Archives For Gear

Lately there’s been a trend developing to use more natural products in outdoor clothing and I like it. Synthetics tend to get stiff and stinky on me about five minutes after wearing them. Here are some thoughts on a Merino Wool baselayer from Woolx.

I like this shirt a lot with the exception of the tag placement. It rubs my side a bit and I’m too scared to cut it off and leave something even worse.

The fit is good though the sleeves are a bit longer than I like. I’m normally between a small and medium and this small fits well.

Links

Woolx Merino Wool Lightweight Tshirt: http://goo.gl/rYWf0p

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Carry-on bag size limits seems to change monthly and when United Airlines updated their policy to include smaller bags, it sent me on a search for the perfect travel bag. Tom Bihn quickly answered that call with the Aeronaut 45.

I’m a frequent flyer on United and I hate checking bags. I can travel for weeks overseas with everything in a bag that fits under my seat. That’s my rule in fact, just in case all the overhead bins are full. Who has time to wait for a bag that never arrive at your destination in the carrousel?

Tom Bihn’s Aeronaut 45 is the exact size of United’s carry-on bag sizer (22″ x 14″ x 9″), but that wasn’t my only consideration.

Multiple options are built in to the bag to carry it wherever you like, including car camping around the north and Midwest like I did. Grab handles are included on each side, regular carry handles are attached to the bag and an optional shoulder strap should give you more than enough options. Oh wait, I haven’t mentioned the shoulder straps that zip into the back of the back, allowing you to inconspicuously convert it to a comfy backpack.

Don’t need a bag this large? Check out the Aeronaut 30 with all the same features in a smaller size.

I’m truly a fan of everything Tom Bihn has ever made, and visited their Seattle factory to see their manufacturing first hand. Everything they do is first class.

Links

Tom Bihn Brain Bag: http://goo.gl/NN6QxH

Tom Bihn Synapse 19: http://goo.gl/D7ukSG

Tom Bihn Aeronat 45: http://goo.gl/iSHGf5

More gear reviews: http://goo.gl/0x4zz

Do you love adventure travel but hate looking like a backpacker? Straps hanging everywhere and large hip belts don’t do anything to help you blend in to the crowd. Boreas solved this problem with their comfortable Sapa Trek.

While roll-a-board bags have revolutionized the travel industry, I’m not a fan of wheeling luggage through subways, down busy city streets, and they certainly don’t fit well on the back of a scooter. I did that in Thailand once and there’s a reason I haven’t repeated that.

At 55 liters (3,356 cubic inches) you’ll find room for everything you need for a two week trip or more. I fit all my gear plus two kid’s worth of clothes in this bag for a 10 day adventure in Korea.

Boreas includes a rain cover, though I left that at home along with the removable back panel to save weight and comply with United’s carry-on size limits.

Links

Boreas Sapa Trek Pack

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Climbing before work in the mornings is great; changing your clothes in the parking lot before work is not. The Deadpoint Shorts by Outdoor Research allow you to climb as hard as you like, brush them off, and head to the office (as long as it’s a casual one).

I love the fit of these shorts: plenty roomy and even though they’re made mostly from cotton, they have a nice stretch to get you through the toughest boulder problem.

In the video I talk about the sizing and find it right on, if not a little on the big side. These shorts will follow you anywhere and keep you looking good while doing it.

Links

Outdoor Research Deadpoint Shorts

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Whether you’re at the gym, in the country, or running on high mountainous trails, there are a few essentials that one must have to endure a successful and comfortable run.  I’m more of a jogger and as I’m living in Minnesota right now, I enjoy the flat land and the break from the Colorado steep mountain grades.

One of the most important pieces of equipment for exercising, in my opinion, is your shoe.  I’ve had bad running shoes and I’ve had good ones.  Obviously, your feet are supporting your entire body and are what keep you moving forward step by step.  I think they deserve a little respect.  So if you want to respect your feet you’ll look into the Grassbow Air by Merrell.

Not only are the Grassbow Airs extremely functional, comfortable, and breathable, they are colorful and pretty.  I have the Pink/Grey ones and absolutely love them! Of course, we all know that style doesn’t really matter but, then again, it’s always a perk for us ladies.

PlanetShoes.com has been a great company to get to know.  They offer an amazing selection of shoe types and brands.  Like I said, I had to return my shoes and get the next size down.  It was hassle free and money free.  I’m very hesitant to order shoes from somewhere that does not offer free returns (this is kind of rare, too) because shoes are so very specific.

If you’re looking for your next favorite pair of running (or hiking too as I would be very excited to wear these hiking) then look no further than the Merrell Grassbow Air.  Light, colorful, full of speed and spunk; you won’t be disappointed!

Links

The Grassbow Air by Merrell

Planet Shoes

Merrell at Planet Shoes

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If your lifestyle consists of wet and dirty environments, then you should immediately get a pair of these.  You won’t regret it and your feet will be happy.  The 15” Insulated Legacy is the perfect waterproof boot.  They are comfortable, classy, and offer the extra layer of protection that your beautiful feet need.

100% waterproof is great but for myself (loading chemicals all day everyday) what is even more important is the “protection against the broadest range of acids, corrosives, and contaminants.”  This is a reassuring factor that keeps me one step safer to protection.

Whether you’re in environments with dangerous chemicals or simply rainy environments, your feet will stay dry.  They’ll stay comfortable too, thanks to the built-in cushion insoles with arch support and seamless construction.  Xtratuf boasts the seamless construction explaining how it helps with the waterproofing but even more noticeable are the ways in which the seamless construction helps with the level of comfort.  I don’t get any hot spots in these boots because of locations where two seams come together.  It’s really nice.

I love also, how versatile these boots are.  Whether it’s a rainy day in Minnesota, a rained out camping trip in Colorado where the dry dirt turns to 6 inches of mud, or simply working on the load site, these are the best and most comfortable option for my feet.  They slip on and off easily, and everyone else will be wishing they had a pair.

Just a quick note on sizing… these are a unisex boot so all the sizing is done in men’s sizing.  I wear a women’s size 8 so I ordered a women’s size 6 and they fit perfectly.  There is enough room for a thick winter sock and they are not overly large with a thin summer sock.  If you have any questions regarding sizing, don’t hesitate to ask.

Links

15″ Insulated Legacy by Xtratuf

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