Normally it’s the time of year when we start to slow down for the holidays, look forward to spending some time at home and begin to take stock of all the great things in our lives. We also usually let our minds drift and daydream about what awesome bike bauble we are hoping to find under the tree.
But this ain’t been no normal year. In some ways 2020 has been a pretty good kick in the teeth, or in mountain bike lingo, it’s been an epic Yard Sale. Everything we had planned spread out in front of us like one big giant “Friday Fail.”
Luckily for us, we have had the gift of the bicycle this year and have been able to pedal through some of our issues. In addition, with our extra time sitting at the computer instead of commuting or having contact with actual humans, we have been able to dial in both our bikes and our “Oh man, I want that!” list.
Here are just a few of the things we think everyone should be asking Santa for.
Evil Offering V2
Although they are calling this "The One (Offering) to Rule Them All", we are pretty sure the Kali Uno was the first time anyone used this marketing speak to try and sell you something. After all, the Kali Uno is The One Helmet to Rule Them All, but we digress.
This is a gift guide selection we are hoping our significant others read and take action because the new Evil Offering is indeed nothing short of awesome. Sort of tucked in between the Wreckoning and the Following, you might be thinking this is a compromise between a trail bike and an enduro bike and you might not be completely wrong. It is, however, the compromise we didn’t really know we were looking for.
The Offering is a 29er with a 77 degree head tube angle and 140mm of confidence inspiring rear suspension. We found it a capable partner on the climbs, a ferocious descender which gave us confidence to chuck at things we have previously hesitated on and it demanded we get in the game, be proactive in our line choices and toss it around like a Nerf ball on the playground.
The only problem is that the Evil Offering V2 may be harder to find then that Christmas when everyone was fighting over Tickle Me Elmo. -Jim
Lezyne Send It Caddy
If you’re going to send it, then what better companion could one want then the Send It Caddy? My Pivot Switchblade (which is lust worthy all by itself) holds two water bottles, so with this handy device I have been able to do 90% of my rides without having the added weight and complication of a hydration pack.
Plus, it is thoughtfully rubberized so it doesn’t damage my frame, holds my spare tube, tire levers, Co2 device and a spare Co2 canister. If I have any friends on our list who have been exceptionally nice I would totally recommend you send the Send It. -Jon
Lizard Skins Charger EVO grips
Lizard Skin has struck the perfect balance between super comfy and great grip with their single clamp lock-on Charger EVO grips. My hands used to hurt so bad. My first thought was to switch to a pillowy thick grip for comfort.
It took me a few years to realize how much more comfortable a thin grip is for me. I was riding Lizard Skins Bearclaw grips but I recently moved to the Charger EVO and my digits could not be any happier. They also make a green that perfectly matches my bike perfectly.
The Maxima SC1 is basically “new bike” in a can. This stuff is a silicone spray that keeps my whip looking totally fresh. The trick is to buy a can when you are about to sell your bike or your car or your motorhome. Spray it on. Wipe it off. Ta-da. Good as new (ish). It also works great on suspension stanchions and dropper posts.
Side Note: It smells like cotton candy from the county fair and who doesn't love cotton candy? -Jon
If you ever had your riding partner crash during a late night, brisk, bike lights on, winter ride, then had to wait for what seems like days for help to arrive, then you will immediately understand what a great investment these emergency blankets are.
They are compact, lightweight and surprisingly inexpensive.
This might be the ultimate way to earn a “thank you” beer, post-ride. -Eric
Shower Pass Rain Jacket
Nobody likes to ride in the rain. Well, nobody in their right mind likes to ride in the rain, but sometimes, you've just got no choice. You’re committed. Or you should be. And you have to push off into the elements.
If you are a ride it, rain or shine, type of person then you should know about Shower Pass. They make serious rainwear for serious people.
Their gear is designed to keep the rain out and still allow you to vent to help dissipate the heat and moisture you are building up on the inside.
Don’t skimp on wet weather gear.
Don’t go out into the elements without a Shower Pass. -Eric
Tern GSD S00 eCargo
I was looking to kill 24 birds with one stone. I wanted to meld my exercise with my need for transportation and my love of fresh air in my face. So, you can find me winging around Morgan Hill on my Tern eCargo bike with a six pack of beer in my front rack, groceries strapped here, there and everywhere and a giant grin on my face.
This two-wheeled wonder has been the excuse killer. I now don’t have a single reason why I can’t get on my bike, get my errands done and get my heartrate up.
Whether I’m in the mood for Eco, Tour, Sport or full on Turbo, I have all the power I need.
I just go.
For that just little bit more comfort I’m running the Kinekt 2.1 Aluminum XL2 seat post. I recommend it is the perfect holiday gift for your backside. -Jason
One Up Components Aluminum Pedals
The pedals on my Pivot Mach 5.5 bike were starting to disintegrate right under my feet. Time was of the essence, so I swung into my local IBD (Independent Bike Shops rule) and perused their collection.
It turned out, I only had eyes for the One Up platforms. They were spacious and have absolutely huge inside bearings. The pedals have additional bearings on the outside and they might not be the lightest platform on the market, but when it comes to durability, and pin-perfect confidence, they are winners.
The One Up pedals are where form meets function for your feets. -Jason
Will Bike for Beers shirt
And, of course, yes.
Enough said. -Nicole
I love the Pivot Vault. More importantly, I love riding the Vault and to be more specific, I love where the Pivot Vault takes me, both physically and mentally. There is no where I don’t want to go and very few places I can’t go on the Vault.
This might seem silly, but one of my favorite things about my Pivot Vault is the Rogue Panda frame bag I had it fitted with. It’s like having the convenience of a cargo bike while still feeling like you are aboard a rocket ship. I can get in a couple hour long ride, pick up some Johnny’s Donuts, a carnitas burrito and get them home fuss free.
The SRAM Force Wide Range gearing makes any climb within reach and the Vaults ISO Flex seat post damper takes the sting out of teeth chattering terrain.
The line has officially blurred and the Vault is ready to make your road ride more fun and more comfortable, regardless of how you define “road.” -Jim
Velocio Concept Bibs
They’re a little like blue jeans. On the surface they all look the same, plain black, straps and a chamois. But once you pull on the Velocio Concept Bibs you realize not all bibs are created equal.
If you are going to be spending 5 plus hours of your Saturday turning the pedals with your private bits plastered to the saddle, then a proper fitting whip, well designed, properly fitting shoes and the right pair of bibs is key to maximizing comfort.
The Velocio Concept Bib Shorts are the perfect partner for all day efforts in the saddle. In concept and in execution (see what we did there) there is nothing not to like about these bibs. They are beautifully made, the materials and execution are impeccable, and we appreciate how Velocio goes about doing their business. They are a company we can get our behind, behind. (More cleverness).
I love them and you will too. -Jim