Browsing Tag

gear review

Life is good from inside the EV 2 tent

Gear Review: Mountain Hardwear’s 4-Season EV2 Tent

Gear Reviews

Much as I love light & fast, one day adventures that let me sleep off the climb in a real bed, there’s a lot to be said for longer adventures and certainly for nights under the stars. Of course when it comes to alpine climbing, a night under the stars can be a serious undertaking and a downright freezing one at that. So, when I set out to buy a tent for winter style adventures, finding something solid but also…

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Befree tripod in action - review

Gear Review: Manfrotto Befree Aluminum Travel Tripod for Adventure & Landscape Photography

Gear Reviews

It’s no secret that a tripod is an essential part of capturing landscape shots but as a hobbyist, it’s easy to fall in the trap of grabbing a super cheap setup on Amazon or get caught up debating the downright expensive options at the local camera store. While photography is not my 9-5, it is a huge part of my life and like many travel bloggers, something I’m continually investing in with gear upgrades. So, when I decided to upgrade…

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Home Depot General Purpose Gloves for Hiking

Gear Review: My Favorite Gloves for Summer Hikes, Scrambles & Adventures

Gear Reviews

Whether you’re planning to climb Yosemite’s Half Dome Cables, navigate the boulder fields of Mount St. Helens, scramble up a knife ridge in the Canadian Rockies or just spend a lot of mornings out on steep trails this summer, gloves may very well be one of the most important tools in your pack. After all, summer adventures mean the opportunity for plenty of dirty, rocky, and high contact days. So while winter gear is all about protecting yourself from the weather,…

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Grivel G12 Crampons in the Snow

Gear Review: Grivel’s G12 Crampons for General Mountaineering – Updated 2018

Gear Reviews

Review updated February 2018. Since I first got into alpine climbing a few years ago I’ve been the proud owner and frequent user of Black Diamond’s Sabertooth crampons and have rented similar sets along the way. However, a few seasons of climbing on mixed terrain routes in the Cascades have taken their toll on my Sabertooths so for the 2017 season, I opted to spoil myself and picked up a pair of Grivel’s classic G12 crampons as my “sharps” for steeper ice & snow routes I…

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Gear Review: Montem’s Oceanum Dry Bags

Gear Reviews

Adventuring in the Pacific Northwest, it’s a simple reality that you’re going to have a lot of wet weather days. While a rainy hike or climb in the snow isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it does tend to wreak havoc on gear. Even with waterproof packs, trash-bag liners and other supposed rainy day solutions, keeping my camera and other essentials dry has always been a pain so when Montem reached out asking me to try out their Oceanum Dry Bags*, I was immediately on board (if you…

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Variant 37 Pack with Ice Tools

Gear Review: One Year with Osprey’s Variant 37 Climbing / Mountaineering Backpack

Gear Reviews

The quest for the perfect alpine backpack is like chasing the Holy Grail, that is to say, good freaking luck. It’s just about impossible to argue for any one pack as a clear winter as pretty much every reliable option on the market has its own set of pro, it’s own negative drawbacks and that’s before you even consider the specifics of the climb! In early 2016 I signed up as a volunteer on Mount St. Helens and quickly realized that between the dozen climbs…

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Blizzak Winter Snow Tires

Gear Review: Bridgestone’s Blizzak Winter Snow Tires

Gear Reviews

Within weeks of moving to the Pacific Northwest I was hooked on the mountains and knew I would be making many pilgrimages out of the safety of my urban dwelling and into the snowy reaches of higher elevations come winter. Months later as the the temps started to drop, the thought of cold mornings putting on chains entered my head and I started to take a very serious look at winter tires trying to understand if they were all hype or a…

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Scratched up Canon 24-105 Lens Before Repairs

Review: Adventure Photographer? Why that SquareTrade camera warranty might just be worth buying.

Gear Reviews

When I decided to step up to a full frame dSLR camera I spent months researching everything from the body to the lenses to the accessories that I would need. Included in that was a seemingly endless debate in my head around protection plans. Most sites dismissed these of course; photography forum members said they’ve never broken anything, consumer blogs talked about limited use and getting your money’s worth but carrying a single item worth well north of $2,000 seemed like…

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Arc Gloves in a Storm

[Gear Review] Black Diamond’s Arc Gloves: For All Around Performance On Cold, Alpine Days

Gear Reviews

Review last updated May, 2017 When it comes to snow hikes and mountaineering, finding the perfect go-to glove has been an ongoing battle for me. Wind stoppers are perfect for covering up on those late-spring, blue-bird in days but simply not enough for alpine starts or steep slopes where snow and ice contact is inevitable. Stepping up to mid-weight gloves, I’ve found myself stuck picking between adequate insulation and useful dexterity while waterproofing has been a distant dream unless I invested a small fortune.…

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Why I Travel With Trip Insurance

Travel Talk

If you had asked me about travel insurance back when I first started traveling I probably would laughed and used the words “silly” and “waste” as I brushed you off. My opinion was rooted in the idea that other insurance covers enough and that whole risk versus reality thing, a simple assumption that stuck with me for years. But then I signed up for a Mount Rainier Guided climb where insurance was a requirement rather than a suggestion. Being a “savvy…

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