It’s that time of year again! You’re looking for that one spectacular gift for the bicycle tourist in your life and you just can’t figure out what would be appropriate. Good thing I am here to help you out with some ideas! Let’s see if we can pick out that perfect item for your adventure rider.
1. Adventure Cycling Maps
Chances are, you may have already seen or heard of these legendary maps. These maps are Adventure Cycling Association‘s bread and butter if you are looking to travel anywhere in the United States. They may not have every city mapped out, but they have the more popular ones for you to choose from. I used these maps and the “purple book” on my Pacific Coast bike tour this summer to get me home. I even have a set for my cross-country tour scheduled in two years using the Southern Route. Why are these maps so great? They are waterproof, so you can use them in all sorts of weather. They are durable and tough to rip. They are loaded with local information about lodging, food, bike shops, etc. They are well-researched and great for turn-by-turn bicycle directions.
2. Bike Tune-Up
Given the fact that it is winter time and most people store their bikes away until the weather gets warmer, they may need a tune-up prior to taking it out on that first tour. Maybe you live in California where we ride all year-long, having a free tune-up is a fantastic gift for those that are always traveling. Check with your local bicycle shop to buy a gift certificate for this service.
3. Tires & Spare Tubes
I don’t know if your gift recipient is like me, but if he/she is, we are probably due to have our tires swapped out. Why not pick up a new pair of tires for them? Find out the size on the side wall of the tires and go to your local bicycle shop to buy or order. The sizes are usually written like 700C x 28 or 26” x 1.75”.
Be sure you get the right kind of tire for your recipient’s bike. Rule out knobby mountain bike tires unless your guy/gal goes off-road bike packing rather than the traditional on-road tour.
Spare tubes are also great for stocking stuffer. Bicycle tourists can’t get enough tubes in our spare rotation. No need to buy ones that are advertised lightweight. We just need the ones that are the right size. Weight is negligible since touring bikes will end up being loaded down.
4. FiberFix Spoke
I’ve mentioned FiberFix Spoke as one of the top 10 things to bring with you on a bike tour. This is great for when you break a wheel spoke on the road. It is a kevlar line that you use to temporarily replace the broken spoke until you reach a local bike shop in the next town.
When it’s not in use, this thing packs down to a very small container, so don’t even worry about it taking up space.
I have a set and carry it with me all the time.
5. A Device Mount
You are noticing that handlebar of your bicycle tourist is running out of space to put that one last device. Why not give him/her an attachment that will allow unobstructed video footage?
We recently reviewed one from WoMo Designs which will do just that. Check out our review and pick one up for your gadget loving adventure cyclist.
6. A New Helmet
Have you looked at your recipient’s photos and noticed that he/she is still rocking the same helmet from 6 years ago? Maybe it’s time to snatch up a new helmet for him/her. It is recommended that a bicycle helmet should be replaced every 5 years.
7. Road ID
On a bicycle tour, many things can happen. Things that you never think would happen, will happen. So to help provide more information about your medical records and people to contact, give the gift of a Road ID. Road ID is a strap that you wear either on your wrist or ankle. You get to customize the information on the faceplate to tell people if you have any drug allergies and who to contact should you arrive to the hospital unconscious. I wear mine whenever I ride.
8. More Socks
There is this weird subculture in the bicycling community where people are constantly looking out for new and interesting sock designs. Regardless of that, having different kinds of socks made for cycling are fantastic gift ideas! You can’t have too many socks, can you?
9. Anything Wool
One of my hidden goals in life is to swap out all my clothes (or at least the majority of my clothes) for merino wool alternatives. Nothing beats the magic fabric that wicks away sweat and moisture while keeping you warm. In addition to that, wool does not smell, so you can wear it a few times before washing it. They also pack away small so you can roll them up when traveling.
10. Printed Photos & Memorabilia
When I am bike touring, I take lots of photos. Most of these photos are stored on my hard disks in my computers. Only a chosen few are uploaded to Facebook or Flickr.
Why not take these great moments and print them out on paper? There is something to be said about having your own photos displayed around your house. A simple 8” x 10” photo in a frame is a good start, or you can print out a poster, calendar, or even a whole photo book. Our friends at Build Your Tour can help you build a photo book even if that person is on the road. Their service can pull the photos from a shared drive and they construct the book so it’s ready for them at the end of their tour.
Out of Ideas?
If you looked over all 10 things on this post and nothing looks appealing, go to REI and buy a gift card. Clean and simple. Most bicycle tourists will need things on tours, like fuel or even an upgrade to their camping equipment. An REI gift card is a sure bet!
What do you think about my list? Anything that stood out to you? Do you have something else that would make a great gift? If so, share in the comments below.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”