No one wants to be 'that guy' on a ride. You know the one, always late, gear is all wanged up before you even get rolling, too little food or water....dry sealant (a dozy). You can't control everything when it comes to heading out on a mtb ride with friends but here is a list of things that will help ensure you'll be invited back.
Make sure you have fresh sealant and at least one spare tube.
This is a big one, a few ounces of fresh sealant can make or break a ride.
Make sure you have the proper tools, pump, quick link and Co2.
None of these things take up much room or cost very much but they can mean the difference between a quick fix and a long walk. Also make sure you know how to use all those fancy tools.
Make sure your bike is in good repair.
Obviously, out on the trail things go wrong, parts get broke but you shouldn’t be heading out with your buddies with worn out tires, brake pads, a leaky shock or a stretched chain. Get that stuff fixed ahead of time so you’re not ruining someone else's’ ride.
Make sure you have the proper clothes.
If you’re heading out for super long ride, one with questionable weather or into high elevations, be sure to bring the right clothing. This is especially true if there is any chance of getting caught out after dark.
Make sure you have the enough food and water.
Much like clothing, make sure you’ll have enough for the entire ride and don’t have to mooch off your companions.
Be on time for the ride. If people are meeting at your place, be ready to roll at the specified time.
Nothing is worse than standing around watching someone pumping up their tires in their flipflops while your kitchen pass it ticking away. For most, ride time is valuable time. If you say wheels down at 9am, be ready to ride at 9am. Likewise, if you're meeting up with everyone someplace, be there when you said you'd be there.
Be conscious of other’s time constraints.
See above. Not everyone has five hours to do a three hour ride.
Let people know if you have time constraints.
Along those same lines, if you only have three and a half hours and you’re looking at a three hour ride, let your riding companions know you can’t be jacking around taking selfies all day.
Bring cash for post ride food and beer (or bring beer).
Pretty self explanatory.
Know the route.
As long as you’re not clear out in the middle of nowhere, if something does go wrong with your bike, it’s not unreasonable to pull the plug and head back to the trailhead or send your crew ahead as long as you know where you’re going and can limp in.
Ride within your abilities.
Testing your abilities is awesome, that’s what mountain biking is all about but keep it reasonable. No one wants to cut their ride short because you attempted to ride something that was well above your paygrade.