• NCCN Not So Secular Gift Guide

    by  • December 12, 2013 • review, tech

    A few ideas for your cycling shopping list this holiday season. Don’t use our links, support your LBS where ever that might be!

    mabe-1532-tour-app5-signed-2NCCN Jakroo Kit – we put together this kit with Jakroo, and did a review back in the summer. If you are team-less, which is totally the pro-way to go in 2014 , then this is how you let folks know what country you represent.

    Barfly  – I covered a bunch of pro race this year for CN and Velo and saw Barflys, or is it Barflies, everywhere. The Barfly 2.0 (road riders) and the Barfly 3.0 (CXers) were the mount of choice on most bikes in the pro peloton. This NorCal company is ripping it up!

    Betwixt – Betwixt is the product of another NorCal company which is gaining a lot of traction locally and nationally. It’s paraben free, and doesn’t cost an arm an a leg. Why would you go with any other cream? I tend to be chamois cream agnostic, but I like what Betwixt represents.

    Osmo – I’m an Osmo fanboy. I liked the stuff Stacy Sims produced when she was at Skratch Labs, and I like her Osmo formula even more now. The Pre-Load formula has been a total revelation for cyclocross season, and the hydration mix for women is another huge step forward on the nutrition front.  Their tag line – “Women are not small men” says it all.

    Picky Bar – I ran a bike camp for 8 year old girls last summer and needed some nutrition ideas.  I asked Stacy Sim’s for some engineered nutrition ideas and she suggested Picky Bars. It was a hit with my 8 year old crew, and nobody bonked. Even through it is engineered nutrition it’s focus on real ingredients was a bonus in my book.  I like the bars with chocolate chips.

    single_pilePure Clean Powder – Use discount code NORCAL to get 15% off. Jade Wilcoxson, who is one of the top 3-4 women cyclists in the country next to Guarnier, Stevens and Olds, is the power behind this beet extract concoction. Local track star Beth Newell swears by it after working with Jade at several track camps.  “I started my beet juice routine in January this year. I went from zero national titles to three. I think I’ll keep drinking it.” -Jade Wilcoxson, Optum Pro Cycling

    Blackburn Click Combo – When I am in need of small, practical gift I go for lights.  I like the Blackburn Click Combo since it is affordable, useful, and super portable between my commuter bikes and race bikes. I used these at Bike Camp too. It is easy to slap onto kids bikes for better daytime riding visibility.

    Cedar Cycling – I have still never tried one of their jerseys but it’s wool, made in California, and looks sweet.  Personally this is one of the coolest Made in America things going. They are pretty much sold out unless you are an XL or Small but get on the waiting list now for the next production run.  They have a women’s jersey now too.

    A Dog in a Hat: by Joe Parkin: I met Joe at a race this summer and so the book as been top of mind for a while. There are two bike racing books I think are worth reading. The first is The Ride by Tim Krabbe, and the second is A Dog in a Hat. Joe’s book is way more fun. This is an awesome gift for the literary cyclist.

    wtfjpg-300x300WTFKits Water bottles – This guy is crazy, but he’s put out some sweet looking bottles. In addition to the water bottles He’s selling a kit produced by Somerville Sports too. That might be worth checking out if you like the HiViz Lemond look.

    Buckler Embrocation – I suppose this is old news to everybody but, Buckler has East Bay roots which makes them a must if you are buying local. The East Bay is the new epicenter of cool cycling products so make sure to support your local NorCal entrepreneur with their winter warming salves. 

    Search and State – The search for the perfect jacket – is it at an end?
    Clothing gifts are hard. That said, it’s hard to imagine someone not appreciating the S1-J Riding Jacket as a gift. No bells and whistles – which is why I love it. Just a well made, well cut outer shell. I love the chunky zipper pull that’s easy to grab even with cold fingers and the material in the shoulders doesn’t  flap in your ears even when descending.

    Donkey Label – I met these guys at Jingle Cross and their aspirations to become the American Rapha captured my attention. Most of the skin care products are made in my new home state of Wisconsin. They have socks too but If i was going to buy socks then i’d head over to…

    The Athletic – WTFKits is wearing these and every time he takes a damn picture I go over to the site and almost buy a pair. The PDX Airport socks are at the top of my envy list. This is the gift for the cyclist that has everything. Nobody has airport socks right?

    Womens Cycling Association – If you like women’s cycling you gotta get on board with the WCA to see if it can make a dent.  They are fundraising and on a membership drive. Get yourself, spouse, or daughter a membership to this fledgling organization! 

    FUCI-Flasks-IMG_2139FUCI Flask – I don’t know how you get one but this is the Cabbage Patch kid item of the year. A FUCI Flask is everything NorCal Cycling is about. Profane, warming, makes you feel good, and infinitely useful if you are doing it right. Go wait in line now. I don’t know where that line might be because it is a closely guarded DFL secret, but if you wish hard enough, you Christmas wish just might come true


    *In addition to myself contributors for this list included Jon Burns, Matt Beebe, and Beth Newell.



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    Former NorCal resident now residing in Madison,Wisconsin. I race cross, but I'm named after a velodrome. Support your local bike shop, NorCal race promoters, and go learn to race on a track. Hellyer Velodrome - http://www.ridethetrack.com