If you’re anything like us, there’s probably a good chance that you’re still looking for one or two gifts for some of the active people in your life.
So we asked our crew for some gift suggestions, and the answers ranged from beanies to bikes, and everything in between. First up, stocking stuffers:
This is my current favorite ski sock, and it’s the thinnest ski sock I’ve ever worn. (Actually, it’s just the thinnest sock I’ve ever worn.) If your ski boots fit correctly and aren’t too big, then a super thin sock is your friend. Even better, these have proven to be more durable than other “thin” socks I’ve used. Love them.
Voke Tabs ($7)
Some of my friends think I have a coffee problem. I think I just like things that are awesome, and that they should mind their own business. (I also like to pull out a stat that I vaguely remember maybe reading somewhere on the internet that heavy coffee consumption reduces the risk of Parkinson’s disease by like 35%. Then I tell my friends that if they were really my friend, they wouldn’t want me to get Parkinson’s…)
Anyway, there are some terrifying occasions when coffee is not near. In those instances, Voke Tabs are amazing. One thin-and-very-packable tin contains 7 voke tabs, and those 7 tabs + the tin container they come in weigh a total of 36 grams. It’s a very small, lightweight way to bring your caffeine with you.
The texture is rather chalky, and the initial taste is sweet – like a flavored Tums — which actually isn’t a criticism in my book. But if you initially think you’re getting something like a Flinstone vitamin, just give it a few seconds: you’ll start to notice a slightly bitter taste … the continues to progress into being an even more bitter taste. But if you’re serious about your
caffeine addiction love of caffeine, you’ll give these a chance, and I’ve come to quite like these. Voke says that each tab has “the caffeine equivalent of 1 premium cup of coffee,” and I’d say that seems about right. Bottom line: they work.
G-Form Pro-X Knee Pads ($69)
While they’re no replacement for a full-blown, heavy-duty knee pad, the Pro-X is far more comfortable to wear, and they’re not too much much hotter than a knee warmer. Protection doesn’t do you any good unless you’re willing to wear it, and the Pro-X Knee Pads are comfy enough that they work even for rides that involve a lot of pedaling.
Troy Lee Designs Air Glove $29 ($22 for youth version)
This glove has a minimalistic design that is great for feeling connected to the bike. I especially love the Airs because the youth version is the exact same as the adult’s, other than size. They are also very durable and my small hands have been rocking a Youth Large for over a year now.
WTB Volt Team Saddle ($249)
A good saddle that fits you well can make all the difference in the world on a long ride. And while it’s tough to internet shop for a saddle (trying options can be critical), the WTB Volt saddle is definitely one of the more popular and very good options out there.
Nature Conservancy Carbon Offsets ($15/metric ton of carbon)
At Blister, we love the outdoors and all it has to offer. But it’s no secret that when we drive to a trailhead, shuttle DH runs, or fly to another hemisphere to get to the goods, we end up indirectly harming the same natural world we enjoy. So the Nature Conservancy is offering gift cards that can help offset some CO2 on your loved one’s behalf. I first got one of these in my stocking a few winters back, and I was simultaneously touched and stoked to receive a gift that both encouraged the enjoyment of the outdoors and helped to protect it.
K’ul Chocolate ($24.99-$39.99)
K’ul Chocolate has dedicated itself to making gourmet dark chocolate that functions as a healthy energy food for endurance athletes. I recently got a box of their Endurance bars before a mountain bike road trip in Utah and practically lived off them for four straight days. Not only are they high in protein, each bar is packed with nearly 300 calories and is entirely vegan.
Because we all still need to go offline and read a damn book once in a while. And also, it’s that time of year when entire dark-before-dinner evenings are spent cloaked in a tent or a living room, warm and evocative prose makes for good company. Set in a fictional Columbian town, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967) follows the town and its central family through a fluid, subjective reality that can be read as a chronological narrative, an allegory for Latin American history, or both. This book is among the first examples of magical realism, and easily one of the 20th century’s best works of fiction.
Autolocking carabiners are fast, easy, and nearly foolproof compared to their screw-gate counterparts. Unlike the traditional twist-lock autolockers which use a spring that can ice up or break, the Magnetron uses two small magnetic buttons on each side of the gate for easy one-handed operation. At 56g (2oz), it’s also lighter than most other auto-lockers. The size, weight, and shape make it one of the most versatile lockers out there, and you’ll probably want more than one.
A good trucker hat is a staple for just about any outdoor activity, from a day on the river to a sunny hike to the crag, and Recaps show off your own personal style with unique, one-of-a-kind styles and prints. Each artistic design is a hand-carved woodblock printed on recycled materials. You can also advertise your own business, brewpub, climbing club, guide service, etc. with a custom Recap design.
Julia Van Raalte
Melanzana has been on my radar for the last few years. Based in Leadville, Colorado, they are a small company that prides themselves on small-scale, local production. Their Micro Grid Hoodie has been a staple in my wardrobe for years, but it was not until a recent move to Leadville that I invested in the Micro Grid Mini Skirt, too. Over the last few months, I can probably count the number of days I haven’t worn the skirt. It’s simple, cute, comes in fun colors, and fits perfectly over leggings or long underwear around town or while romping around the mountains.
Nothing tells that skier in your life that you care about them and want them to be happy like the gift of a Blister Membership or Blister Deep Dive subscription. The Blister Membership will give them access to a growing list of great deals, while the Blister Deep Dive subscription gives them access to all of Blister’s extremely in-depth product comparisons. Grab one for yourself, your dad, your state senator, your boyfriend or girlfriend, or your mail carrier, grocery store cashier, or local bartender—whichever one of those you like most. Spread the holiday cheer.