Gift a wheelie good time to the bike-lover in your life. Too punny? Sorry! But we have rounded up the advice of Alpkiteers and Alpkit staff to put together a list of gift ideas for the rider in your life.
Oops! This one is 2 gift ideas in 1. But Alpkiteer Pete McNeil recommends this combo for any cyclist. “Regardless of if you're into bikepacking or not…pretty much any ride can be made better by stopping to have a brew. There’s something about the ritual that makes you take in your surroundings, have a moment and can change the whole dynamic of a ride, making it that little bit more adventurous.”
Inspired by co-founder Kenny’s present from his partner a few years ago, give the gift of adventure with the Winter Gravel Series. We’ve got four events taking place in 2022 – just in time for a post-Christmas pootle on the local gravel.
Pete McNeil: “I find frame luggage invaluable on pretty much any ride and can fit most bikes. A really versatile bit of kit, whether just for getting kit off your back (as a MTB guide, I frequently use my framebag to stow tools, emergency kit & snacks) or to add in that extra thing you wouldn't normally take on a ride (i.e stove, tarp or brew flask) to add in an extra bit of adventure to your ride. For me, with many of my adventures right now being 'child-friendly', they often end up stowing a spare nappy, snacks and a change of clothes...”
Marketing Assistant Hayley used the Pulsar for the Coast to Coast. It was perfect! It fit neatly down to a small enough size that it wasn't bulky in her bar bag (and kept room for snacks). She wasn't hot and sticky, the zip is long enough to allow air flow without having to completely undress. And, even after the heaviest rain, it didn't feel heavy or stick to her skin like other waterproofs do.
Neil Cottam: “I love the Vaypers. These make excellent mountain biking jerseys. Super light and silky. I use them a lot for racing, they’ve kept me cool in Madeira and warm in Wales. They dry in the blink of an eye, keep odours at bay for days, and make me look cool in the bar (which is almost impossible). They’re also great for travelling because they pack down smaller than your average Jaffa.
Neil Cottam: “The best non-cycling cycling shorts I’ve ever owned. I use them for everything from enduro racing to long distance touring, you’ll rarely see me on a bike without them. The cut is really nice (excellent for knee pads), the fleecy waist band super comfortable, and, if like me you’re getting on a bit then the thigh pocket is perfect for stashing your reading glasses – the angle is perfect, and I never notice them until I need them. Mine have been absolutely hammered (on three continents) since 2017 and are showing no signs of giving up yet – bomb proof.”
For cyclists, Alpkiteer Sarah Leighton thinks some extra lumens to light the way are definitely appreciated! "A high powered, rechargeable light like the Phase 800, Ariel, or Hadron, would be an awesome winter companion for any road, gravel, or mtb rider. It’s a gift that extends far beyond their time on the bike… doubling up as a camp light for bike packing trips, a dog walking torch, or for guiding their way from the campsite to the pub!"
Alpkiteer Scott Swalling doesn't leave home without his Balance Jacket: “my absolute go to has to be the Balance jacket, I very rarely leave home without it, tough, breathable, practical and keeps the weather well and truly out. It is really comfortable and packs away well for a heavier weight jacket, that isn’t terribly heavy. I have two, so they must be good?”
Scott also thinks the Apollo Cycling Sunglasses are "top glasses for very little"! “The second and they became an instant hit. There are few glasses even at the £100+ mark, I have found that perform as well as the Apollo wrap arounds @ £20. I am constantly impressed by how well they breathe, have such excellent clear vision even in the peripheral vision, the weight or rather lack of and comfort. The look might not be for everyone, but I like it and they are super easy to clean and so far proving robust (they have take a few branch impacts).”
Circumnavigator of Britain by handbike and Alpkiteer Mel Nicholls thinks the Koala was made for self-supported world record bike adventures. “Two of these sac magiques have carried my life around the whole 7000km handcycle of the coast of Britain. They not only look very cool, but they’re tough like their cycling adventurers. And you’d be amazed just what you can pack in them.”