San Francisco Cruising Gear

Tools for hill and wine country.

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There are many things San Francisco is known for-not the least of which are hills and wine. So, we've dug up the following travel essentials to help prepare you for your high altitude climbs and vineyard voyages.

San Francisco is a great city for walkers, but there's nothing wrong with a little help. Check out the SwissBike XO, $2,299 (www.swissbike.com). A full-size bike, it folds to a compact 26" x 28" x 12" in under thirty seconds without the use of tools. With 27 speeds and designed for use in the Alps, it can certainly handle Filbert Street.

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Of course, a great bike is only as good as the legs that pedal it and life aboard can leave some of us a little softer than is ideal. At least, that's the excuse we'd go with to justify keeping an on-board Vespa LX 150, $4,399 (www.vespausa.com). Its larger front wheel increases the stability and handling characteristics of the scooter and its 150cc engine cruises you around town at a top speed of 59 mph-which means you can take the back roads all the way to wine country.

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And if you're going to San Francisco, you are going to be surrounded by Wine Country! Mendocino, Napa, Sonoma, Carneros, Santa Cruz, and a handful of other regions near San Francisco have more wine for you to try than even the thirstiest amongst us could guzzle-er, I mean, smell, swirl, roll, and sip, of course. Going to San Francisco without a top-notch corkscrew would be downright irresponsible and since there's no point going halfway, spring for the Hermes Pocket Corkscrew in Leather, $445 (www.hermes.com). You might also want to pick up Mulholland's Endurance Two Bottle Wine Carrier, $275 (www.shopmulholland.com), so you can bring home some memories.

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