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Both guys and gals love their gear, and for good reason. The right clothing or accessory can make or break a January workout in the snow, or a scorching hike in the desert mountains. Feed their fire and keep them happy and healthy all year with these great gift ideas.

GIFTS FOR THE GREAT OUTDOORS by christy coughlin

Mizuno Wave Ascend 7  The Ascend is a well-balanced crossover shoe that takes you from road to trail without missing a step. It’s as comfortable on rock as it is on pavement, and the cool colors will make them an instant hit for your active guy or gal. $105, Road Runner Sports, 3232 Lake Ave., Wilmette,

North Face Impulse 1/4 Zip  Outdoor enthusiasts will love this lightweight, durable, wicking pullover with unrestricted arm turnover, thumb holes at the base of each sleeve, and a security pocket. $65, North Face, Evanston and Westfield Old Orchard,

 Electra Cruiser, Townie With Flat Foot Technology, this bike has an upright, relaxed riding position that lets you drop your feet flat on the ground without leaving the saddle. Commuting to the train, school, or the grocery never looked so good. $270, T.L. Fritts Sporting Goods, 560 Chestnut Street, Winnetka, 847-446-6694,


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D21 Hydro Flask The Hydro Flask keeps your soup hot for après ski or your water cold during a long trail ride with a larger opening for brewing tea, mixing sport drinks, or just to quench your thirst quickly. It fits in most cup holders and is BPA-Free. $26, Uncle Dan’s, Evanston and Highland Park,

 Columbia Snuggly Bunny Include your littlest one in outdoor winter adventures. Water and wind resistant, a diagonal zipper across the front stops makes on and off easy and fold-over cuffs allow for boots and mittens. $90, Uncle Dan’s, Evanston and Highland Park,

 REI Stoke 19 Pack in Spring Moss/Grey Mist This lightweight, bodyhugging pack is comfortable and functional with a unique back panel that keeps the pack off your sweaty back. Great daypack for hiking, biking, or a day in the city. $79, REI, 888 Willow Rd., Northbrook, 847-4801938,

11/6/12 6:22 PM

Make It Better December 2012: Better Gifts  

2012 Gift Guide, Brene Brown, Holiday Theatre & more!