The Extra-Useful Bikepacking Gift Guide

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For better or for worse, the holiday festivities are almost upon us. As bikepacking obsessives, there’s probably a ton of gear we’d all love to receive… so we’ve compiled a list to be surreptitiously slipped in the direction of your partner, family or friends…

But we also know how easy it is to get caught up in the modern, commercial frenzy of this family festival. So everything we’ve picked is gear that we’re confident will stand the test of time. That will add real value to your journeys. And, given that winter festivities have long been rooted in helping survive the harsh months… gear that will tide you through the frosty times ahead.

We’ve also laid out our list to meets all kinds of price points – from stocking fillers to larger gifts, plus a few more luxurious treats (edible or otherwise) – that we know you’ll be happy to receive.

As a sidenote, we’ll be following up our Extra-Useful Bikepacking Gift Guide with advice on how best to repair and maintain the gear you already own. Because bikepacking isn’t just about shiny new gear. It’s about getting out there, come rain or shine. Even in the winter months…

Stocking Stuffers

Need a few small gifts to spread some cheer? Here’s some stocking fillers that won’t break the bank:

Orange Seal Endurance Tire Sealant

Orange Seal Endurance Sealant (4oz Bottle)

$10.99 / orangesealed.com

Who wants punctures! We’ve found Orange Seal’s tubeless sealant to be a reliable way to keep you rolling, wherever you’re riding. The new Endurance formula is designed to last longer, making it ideal for longer bikepacking trips.

Revelate Designs Straps

Revelate Washboard Straps

$9.00 / revelatedesigns.com

You can never have too many straps, right? Stash a set of Revelate’s Washboards in your framebag – we know you’ll need them at some point. Use them in all kinds of ways; with an Anything Cage, or by joining two to lash a pair of Crocs to your seat bag.

Montbell Handy Scoop and O.D. Roll

Montbell Handy Scoop and O.D. Roll

$13.95 / montbell.com

New year’s resolution: be a responsible bikepacker. There’s never any excuse not to carry this trowel, as it weighs a mere 1.4oz (40g). And be sure to follow LNT Principle #3.

Surly Merino Wool Socks

Surly merino wool socks

$15.00 / surlybikes.com

If someone insists on giving you socks… just make sure it’s some of these. Not only will they last the test of time, but these socks have a real sense of humor – not something we ever thought we’d ever say… Plus, whoever’s in your tent will thank us later.

tenacious tape

Tenacious tape

$4.95 / mcnett.com

We love this stuff for repairing gear – where it be tents, tarps, shells or pretty much any kind of fabric. Wrap a length of tenacious tape round your bicycle bump – it will always get you out of trouble in the backcountry.

Vargo Titanium Spork

Vargo Ti Spork

$11.95 / vargooutdoors.com

If you loose cutlery like we do, a spare ti spork never goes amiss. We can’t claim you’ll notice the different in your pack weight, but if you have to indulge a ti fetish, a spork is a great way of doing so.

Bikepacking Food Preparation - Good To-Go Meals

Good-to-Go Thai Curry (double serving)

$11.50 / goodto-go.com

Can’t make it to Thailand this holiday?! Treat yourself to delicious Thai curry for your christmas bikepack. It will be an exotic treat wherever you ride.

Picky Bars

Picky Bars

$8.99 / pickybars.com

And while we’re on the subject of food… Not sure what the fuss is about with fancy bars? Taste these! The holiday festivities are about enjoying fine cuisine, right?

Dr Bronner soap

Dr Bronner Soap

$3.20 / Dr Bronner

We’d never begrudge an extra bottle of Dr Bronner’s magic soap. Do the dishes, wash your face or brush your teeth with it – and it’s bio-degradable too.

Gaia App for Bikepacking

Gaia Topo Maps download

$20.00 / gaiagps.com

Need a GPS on a budget? Turn your smartphone into a navigational wizard. We can’t live without this Gaia, which allows us to download maps and navigate offline. Start planning next year’s adventures now.

Zefal 1L Bottle

Zefal Magnum Bottle

$8.65 / zefal.com

Perfect for thirsty rides. Looks like a normal waterbottle and fits in a standard cage, but Zefal’s Magnum holds a full liter (33oz).

Swift Industries Camp Mug

Hinterland Camp Mug

$20 / Swift Industries

As Swift proclaims: Not as light as titanium and colder than steel. Gram counting aside, we love the graphics of the new, limited edition, enamel-coated Hinterland Camp Mug.

Under $50

Have a little more cash to spend? Here’s 10 great gifts for under fifty bucks:

Ergon GS1, Bikepacking grips

Ergon GS1 Grips

$35.95 / ergon-bike.com

The GS1 may have been developed for marathon racing, but that doesn’t stop these grips from being super comfortable for long distance bikepacking. In fact, Logan and Gin are using them in Spain right now, and loving them.

Bedrock Bags Tapeats To-Go Bag

Bedrock Tapeats stem bag

$49.00 / bedrockbags.com

The Tapeats is one of our favourite stem bags. Perfect for packing a camera to record those xmas memories, it’s neat design makes it almost fully waterproof – ideal for the winter months.

Buckshot Wireless Speaker

Outdoor Tech Buckshot Handlebar Speaker

$39.95 / outdoortechnology.com

The buckshot is a lightweight, rugged, and water-resistant wireless speaker that straps to your handlebars. Perfect for a podcast on a long climb, or favourite tunes round a campfire.

Oracle Downtube Bag

Rogue Panda Oracle Downtube Bag

$40.00 / roguepanda.com

Squeezed for space? We love this nifty little down tube (or suspension fork) bag; it’s ideal for tools or a spare tube.

Oveja Negra Snack Pack Top Tube Bag

Oveja Negra Snack Pack (LG)

$50.00 / ovejanegrathreadworks.com

Neat, clean, affordable and – perhaps most importantly – in stock for that last minute shop! Oveja Negra’s Snack Pack will add style to your ride, and provide the perfect spot to stash your holiday snacks.

Lezyne Zecto Drive Pro Review

Lezyne Zecto Drive Rechargeable USB light

$50.00 / lezyne.com

Be safe at night. A great little light perfect for emergency situations – that includes front and rear LEDs. Read our review here.

Randi Jo winter cap

$32.00 / randijofab.com

Not only is Randi Jo’s winter cap lovingly made from wool, but it comes complete with ear flaps for when life gets chilly. We wear ours all the time.

Pump for Bikepacking, Lezyne Micro-drive

Lezyne Micro Floor Drive

$45.00 / lezyne.com

Floor pump efficiency in a super compact, bikepacking size. This is one durable pump, and it even works to pump a suspension fork.

bikepacking pisgah - Dirt Rag

Lightweight hip flask

$25.00 / stanley-pmi.com

Warm yourself up with a dram of whisky on your next winter bikepack.

Kleen Kanteen

Klean Canteen

$28.00 / kleankanteen.com-pmi.com

Or, enjoy a piping hot brew mid ride! This 16oz insulated thermos is perfect for keeping spirits high; best served with a local pastry…

$50-100

$100 dollars gets you some seriously nice gear. Here’s what we’d do with it…

Bikepacking Gloves, OR Versaliner

OR Versaliner gloves

$52.00 / outdoorresearch.com

Keep those digits toasty. These little fellas pack so small you’ll hardly know you’re carrying them – until you need them. One layer of warmth, and a second for inclement weather.

Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove - Bikepacking

Snow Peak Litemax Ti Stove

$60.00 / snowpeak.com

At less than 2 ounces (54 grams) and 3 inches long when folded (7.6 cm), the LiteMax stove is about the size of a small candy cane.

Sea To Summit Ultralight Sleeping Pad

Sea To Summit UL Mat

$99.95 / seatosummit.com

Time to move on from that old school foam mattress? The UL mat was one of our favourites in our recent mattress shootout… After all, everyone loves a good night’s sleep!

IMG_4695

Revelate Terrapin V2

$90.00 / revelatedesigns.com

Winter brings snow and rain… the Terrapin is capacious and importantly, completely waterproof. Revelate’s seat packs go from strength to strength. We know you won’t be disappointed with the V2.

ZPacks Dry Bags

ZPacks Cuben Dry Bags

$17-49 (buy several) / zpacks.com

You can’t have too many dry bags. And you might as well have the lightest and the best. We love these cuben dry bags and stuff sacks from minimal specialists ZPacks.

$100-200

Stepping it up a notch, here’s what we’re recommending if you have a couple of Benjamins to spend…

Surly Wool Long Sleeve Jersey

Surly Long Sleeve Wool Jersey

$140.00 / surlybikes.com

At bikepacking.com, we’re big fans of wool. Surly’s Long Sleeve Jersey may not be the lightest layer in your arsenal of apparel… but it may well end up being the one you end up wearing most.

NZO Sifters Review - Shorts

NZO Sifters

$119.00 / nzoactive.com

Buying shorts in the winter? Why not, they’ll last forever! Sifters may be designed for slaying single track, but they’re equally at home in the local taproom, or on a dirt odyssey in tropical climes.

Deity Bladerunner Pedals

Deity Bladerunner Pedals

$143.99 / deitycomponentsstore.com

With sealed micro bearings and a large 103mm x 100mm footprint, at only 11mm thick, Deity’s Bladerunner pedal is the one to beat.

Porcelain Rocket Mr. Fusion Dry Bag System

Porcelain Rocket Mr. Fusion V2

$185.00 / porcelainrocket.com

We’ve long been fans of Porcelain Rocket’s Mr. Fusion seatpack, and its anti-sway design. The latest incarnation of this seat system is built around the same support rack, with an all new, removable and waterproof bag.

Thermarest NeoAir Xtherm Sleeping Pad, Mattress for Bikepacking

Therm-a-rest NeoAir Xtherm

$199.95 / cascadedesigns.com

Braving the elements this winter? With an R-value of 5.7, this is the Therm-a-rest to keep you toasty warm through all 4 seasons.

Patagonia Merino Air Bottoms

Patagonia Merino Air Bottoms

$129.00 / patagonia.com

Ultralight and cozy, these Merino wool blend bottoms are sure to keep coldness at bay.

Porcelain Rocket Mini-Slinger

Porcelain Rocket Mini-Slinger

$140.00 / porcelainrocket.com

For the photography buff: A convenient, at-hand storage for a mirrorless (or micro 4/3) camera, mounted behind the handlebars.

$200-500

Okay, we’re talking serious moola here, so spend it wisely…

Montbell EX Light Down Anorak, ultralight packable down, bikepacking

Montbell Ex Light Anorak

$219.00 / montbell.com

The Montbell Anorak is a choice ultralight down jacket for a minimalist backcountry bikepacker.

Specialized Recon Mixed Terrain Shoe

Specialized Recon Mixed Shoes

$225.00 / specializedd.com

‘Where the pavement ends, adventure begins.’ A lightweight and stiff shoe with classic stylings, built for road and gravel exploration.

Shimano XM9 bikepacking shoe

Shimano XM9 Shoes

$250.00 / shimano-lifestylegear.com

Planning a serious bikepacking expedition? Look no further than Shimano’s XM9s, built with the adventurous bikepacker in mind…

Katabatic Alsec 22 Quilt

Katabatic Alsek 22°F Quilt

From $485.00 / katabaticgear.com

At under 650 grams, the Alsec 22 is lightweight, warm, and compact. This versatile quilt ensures a good night’s sleep well into the shoulder seasons. Combine it with layers, and you have a good winter quilt.

Big Agnes Slater UL 2+ Tent Review

Big Agnes Slater UL2+

From $389.95 / bigagnes.com

The Slater UL 2+ tent offers a spacious interior in a minimal package with one hidden perk, a bit of insulation for the cold nights of winter and early spring.

500+ (money is no object)

Looking for the ultimate gift for the bikepacker in your life?! Or you are just looking to treat yo’self… Here are a few bikes that have really impressed us this past year:

Surly Wednesday Fat Bike

Surly Wednesday

$1,500.00 / surlybikes.com

Christmas falls on a Friday, but a Wednesday will make any winter bikepacker happy. $1,500 buys you an incredibly capable rig, be it for trail, sand, snow, or expedition riding…

Salsa Deadwood Bikepacking - Bedrock Bags

Salsa Deadwood

$2,599.00 / salsacycles.com

With its flared drop bars, shapely carbon fork, and 29+ wheel package, the Deadwood is decidedly unique… and it delivers.

Jamis Dragonslayer 27.5+

Jamis Dragonslayer

$2,699.00 / jamisbikes.com

The Dragonslayer Combines big wheel roll-over-everything capability with the traction of 3” tires… all in a spritely, steel package. Gin’s testing one out now on the GR7 in Spain; she loves it, so stay tuned.

Marin Pine Mountain 2  27.5+

The Marin Pine Mountain 2

$2,749.00 / marinbikes.com

Marin’s take on an adventure specific 27.5+ bike. After a week on the trail in Spain, Logan is already saying good things…

Jones Plus Bikepacking

The Jones Plus

$3,785.00, depending on build / jonesbikes.com

The Plus is one of the most comfortable, capable and versatile bikes we’ve had the pleasure of riding. “Bike For Life” is a phrase that’s often bandied around. In this case it’s really true.

Tags

  • Lewy

    I am liking that Pine Mountain. Can’t wait for the test and comparison against the ECR.

  • http://www.bikepacking.com/ BIKEPACKING.com (Logan)

    It’s a good one! But, it’s a completely different bike from the ECR… the two would be hard to compare aside from the blatant differences (tire/wheel size, geometry, and intended riding style)…

  • mikeetheviking

    and a partridge in a pear tree……..

  • Lewy

    Oh ok. Thinking it may be a closer to my current 2012 Trek Superfly HT with a Krampus fork.

    http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b220/lewy110/Mobile%20Uploads/IMG_20151107_173443_zpskk02enul.jpg

  • Rob Grey

    i can vouch for all the stuff i’ve tried on this list. it’s a good list. you want all of it. you do. especially wool, wool anything.

    a drunken rant ensues…

    revelate straps,: voilé has been making bombproof straps for a while; i have all the sizes. and they’re orange. and they’re awesome.

    gaia GPS: the best app you’ll ever download. shows you trails that some local maps neglect.

    tenacious tape, the best! it’s been holding my shorts together for the last three months. they also have a reflective version.

    i hate sporks, but msr makes a ti spoon/tool that’s a perfect size for your mouth and it’s handle is a wrench for your whisperlite (which I rarely haul around in my bike, but when i do… *wink and finger guns*). and it weighs nothing.

    gsi’s glacier stainless cup/pot is a perfect size for a solo traveler. i can fit a lighter, a modified windscreen, a ground reflector, and my alcohol stove in it, and it’ll easily fit in any frame bag. and it’s cheap.

    dr. bronner’s is a staple in my house. they also make a solid bar version in many flavours(mint is the best).

    i wish i could afford another bike. all the ones on this list make me drool. especially the dragon slayer and the deadwood. and jones: that guy can rip! those forks look funny, but i’d love to try them before dismissing them.

    oh, and my favorite bag is the mountain hardware ultra lamina 32. super compressible, synthetic, so i can venture out in the pnw winter, and plenty warm for me. it has been cozy down to freezing, and i imagine even colder if i wear my puffy.

    my pad is a klymit ozone and it’s hit or miss as a side sleeper. it’s really freaking small, and the pillow is awesome, but the cut outs are tricky if you’re on rocky ground. if you’re a back sleeper, no worries, but as a side sleeping toss and turner i’ve had problems getting a decent rest on certain nights. i’m looking hard at that sea to summit pad..

    that is all.

  • Andrew Wade

    Nice well thought out list. I would like to add your recommendation for the Lezyne Power Cage for pairing with steel canteens like Klean Kanteen. That cage proved itself on my GDMBR tour, keeping a tight grasp on my canteen under the downtube. A great >$10 stocking stuffer idea.

    Also, I can’t wait for a review on the Dragonslayer and Pine Mountain! Both are on my radar for future purchases and a bikepacking.com review might help me decide. Cheers!

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