If you own a mountain bike, then you're the type that loves riding on dirt hills outside of the city limits. However, sometimes you will ride your bike in the city. It might be that you're going to the grocery store, or maybe you're planning on using your bike to commute to work when your car is at the mechanic. For whatever reason, you need to outfit your bike for an urban environment. There are a few essential biking accessories that you should have for your bike that will make it city proof.
Here are some suggestions.
If you're using your bike to commute, or go to the grocery store, then waterproof panniers are a great idea. Panniers are bags that sling over the back of your bike. They are great because they can carry your work stuff, groceries, or anything else. You can put more stuff into the panniers then you could a backpack or messenger bag. The added benefit is that you don't have to physically carry the panniers like you do a messenger bag or knapsack.
Frame Pump and Tool Bag
One of the hazards of riding on city streets is that you can encounter broken glass, nails, and lots of other sharp stuff that might puncture your tire. So, it's important to have a tool bag on your bike that has a spare tire and a patch kit.
Also, sometimes your tire will need to be inflated. You don't want to be on the road to work and have to walk the bike. This is where the frame pump comes in handy. You can pull the bike over, pump up the tire, and be back on your way.
Unless you can bring your bike into your office, you're going to have to leave it out on the street. This means you have to lock it up. A U lock is a great method of protecting your bike. They are better than cable locks because they are harder to break. Many cable locks can be split with a cheap bolt cutter. When thieves see a U lock they are apt to move on to easier pickings.
Headlight and Taillight
Riding in the city at night poses a whole new set of risks. The main one is car traffic. Reflectors are great, but a headlight would be a big improvement. You can get a very powerful headlight and attach it to the front of your bike. This not only helps you see where you're going, it helps others see you. If you want, you can also get a taillight for your bike. They both run on batteries and can be removed when you head into work so they are not stolen.