7 Gifts for Mountain Bikers
Shopping for the mountain biker in your life—or maybe yourself? Cycling Experts share seven gifts sure to satisfy any cyclist.
Shopping for mountain bikers can be intimidating. With so many types of mountain biking and the unique gear that comes along with different styles, it’s hard to get it right and find the perfect gift. If you want to go above and beyond a gift card to a bike shop, Curated Cycling Experts put together a list of some of the best gifts sure to please any mountain biker.
1. Digital Tire Pressure Gauge
Tire pressure is key to a proper mountain bike setup, and it’s often overlooked. Having a tire at the wrong pressure can ruin a bike ride. Instead of checking tire pressure with the scientific “hand squeeze,” or connecting a floor pump to the tire, a digital pressure gauge, like the Blackburn Honest Digital Pressure Gauge, is a great gift that makes it easier to get an accurate measurement of your tire pressure before every ride.
Having a digital tire gauge is a life-changer. My pressure gauge lives in my truck to easily check tire pressure before every ride. This tool is indispensable and simplifies bike setup every time. - Isaac C.
2. A Floor Pump
Every mountain biker should own a floor pump, like the Crank Brothers Sapphire Floor Pump. Whether you ride cross country or downhill, the large volume tires of mountain bikes require a floor pump to be easily inflated. Without a floor pump, you either have to use a hand pump or go to a shop to have tires inflated. Nothing is worse than discovering a flat tire and not having the means to inflate it.
The floor pump is one of my most used shop tools. Making sure tires are pumped up on all bikes is crucial for avoiding flats and having a good riding experience. - Isaac C.
3. A New Helmet
This one can be tricky. Helmets have a rough life, and more often than not, they should be replaced after two to three years. Most mountain bikers aren’t going to replace their helmet that often and a new brain bucket can be a good gift idea. However, helmets are a very personal item and no two heads are alike. If you opt to buy the mountain biker in your life it's a good idea to have an idea of the style of helmet and what helmets fit their head well before you make that purchase. Check out the Smith Forefront 2 MIPS.
A good helmet is a no brainer. You only get one head and making sure it’s protected is one of the most important things to do when biking. - Thomas H.
4. Digital Shock Pump
Another important item for bike setup. If your mountain biker has any suspension on their bike, there’s a good chance it’s an air spring. Without a shock pump, like the Blackburn Honest Digital Shock Pump, it is impossible to properly tune this suspension. While a shop will get the suspension close to a good setting, to properly dial in suspension a rider needs the ability to tinker and adjust settings frequently. With a digital gauge, it is possible to dial in the suspension to the exact PSI required.
Without a digital shock pump, my suspension never felt exactly right. With a digital shock pump, I could take detailed notes of my setup every ride and tune it until it felt just right. -Thomas H.
5. Bike Lock
If the biker in your life doesn’t already own one, a lock is a great gift. Mountain bikes are expensive and theft deterrent is important to keep a bike safe. While U-Locks are a solid option for security, a chain lock or cable lock, like the Abus Chain Lock, is more versatile and can be used to lock a bike in town or even attach a bike to a vehicle. Bike locks are an important accessory to own and a gift that any cyclist will use.
While not a fancy or flashy item, I use my chain lock all the time. Whether I’m commuting around town or grabbing tacos after a ride, my bike is always locked up. - Isaac C.
6. Tire Plugs
Most mountain bikers run tubeless tires (and if they don’t they should). This means that instead of an inner tube within a tire, mountain bike tires have a juice inside the tire called sealant. This has many advantages, one of those being that the sealant will plug small punctures and cuts in the tire. Sometimes these holes are too large for the sealant alone, which is where tire plugs and a patch kit, like the Lezyne Classic Tubeless Bicycle Tire Patch Kit, come into play. Simply stick one of these tire plugs into a hole and watch as the sealant now magically plugs the large hole. These plugs are a small item that is easy to fit into any pack or bike repair kit and are an indispensable tool on the trail.
I’ve been saved too many times by tire plugs. Pesky punctures that won’t seal properly are no longer an issue. Every biker should be carrying tire plugs on the trail. They take up no space and are much easier than throwing an inner tube into a tire full of sealant. - Jake P.
7. High Volume Pump
Another handy tool for trailside repairs. The Crank Brothers Klic HV Pump is optimized for high volume mountain bike tires, making a trailside tire fix take less time pumping and letting you get out on the trail faster. With the unique magnetic design, the hose disconnects from the pump body, allowing the pump to be slimmer in a pack and also protecting the valve stem from being broken from pumping. This pump is a great option for stashing inside a pack and forgetting about until a tire goes flat.
One of my favorite ‘forget about it until you need it’ tools. This pump lives in my backpack until I inevitably get a flat tire. The small compartment in the handle is also perfect for stashing spare master links. -Isaac C.