What to wear mountain biking in Scotland
Posted on Oct 01, 2018 by Rupert Shanks
Mountain biking in Scotland is some of the best in the world! But it can mean 4 seasons in one day all felt from the saddle.
We have been running Scottish Mountain bike trips for over 15 years. So we’re delighted to share our guide to What to Wear Mountain Biking in Scotland.
Getting muddy and wet is all part of the fun right? It sure can be! As long as you have the gear to keep you warm and comfortable biking all day in the hills. Our full kit list below will ensure a happy and warm day out in the Scottish mountains, in all weathers! Full disclaimer – we do have a partnership with Endura sport (a Scottish cycle-wear manufacturer). There are a few nods in their direction but we only partner with them because we truly believe they make fantastic, comfortable equipment perfectly suited to riding in Scotland.
Check out our video for a summary of the guide. Kindly presented by Sara Blanch from our office Operations team. Thanks Sara!
- Base layer T shirt or lycra cycling shirt such as these quick-wicking, breathable ones for Men and Women from Endura. We also love these for Women from Flare (another British MTB brand) and these Fox jerseys for Men.
- Long-sleeved base layer to complement the above. We love these lightweight but warm and breathable Merino wool options for Women and Men.
- Lightweight fleece jacket or gilet. These are surprisingly windproof and cosy for something so light. We also love the elasticated armholes to ensure they’re not restricting while riding. For Women and Men.
- Lightweight waterproof jacket. Such as these which are tough, breathable and pack right down. For Men and Women.
- Padded lycra shorts plus/or outer shorts as preferred. We prefer the full combo of padded lycra bibshorts with a tough pair of mountain bike shorts over the top! We recommend these well-fitted but breathable bib shorts from Endura for Women and Men. These are great MTB outer shorts which are tough but comfortable; for Women and Men.
- Leggings or longs for riding. For those colder rides, it’s worth bringing some leggings such as these for Men and Women. They are really warm and snug while the ankle zips mean they’re quick to get on and off during a ride.
- Lightweight waterproof but breathable unisex trousers. Another option is some waterproof biking shorts such as these Madison shorts for Men and fitted waterproof trousers for Women.
- Bike shoes or hiking trainers. We love the solid feel of these flat-soled shoes from Five Ten for Women and Shimano for Men.
- Socks for riding. It may seem ridiculous to get bike-specific socks but the breathable nature and silky feel of these Merino wool socks do make a a big difference for happy feet.
- Neoprene overshoes if you tend to get cold feet. If you experience cold toes regularly when you’re riding these overshoes are a great option to keep your shoes and feet more protected and insulated. They fit over a variety of shoe and clip-in combinations.
Head and Hands
- Helmet. This unisex helmet from Endura is highly certified and highly adjustable.
- Gloves (full-fingered are usually a better choice in Scotland) for Men and Women. Unisex fingerless mitts here for Women and Men.
- Clear lens or interchangeable sunglasses (100% UVA & UVB protection). These unisex interchangeable glasses are also adjustable to fit your face exactly.
- Warm fleece or wool hat. We love these wool beanies from Haglofs.
- Buff or bandana. Ideally, this should fit under your helmet to keep your ears warm on those extra cold days. This quick-wicking multitube is really versatile.
Additional essential kit
- Backpack to carry clothes, equipment and food (15-30L capacity). This is a great small backpack with water bladder and drinking hose included.
- Waterproof liner or bag to keep backpack contents dry
- Water bottles or hydration bladder (ideally 2L capacity total)
Bike & Spares (Below is not required if you are hiring a bike through Wilderness Scotland)
As many of these items are bike-specific we recommend you visit your nearest bike shop with your bike to get exactly what you need.
- Bike multi-tool
- Flexible or spare spokes
- Pump and shock pump (if required)
- Inner tubes
- Spare gear cable
- Chain links/pins (speed links)
- 2 x spare disc pads
- Puncture repair kit
- Bike chain lube
- Rear mech hanger suitable for your bike