‘Tis the season for gift giving, right?! We know this can be a stressful endeavor so we’ve put together a list of the Top 5 Gifts for Bikers — specifically, for those who enjoy self-guided bike touring.
Handlebar Bag – having a bag on the front of your bike that you can take off and go will make your trip easy and enjoyable. Drop in your phone, a snack, keys and your wallet and you’re ready to go. Look for water-resistant materials and easy on-off options. But always carry a plastic baggie for your electronics in case it rains. We use Axiom bags on our bike fleet. We find them to be durable, easy to put on, and we love that they’re environmentally conscious, being made from reclaimed fishing net.
Cycling Gloves – a quick way to increase your comfort on any long bike ride is to wear gloves! Make sure to get cycling gloves with foam on the palms to dampen the vibrations from the trail. Fingerless gloves are best for warm to hot weather riding, you’ll be glad you have them. Here are a couple we like:
Multitool – never leave home without it – a multitool, that is. The most essential tool for any cyclist, take this on rides of any length and maybe you’ll be the hero for having the right tool at the right time. This basic tool from ACA Cyclosource has what you need. But if you are looking to splurge, this sleek tool is the ticket: EDC Tool System.
Light/Windproof Jacket – We’re not ones to insist on special outfits just to ride your bike, but a good lightweight cycling jacket is worth purchasing. It’s tailored to fit you while biking and should be tight in the right places, but loose in torso to allow you to not overheat. We’ve been known to wear a windbreaker as the perfect temperature regulator on snowy winter rides, and also as a sunscreen on hot August tours. This is our go-to piece of clothing all year round and something every cyclist should have. We love the gear made by Aerotech right here in Pittsburgh, Pa.
Splurge! Bike Shorts – a true must-have for your first or any bike tour is a good pair (or two) of padded bike shorts. These shorts make all the difference to being as comfortable on day 3 as you were on day 1. Just remember to try them out BEFORE you take your trip, to make sure they fit correctly. Here is a nice guide to what to look for in bike shorts – https://www.aerotechdesigns.com/bikeshorts.html. This is one piece of clothing that is worth spending money on – make this investment. [And remember that bike shorts are worn without underwear:)]
For woman, it can be especially difficult to find a truly comfortable pair of cycling shorts. If you haven’t found them yet, KEEP LOOKING! We’ve found Voler to offer the most comfortable shorts around the $100 price point. Here is a quick link for the guys too. They have gripping material at the waist and thigh that is actually comfortable to wear, without being overly tight or cutting into the skin.
Whether you get one, two or all of our suggestions for that special cycling enthusiast in your life, you’ll be guaranteed to put a smile on their face! We hope you enjoy this season of sharing with friends and family. Mostly, we encourage you to think about what experiences you want to share in 2020 and if we can be part of those experiences, we’ll be sure to take incredible care of you on a self-guided bike tour.