Gift ideas for the adventure seeker, birder or cyclist in your life

Clifton Gorge transforms into a true winter wonderland when temperatures drop low and snow fall is heavy. CONTRIBUTED
Clifton Gorge transforms into a true winter wonderland when temperatures drop low and snow fall is heavy. CONTRIBUTED

Local experts share their suggestions on what to buy for the outdoor enthusiast

The holidays are quickly approaching but there is still plenty of time to find that just-right gift for the outdoor enthusiasts on your shopping list.

What better way to pick the perfect present than by listening to local “experts.” And what better way to begin your shopping adventure than with the ABCs – gifts for Adventure seekers, Birders and Cyclists.

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* Adventure seekers

One-size-fits-all: Gift cards from local business like Great Miami Outfitters are the perfect present for adventure seekers of all sorts. From camping to climbing and paddling to apparel, the Centerville store has it all, not to mention classes and equipment rentals.

Live and Learn: Looking for a hiking themed stocking stuffer? Dayton Hikers founder and organizer Andy Niekamp, aka Captain Blue, has penned a book – “Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes: The First Solo Thru-Hike of Ohio’s 1,444 Mile Buckeye Trail.” The book, which details his 88-day adventure, is available on Amazon.

Pack up and go: Help fund a fun adventure by giving an Ohio State Park gift card. They are available in any dollar amount and can be used at state park campgrounds and lodges as well as for boat and bike rentals. Visit https://reserveohio.com for information.

Dayton Hikers founder's book "Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes" could make for a fun stocking stuffer
Dayton Hikers founder's book "Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes" could make for a fun stocking stuffer

* Birders

Ohio Backyard Birding members

Get a better look: Binoculars are a must-have for birders but vary greatly from clarity to cost. Learn what some of the attendees at the 2019 Audubon Convention liked and didn’t like in the Audubon Guide to Binoculars at www.audubon.org/gear/binocular-guide.

Creature comforts: Nothing beats a warm bath on a frigid winter day and birds seem to agree. A heated birdbath is a timely gift and provides a perfect place to observe lots of feathered friends. Feeders appear near the top of any birders wish list with options including pole feeders, window feeders, tube feeders, suet feeders and, even, squirrel-proof feeders. Wild Birds Unlimited carries a wide variety of feeders.

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Learning and birding: “Birds of Ohio Field Guide,” by Stan Tekiela gets high marks for its well-chosen color pictures, clear descriptions and size – small enough to keep by your window or in a glovebox or camera bag. “Birds of Ohio,” by James McCormac and Gregory Kennedy is also recommended reading. Beyond the Buckeye state, Kenn Kaufman’s “Field Guide to Birds of North America” is a helpful resource.

Birding all year: With more than 800 million eBird observations, close to 2,000 authors and information on 10,721 species, a world of knowledge is available to subscribers of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology Birds of the World research database. Subscribe by the month or year at https://birdsoftheworld.org/bow/home. An annual subscription to Bird Watcher’s Digest includes print issues as well as access to the BWD digital edition.

Fun and games: Add Wingspan to family game night. Download a birding app to help identify birds by sight or sound or pick up a birding journal or log book as a stocking stuffer.

Binoculars and guide books are popular gift ideas for birders CONTRIBUTED
Binoculars and guide books are popular gift ideas for birders CONTRIBUTED

* Cyclists

Major Taylor Cycling Club of Dayton

Gear up: Winter cycling might require an additional layer or two so a buff, cycling socks and full finger cycling gloves can make the ride more enjoyable. A helmet cover, long sleeve jersey or a pair of cycling tights will also protect against chilly temperatures.

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Tools of the trade: Park Tool has been a mainstay in bicycle maintenance for close to 60 years. From the economical essential tool kit for the casual cyclist to the advanced mechanic tool kit, there is something for every cyclist on your shopping list as well as helpful articles and resources online at www.parktool.com.

Shop local: Edge Cycling Technologies — which began in 2017 in a physical therapy clinic in Dayton — strives to provide a comfortable cycling experience. Their PhysioSaddle, made in the Miami Valley, does just that. For information, visit https://edge-cycling.com/. Not sure what to buy? A gift card for a locally-owned shop like Kettering Bike Shop or K&G Bike Center is a good option. Mike’s Indoor Bike Park also offers gift certificates and monthly passes for the special cyclist in your life.

Contact this contributing writer by emailing djuniewicz@gmail.com.

Chilly temperatures won't keep cyclists indoors with the right gear CONTRIBUTED
Chilly temperatures won't keep cyclists indoors with the right gear CONTRIBUTED

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