Wearing gaiters adds weight to your legs or to your pack when you take them off.  I have reluctantly changed my mind over the past few months. Wearing light weight quick dry hiking pants while hiking is something I have always done to help protect my legs and feet. One of the things that the […]


I normally do not listen to music on the trail however every now and again it is nice. In years past headphones were bulky or fell out and you had to have them plugged in. Fast forward to today with technology continuing to get smaller and more and more devices being Bluetooth enabled. JBL has […]


National Geographic has recently published a thirteen map set covering the entire Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Maine’s Mt Katahdin. These high quality maps are waterproof paper designed with the backpacker in mind. Full of locations specific information, helpful tips, topographic section maps and elevation charts.

Hanz Waterproof Socks

Some products take longer to test than others. With the Hanz Waterproof Gloves and Socks I tested them in both winter conditions and spring conditions. I played in the snow with the gloves shoveling driveways in Iowa and the socks were taken to the depths of the Grand Canyon and used while splashing around in […]


Granite Gear, born in Boundary Waters, crafters of award-winning backpacks and duffel systems was put to the test during one backpacker’s travels to Idaho on a 7-day adventure during the summer of 2015. The Granite Gear duffel was packed solid (immediately appreciating the wheels!), checked-in at the airlines, transferred to automotive transport, unpacked and stored for 5 days, to then be packed solid again. After traveling for a week and passing through a dozen handlers the duffel slipped right back into the hands of the airlines, for its return trip.


Buff the company who makes those really cool bandanna scarf things has created a special lineup to help celebrate the National Parks Centennial. They have created 6 beautiful designs that are not only stylish but will also protect you from the sun. Not only will they protect you but they will also protect our hiking trails. Buff will be donating 3% of the net purchase price from each National Parks UV BUFF® to the American Hiking Society. This promotion runs from now until December 31, 2016.


I have been having fun with the Smoky Mountain Growler. It is made of stainless steel and vacuum insulated. They say that it will keep products cold for 3 days. They are not lying. As a test I filled up my growler full ice and waited for it to melt. It sat on the counter at home, on my desk in my office, and a full 8 hours in my Jeep. Not to mention the time back and forth between work and home. It has been nice here in Arizona so the temps in my Jeep were warm but not scorching hot.


I test a large amount of gear in 2015. Many of my favorites come from smaller companies that the outdoor industry calls “Cottage Companies”. The companies are the equivalent to the Technology Industry’s startups. Small in nature, innovative, and extremely flexible. Many of them have flocked to Kickstarter to help get funding to develop their products.


There is no question that merino is the go-to fabric for most hikers when it comes to their baselayers. I have been testing out three products by Minus33.
The Minus33 Story!

Minus33 is located in Ashland, New Hampshire and still operates on the grounds of L.W. Packard Inc. L.W Packard Inc., dates back to 1916 as a textile manufacturing company. I could write all about their history but this great video does a much better job than I could.


The Eyefi Mobie Wireless SD memory card is a neat little gadget. This memory card has the ability to create a secure Wi-Fi network to allow you to connect other devices to it. Once connected you can transfer photos and videos from the card to your other devices via the secure network.  No more taking […]


The RefrigiWear Fleece is a warm well made and will keep you warm. Now that the weather here in Arizona has cooled off this has been a great light weight jacket to wear for everyday life as well handy for day hikes. The fleece weight wise is heavier than most jackets I would normally take […]


It is Wednesday and it is time to start thinking about the weekend camping trip. The lists have been started and some of the gear has been packed up. If you are like me I am typically in charge of bringing the spirits to the weekend. Normally it is thrown together in a box and […]


Footwear for hikers has come a long way in a very short time. In a not so distance past all hikers had to choose from was different brands of leather boots. Now there is everything from full leather boots to synthetic trail running shoes. Many are waterproof others are not. It all depends on what activity you are doing and what your needs are.

I have been a huge advocate of boots in years past but with the tech changing and materials becoming lighter stronger and more durable I have decided that trail shoes might not be as evil as I thought they might be. I have tried several out this past summer and now bring you a look at the Adidas AX 2 GTX.


Working in the technology and photography industries for many years you come to rely on specific brands to keep your gear safe. One of those brands is Pelican. They have been around for a very long time. Professional photographers, hunters, tech geeks, police and the government use Pelican to keep just about anything you can think of safe. I recently purchased a small case to keep a hard drive safe. This drive’s purpose is to go with me on all of my adventures to keep video and photos archived until I can get them backed up online. The hard drive is a Western Digital My Passport Wireless 1 terabyte drive, but more on that later.


These wallets are not your traditional leather wallets your grandfather used to use. These, dare I say hard core wallets will last you a lifetime. Made from Aircraft-grade  aluminum, high quality leather, and 550 Paracord. You will not find anything like these wallets.   About Trayvax Trayvax was started in 2013 by founder Mark King. […]


As Hikers, Backpackers, Scouters, and Adventurers we know how important it is to stay hydrated. We also know that it is very important that the water we put into our bodies is filtered and or treated. Not every water source needs filtered but those of us to like to take extra precautions.

Purinize is a pre-filter water treatment that is effective against Chemicals, Contaminants, and Micro organisms. This treatment can be used on its own, however it is recommended to be used before you filter you water. This will help take out many of the hard minerals in the water as well.


WARNING: If you are looking for a ultra lightweight featureless boring pack this post is not for you! If you are looking for a pack that is extremely comfortable with lots of great features then please keep reading!

The Teton Sports Escape 4300 is quickly becoming my favorite multi day workhorse pack. The attention to comfort has always been seen in the Teton Sports backpacks. With extra padding on the shoulder straps, lower and upper back. This 4300 cubic inch capacity pack boasts seven pockets, two pouches, four compression straps, daisy chain gear loops, D-ring, eyelets, and slide-storage under hood.


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