As a quick primer for those that don’t use Instagram, a hashtag is a word (or multiple words in one string of text) preceded by a hash (#) that’s added to a Instagram post (or tweet or Facebook update). Hashtags are used for a couple of different reasons but primarily to add a particular photo or post to a stream of related content.

A photo hashtagged with #nofilter, for example, denotes that the photo wasn’t processed using one of Instagram’s built-in filters. Selecting the hashtag takes you through to a feed of all other posts, from all users, with the same hashtag.

Hashtags are sometimes used (and overused) as a sort-of postscript to a photo’s description, providing extra information about the photo. A photo of an exhausted rider after finishing a race in sweltering conditions, for example, might be hashtagged with: #hot #sweaty #sweatingbuckets #buckled #paincave #hurtbox and so on.

With that in mind, here’s a selection of cycling-related hashtags you might come across and be inclined to use on Instagram, what they’re about, and some examples. We’ve deliberately avoided the more generic hashtags used by people that feel inclined to use 50 hashtags per post (e.g. #cycling #bike #riding #bicycle #ride #rider … you get the drift) and focused on more specific and instructive hashtags.


#baaw is, quite simply, an acronym for “bike against a wall”. Propping one’s bike against a wall is often the easiest way to set it up when taking a photo of it … even if it isn’t the most exciting. Bonus marks can be awarded if the wall itself is interesting, not just the bike.

If you’re the sort of rider that cares about “The Rules”, rule #26 might be worth reading up on. Namely:

When photographing your bike, gussy her up properly for the camera. Some parameters are firm: valve stems at 6 o’clock. Cranks never at 90 or 180 degrees. Others are at your discretion, though the accepted practices include putting the chain on the big dog, and no bidons in the cages.

Urban legend suggests this hashtag might have originated with Melbourne cycling identity Andy White of

You might sometimes see variations of #baaw as well, #baaf (bike against a fence) for example.

Still not #baaw'd. #Llewellyn

A photo posted by F Y X O (@fyxo) on

The wilier out of the wilderness! #baaw #wilier

A photo posted by @adiorietes on


When you’re riding along with your mates and you want to take a photo (we recommend you pull over to take the shot) the easiest option is to shoot in the direction you’re going, with your cycling buddies ahead of you. This can provide good foreground interest, but there’s a downside: just about every shot taken in this way is going to feature a whole lot of your mates’ backsides.

#foreverbuttphotos is often used as a grudging admission to say “yep, I’m aware I’m taking photos of my mates’ arses; sorry about that.”

If you’d like to avoid butt photos, try shooting from a different angle — maybe ride ahead of your mates, stop, and get a shot of them flying past from the side of the road.

#jacaranda #attaquer #foreverbuttphotos #congeeexpress

A photo posted by Tristan Ap (@t_ap) on


#WYMTM stands for “What You Missed This Morning”, a phrase and then hashtag coined by CyclingTips founder Wade Wallace back in 2008 when the site was first starting. It began when Wade was out riding and wanted to post photos that would make people jealous, and in recent years it’s grown into a photo competition that we run on the site every December.

We’re pleased to see that the hashtag has grown to be used more widely than just by us. It’s not uncommon to see Instagram posts from around the world, at all times of the year, hashtagged with #WYMTM.

#WYMTM is all about beautiful sunrises, quiet roads, misty climbs and all the other great stuff that comes from dragging yourself out of bed early in the morning for a ride.

Popular alternatives including #WYMTA (what you missed this afternoon) and #WYMTE (what you missed this evening).

Quiet roads in the hills this morning | #WYMTM |

A photo posted by BIKE GALLERY (@bikegallerymelb) on


#Lightbro is used when a photo features a particularly impressive use of light. This often manifests itself as light rays streaking through clouds (“crepuscular rays”) but can be used for any photo in which the light is a feature, not just a tool for exposing the image.

Our understanding is that this hashtag was popularised (if not started) by Radavist founder John Prolly.

Quietly climbing through the morning fog. …unexpected early shot waiting for us just along our local trail.

A photo posted by Luigi Mattei (@luigimattei) on

NOT the Jackson 5 #stravachallege #lightbro #cycling gtt

A photo posted by Peter Bradley (@pbradz) on

Today's ride was all about #lightbro #Teamstandert

A photo posted by wolves_and_foxes (@wolves_and_foxes) on


This isn’t the most popular hashtag on the list but it does turn out some great stuff every now and then. #kitspiration is used, often by those who design their own kit, to flag up interesting designs that could be used as inspiration for cycling kit.

#kitspiration #fitspo #kitspo #wood

A photo posted by Tom Freeman (@tubulartommy) on

Market stall cycling jerseys #kitspiration

A photo posted by @milltag on

MACHINES bibs + Lederhosen combo by @jenniewrenn. Makes my brain explode! #kitspiration

A photo posted by Machines For Freedom (@machinesforfreedom) on


One of the greatest things about cycling is the amazing landscapes and scenery we get to see from the seat of our bikes. Stunning switchbacks, great road-side views, narrow tree-lined backroads; they’re all great fodder for #roadporn.

#taiwan #roadporn

A photo posted by Kirk Parsons (@cycling_kirk) on

#iceland #Roadporn

A photo posted by @teomaj on

Would much rather be out in the woods than on the weekly grind. Oh well happy Monday y'all

A photo posted by Tino (@tinozr) on


A quick bit of research doesn’t confirm whether this started as a marketing campaign or not but even if it did, it’s since taken on a life of its own. It speaks of local pride and is used by cyclists to share moments from rides in their local area.

The Viking's Vacuum. #prohours #thefixedwheel #mwcycleclub #fromwhereiride #outsideisfree #fromwhereiride #wymtm

A photo posted by Jason Pitkeathly (@jasmonoz) on


This hashtag speaks volumes about one of the most appealing aspects of cycling: the fact that getting on your bike and riding is a great way to leave the stress and hassle of everyday life behind. Little else matters when you’re out riding with your mates on your favourite roads.

Think this will get a bunch of use this winter #MTB #onone #snow #outsideisfree

A photo posted by Evans Rohrbaugh (@cyclingevans) on


A photo posted by Ronnie Toth (@tothdoingstuff) on


#sockdoping is a homage to the humble cycling sock, a piece of kit that says a lot about a rider. Loud and outlandish socks make a statement, but they’re less daring than a loud jersey and knicks combination.

Why #sockdoping? We’re not entirely sure but our guess is that doped socks are socks that have been ‘enhanced’ to be much more than simple white or black socks … usually through colourful and exciting designs.

Other popular sock-related hashtags include #sockheight and #sockporn.

Kick old man winter in the nuts with some color!!!

A photo posted by Handlebar Mustache Apparel (@hbstache) on

TBT to last week. They did leave my #sockdoping in place for surgery… That's how I roll. #belgianTFU

A photo posted by Handlebar Mustache Apparel (@hbstache) on


For cyclists that love bikes, bike tech and even parts of bikes, #bikeporn is the hashtag for you. Often used on photos featuring weird or unusual bikes, #bikeporn is also just used whenever someone wants to show their love for their two-wheeled companion.


This is an unashamedly Melbourne-specific hashtag but we’re sure it could be localised just about anywhere (we’ve seen #notcoluzzi in Sydney, for example). Beach Road is Melbourne’s most popular cycling route; a flat, bay-side route that runs south out of the city and that is frequented by literally thousands of cyclists on the weekends (and plenty during the week too).

While Beach Road is flat, fast, convenient and a lot of fun (particularly in groups), it can also get a little boring when ridden too often. #Notbeachroad is used somewhat cheekily when posting about roads or rides that are a little bit more interesting and more hilly than Beach Road.

Its use has precipitated the odd argument — “what’s wrong with Beach Road! Stop being such a snob!” — but mostly it’s just used to celebrate the diversity of terrain available for riding around Melbourne (and beyond), including the many great hills.

Andy White from tells us he was the first to start using this hashtag, although he originally styled it as #notbeachrd.

Made it to the top of Murchinson Gap #notbeachroad

A photo posted by @chrisabruns on


What have we missed? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.