. Wool socks. Knee high wool socks. You'll thank us.
Hand warmers and toe warmers
VERY IMPORTANT: Duct tape, vaseline, chap stick, sunglasses, goggles, moleskin, ibuprofin, pepto bismol, q-tips, floss, a toothbrush, zip ties, more zip ties, master link, chain tool, spare derailleur hanger, electrolytes, electrical tape, you get it the idea. Bring what you think you might need and be a hero this weekend! Or, realize you don't need something and feel confident leaving it at home. Eliminate the "what if's."
Booze. Technically, we aren't allowed to serve it to you but you're allowed to share it.
RACKLESS SET UP WITH BAGS VS. BIKE RACKS?
There's no wrong way to strap stuff on to your bike, but a lot of really neat bags and gear exists and can help you make things easier for yourself! Our friends at Grand Rapids Bicycle Company can help you work through which frame bags, seat bags, and handlebar rolls will fit all your stuff, but if you're not able to pop by to see their staff, check out this helpful article from Salsa Cycles or peruse Bikepacking.com for more ideas on how to pack your rig!