We're deep in road trip season. Hopefully, you're able to squeeze a couple more adventures in this summer. While I love traveling to exotic locations to ride, I've kept my mountain bike trips close to home this year. There's a wealth of underappreciated trail systems in Colorado and Wyoming that I've explored. Most of these spots also have great access to fishing, rock climbing, and other activities, which is great if you or your family don't intend to spend every waking moment on singletrack.

Over the years, I've divided my camping gear into two categories: equipment for bikepacking, and gear I use for mountain bike road trips/car-camping. As much as I love ultralight gear for bikepacking, it's expensive, prioritizes low weight and compactness over comfort, and is sometimes less durable than products made for car camping.

The best camp gear for mountain bikers
Here's a look at some of the car-camping gear I've enjoyed using this season. Feel free to chime in with the gear that you would recommend to fellow mountain bikers.

Camp Bin
Every car camping set-up begins with a bin to hold your stuff. I'm a fan of the Rubbermaid Action Packer series. They're durable and come in a range of sizes. The 24 and 35-gallon versions are best for car camping. Personally, I'm a fan of the 35-gallon version. I can fit my entire camp kitchen and most of my dry goods inside.

Camp Stove
Campfire cooking is great, but fire bans in many parts of the US mean it's not always possible, nor prudent. MSR's Pocket Rocket or a Jetboil is great when you're making solo meals. If you're feeding a group of hungry mountain bikers, the tried and true Colman Stove is the best way to go. These stoves last forever, can be rebuilt without much hassle, and can be readily found at thrift stores and garage sales for next to nothing. When a friend accidentally backed over my 20-year-old stove, I upgraded to the higher-end Triton model with push-button ignition, and (baring any automotive mishaps) it will probably last at least 20 years.

Cast Iron Skillet
When grams don't matter, I reach for my trusty Lodge cast iron skillet. The 10.25" version is the best size for most camp needs and fits easily into a camp bin and on top of a Colman stove. If you're planning to cook directly in the coals and don't want to drag along a separate Dutch oven, I recommend investing in Lodge's Combo Cooker. It gives you a deep and shallow skillet that can be used separately or combined for covered cooking.

This is an optional item that I bring when I know there won't be a picnic table or if I need a workspace for servicing/repairing bikes when I'm at a race. I picked up this generic folding camp table on sale and it's proven sturdy enough and very packable. I'm sold on the lower storage space. Depending on how I'm using this table, the storage organizer is a great spot to store cooking items or additional tools and repair items.

Even when I'm bikepacking, I carry a larger shelter than is really necessary. This trend is magnified when I know I don't have to haul my house on my bike. I want a shelter I can stand in to change-it's not much fun trying to wriggle in and out of cycling gear laying down. In my opinion, the Big Agnes Bunk House 4 is the best car camping tent.
This tent is roomy enough for a family of four (or two adults and a lot of gear), tall enough to change in comfortably (the ceiling height is 5'8"), and it can be used as a sun shelter as well as a tent. It packs into a backpack-style storage bag that's easy to haul to your campsite.

Cheap moving blanket
A cheap moving blanket is one of those items I always camp with. There are countless uses for a crappy moving blanket. It can be a blanket for picnics or stargazing or a yoga mat for post-ride stretching. If your sleeping bag isn't cutting it, you can add it as an extra insulating layer. Or, if you camp with a dog, it can protect your sleeping bag from whatever the heck your furry friend rolled in. And if you're the one covered in mud after a ride, you can throw it over your car seats to keep them clean.

Keeping post-ride beverages cold is one of my top priorities. I won a Yeti Tundra 45 cooler at a bike race several years ago and love it. Does it keep food and drink any colder than an RTIC cooler that costs half as much? Absolutely not.

The boutique cooler trend is massively overblown. Save your hard-earned cash for bike parts. Here's my tip for getting the most out of any cooler: use water bottles filled with frozen water to pre-chill the cooler before use. Keep these in the cooler instead of ice or freezer blocks and enjoy chilled water as needed.

What do you think?
Do you have any camp gear that you love and would recommend to fellow mountain bikers? If so, share it here.