Category Archives: Gear Junkie

Gear We Love: ENO Upcycled Dog Collar & Leash

GEAR WE LOVE: ENO Upcycled Dog Collar & Leash by Eagles Nest Outfitters Longtime ASJ supporter Eagle’s Nest Outfitters, the company known for high quality backpacking hammocks, is now making dog collars and leashes from upcycled webbing. A true repurposing story, ENO’s dog collar and leash are made from leftover materials used in making hammock Continue Reading »

The Gear Junkie — Skora Running Shoes

Nike, New Balance, Saucony, Asics. . . the big boys used to be the only option when you stepped into a store in search of running shoes. No longer. These days, a mega-trend of footwear that is more minimal and “barefoot style” has pushed dozens of new brands into the spotlight. This month, I tested Continue Reading »

NuVinci Bike Transmission

With a simple twist of the wrist, the promotional materials read, you can shift this bike in a way that’s “as easy as adjusting the volume on a radio.” As bike-industry marketing speak goes, the “radio” analogy was about as weird as I’d seen. But this month, while riding a new bike from Jamis called Continue Reading »

‘Performance’ Cotton Underwear

Cotton underwear. Seriously, that is the topic of this week’s column. But these boxer shorts, made by Longworth Industries Inc. of North Carolina, are not knitted with your run-of-the-mill white fluff. Marketed as “performance underwear,” the company’s Polarmax AYG line of men’s and women’s boxers and briefs feature a special cotton type branded as TransDRY. Continue Reading »

Dog Gear 2011

My dog is a bit of a brute. At 100 pounds and more athletic than most humans could ever dream to be, Rodney the Weimaraner has a ripped physique and an impressive bark to match. He runs on heel or pulls on command, a hook-up for power on skis in the wintertime and a running Continue Reading »

Knife with Light and Whistle

A blade, a light, and a whistle — that’s the formula for the Core Lite, a hybrid “survival tool” made by Adventure Medical Kits of Oakland, Calif. The company, known for its first-aid kits, also has a line of survival products, and the Core Lite is a new and unique addition for outdoors types looking Continue Reading »

‘Cold-Prep’ Camp Food

The quest for camping food that is simple to make just moved a notch. With its new Chicken Salad product, Mountain House offers campers and backpackers a freeze-dried meal that requires nothing more than cold water and a short wait. Until now, most all freeze-dried food companies recommended hot or boiling water for the reconstitution Continue Reading »

Survival Straps Bracelet

“Wear it, unravel it, survive!” That’s the somewhat melodramatic but highly illustrative tagline for Survival Straps’ namesake product, a bracelet made of paracord that can be untied and unfurled in the outdoors in a time of need. Survival Straps is an operation based in Florida, and its workers weave a high-strength cord — “550 test Continue Reading »

SPOT Connect

The sailboat bobbed in swells, our view to land obscured by a thick fog. It was early one morning this spring, and I was sailing along the Californian coastline en route from San Francisco to LA. Beyond cell-phone range, and out of touch with the world, I woke up my iPhone and started to type. Continue Reading »

Super-Size Trail Running Shoes

In the past few years, a trend of super-sizing sports equipment like tennis racquets, golf clubs, and downhill skis has caught on with consumers. Whether it’s more power, more speed, or an ease-of-use upgrade, there’s little wonder why the enlargement effect has resonated in American culture, where “bigger-better-faster!” verges on a national theme. This leitmotif Continue Reading »

Oakley Prescription Glasses

Oakley Inc. is known for its iconic (and often iconoclastic!) sports-oriented sunglasses, including innovative as well as simply strange frame and optics designs. Recently, I got a pair of relatively “normal” glasses from the company. Oakley’s Deringer frame now serves as my “wear-everyday” prescription glasses for work and home life. The Deringer is lumped into Continue Reading »

Petzl ULTRA BELT ACCU4 Headlamp

For virtually any outdoors adventure, the right gear can give you an edge. But in few product categories does this ring as true as it does with lighting. For activities at night, an ill-performing headlamp, flashlight, or other source of illumination can literally leave you in danger and adrift in the dark. I have been Continue Reading »

Garmin Forerunner 310XT

The Forerunner series of athletic-minded watches from Garmin Ltd. have gained a devotion with some athletes and exercisers that may only be described as cultish. But it is with good reason: Forerunner watches are top-shelf performers and they offer functions unlike anything else on the market. . . . To the point, the Forerunner series Continue Reading »

Interbike Expo 2010

The annual Interbike Expo trade show, held last week, Sept. 22 to 24, in Las Vegas, is a gathering of cycling brands, dealers, designers, media and bike enthusiasts from around the globe. I traveled to Sin City for a quick trip and took two days to walk the Interbike floor. Here are a few items Continue Reading »

SealLine Pro Pack

It is obscenely huge. It fastens shut and watertight with a roll-top closure. A backpack harness system lets you strap it on and hike, ferrying immense loads through airports and down backwoods portage trails alike. The SealLine Pro†Packs are essentially giant vinyl duffel bags. They open wide to reveal a capacious hold that can swallow Continue Reading »