Our staff has given you recommendations for how to wow every cyclist on your list this season. Sometimes, however, we need gifts that are smaller in scale but just as big of a hit.
Whether you’re looking for gifts for the twelve days of Christmas, for an office Secret Santa or to use as stocking suffers, our Santa’s helpers have more great suggestions for you.
Little Gifts that Make a Big Impression
Sunglasses don’t just provide protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Cyclists wear glasses in all conditions to protect their eyes from wind, precipitation and debris from the road. Cycling glasses also protect a cyclist’s eyes’ in the event of a crash. Sunglasses may not be on your mind during these days of limited sunlight, but we guarantee they will get ample use from the cyclist or runner in your life. Plus, at $40 to $80, Tifosi sunglasses are priced right for gifts or stocking stuffers.
The Serfas Thunderbolt (USB) USL-6 Headlight is a $45 headlight that puts out 90 lumens, giving you plenty of light to safely arrive at your destination. Even better, those 90 lumens come in a non-directional beam to cover a wider area. The USB-rechargeable Thunderbolt can be mounted virtually anywhere on the front of your bike—from the handlebars to the fork. The Thunderbolt comes in 7 different colors. The Thunderbolt (USB) UST-6 Taillight, the 35 lumen rear light version, also retails for $45.
Sugoi Cold Weather Gear
Sugoi‘s Midzero and Firewall lines offer great layering pieces to protect extremities from whatever nastiness Mother Nature wants to throw your way. Sugoi gear to protect hands, feet, head, face, arms and legs – available from $15 to $75 – makes great gifts and stocking stuffers.
The Midzero line offers great wicking properties while remaining windproof. The Headwarmer keeps your ears covered. The Thermal Tube keeps your neck covered and can be pulled up over your mouth, nose and ears when needed. The Balaclava is the warmest option for the coldest rides and runs, keeping your head toasty.
Arm warmers, knee warmers and leg warmers are available in Midzero insulated fabric as well as in merino wool. Merino wool socks will keep your toes warm. The Firewall line is a first line of defense against the winter. The Firewall Sock goes over your cycling shoes to keep your feet warm and dry.
We have a variety of gloves from Sugoi this year to make sure fingers stay warm. RS Zero Glove, RS ZeroPlus Glove and the RSE Subzero Lobster Glove are insulated with Thinsulate material. The shell, unlike most cycling gloves remains flexible in the cold. Gloves offer touch screen compatible thumb tips and reflective materials.
iPhone/Smart Phone Dry Bag
The Topeak Phone Dry Bag makes a great gifts for moms who need to keep track of kids or dads who need to check in to home or the office while out riding. This bag is a great way to keep an iPhone or SmartPhone handy for communication or to use as a GPS device during longer rides, while protecting the SmartPhone from the elements. It features both a water resistant and shock protective construction, making it a thoughtful and practical gift.
Gifts for $25 or Less
Limited Edition GU
Bring some holiday joy the training season with the limited release Mid-Winter Salted Caramel Energy, featuring extra electrolytes to aid hydration and 20mg of caffeine per serving. GU Energy Gel is a tasty carbohydrate and electrolyte formula that is absorbed quickly for sustained energy and increased performance on-the-go. The Salted Caramel flavor is a treat to taste buds. At $1.50 per serving, and a cute yeti on the package, it makes a fun addition to Christmas stockings.
Cold Weather Nutrition
Skratch Labs has the perfect drink mix to enjoy while exercising in the cold. It also makes a great recovery drink after cold weather training. There’s nothing like the taste of warm apple cider as a reward for a hard effort. Skratch Labs Apples and Cinnamon (Hot) Exercise Hydration Mix is delicious hot and can also be enjoyed cold. Give the gift of comfort and warmth for $20.
Road ID is the perfect gift for the cyclist, runner, triathlete or active person in your life. In the event of an accident, if your loved one can’t speak, Road ID will do the communicating. It’s not just a piece of gear; it’s peace of mind. (A gift for you both, really!) $20 for the Wrist ID Sport or the Ankle ID; $16 for the Wrist ID Slim (ideal size for kids or small wrists). Come into Higher Gear to pick up a coupon for free shipping on online orders.
For just $10 for one session, you’re making an introduction to a new way of training, training with power. CompuTraining is a smart alternative for staying fit during the winter months, helping with weight management during the “off season” and increasing one’s power-to-weight ratio, a key factor in cycling strength. If your cyclist hasn’t yet tried our boutique studio in Highland Park, the gift of one or two sessions could be just what they need to get in the door! Or, if your cyclists plans to use our studio regularly, for $20, you can cover their bike storage for a month.
A bento box is a bag that secures to the top tube of a bike, is a great place to stash items for access during a ride. A cell phone, camera or nutritionals are secured within easy reach. The clear plastic cover makes items easy to find while keeping them protected. For $15, a bento box makes a thoughtful and practical gift – which is why it keeps popping up on our list of favorites.
Another kind of bag, one that is ideal for a flat kit, is a seat bag. It’s a small bag that fits just under a saddle, attaching to the rails. It makes a great gift for a new cyclist or a cyclist who is just starting to venture out on their own. (It’s also the perfect hint for a buddy who never packs his own tube for group rides!) A small bag, at $15 for Banjo Brothers or $22 for Specialized Mini Wedgie, will hold flat kit essentials, like tire levers, a spare tube, a patch kit, a multi-tool and a CO2 cartridge and inflator.
No cyclist’s flat kit is complete without a multi-tool. Park Tool’s I-Beam Multi-tool from Park Tool is strong, compact and lightweight. It’s perfect for taking on the road or trail. It includes a eight hex wrenches, a star-shaped T25 for fittings of disc rotor bolts and a flat blade screwdriver. At $17, Park Tool’s I-Beam Multi-tool makes a great addition to any stocking.
CO2 Inflator and Cartridge
For those looking for a faster, easier and lightweight alternative to a pump for on-the-go flat fixes, a CO2 inflator offers a simple, reliable design that is low profile enough to fit in a flat kit bag or a jersey pocket. At $20, Planet Bike’s Red Zeppelin 2-pack makes a great gift. It includes an inflator, two 16g CO2 cartridges and an insulator sleeve. The inflator works directly with Presta and Schrader valves and is designed with an Airflation Control knob for reliability.
More great gifts for a new cyclist or one just learning to fix a flat on their own are items for their flat kit. These include Pedro’s tire levers ($5), back-up CO2 cartridges ($2.50) and spare tubes ($10).
SockGuy Higher Gear logo crew socks offer superior quality and high-tech comfort in a $10 sock. All SockGuy socks feature “stretch-to-fit” sizing and an exclusive “easy-fit” cuff for a perfect fit every time on any foot. These features create superior softness and comfort to help eliminate blisters and hot spots. They also feature a double stitched heel & toe for added strength and durability.
Hand and foot warmers come in handy for cyclists and for any winter sports enthusiast. (Think skiers, ice skaters, Bears fans and cx spectators.) These single use warmers fit inside of gloves, shoes or pockets to offer more than seven hours of heat to keep fingers (or toes) nice and toasty despite winter temps. For $2.50 per pair, these make great gifts before a ski trip or for when the wind starts whipping off the lake.
Need something to make a bigger impact on your cyclist? Check out our Holiday Gift Guide for staff recommendations for gifts for this holiday season.
If you’re still at a loss, a Higher Gear Gift Certificate always makes a nice (& useful) gift for the cyclist in your life. Higher Gear Gift Certificates are available in any amount. They fit easily in stockings or envelopes and they’re always the right color and size!