1. Travel

Mountain Biking Stocking Stuffers: 2012 Edition

By

Let’s be honest, as you get older, the items in your stocking lack that certain “wow” factor. But they don’t have to! Instead of settling for a stocking full of chapstick, lotion, deodorant and dental supplies (a sneak peek into my Christmas stockings circa 2001-2011), give the jolly bearded man a not-so-subtle hint that you’d like something different—exciting even—this this year. What could possibly be more exciting than deodorant you ask? A world full of palm-sized cycling-specific goodies, that’s what. Here’s a preview of what you shouldn't miss out on any longer.

1. Sock Guy SGX Socks

New from Sock Guy, the SGX line of socks is made specifically for elite athlete featuring Sock Guy’s “Elite Performance Formula.” What does that mean? It means these aren’t your typical socks. Find these in your stocking and you’ll be awarded a compression fit, performance ribbing, enhanced ventilation and a reduced friction profile. Additional features include Sock Guy’s signature Stretch-to-Fit sizing and reinforced toe and heel. Sizes S – XL. MSRP: $13

2. Leatherman’s Mako Ti

Named after one of the fastest species of sharks in the world, Leatherman’s Mako Ti bike tool is ideal for fixing your mountain bike misfortunes on the go. Exceptionally lightweight, you won’t even remember it’s in your hydration pack—until a breakdown requires you to use it. The Mako features the following nine trailside tools: 1/4" Hex Bit Driver, 8mm Box Wrench, 9mm Box Wrench, 10mm Box Wrench, 15mm Box Wrench, 16mm Box Wrench, 14-guage Spoke Wrench, 15-guage Spoke Wrench and Bottle Opener. As the name suggests, this compact tool is made of titanium and is TSA compliant. For frequent travelers who have had multi-tools confiscated at security (ahem), this is great news. The Mako comes with a 25-year warranty, measures 3.5 in/9.5 cm long and weighs a mere 1.4 oz /42 g. MSRP: $40

3. Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Thermal Arm Warmer

Keep those arms warm on chilly morning and evening runs with the Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Thermal Arm Warmer. P.R.O. Thermal Fleece with Minerale offers riders optimal warmth, dry time and odor absorbency. The upper arm scallop lines up perfectly with tops to provide full coverage through entire range of motion—from standing around at the trailhead to fully stretched out during your ride. Anatomic left and right arm-specific fit and elastic binding with silicone grippers ensure this arm warmer fits like a glove and stays in place! Reflective features make sure you’re seen during low light rides. Ideal when paired with your favorite short sleeve jersey. MSRP $50

4. Hydrapak Softflask

The ideal companion for any energy gel, the Hydrapak Softflask grants you easy access without the mess. The graspable, form-fitting flask is large enough to eliminate the need to carry multiple gel packets and does away with the sticky aftermath in your pockets. Unlike a hard flask, its flexible material allows you to squeeze out the entire contents and roll it up for easy stashing once it's empty. The bite valve works well with fluid, gel or a mixture of each. MSRP: 5 oz. flask: $6.99; 8 oz. flask: $7.99

5. Injinji Toesocks

I am prone to blisters. As in, every time I mountain bike, or hike, or walk (who’s kidding, I don’t run!) I must apply some sort of protective barrier. In the past, this has included everything from riding with two pairs of socks to strategic duct tape application. Enter Injinji toesocks. These five-toed socks offer restriction free movement while eliminating skin-on-skin friction. The Coolmax material sheds moisture to keep your feet dry and protected during your next mountain bike ride. Available in three different weights and various colors and cuts, Injinji toesocks also offer arch support and moisture management. Yes. Please. MSRP $10

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.