The 50 Best Bike Shops in America 2015 from America's 50 Best Bike Shops 2015
America's 50 Best Bike Shops 2015
The 50 Best Bike Shops in America 2015
Once again, we’re honoring the shops that have helped us reach our riding potential and kept us cycling to our heart’s content. For our third annual ranking, we added 32 bike shops from 7 different states to our existing list of 95 shops and then we asked you to tell us which shops deserve a top 50 spot.
The response was impassioned—2,525 voters selected their top picks and more than 1,000 of our readers left comments in support of their local shop. From those votes we compiled our ranking of the best bike shops in America.
Whether you’re a regular fixture at the counter of your local shop or you only stop in once in a while, everyone has a favorite place. See if your local shop made this year’s list and find out who made it to number one.
#50 Parvilla Cycle & Multisport—Edgewater, Md.
Parvilla Cycle & Multisport
Not only was this bike shop a contender for our top 50 list, but it’s also currently nominated as one of the best pro road shops as part of the Interbike Awards. Clearly Parvilla has a loyal following and it’s not hard to see why. The Maryland-based shop is stocked with equipment and accessories ready to cater to a bike-owner’s every need and the team here builds custom bikes, provides expert fittings and even hosts a wide range of training classes and clinics.
#49 Hub Bicycle Co.—Cambridge, Mass.
Hub Bicycle Co.
This shop is well-known for expert repairs, top-notch service and community involvement (think monthly classes and an epic cycling club called Team Monster Truck)—a few of the key factors that the best bike shops share. One element that’s a little less common? Hub Bicycle Co. is “woman-owned,” with an emphasis on supporting women in cycling. The shop caters to all bike-lovers and advocates for safer streets and trail access, but there aren’t too many shops out there that give a special shout-out to the ladies.
#48 Goodale’s—Concord, N.H.
Goodale's Bike Shop
This New Hampshire-based bike shop stocks every essential. From helmets and tires to shoes and even car racks, if you need it, they probably have it. Plus, not only does Goodale’s have an expert service department that will cater to everything from small adjustments to major maintenance, but the well-loved shop also provides fittings, rentals and even hosts maintenance and fitness training classes.
#47 Wheel and Sprocket—Hales Corners, Wis.
Wheel and Sprocket
This shop, which opened its doors in 1973, is the beginning of a legacy. Today there are six other locations, but it all began with the knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff at Hales Corners. Their expertise and top-notch workmanship have made them a favorite of locals and put them in the top 50 bike shops in America.
#46 Speedway Cycles—Anchorage, Alaska
The staff at Speedway is not only dedicated to providing their customers with quality gear and a positive experience, but many team members are part of the local cycling community, which means they walk the walk and talk the talk when it comes to bikes and the cycling lifestyle. “If there is a human-powered two wheel race in the Anchorage area chances are there is an orange Speedway kit in the mix,” the shop’s website reads.
#45 Alpha Bikes—Alpharetta, Ga.
Fans of Alpha Bikes flock to the shop for their great staff, all of whom share in-depth knowledge about all things bike. The team lives to bike and that’s apparent in their expertise. One cyclist put it simply, “They do great work and are amazing ambassadors for sharing the love of cycling!”
#44 Sunnyside Bicycles—Fresno, Calif.
The folks at Sunnyside know what it means to be a part of the cycling community. Our survey respondents repeatedly praised this bike shop’s staff for its “teamwork vibe” and overall great customer support. “Sunnyside Bicycles have done a wonderful job of helping my wife and me (in our 60's) get back into biking after 30+ years,” one reader wrote. “They were very patient and encouraging, and let us try a few bikes (and rode with us) over several visits, until we were comfortable buying two road bikes. We still enjoy going on group rides with them, especially the breakfast ride. We have met many new friends through those rides.” Another reader said the staff here “treats you like family.” “They are never intimidating and will go out of their way to make sure you have someone to ride with,” they added.
#43 Shenandoah Bicycle Company—Harrisonburg, Va.
Shenandoah Bicycle Company
This Virginia shop is well-loved for its staff, top-notch gear and full calendar of events—they have something going on practically every day of the week. With rides for every skill level and type of rider (from road to mountain and beyond), no bike-lover is left out. When the staff isn’t on a group ride or working on quick and reliable repairs, you might find them cleaning up local trails.
#42 Ride Studio Café—Lexington, Mass.
Ride Studio Café
A cycle shop and café all in one, Ride Studio prides itself on offering customers friendly, professional and convenient service, and of course, great coffee, too. What sets this shop apart from others in the area, though, is its commitment to the Lexington cycling community. One reader wrote in to praise Ride Studio for “great group rides, which help support a wonderful local cycling community.”
#41 R&A Cycles—Brooklyn, N.Y.
This shop set in Park Slope scored points with readers for having “everything you could ever need” and turning around repairs quickly. The fully stocked shop is huge and houses some of the most incredible high-end bikes you’ll find anywhere.
#40 The Hub Bike Co-Op—Minneapolis, Minn.
The Hub Bike Co-Op
“All types of bikes for all types of people.” That’s The Hub’s motto and based on our readers’ votes this shop has certainly not failed to deliver what it’s promised. Not only is The Hub the only cooperatively owned bike shop in Minneapolis, but they carry an extensive stock of gear and parts—including women-specific gear—ready to meet every customer’s need. Not to mention, the expert staff here provides professional bike fittings and routine repair services plus maintenance classes that teach customers about everything from how to fix a flat to completing a full tune-up.
#38 (Tie) Vecchio's Bicicletteria—Boulder, Colo.
Vecchio’s Bicicletteria is not your ordinary shop. The expert staff takes pride in supplying the finest parts, building bikes in-house and fitting each bike to the rider in a way that can only be described as near perfection. All bikes are built-to-order, with custom fittings and parts ordered “a la carte.” When it all arrives, they hand-build the bike in their shop (and throw in hand-built wheels) and the end result, according to our survey, is some very happy customers.
#38 (Tie) Lee’s Cyclery—Fort Collins, Colo.
Lee’s ranked at number 25 on our list last year, but just because it fell a few spots this time around doesn’t mean our readers didn’t write in to let us know they still wanted to see this classic, Colorado-based bike shop applauded for its commitment to excellence. Founded in 1963, Lee’s has been providing local riders with the best service and equipment for 52 years and now has three successful shops in the Fort Collins area.
#37 Solon Bicycle—Solon, Ohio
“Solon Bicycle has the best attitude of any shop I have ever been to. Quite possibly the friendliest bike shop in America. I moved away years ago and miss this shop desperately,” said one commenter. There’s a lot to miss at this award-winning cycling haven, including the staff, who are a bunch of friendly “bike junkies” that really know their stuff.
#36 NYC Velo—New York, N.Y.
Located in New York City’s East Village, NYC Velo considers itself one of the most unique bike shops in all of Manhattan, and based on their votes, our readers definitely agree. In fact, so much so that, compared to last year’s ranking, they bumped this city cyclery up four spots. NYC Velo is known for serving as a central hub for some of the city’s most passionate cyclists and rave reviews repeatedly applaud the store for consistently keeping important parts in stock and easily assisting with last-minute, emergency bike repairs.
#35 Beacon Cycling—Northfield, N.J.
From the recently renovated showroom to the expert staff, Beacon Cycling is a big hit with readers. On top of reasonable prices, the Northfield location made the list for personal service. “Beacon Cycling in Northfield, NJ has the best customer service around,” said one reader. “They are true experts in their field and I always leave with a smile.”
#34 East Burke Sports—East Burke, Vt.
East Burke Sports
This popular Vermont shop is dedicated to helping everyone from first-time cyclists to the most expert riders. “Our staff is trained to get you going and keep you informed,” the East Burke website reads. And not only is this shop’s staff equipped with expert bike knowledge, but they’re also credited with having helped cultivate the area’s Kingdom Trails, which is widely regarded as one of the most popular cycling spots in all of New England.
#33 River City Bicycles—Portland, Ore.
River City Bicycles
Based in Portland, River City Bicycles goes above and beyond in educating cyclists. Free weekly bike maintenance classes, weekend group rides and a passionate staff have earned this shop a stellar reputation. “River City has become a destination for many cyclists whether visiting for the latest and greatest gear or just to pay homage to arguably the best cyclist ever at the Eddy Merckx shrine,” wrote one voter.
#32 Wheat Ridge Cyclery—Wheat Ridge, Colo.
Wheat Ridge Cyclery
The passion and expertise behind this beloved and successful bike shop stems from a family affair. Eugene Kiefel bought the store in 1973 and with the help of his wife and three children eventually built Wheat Ridge into somewhat of a cycling empire. What started as a modest 750-square-foot shop is now a thriving 30,000-square-foot facility that sells thousands of bikes each year all while maintaining the same quality and value Kiefel set out to provide when he began 42 years ago.
#31 One on One Bicycle Studio—Minneapolis, Minn.
The team at One on One Bicycle Studio prides themselves on being able to build, fix and adjust just about anything on a bike. But when it’s time to “put bikes out of their misery,” they also have an epic junkyard where other cyclists can come find parts (just be sure to read the rules). The bike mechanics specialize in single-speeds and fixed gear repairs, but are able (and open) to working on anything. Pair top-notch repairs and reasonable prices with a great shop and excellent coffee and you can’t lose.
#30 Monkey Wrench Cycles — Lincoln, Neb.
Monkey Wrench Cycles
What sets this Nebraska-based bike shop apart from its peers? According to one reader, its Monkey Wrench’s extensive collection of vintage mountain bikes. But that’s not all. “Monkey Wrench has an extremely knowledgeable staff and great customer service,” this respondent said. In even simpler terms, they said this shop is “rad.”
#28 (Tie) Bicycle Habitat—New York, N.Y.
Described as a “friendly and encouraging bike shop” by one survey respondent, Bicycle Habitat might be located in a big city, but it definitely doesn’t give off an intimidating vibe. Ranking at number 41 on our list last year, our readers made it clear they wanted to see this resourceful shop placed in a higher spot this time around. Why? One reader explains it in plain and simple terms: “Bicycle Habitat is and has always been all about getting people on bikes that they love.”
#28 (Tie) Old Spokes Home—Burlington, Vt.
Old Spokes Home
This cleverly-named, no-frills shop in Burlington has always been about the rider’s needs above profit and now they’re making it official. “Old Spokes Home was recently bought by Bike Recycle Vermont, a non-profit shop that runs programs for underprivileged youth and adults and uses the bike as a way to expand mobility, provide job training, and break down social barriers,” said one reader. “[It’s] still the best bike shop around—super down to Earth and professional staff, still selling used, new, and unique vintage bikes, still with a bicycle museum upstairs, and still the go-to shop for people in our area who know that bicycle's aren't just means to an end...people who know that bicycles are magic—but now the profits from Old Spokes Home support amazing social programs that help less privileged people access bikes for transportation.”
#27 Velo Cult—Portland, Ore.
Velo Cult is much more than just another run-of-the-mill bike shop, as our readers pointed out, it’s a hub in the midst of a bike-centric city. The shop with an expert staff and awesome new gear is also the epicenter for all things bike in Portland. “Velo Cult is a great combination of bike shop, coffee shop, bar, and event center,” one reader pointed out. “Instead of a run-of-the-mill shop it has created a place for bike culture to live.”
#26 McCully Bicycle—Honolulu, Hawaii
Two factors that undoubtedly make for a top-notch bike shop: affordable products and a knowledgeable and friendly staff. Time and time again our readers praise this shop for consistently demonstrating these two characteristics, which is why McCully continues to rank on our list of the best bikes year after year (jumping up 16 spots from its rank last year). Once again, this time around survey respondents chimed in to let us know that McCully deserves to be applauded for its great prices and excellent service.
#25 Poison Spider Bicycles—Moab, Utah
Poison Spider Bicycles
With a reputation reaching way beyond Moab, Poison Spider Bicycles is the go-to shop for gear, advice and Thaw, an annual event to kick off the biking season. “I don't even live in Moab and I know about this fabulous shop,” said one survey respondent, while another visited while on a trip and said the shop just felt like home.
#24 Bicycle Pedaler—Wichita, Kan.
Consistently rated as a top U.S Bike shop by the National Bicycle Dealers Association, this popular Midwest cyclery is dedicated to a simple but noble mission: “making the best bicycles available to everyone.” With more than 30 years of experience selling bikes and supporting the cycling community in Kansas, the staff at Bicycle Pedaler is dedicated to meeting the needs of every type of rider with any kind of budget.
#23 Mellow Johnny's—Austin, Texas
Set in the center of downtown Austin, this bike shop is about as far from an ordinary storefront as you can get. The building houses an in-store café and locker rooms complete with showers and secure storage for commuters, making it feel like more of a cycling clubhouse and less of a retail operation. Mellow Johnny’s is in the midst of their first expansion and their new location at the trailhead of Trinity Trails in Fort Worth will provide easy access to some of the best trails in the state.
#22 Bikes and Life—Johns Creek, Ga.
Bikes and Life
Bikes and Life (formerly known as The Bicycle Wheel), scored major points for a passionate staff that puts riders of all skill levels at ease. “I have been to many of the local bikes shops, and no shop made me feel welcome like the staff at Bikes and Life,” wrote one cyclist. “I have been fitted on my bike two times previously, Bill took time to accurately fit me and now I have the most comfortable fit on my bike in three years.”
#21 Paradise Garage—Columbus, Ohio
Paradise Garage Bicycles
In just two short years this popular shop went from a small storefront servicing commuter and city bikes exclusively, to a larger facility that now caters to more customers with an expanded service area, a wider range of products and even space for hosting community events. One survey respondent specifically applauded Paradise Garage for its “hip, hometown feel.”
#20 Blue Ridge Cyclery—Charlottesville, Va.
Blue Ridge Cyclery
In the past, our readers have praised Blue Ridge for its top-notch customer service, unparalleled selection of quality products, friendly, knowledgeable staff and genuine enthusiasm for anything involving bikes. This year is no different: thanks to its consistently helpful staff and unrivaled expertise, once again, this Virginia-based shop shot easily to the top end of our list.
#19 Absolute Bikes—Salida, Colo.
No job is too big or too small for the expert bike mechanics on staff at Absolute Bikes and if you’re looking for the perfect fit, owner Shawn Gillis is one of the best fitters in the West—this shop has everything you need. One of the very best perks, though, lies just outside the shop's doors. The Salida shop is just minutes from some of the best trails in Colorado. Rent some gear, hit the trails and enjoy your day knowing that the team at Absolute Bikes will be there for any emergency repairs.
#18 Belmont Wheelworks—Belmont, Mass.
It’s clear why our readers voted Belmont to the top of our list: the store is stocked with a great inventory and has a truly welcoming feel. One reader said it’s the best bike shop they’ve ever been to. “[Wheelworks] has a big inventory and small feel,” they wrote. The store was applauded for their no-commission sales, wide range of products and expertly equipped mechanics. “Belmont Wheelworks is the best shop in the country. And it does it with New England style: understated elegance and grit,” they added.
#17 Big Poppi Bicycle Company—Manhattan, Kan.
Big Poppi Bicycle Company
This small town bike shop is all about keeping customers happy by providing “the best cycling experience possible” and building a bike community that “makes other towns jealous.” According to our survey, Big Poppi has succeeded in both, proving its prominence as a well-loved Kansas bike shop that not only offers a superior stock of top-notch services and equipment but also old-fashioned customer service that easily beats what any big box store could ever deliver.
#16 Over the Edge Sports—Fruita, Colo.
Over the Edge Sports
Given this popular shop’s owners, George Gatseos and 'Rad' Ross Schnell, are both avid mountain bikers themselves, it only makes sense that Over the Edge is located in one of the world’s most prominent biking destinations. The team at its Fruita location (the brand has two other locations in the U.S. and one in Australia) is constantly commended for providing valuable trail information to both locals and visitors and it’s clear that each member lives and breathes biking 24/7. One of readers even wrote in to commend Over the Edge for its great, knowledgeable and helpful staff.
#15 Free-Flite Bicycles—Marietta, Ga.
“Free-Flite has been in Marietta, Georgia since 1978. Lots of riders that got their first bikes from Free-Flite are now buying bikes for their kids there,” said one commenter, of the top local shop in the area. In addition to a history of impeccable customer service and extensive knowledge, Free-Flite is also well-known for their involvement in the local cycling community. “You will always see the Free-Flite van and some of their staff at the trailhead or local cycling events. The owner has made huge contributions to the local cycling infrastructure.”
#14 Las Vegas Cyclery—Las Vegas, Nev.
Las Vegas Cyclery
Founded by newlyweds Jared and Heather Fisher in 1992, thanks to the couple’s passion and hard work, this bike shop quickly grew from a home-grown rental service to a full-blown bike business. Now, the highly successful cyclery offers everything from essential equipment and accessories to triathlon gear and even biking and hiking day tours around the area. Based on the votes of our readers, it’s clear that LVC is an integral part of the Vegas cycling community.
#12 (Tie) Motion Makers Bicycle Shop—Asheville, N.C.
Motion Makers Bicycle Shop
When it comes to top-notch customer service and speedy repairs done the right way, Motion Makers Bicycle Shop is tough to beat. “Motion makers is staffed with, and owned by friendly experts who all bike and know their stuff,” said one commenter. “Great participants in community and local life. Dedicated to personal service and keeping everyone riding in style.”
#12 (Tie) Bicycle Michael's—New Orleans, La.
Set in the historic Faubourg Marigny neighborhood of New Orleans, Bicycle Michael’s has been a mainstay in the community for 30 years and they have a following of loyal customers who have been there since the beginning. One customer summed it up best, “Bicycle Michael’s is the center of bicycle culture in New Orleans. This bicycle shop is as much a cultural symbol as Jackson Square.”
#11 Angry Catfish—Minneapolis, Minn.
Angry Catfish is Part bike shop and part café, and our readers love it for its intelligent staff made up of a close-knit group of skilled bike enthusiasts who are ready and willing to tackle any bike debacle you might throw their way. The shop was also praised for its stylish vibes, high-end products and of course, the café, which one reader said will brew up the perfect Americano while you wait for a repair.
#10 Freeze Thaw Cycles—State College, Penn.
Freeze Thaw Cycles
Our survey respondents raved most about the stellar customer service experiences they had at Freeze Thaw. One wrote in to applaud the shop’s “awesome” demo program. “They take the time to fully fit you to a demo bike. Fitting isn't just getting the seat right. For my wife they swapped stems and made sure the suspension was dialed in,” they wrote. “This initial set-up sold her on the bike when we got home to demo it on our own trails. She loved it so much she called them on the way home and they allowed her to purchase the demo bike with the card they kept for the damage waiver. A few days later they sent us the manual and shock pump.” Another respondent put it in simpler terms: “[Freeze Thaw] has the most friendly service at any bike shop I’ve been to.”
#9 Fair Wheel Bikes—Tucson, Ariz.
Home to one of the best group rides in the country, some of the most incredible custom bikes and the rarest parts, this Arizona shop took last year’s top spot and remains in the top 10. Many voters gushed about the selection, knowledgeable staff and outstanding customer service.
#8 The Hub and Pisgah Tavern—Brevard, N.C.
The Hub and Pisgah Tavern
“I love The Hub & Pisgah Tavern because they have friendly, knowledgeable staff, a great selection of bikes and gear, and they also serve delicious craft beer,” one survey respondent said of this bike shop and brewery combo. “Their location at the entrance to Pisgah Forest is perfect. They also lead group rides sometimes from their store.” Another reader wrote in to let us know that The Hub is also a great pre-mountain bike ride spot for picking up last minute gear. “[It’s also] a great post-ride spot to chill on the patio with a beer,” they added.
#7 Bike & Bean—Sedona, Ariz.
Bike & Bean
Described as “a home away from home,” this Sedona bike shop is a whole lot more than just a storefront. In addition to the bikes-and-espresso combination, Bike & Bean offers incredible group rides, proximity to some of the best trails in Arizona and, more recently, a place to crash overnight. The owners of the bike shop also own a resort located behind the bike shop that "caters to the adventurous crowd.”
#6 Island Triathlon & Bike—Honolulu, Hawaii
Island Triathlon & Bike
Many readers wrote in to let us know they love IT&B for its support of the Honolulu cycling community. “They are more than just a bike shop, they are part of the community. IT&B can be seen at every local cycling event whether it's a race, charity ride, or just-for-fun ride,” one survey respondent wrote. “They are advocates for safe cycling and include the entire community regardless of experience level. IT&B is a ‘no drop’ bike shop that just works hard to put more butts on seats.”
#5 The Pedal House—Laramie, Wyo.
The Pedal House
Located in a former saloon and brothel, this shop is rich in history, passionate riders and staff expertise. Several comments pointed to The Pedal House as an integral part of the community. “Pedal House provides not only a place to wrench on your stead, but also a home of friends that truly care about your cycling lifestyle. They provide world class service at an economical price and give customers the utmost respect. Pedal House is also part of the community by arranging Cruiser Rides, supporting local racing series, providing bicycle maintenance clinics and so much more. Pedal House is what Wyoming is all about.” If you’re having trouble finding the joint, keep an eye out for a colorful two-story mural of cyclist Thomas Stevens riding his high wheeler.
#4 CamRock Café & Sport—Cambridge, Wis.
CamRock Café & Sport
Garnering nearly 30 percent of the votes in our Midwest category, it’s quiet clear that CamRock deserves to rank at the top of our list, and fans of the shop were very vocal about why. “CamRock Café has it all,” one respondent wrote. “Great atmosphere, coffee shop, outside patio with live music, location near bike trails and mountain bike trails, good food and coffee, and Trek bike knowledge!” Another respondent praised CamRock for its great staff, awesome service and top-notch location with easy access to nearby trails. And another said, “CamRock Café and Sport has brought some much-needed revitalization and recognition to the small town of Cambridge. [It’s] helped renew interest in the CamRock County Parks, and it is great to see more and more cyclists on our mountain bike trails each season. “
#3 First Flight Bicycles—Statesville, N.C.
First Flight Bicycles
Another shop that’s made the top 10 for the third year in a row, First Flight Bicycles is a huge hit with customers for their knowledge, honesty and involvement in the community. From helping to establish a local trail system (the Itusi Trail system at Lake Norman State Park) to outfitting everyone from beginners to experts, the team at First Flight has made the shop one of the best in the country. “I won’t shop anywhere else,” said one commenter.
#2 Roswell Bikes—Roswell, Ga.
Our survey respondents were loud and clear on this one: not only does this Georgia-based bike shop have what one reader called “an unparalleled selection of bikes, gear and apparel,” but the staff at Roswell was continually lauded for their impeccable customer service and bike expertise. “Roswell sales people and mechanics are pros,” one respondent wrote. “They know their stuff and if they don't have it, (which is rare) they will get it for you. Great customer service and no one can match their inventory of the best bikes on the market.”
#1 Fit Werx—Waitsfield, Vt.
For the past three years, we’ve opened up our annual survey and asked our readers, “what’s the best bike shop in America?” Throughout those three surveys and rankings, some great shops have come and gone, some claimed a spot on the list year after year and the very best have managed to stay in the top 10. Fit Werx is one of only four bike shops that have retained a top spot on our list each year, a sure sign that they truly are the best in the country.
Year after year fans of Fit Werx gush about the custom builds, master fit and expert advice. This year the shop received more than 400 votes and dozens of positive comments. Still legendary with their customers, one voter sums up what makes the shop so great: “Absolutely the best shop I've been to anywhere in the world. Professional, personal, and the best selection.”