Road riding never really did it for us, even though it’s a great way to build mountain bike fitness. Gravel biking, on the other hand, is way more fun and leads to some pretty great scenery, especially this time of year.
You don’t even have to go full gravel to enjoy the benefits of underbiking; pick up a set of drop bars to convert your old XC hardtail, or throw on a set of narrow, fast rolling tires for gravel season. Check out some of our favorite gravel-type gear we’ve tested.
Schwalbe Thunder Burt Tire 29×2.35
$98.00 | $93.06 sale
The Schwalbe Thunder Burt is a lightweight, fast rolling tire with small knobs that work well for gravel riding. Read more.
Buy from Worldwide Cyclery
Bontrager Foray Mountain Bike Shoes
The Bontrager Foray is a great shoe for anyone who wants a mid-range XC/trail riding shoe and values comfort and efficiency over either race-level stiffness or sending gnarly trails. Read more.
Buy from REI
Knog PWR Trail 1100 Light
$104.00 | $91.17 sale
The Knog PWR Trail 1100 bike light is great for trail riding and is part of a modular system that can do everything from charging devices to lighting up camp and pumping out the jams. Read more.
Buy from Amazon
Diamondback Haanjo 2/3 Gravel Bike
$925.00 (Haanjo 2)
We tested the Haanjo 6C on gravel and singletrack trails and would suggest one of the lower-cost Haanjo builds (Haanjo 2 or 3) to friends who want a “hybrid” bike. Read more.
Buy from REI
Origin8 Gary Sweep OS Handlebar, 31.8 x 610
Give your old XC hardtail a makeover and turn it into a drop bar gravel ripper with a set of Origin8 Gary drop bars. These have an aggressive and comfortable sweep, and they’ll fit in your 31.8mm stem. Read more.
Buy from Amazon
PNW Coast Suspension Dropper Post
The PNW Coast Suspension dropper is a seatpost that incorporates 40mm of suspension travel with up to 120mm of drop for gravel riding and mountain biking. Read more.
Buy from Jenson USA
Mission Workshop Toro Handlebar Bag
Mission Workshop says the Toro is “super stable with zero bounce even on the roughest trails,” which is hard to believe, but in our experience is absolutely true. The bag stays put and is super quick and easy to attach. Read more.
Buy from Mission Workshop
WTB Venture Gravel Tire
$65.95 | $58.95 sale
While the WTB Venture isn’t going to make the short list for most gravel races, it should be an excellent choice for riders who want a do-all gravel tire that feels comfortable and in control across a variety of surfaces. Read more.
Wolf Tooth B-RAD TekLite Roll-Top Bag
The Wolf Tooth TekLite Roll-Top Bag can be mounted pretty much anywhere on a bike frame. We like using it to store tire repair stuff and it easily transfers from bike to bike. Read more.
Buy from Wolf Tooth Components
Specialized Diverge STR Expert
Specialized recently updated the Diverge gravel bike with a distinctive look and feature set. The brand is adamant that the new Rear Future Shock design suspends the rider, as opposed to the bike, compared to traditional mountain bikes. Read more.
Buy from Specialized
Honey Stinger Energy Chews
$31.99 (pack of 12)
IMO, snacks are just as important as your helmet on every ride, especially long gravel ones. Chewy gummies are a sweet treat and can give you a little extra energy to go that extra distance. Use code Singletracks16 to save 16% on your order.
Buy from Honey Stinger
Ornot UV Trail Shirt + Lightweight Mission Short
$66.00 (shirt) and $118.00 (shorts)
If you’re looking for a pair of technical, tailored bike shorts you can show up to the in-laws’ house in, these might be right for you. Pair them with the lightweight UV Trail Shirt for all types of sunny biking adventures. Designed & sewn in the U.S.
Buy from Ornot