What to wear mountain biking

A couple of decades wearing road shorts or bibs, but changing fashion finally got me in the last few years and now I throw a pair of baggies over them.

skin suit and aero shoe covers

everyone knows you are giving up 10% if you don’t wear an aero helmet


Rapha Cargo Bibs :+1:t4:

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Thanks OP!
I’ve long been considering going the baggies over bibs - good to see plenty of others do it.
My goto set of bibs are getting a bit see through - this will be perfect second life for them (as soon as I find a suitable set of shorts)

I bought some very “niche” ALE bibshorts - in terms of colour on a sale just to wear under baggies and as they’re the thinnest I own they are perfect for the job. :grin: Not sure I’d even wear them on the trainer in the garage. They’re clashy to say the least.

I always run a backpack with a bladder in so don’t do the road Jersey pocket thing though that’s a great idea. Two reasons - I’m either out with my mates on a long day or playing out with the kids on which case I act as the pack horse. :grin:
I think MTB is far more relaxed style wise and no one really seems to care.
As @Pbase says above you can drop your MTB mates depending on their fitness levels but remember that MTBing brings in more upper body to the mix. Whole new ball game. :grin: :+1:t2: Enjoy.


I would recommend form fitting “baggies” over your favorite road bibs. You know the comfort with your bib shorts, the over-shorts just offer a bit of extra protection and you don’t have to get the over the knee or super baggy fit versions.

I don’t think Fox makes any XC gear any more but I did have a pair of “Live Wire” shorts that were marketed for XC riding. I loved those and wished I had gotten an extra pair because they’re not produced any longer. I’m eyeing up some tighter fitting shorts from Gore this season, and 7Mesh is another brand worth looking at.

7 Mesh also offers a 3 pocket bib short that’s designed to work with a baggy short over top, this allows a non-road style shirt to be worn since you can stash your necessities in your bibs.

I still use a road style jersey on most of my rides since I hate hydration packs and tight form fitting jersey with tight pockets seems to work best for me. Fashion wise, I’m sure I’m breaking some rules but could care less.


I used to always use the double layer Endura MT500 shorts. They were great for MTB riding where you often fall off and can ruin normal lightweight (and expensive) road bib shorts.
I don’t think they make them now but these days I will wear baggies (Endura MT 500 baggies are great) but look for slightly tighter fitting and if the liner isn’t any good I’ll either wear a pair of bib shorts or padded underwear beneath.
I do feel a bit extra layers on the MTB is worth it.

I just ordered some new kits, a Gore merino blend shirt and poly over short, using an old pair of specialized swat bibs to stash the gear as the shirts don’t have big pockets. I also wanted to try some 7mesh items so I have their version of a cargo bib and a couple of their shirts as well. This is my attempt at looking less roadie on my dirt rides. :nerd_face:

I definitely wear baggies to fit in but my main motivation in wearing baggies is to protect the expensive bibs I wear underneath.

Always a t/tech-t on top.

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I wear my usual roadie bib tights and jersey, but in addition to that I also wear overshorts as protection against mud and gravel. The overshorts I use are Assos trail cargo shorts: very nice and light, with a lot of elastic, so I barely notice them.