6 Best Bike Shops in Dallas (Or Nearby)

Most anyone who can ride on two wheels can tell you their favorite bike shop. In prepping and shopping for this weekend's big Bike MS: Sam's Club Round-Up Ride (aka, the MS 150), it seems I've heard raves about almost every one -- from tiny hipster outlets to big stores with enough flow to sponsor big rides. Some shops fully lived up to the hype, some were never open three times I tried to visit, and one had an employee (loose term) who actually yawned in my face and never stood up to show me to what I was asking for (apparently, pointing is very cycle-chic).

But there were more winners than non. More awesome and generous mechanics. More fanstastic customer service. And more chamois cream than I've wanted to know about. In alphabetical order ...

Bicycles Plus 7015 Snider Plaza #110, University Park, 214-363-2025 This is a no-pressure shop with a good supply of road, mountain, casual cruisers and everything in between. They also have the only pair of helmet-friendly sunglasses that don't make me look like an asshole, but I'm not to that level yet. The shop is set up a little oddly, so if you're just off a ride, the snacks are in the back. They support local group rides, and that's always a bonus. Also, really attractive employees. (There are multiple locations for Bicycles Plus, but this is the one I like best.)

Dallas Bike Works 4875 W. Lawther Drive, 214-343-2453 Located just off White Rock Lake -- like, literally -- this shop is a gem catering to those out on the path. Example: Last year we had a team member crash out on a training ride. He had no cash on him, but they picked him up, fixed his ride and let him return later to pay. SUCKERS! Kidding. Just last week, I called for a repair estimate and they gave me a "riding right now" versus a "can drop it off" ETA. Very helpful indeed, and it's nice to know you'll only be waiting if you aren't drenched in sweat and have a car ready outside. And it's a great place to browse when you're pissed off at your current bike.

Plano Cycling & Fitness 605 18th St, Plano, 972-423-4130 I'd never seen so much ball ... er, uh ... chamois cream. Then Rick, the shop owner who I'm convinced will remember my name next time because he called every other customer by theirs, recommended DZ Nuts because he'd just ridden 73 miles using it and was feeling great. I stopped guessing right then. My husband's gentlemen can let you know if the recommendation was solid after this weekend. Plano Cycling also has an impressive supply of apparel in all sizes (like, a FULL range of sizes). And the store offers a selection of bicycle fitting methods, including the Body Geometry Fit system out of the Boulder Center of Sports Medicine, which at this point in my training, I'm pretty sure might tell me I'm just broken. Still, it's a cool thing.

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