Gravel bike clothing guide

Gravel bike clothing guide

You’re going for a nice gravel ride or bikepacking adventure. You’ve got your cargo shorts, bar bag, maybe even a frame bag. You’re saturated with storage space and, to be honest, the back pockets of a cycling jersey have simply lost their appeal. What should you wear instead? There are no rules about what you should and shouldn’t dress yourself in for a ride, and (unlike road cycling) gravel’s often relaxed vibe really lends itself to creativity in terms of fashion. Here are a few options you could consider for your summer look.

Want to look casual but still signal that you’re a cyclist that owns cycling clothes etc.? This Rapha T is a perfect look for those interested in dipping their toes into the “wearing a t-shirt on a ride” pool, without fully giving up the cycling brand lifestyle.

The hand-dyed Cloud Merino T-Shirt is designed to thermoregulate in all weather and conditions. The shirt is made to be layered, for chillier running (or, in this case, cycling.)

With gravel bikes filling the void between road riding and mountain biking, so must gravel bike clothing. It’s unsurprising that the kit used for gravel riding is heavily influenced by both disciplines. On one side of the spectrum, the sleek efficiency of road kit which adheres to a strict set of ‘rules’ regarding sock length and colour coordination. On the other side, the relaxed style and durability of mountain biking kit offers a more casual approach to technical clothing. 

In the same way that a mountain bike can happily trundle down a tarmac road but a road bike will do it faster, your road or mountain bike kit will likely suffice for a gravel ride. However, gravel bike clothing is designed for the task at hand and will invariably perform better.