Continuing the theme of holiday gifts from the last column, I wanted to look at suggestions some local retailers have for cyclists, runners and skiers.
Ken Putnam, owner of Ken’s Bike Shop, said this year’s products are all about visibility — making cyclists more visible to motorists.
“The last color you see at night is green, and this is the brightest form of green.” Ken’s carries a full line of clothing and accessories in high-visibility green including jerseys ($60), windbreakers ($120), youth and adult helmets (both $40), leg warmers ($25), arm warmers ($20), insulated gloves ($25) and socks ($12).
Putnam said that while lights used to be used only at night, Bontrager Ion 450 RT headlight ($70) and Flare RT taillight ($80) are designed as daytime running lights with strobe functions and focused beams that are visible more than a mile.
Fleet Feet also has a whole section of safety gear made with runners in mind.
“Reflective materials only work when illuminated by a car’s headlights, so it’s best to be proactive by using blinking lights to alert motorists before their cars’ lights can hit the reflective material,“ said co-owner Emily Davis. For this she recommends the Amphipod Xinglet Strobe Plus ($44.50). The narrow vest combines reflective green and white material with three blinking LED lights on both the front and back. The store also has a jar of Nathan clip-on LED strobe lights ($10) at their checkout counter that make great for stocking stuffers. The lightweight, weather-resistant lights come in red, green or blue and emit both steady and blinking lights and easily clip on clothing or a dog collar.
As for clothes, Davis points to their full line of Tasc activewear made with bamboo fibers. Bamboo is eco-friendly and anti-microbial, which Davis said means it is odor-resistant. She said the material has a “buttery feel” and does not lose its shape.
When your run or workout is complete, look to the Magic and Torch massagers from Addaday to work out those knots in your muscles. The Magic ($95) uses two rotating nodules to knead the muscles and includes a warming feature. Place the Magic on a chair back to massage the back and neck or on an ottoman to work the leg and calf muscles. The handheld Torch ($79) can be directed wherever needed and features four interchangeable heads with both vibrating and massage features.
Over at Ski & Tennis Station, the staff pointed me to several items to keep you warm and dry this winter.
New from Patagonia are their men’s and women’s Retro Pile fleece outerwear that has the look of a sheep’s fleece but is 100-percent polyester, which dries faster than wool. The line includes a vest ($120), pullover jacket ($129), full-zip jacket ($140) and full-zip jacket with hood ($150).
A new item from The North Face is their Stretch Down jacket ($230) and vest ($180). Both products are lightweight, feature stretchy, water-resistant fabric and 700-fill down for mid-level warmth.
For the feet, they said one of their most popular winter boots are the Sorrel Cheyanne for men ($150) and Slimpack for women ($145). The duck boot design keeps feet dry when tromping through rain, slush and snow while the insulated lining keeps feet warm. Once you get inside, slip into a pair of UGG’s Ansley moccasins ($100 for both men and women). These leather slippers have soft shearling linings and rubber non-slip soles for durability.
One more popular item at the store is the Fjallraven Kanken 16L backpack ($80) and the Kanken Mini 7L ($70).
Lastly, if you didn’t pick up your sled before last weekend’s snowfall, the store carries U.S.-made Flexible Flyer 26-inch Flying Saucer ($15) and 48-inch Winter Lightning ($20) sleds in a variety of colors.