The best gifts for mountain bike stage racers, training camp afficionados, vanlife-ing cyclists… Sounds like a pretty niche gift guide, doesn’t it? But honestly, that’s a lot of us these days. Basically, if you’re traveling to train somewhere, particularly if you’re driving there and will be doing car camping, hotel-ing it, or even if you just spend a lot of time at trailheads, this is the gear guide for you. We’re also prepping to head to Quebec Singletrack Experience next summer (yay! grab our promo code here!) so here’s the small stuff we’re excited about having and gifting to other racers.
Following a plan is a big reason for success. Many athletes have tried the ‘just ride’ method and had success but then find its hard to progress. Try out a plan to get reminders about important elements like off-days and intervals + all Consummate Athlete plans encourage walking, gear preparation and other ‘off-bike’ aspects that improve performance.
Get our 3 Month MTB Stage Racing Training Plan
For those remote rides where your cyclist really needs to get changed after their training, or for post race cleanups, a shower rocks. And we’ve said it before, but this awesome ($10) camp shower is the absolute best! You wouldn’t think a shower like this would get super hot, but it honestly gets quite warm as long as the sun shines on it, and it’s also great for cleaning off bikes, doing dishes, and of course, giving your dog a quick rinse before letting him jump into the car. Even if your stage race has showers, it’s nice to have your own water source at your car for quick rinses off or even just handwashing or tooth brushing without traipsing to the washroom. (Pair with this gallon weed sprayer for a full DIY bike + body wash for under $40!)
Merino Wool Beanie
These are just really, really nice to have because they’re super small and fit in anything. They’re great for stage races where it gets hot during the day, but evenings and early mornings can be quite chilly. Just a great little extra to stash in your bag.
Sleep Headphones and Mask
Stage races and nights in vans can get LOUD… I’m loving these for white noise or stories to snooze to can stream to it, and it serves as an eye mask! I love that this combines the headphones and mask for a really simple piece.
Get them here (and in Canada)
Topeak SmartGauge D2
I swear, if Peter could gift this to every cyclist he knows, he would. But as EVERYONE we’ve talked to says about stage racing, you really, really need a good smart gauge to dial your pressure in every single day. This is an awesome stocking stuffer or an easy-to-ship (read: tiny!) gift option for Christmas.
Take Off Your Chamois Sandals
You know *exactly* who this is for. (Pair them with a changing towel and possibly a pack of baby wipes for maximum trailside effect.)
Velocio Concept Merino Jersey
I didn’t expect to love this, to be honest. But the merino short sleeve ended up being one of the most comfortable jerseys I’ve ever worn—it stretches SO nicely, which makes it extremely appealing to me. It also wicks sweat nicely and doesn’t get super smelly after a long ride, so I’d say it’s a great choice for a stage race or a training camp or someone packing a vanlife capsule cycling wardrobe. ($199 before the current 25% off holiday sale discount—and available in mens and women’s sizes)
Travel Shoe Dryer
I’ll list this one over and over again because very few people will get it for themselves, but it’s a total trip/race saver. If you’re in a hotel frantically trying to dry shoes after pre-running a course, or back at an (electricity-having) campsite after a long day of hiking, it is SO nice to be able to ensure that your shoes are dry and ready the next day. And it can also run on your car’s cigarette lighter! This is perfect for runners, cyclists, hikers, literally ANY outdoors type, and the travel option takes up no space.
Get it here (and similar in Canada)
The Fenix 65 or 70R (depending on if you’re shopping in the US or Canada) is perfect for running and for getting around a campsite at night. I cannot believe how much easier it is to wander around camps at night with this versus a handheld flashlight (especially when walking DW!). Plus, it doesn’t kill your cell phone battery, unlike walking around in flashlight mode.
Get it here or Canada)
Two-Person Camp Couch
I love a comfy camp chair, but I REALLY love the idea of a camp couch for one or two racers. For two, it’s a nice way to snuggle up after a long day of riding (and enjoy perhaps an adult bevvy from the mug I list further down!). For one, it’s a way to totally chill and get your feet up after a long stage without sequestering yourself in your tent!
Get it here (and similar in Canada)
Rumpl The Original Puffy
To go with the nice folding couch, I also love a down quilt that can double as a bonus layer for your sleeping bag if temps drop, or get folded underneath you for a little bit more comfort if you’re sleeping in a tent. But it’s also just nice when it’s a bit chilly out to be able to cozy up in one of these on a couch, or at a bonfire!
Get it here (and in Canada)
Camping Wine Glasses + Coffee Mugs
I really love these tumblers because they’re multi-purpose for classier car camping/vanlife. I love that these are good for enjoying morning coffee in smaller mugs and the occasional glass of wine in something a little fancier than a water bottle. (I don’t love the clear plastic wine glasses for camping because they aren’t multi-purpose!)
Maars Bev Steel Stemless Wine Glass Tumbler (in matte black, of course)
A registration to the Quebec Singletrack Experience
Pricey, yes—but then again, a registration to this for you and your partner is an AMAZING way to spend 5 days playing in the best singletrack in Quebec. Get on early bird registration (and use our promo code) right here. (And no, this isn’t an ad or a sponsored thing—we just are really stoked about this race after hearing a ton about it from a bunch of clients and friends!)