In this article, we chat about camping with your dirt bike.
What you need to know when Camping with a Dirt Bike
Now you’re probably thinking to yourself well all right what do I need what do I not need and how am I going to make this work as a Dirtbike is not really set up to carry luggage or gear or anything like that.
While you could figure out how to carry lots of your gear on your back that’s also makes for a not-so-fun trip if you were writing more of technical singletrack or out away from paved roads.
Dual sport dirt bikes are typically setup WAY better than a standard dirt bike for overnight camping. These dual sport dirt bikes or adventure dirt bikes have larger gas tanks and ways to hook up luggage to the dirt bike. Now the downside is these dual sport dirt bikes tend to be much heavier and WAY harder to ride in hard technical situations but perform better on pavement than a standard situation.
Now there are some dual sport dirt bikes that can do it all like the KTM EXC platform. They can be ridden on the road but also perform well on dirt single-track trails.
Giant Loop Coyote RollTop Saddlebag
- Waterproof Pods
- Military Spec construction
- 39 liters of volume
- Limited Lifetime warranty
- Rackless pannier bags
- Quality and durable construction
- Roll Top design
- Removable waterproof liner
- Tough for offroad use
- Waterproof liner
- 40 liters of space
- Limited Lifetime Warranty
How Long Do you Plan On Camping With Your Dirt Bike?
The other thing to ask yourself is where do you plan on riding your dirt bike and camping is this going to be an overnight camp or is this going to be multiple days.
This is really important as there is a lot to think about when it comes to how long your camping trip is and how many miles you plan on riding your dirt bike. Are you planning on riding all single track or a mix of everything with some pavement between trails.
Dirt Bike Fuel for Camping
The other thing you need to be aware of is fuel. If you plan on doing a multi-day trip it’s probably recommended that you have an option where you can fuel up and this typically means that you’re going to need a street-legal dirtbike.
However, there are some places in the world that will not give you too much grief if you ride your dirt bike on the pavement down to a gas station as long as you’re opening all the traffic rules.
There are compact aluminum bottles designed to carry extra fuel that is available for dirt bike camping.
You can carry fuel but typically it’s really heavy and it’s probably smarter to carry more water than fuel.
An average tank size on a dirt bike gives you anywhere from 70 to 120 miles.
Dirt Bike Camping Gear
Carrying all your camping gear with you while your dirt biking is actually quite a challenge.
Do you want to make sure you pack only the essentials and pack as light as possible? Luckily there are actually options for you to be able to attach gear to your actual dirtbike so that you’re not carrying it on your back.
You can use some of the lightweight backpacking gear that is available for dirt bike camping as well.
Dirt Bike Camping Essentials
There are some absolute essentials you need if you’re going to go camping with your dirtbike. Below is a list of things you need before heading our camping on your dirt bike.
- Enough Fuel
- Water or a way to purify water
- Proper clothing to stay dry
- Tool kit
- Warm sleeping gear
- A way to start a fire
- A way to communicate for emergencies
- Light Kit
- Proper Dirt Bike Riding Gear
- Medical Kit
Let’s talk about WATER
Typically you can only go 3 days without any water. This means that getting access to water is REALLY the most important thing to think about before you head out on your dirt bike camping adventure. Here are a couple of questions you should ask yourself.
Are you going to an area where there is no easy access to water?
Are you going to an area where there is lots of access to water?
Typically before I head out on ANY dirt bike adventure I will carry water with me on my back. The reason for this is you never know when you will get stranded and need water to survive.
A stainless steel water bottle is the best as it’s light, tough and you can boil water in it. You can boil water in some plastic bottles but I don’t recommend it.
How to purify water for dirt bike camping?
So you should carry water on you at all times but if you need more water that is in a stream or lake you will need to purify that water before you drink it.
- Bring water to boil and let it boil for over a minute (CDC guidelines)
- Bring a water purifier pump system
- Bring iodine tablets (Lightweight option)
I typically carry a Jetboil with me that has a stainless steel container that will boil water really fast. This is typically what I have in my pack for dirt bike camping. The Jetboil doubles as my cooking mechanism as well. A Jetboil is heavier than iodine tablets but I am not a big fan of the iodine tablets as they test terribly.
Now you can bring a water purifying kits like the life straw or a pump-action water filter. These are really good at giving you clean water and will also filter out dirty water. They also test better than the iodine tables.
If you want to go as light as possible then spring for the iodine tablets and bring some crystal light powder to make it taste better!
*** If you are facing dehydration and you have ZERO options for cleaning the water….its better to drink the water and have the runs…drink the water anyhow.
There are lots and lots of good options for lightweight just add water freeze-dried food options. I won’t go into a ton of detail but make sure that you have enough good to eat.
I personally like food that tastes good enough but is really easy to prepare. Food like Mountain House and Backpacker Pantry have enough options to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters.
Dirt Bike Luggage Rack
Since you cannot carry all of your camping and dirtbike gear that you need on your back there is some really cool dirtbike. Luggage racks that you can add to your dirtbike for caring extra gear.
These Dirtbike luggage racks can carry soft bags you can attach all sorts of things to them you also can do panniers. Luggage racks are great for hauling some of the heavier items like your sleeping bag, tent, fuel, and water.
Now you can also carry a backpack on your bike but it does change the balance of your riding position especially when standing up. This is typically why I recommend wearing a smaller backpack and use luggage racks or panniers to haul the big stuff. There is also lots of great options when it comes to front fender packs.
Dirt Bike Camping Tent
Really any lightweight camping tent will work when choosing a dirt bike tent. You just need to make sure that it’s weatherproof and also is small enough to pack on your dirt bike.
Now there are specific dirt bike camping tents that have an area for you to sleep and then a garage for your dirt bike. Lone Rider makes a MotoTent that you might want to check out.
Really all you need is a tent for you to keep you out of the weather.
Dirt Bike Sleeping Gear
This is an area that I would not go on the cheap. You want to make sure that your sleeping bag is warm enough and if it gets wet it will still keep you warm. A quality sleeping back can also be used as a lifesaving item when needed.
Get one that is stuffable and easy to pack.
I also prefer a blow-up sleeping pad to make the ground less hard.
*** REMEMBER the degree rating on the sleeping bag is a survival rating not how comfortable or warm you will be
Dirt Bike Camping Test Run
Before you head out on a multi-day camping trip with your dirt bike, I would recommend that you first do a 1 nighter trial run to see how everything works and rides. Take note of things like if you over packed which tends to happen. If you are not using it DO NOT pack it unless it’s considered an emergency or life-saving gear.
If you are like me you tend to over plan which means that you end up carrying more gear than you should. While that is ok if you take a couple of trips, note what you actually use and what you do not.
Try not to overpack and make sure to not skimp on the food/water and lifesaving devices.
See you guys out on the trails.