GRAVEL BIKING: 101
STEP 1: Plan Your Route
California has thousands of miles of gravel and dirt roads, just begging to be ridden! Find a local route using Gravelmap.
STEP 2: The Right Gear
Ideal Gravel Bikes have room for wider tires, a relaxed head-tube angle for more steering control, and a longer wheelbase and low bottom bracket. Tires should be anywhere from 700x28 - 700x45c (depending on what your frame will allow). You might also want some extra on-bike storage for long days.
STEP 3: Be Prepared
When you're out there, often in remote places without cell-service or uber drivers, make sure you've got these essentials for mechanical problems:
• Two spare tubes
• A patch kit
• A pump
• Multi-tool with chain breaker
• Spare chain links
• Chain lube
• $20 cash
STEP 4: Stay in Control
• Loosen up! Gripping the bars too tightly can actually result in a bumpier ride. Keep hands gently secured and bend your elbows slightly to absorb bumps.
• Maintain Momentum. Speed is on your side when it comes to loose or muddy surfaces. Shift to a harder gear and keep consistent pedal strokes.
• Steer Smoothly. Avoid jerky, hard turns and face your hips towards the turn. Start breaking early and lightly.
• Sit in the saddle on steep, washed out climbs to weight your rear wheel. Maintain a faster, smooth cadence to prevent spinning out.