Top picks for comfort and convenience
ThermaCELL ProFlex Heated Insoles
Keep your tootsies cozy in cold weather with these battery-powered insoles. Super easy to use, you simply insert them in your own shoes or boots and select your desired heat setting with the remote control. The rechargable cushion-covered batteries are easy to slip in and out of their nook in the comfortably flexible insole, and the charge lasts up to five hours. Longer day out in the cold? Bring along an extra set of charged batteries (sold separately) to extend the warmth.
MSRP $184.99 • www.thermacell.com
Good To-Go Gourmet Trail Meal
We never thought we’d be describing a backpacker’s packet as “comfort food.” But that’s indeed what you get with this healthy gourmet-quality line of trail food conveniently dehydrated for anyone on the go to enjoy. Good To-Go meals are so much like what you’d make at home or enjoy at your favorite restaurant, that we challenge you to tell the difference. These delicious meals are slowly simmered with ingredients like real veggies, freshly ground spices, and extra virgin olive oil. Who’s hungry now? Break out the Jet Boil!
MSRP $5.75-$9.75 • www.goodto-go.com
Trigger Point GRID Foam Roller
The GRID foam roller is an excellent tool for self-massage and effectively works out those knots and tight muscles that inevitably plague the active body. The three dimensional surface has a variety of widths to replicate the feeling of a massage therapist’s hands, promoting the flow of blood and oxygen—the nutrients needed to repair muscles. Using less foam than traditional foam rollers, the GRID is firmer and more environmentally friendly. So, what are you waiting for? Get rolling!
MSRP $39.99 • www.tptherapy.com
Deuter Kids’ Fox 40 Pack
Your kids will happily schlep their own stuff on the trail when outfitted with this comfy backpack. Deuter is well known for making weight comfortable and this pint-size pack based on their adult trekking packs is no exception. The Aircontact molded back panel is designed to fuse the hiker and pack into one entity, increasing maneuverability and comfort while promoting airflow to keep kids cool as they trek. The pack boasts a bottom access compartment for quick access to essentials and easy organization. It also features an integrated, detachable rain cover to protect gear.
MSRP $109.99 • www.deuter.com
The TUBE Wearable Waistband
Carry all your Stuff comfortably! The TUBE stashes an impressive array of items, from lip balm and cash to keys and smartphone (yes, it’s plenty big for the iPhone 6, and with room to spare!). We already mentioned it’s comfortable … but this bears repeating. The TUBE is made from high quality stretchy athletic material that stays put, right where it should be. Where’s that? Anywhere you feel most comfortable! On your waist, on your hips … wherever it feels right. Pop this on for secure storage of and easy access to your essentials as you hike, run, camp, bike, travel, hit up the music festival, and so much more.
MSRP $24 • www.thetubewaistband.com
Now you can experience your on-the-go beverages, reinvented for heat. An innovative travel mug to keep your morning fuel hot at home, at work, or working against mother nature’s terrain. At last, a CamelBak product specifically designed for hot beverages. The vacuum-sealed, double-walled steel travel mug is insulated to keep your coffee or tea hot for over four hours. Plus, the self-sealing lid makes it easy to drink one-handed without worrying about leaks or spills.
MSRP $30 • www.camelbak.com
Elemental Herbs All Good Herbal Freeze with Arnica
We’re not quite sure how they did this—must be some powerful juju in their recipe—but Elemental Herbs’ Herbal Freeze really DOES work … and FAST! Herbal Freeze is the first and only all-natural muscle pain relief spray proven to provide fast pain relief for sore muscles and achy joints through a carefully formulated blend of herbs and medicinal plants. It goes on cool and warms up fast. Whether you’re sore from a workout, suffering from chronic pain or getting your muscles warmed up for a race, you can use Herbal Freeze to take the edge off for muscle pain relief.
MSRP $11.99 • www.elementalherbs.com
Hi-Tec Thomas Boot 200 i
The Thomas Boot 200 i is a woman’s ideal winter lifestyle boot. With a durable textile upper, i-shield technology to repel water and dirt, and Thinsulate™ insulation for that winter warmth, this is the perfect apres boot for any condition. OrthoLite® sockliner provides cushioning and a durable, cleated high abrasion EVA outsole absorbs impact. And so pretty, too!
MSRP $80 • www.hi-tec.com
A Beer Worth Earning:
Deschutes’ Black Butte Porter
Black Butte Porter is one beer that really needs no introduction. One of the original three beers Deschutes Brewery brewed when it started back in 1988, it’s become one of the most popular craft beers in the country. But did you know there really is a Black Butte the porter is named after?
Black Butte is actually an extinct volcano, rising up over 6,000 feet above sea level in the Deschutes National Forest about 20 miles northwest of Bend, OR where the Deschutes brewery is located. Plenty of Deschutes employees hike up to the top of it, with more than a few carrying the namesake porter in their backpacks up to enjoy at the summit.
As for the beer itself, Beer Connoisseur recently gave it an “Exceptional” rating, describing it as “A rich me’lange of dark chocolate and roast malt … displays hints of toasted grain, bread crust, and even toffee …” I’m not a trained beer judge, so I’ll leave culinary descriptions like that for the expert. As for me, I just think it’s got a great drinkable, roasty character with plenty of depth making it my go-to porter. —Derrick Peterman