By Ryan LaBar
After reading Sal Ruibal’s Dirty Words: The Short Arm of the Law, I got to thinking of the contents of my own pack. What I always carry, what I should carry and why I carry what I carry. Here’s what I’m packing right now:
1. Osprey Zealot 16 – This pack is loaded with nice features like its rollout tool pouch, clamshell-style main pocket, rigid-framed reservoir and a chest pocket that's the perfect size for fitting an iPhone. My only complaint is, sometimes the ends shoulder straps poke into my sides a little bit.
2. Blackburn Mammoth 2 Stage pump. This pump has never given me any grief performance wise. Every once in a while, though, I’ll get my hand pinched between the pump’s handle and head.
3. Pro Mini Tool 11. It's flat and sleek and all the right sizes (4, 5, 6 and Torx) are easy to access, but I'd really like to see the 8-millimeter store somewhere other than on the 5-millimeter key.
4. Two empty beer cans. I forgot to take one of them out after a ride and the other one is supposed to be full of beer–oops.
5. Park Tool Mini Chain Brute Chain Tool. It's small, durable and it works.
6. Payday candy bar. They will not melt and they taste awesome–plus peanuts are a good energy source.
7. Empty Strawberry Gu Chomp packet. They were delicious.
8. iPhone with RokForm case. Keeps track of my rides via GPS and is my Instragram camera. The case keeps my phone protected.
9. Mavic tubeless valve stem. Was easy to remove when I sliced my sidewall on a sharp rock.
10. Bits of chain. Completely useless. I didn't want to litter.
11. Dakine Breaker jacket. It's light and it will keep you warm and dry during brief or light rains. If I didn't live in Southern California, I'd pack a more waterproof jacket than this.
12. Four tubes. Two 29- and two 26-inch tubes. Last week, all four were 29er tubes (I found that out after I flatted on my 26-inch wheeled bike). The funny looking ones are Michelin's Protek Max tubes, which have a special shape to help seal punctures–whether by design or luck, I’ve not flatted one of these yet, but they are heavy.
13. Adventure Medical Kit 5. It's always good to have a first-aid kit. I have not had to open this one yet.
What’s missing? In addition to what you see here, I usually like to have a handful of zip ties and a small bottle of chain lube in my pack.
What do you keep in your pack?