Whether meant to scale mountains or drift down street shoulders, the mounts and cycling gear at Summit Bicycles ease any odyssey atop two wheels. The extensive selection ranges from Trek bikes for road and mountain to hybrid and commuter bikes that trump getting to work by hiding overnight in a coworker's trunk. Well aware of the importance of finding the ideal frame, the store lends out high-end bikes for test runs via its demo program, allowing riders to get a feel for the saddle's political bent before taking it home to meet their parents. For current owners, Summit's technicians repair and tune up already-owned bikes and help browsers find accessories such as tire-patching kits, electronic heart-rate monitors, and apparel from Bontrager and Pearl Izumi.
Over the course of 50 years, the family that runs Helm of Sun Valley has amassed an inventory of top-shelf gear for wintry recreation and summertime watersports. Before stocking their shelves, the shop's athletic staffers take skis from Alpina, kiteboards from Cabrinha, and water skis from Connelly for test spins to appraise their performance. Standout sports gear snags a spot inside the store, along with apparel and accessories. Employees also rent out and tune up equipment. They specialize in fitting snowboard boots to feet, sometimes fashioning custom ZipFit liners by molding foam around arches. New kiteboard owners can master the sport by attending lessons, during which instructors teach basics on land before waving pupils onward into frothy crests.
When crafting custom-fit bicycles, the staff members at CyclePath focus on empty space. To select the perfect frame, wheels, and components for each customer, they observe how his or her body moves through the air in free motion, rather than relying on a database of average body types. The result is a cycle that is uniquely suited to the customer's body and movements. In addition to building custom cycles, they rent out high-end road and mountain bikes and sell pre-made bicycles, allowing patrons to immediately explore the Bay Area's scenic side streets. They keep cycles running smoothly with comprehensive tune-ups and help out bikers who have accidentally pedaled into a realistic-looking mural with a list of repairs.
As a surfer and cyclist, Marcel Mijares was drawn to the Pacific Coast many years ago; since then, he’s found little reason to leave. A native of Venezuela, Mijares spoke only Spanish when he made the move, but his love of the Bay Area fueled his drive to acquire the English language and graduate with honors from the Lincoln School of Business. Now, as the owner of High Trails Cyclery, Mijares combines his passion with his determination, sharing both with riders in the heart of Russian Hill. He leads a team of cycling experts equipped to repair cycles and perform tune-ups, overhauls, and bike fittings. Team members also share their expertise during maintenance classes, in which they teach students to care for their own cycles and understand the dangers of trying to change a bicycle's transmission fluid.
Housed inside of a graffiti-slathered old garage, Pedal Revolution is a non-profit bike shop. Inside, bicycle frames and wheels hang from the ceiling, while merchandise and decoration mix throughout the walls of the store. This is not only a terrific place for an alignment, but also a job training center for at-risk youth, where interns get hands-on training in how to run a small business, as well as the more mechanical aspects. Selection is on the smaller side, but the prices undercut nearly all the neighborhood’s power players. For the last fifteen or so years, Pedal Revolution has been keeping the Mission’s burgeoning cycling culture going, doing good all the while.
The friendly mechanics at Everybody Bikes nurture two-wheeled transports of all styles, helping urban commuters traverse city streets unencumbered by a car’s demands. Mechanics perform services such as tune-ups, repairs, and custom bicycle builds amid racks stocked with bikes by Kona, Fuji, and Linus. To educate their customers, they also lead private and group lessons on mechanics, safety, and riding techniques. The mechanics also maintain the shop’s blog, which keeps customers in the know about everything from what helmets to buy to when tricycle mating season starts.