I’ve done a post on what I carry in my makeup bag when I travel on my motorcycle, but I figured this one is a bit more practical (and unisex!).
I purchased my faux leather bag from Nordstrom Rack for ~$40, and since then noticed that it’s a knock off design for the $295 Rebecca Minkoff Julian Backpack. Fuck yea for being frugal!
Emergency/First Aid Items
- Hand sanitizer
- Antiseptic wipes
- Safety pins
- Hair ties
- Bandages and gauze pads
- Bandage wrap
- Microfiber cloth
When I got into the accident last year, I didn’t have anything with me other than water. Even though I don’t see myself getting into another accident, I at least want to be prepared with basic first aid items so I can clean any dirt off of me if I get a cut or scrape. I also added a few cosmetic items, like hair ties and safety pins, just in case any clothing items rips or tears (and yes, a hair tie can lead to an emergency later when you ride with your hair down and it turns into a birds nest). These items can also be used if you get stung by a bee or feel irritation on your hands by your gloves, etc.
- Tire Pressure Gauge
- Zip ties
- 1/2 inch wrench
- L-wrench (not pictured)
- Screw driver
- Duct tape
My logic is that everything that I change/remove on my bike (handlebars and headlight so far) is now susceptible to falling off. I am not a mechanic – I don’t really know how to fix things, so if I don’t screw a nut or bolt tight enough, it’s bound to fall off with the vibrations. So plan on that by adding the tool you used on any specific part. Once the bike gets older and I’ve worked on it more, I would probably want to ride with a fuller tool set, battery tender, and jumper cables. So if your bike is older and needs more TLC, you might want to add to this list.
- Motorcycle Registration Card
- Insurance Card
- Roadside Assistance Card/Info/Phone Number
- Harley Davidson Extended Service Plan Card (with Service Contract Number)
- Harley Owners Group Membership Card
- Various motorcycle towing company cards/info
- Emergency Contact Information
One thing that I didn’t plan for in my accident was not knowing my basic Insurance information and who to call. Luckily my phone was charged so I could log into my account, but it added to the struggle of being on the side of the road and not knowing what to do. All phone numbers and policy information is there for me at my disposal now, and the only thing I added was an emergency contact information card that I made on Microsoft Word. The only reason I made this is because I don’t have any family up here in the Bay Area, other than my boyfriend. If I go out for a ride, nobody really knows what I’m doing or where I’m going, other than him. My immediate family (parents and sisters) live in Los Angeles, so if I do get into a wreck, they won’t know until hours or days later.
- Clear face shield (if I’m riding at night)
- Full water bottle
- Ear Plugs
- Portable Phone Charger & Cable
- Granola Bars/snacks (if I’m riding 8+ hours)
- Cash (just in case you ride anywhere rural where gas stations might not accept cards)
You might think this is a lot of stuff, but my tools and first aid kit fit in one side pocket, and my emergency stuff fits in the other. I still have the entire body of the backpack to fit with water, extra items, my camera, and wallet.
You could avoid wearing a backpack if you buy the swing arm bag and fit most emergency and tool supplies in there. Even a tank bag would work. And on days where I don’t feel like carrying a backpack, I shove it into my boyfriends saddle bag. Carrying a bunch of stuff seems like a hassle at first, but I’d rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.