‘Tis the gifting season once again, and what better way to help the adventure riders in our lives (heck yeah, that includes ourselves) feel the holiday joy than finding the perfect riding-themed gift? To help with ideas, we’ve curated a Santa’s list that hits all the marks, from keeping you connected to keeping you warm; helping with maintenance, improving safety and even upping your campsite cooking game.
REV’IT! Arid 9L H20 Backpack
When is gifting a cool, purpose-built backpack ever a bad idea. REV’IT! worked with Kriega to develop its Arid 9L H2O backpack. The design incorporates Kriega’s patented ‘Quadloc-Lite’ quick-release harness system, which transfers weight from the wearer’s shoulders to the chest when the bag is fully loaded. The Arid 9L backpack is roomy and expandable, yet low-profile when you want it to be. Construction is rugged ripstop nylon and the design includes a 4L roll-top main compartment that’s fully waterproof. The H20 designation lets you know the pack is ready to accept up to a 3.75L (1 gallon) Hydrapak water reservoir, although that item is sold separately. There’s an adjustable, removable waist belt and mesh backing for comfort. Color choices are Black or Black with Camo Grey.
Sea to Summit X-Pot Collapsible Kettle and Mug Set
When you’re packing for an adventure tour every centimeter of space counts, and if you’re going to be camping, your choice of gear is especially critical. When we tested this light and compact Sea to Summit X-Set 11, we found it an awesome addition to our camp kit. What you get is a collapsible kettle and two cups, allowing you to prepare hot beverages and freeze-dried meals on the trail.
The kettle has heat resistant, flexible silicone walls and a 6063-T6 aluminum base that does the work of converting heat. Glass-reinforced nylon handles are handy for burn-free pours. At first glance $64.95 might seem steep, but this ultralight cook set is less expensive and way more space-efficient than a JetBoil, though it will take longer for water to boil since you’ll be using a conventional backpacking stove. Sea to Summit also sells collapsible coffee drippers and cook pots to complement your ultralight adventure kitchen.
SnapJack XTrail Pro Portable Jack Stand
No center stand, no problem. Give the gift of convenience with a telescoping prop jack stand from SnapJack that provides enough strength and stability to support full size adventure bikes. The unit can be used to hike up the front or rear of your bike for on-the-fly tire repairs and maintenance, and best of all, the device weighs only 13oz and packs down to 10.5 inches. SnapJack’s XTrail prop stand comes with a claw-style base for stability on any surface, while the stainless steel cradle can hold onto the frame, swingarm or bash plate. Aircraft-grade aluminum tubes are height-adjustable, offering seven positions. The XTrail kit includes the telescoping prop stand, locking pin, claw base, cradle/slide-on protective tube, velcro strap, reusable zip tie and rubber non-slip pad.
Alpinestars Tech-Air 3 Airbag Vest
Anything that improves safety for motorcycle riders is a priceless gift, and Alpinestars Tech-Air 3 Airbag Vest does just that, potentially saving a wearer’s life in the event of a crash. The vest incorporates an autonomous active airbag system that is triggered in 50 milliseconds when a crash is detected via 6 integrated sensors (3 accelerometers, 3 gyroscopes or 1 triaxial gyroscope and 1 triaxial accelerometer). With airbags situated across the chest and back, it activates with a magnetic zip closure, while an LED display continuously indicates the airbag’s operational status. There’s also an app to confirm status and charge levels for the device, which boasts battery life of 40 hours with a recharge time of approximately 4 hours. The Tech-Air 3 Airbag vest is lightweight, re-packable, won’t restrict movement and can be worn under or over your motorcycle jacket. It’s intended to benefit city commuters, street riders and light off-road adventure riders.
Rabaconda ADV Tire Changer Kit
We’ve recommended the Rabaconda ADV Tire Changer kit before, and that’s because we can tell you firsthand it rocks. Any adventure rider who’s worked a tire iron will tell you changing tires by hand is an unwelcome chore. And if they’re having the dealer do it, it’s both a time suck and a pain in the wallet. So if you really want to treat your favorite rider (that includes yourself) to the ultimate luxury, this ADV and dual-sport tire changer kit is it. The Kit includes the 3-minute tire changer unit, PRO tire iron set, 2 x 17-inch tire spoon, 12-18mm spindle and 28mm adapter. The secret ingredient with these easy-to-stow kits is leverage, which saves both energy, and knuckles. If easier tire changes are your priority rather than speed and ensuring your wheels remain scratch free, you’ll want to investigate the new Rabaconda Street Bike Tire Changer, which sells for $589 and works on spoke wheels too.
Quad Lock Phone Holder
These days our smartphones have become such an extension of our minds and bodies that we’re used to having them with us all the time. Additionally, they’re extremely useful for GPS navigation on our bikes or keeping up with important notices and calls on the road. They’re also not cheap to replace. When choosing a phone mount, it’s important to keep your expensive phone safe from falling off and tumbling down the trail. The Quad Lock system is a trail proven option for mounting phones on ADV bikes, and you can opt for an additional vibration damper for even more protection. The mount can also be customized with a phone specific case (as opposed to using the universal stick-on mount), and you can choose a range of different bar mount options, including a RAM mount. The Quad Lock is sleeker and more secure than some of the larger X-style mounting systems around, and requires just one hand to lock and unlock the phone from the unit.
Dunlop TrailMax Mission Tires
Dunlop took its time developing its TrailMax Mission tires, investing heavily not only in R&D (It took 30 prototypes to get it right!), but also gathering input from real world riders. The result is a solid 50/50-rated tire that aims to do it all, rather than forcing riders to choose between off-road performance, street performance or longevity. At the same time this isn’t a one-size-fit-all tire. Special care was taken to tune the tires so they would perform up to Dunlop’s high standards on the full range of popular ADV bikes. We don’t take tire recommendations lightly, so you can read about how the TrailMax Missions performed for us during 4,300 miles of rigorous testing over sand, rocks, handpicked dirt, wet and dry twisties and even the dreaded interstate. The gift here is confidence, both in the performance of these tires on a variety of terrain, but also knowing they’ll last for many adventures to come.
TecMate Battery-Safe USB Charging Port
Personal electronics are ubiquitous in modern life, and many adventure riders seek to escape the buzz of information and interruption caused by constant connectivity by getting out on the trail. Yet out on the trail is where it’s most important to keep not only your phone, but devices like your gps and intercom headset charged up and ready for use. Meet The TecMate OptiMate, a smart USB charger that will keep your devices topped up while monitoring any lead-acid, AGM or lithium battery’s energy level, automatically curbing its draw ahead of a problematic battery drain. As a bonus, when your bike needs to sit in the garage for a bit, you can check the charge battery status at a glance. The device is weatherproof and plugs into any standard SAE battery tender cable. If you don’t already have an adaptor on your bike, TecMate sells an easy-to-install quick disconnect SAE battery harness for $9.99.
Oxford Heaterz Premium Adventure Heated HotGrips
Making sure a rider’s hands stay warm in cold weather is not just about comfort, it’s about safety, too. And while many new high-end adventure bikes come equipped with heated grips, the majority of us struggle with cold hands and ensuing numbness and would definitely benefit from the affordable application of Oxford’s universal-fit Heaterz Premium Adventure Heated HotGrips. These ergonomically engineered handlebar grips offer all the features of performance aftermarket grips, with the added benefit of “intelligent heat control” accessed via a “sealed for life” five-setting heat controller. The weatherproof design includes a battery saving mode, though the draw is under 4A with zero back drain current. The grips will fit all 22mm handlebars, with lengths that can be adjusted from 122mm to 132mm. Oxford advertises easy fitment and simple installation as well, assuring this item won’t turn into a gift horse.
Mosko Ectotherm Insulated Heated Jacket
Nothing beats heated under layers when it comes to winter riding comfort, making Mosko’s Ectotherm Insulated Heated jacket a gift that will keep giving on every cold season ride. And with low profile carbon fiber wiring and puffer-style insulation, it will also keep its wearer warm and comfortable off the bike in any season. The jacket connects to the bike via a 12v coax power plug (battery harness included), with heat being regulated by a three-way button. The shell features an articulated cut and is made from water repellent ripstop nylon, while the insulation is fluffy PrimaLoft Gold with Cross Core Technology. There are two zippered hand pockets and one on the chest, with the left hand pocket converting into a stuff sack for easy storage of the garment. Color choices this year are Woodland, or Curry. For more details check out our review of the Ectotherm jacket here.