- Race Report: California Enduro Series 2023 Round 1 – Ensenada Bike Fest Enduro - 03/23/2023
- CES 2023 Race Season Update - 01/13/2023
- Evergreen Lodge at Yosemite - 11/28/2022
Goodies for your active lifestyle
Bontrager Blaze WaveCel MTB Helmet
Earlier this year — and to much acclaim — Bontrager unveiled groundbreaking helmet technology called WaveCel. This revolutionary material is proven to be up to 48 times more effective than standard EPS foam at preventing concussions from common cycling accidents.
Standard foam helmets are designed to protect against direct impacts. But most cycling accidents actually result in angled impacts. WaveCel takes this important distinction into account. Its collapsible cellular material absorbs energy in multiple ways and then disperses it in a remarkably effective way resulting in much safer cycling protection. Is it comfortable? Indeed it is. And with several colors and styles to choose from, you’ll look smart no matter what type of cycling you do.
MSRP: $299 • bontrager.com
Nemo DragonflyTM 2P Ultralight Backpacking Tent
Nemo recently released the Dragonfly™, a freestanding ultralight backpacking tent boasting plenty of space and convenient storage pockets. On our first night out with this tent, we had to pitch camp in the dark. We expected the usual confusion that goes with setting up a new tent in the dark, but we had the Dragonfly™ up in a jiffy. We were thinking that this is the tent you’d want to have with you if you’re out in the backcountry when a storm rolls in unexpectedly.
What makes set up especially easy are the color-coded poles with matching webbing. Another unique feature we love are the roomy trapezoidal vestibules; lots of protected space to stow our gear once the fly is up. The tent materials seem strong and sturdy despite their light weight, and the superior craftmanship is obvious. Comes with a dual-stage stuff sack which allows you to split the load with a hiking partner. Also available in 1P.
MSRP: $389.95 • nemoequipment.com
Scarpa Mojito Hike GTX
The fully adjustable lacing system of the Scarpa Mojito Hike GTX is derived from climbing shoes. This allows for micro adjustments to dial in the right fit depending on terrain or foot tiredness. On long hikes in the Sierra we like tighter laces on steep downhills and the Mojito allows for subtle fine-tuning so you can baby your feet.
Scarpa is an Italian company with climbing roots and this shows. The Mojito is very grippy and solid on most terrain, with an aggressive lug sole design and sticky rubber for granite or sandstone hiking. Overall this is a great shoe choice for multi-day backpacking trips. The Mojito is available in half sizes. It comes in Euro sizes so you will have to do the conversion to English sizing.
MSRP: $149 • scarpa.net
Orca Cooler 58 QT
A big cooler is key for beach picnics and campground activities. When you are ready to purchase a new one, consider the Orca 58 QT. We like this size for a family of five with plenty of room to spare, but Orca makes other sizes so check availability.
Made in USA, this bad boy sports crazy good insulation that will keep your items cool for up to ten days. The roto-molded construction is totally bomb proof and road ready, and the ergonomic handles allow solo or tandem carrying. With an easy flow drainage spout, sometimes the simplest designs are the best.
MSRP: $339.99 • orcacoolers.com
We recently met the CLUG inventor at Sea Otter Classic and we predict he’ll become a millionaire because of this thing. This little gadget really is “the world’s smallest bike rack.” It’s pretty much the best bike rack ever and has won awards to prove it.
You mount the CLUG on any wall (with included screws) and it works so well you’ll wonder why nobody thought of it earlier. That said, it’s super important to get two details right or the CLUG won’t work correctly. The CLUG has to be the right height on your wall to work with your bike. (Just follow the directions and you will be fine.) Also, you must buy the right CLUG that fits your tire. There are CLUGs for road bikes and CLUGs for MTBs. Figure out your tire width and happy CLUGGING!
MSRP: $19.99 • thehornit.com
We don’t go on an adventure in the backcountry without Blister Medic in our first aid kit. Blister Medic combines the tried-and-true protection and blister prevention of moleskin with the advanced relief and healing of Glacier Gel™ hydrogel dressings.
The kit contains different size pieces specifically shaped to fit common blister areas. Alcohol pads and antiseptic towelettes are included.
And best of all — no scissors required!
MSRP: $10 • adventuremedicalkits.com
Hydro Flask Journey Series™ 10 L Hydration Pack
We tested the ten-liter version of the Hydro Flask Journey pack on a recent ten-mile ride in the Santa Cruz mountains and we were impressed. The super insulated hydration system kept the water very cold for three hours of mountain biking, and the ergonomics of the pack were remarkably streamlined and comfortable.
This is a good pack for people who prefer hydration packs but don’t like the “sweaty back” feeling, because the Journey’s articulated back panel keeps air flowing between the pack and your body. The hydration bladder is made by HydraPak, an Oakland based company known for BPA free, high quality hydration components.
Overall this is a great pack with room enough for a tool kit, extra tube, food, and other trail items you need.
MSRP: $165 • hydroflask.com
Monster Straps have got your rack-mounted watercraft and sports gear covered when it comes to providing reliable, damage-free transport.
These overbuilt and oversized straps have been tested for over a decade on California freeways, Mexican arroyos and South Pacific surf escapes. You can rest assured there is no better way to secure your big-wave guns, prone paddleboards, SUPs, outriggers, surf-skis, kayaks, canoes, ice chests, bivy sacks, and so much more.
Conceived and engineered by board- and action-sport vets with a century of combined design and manufacturing experience. Tested and approved by watermen and women worldwide.
Available as pairs or singles. Ghostryder Black (pictured) or Pacific Blue.
MSRP: $29.95 • mile22.bigcartel.com
Hoka One One Challenger ATR 5 Trail Shoe
Don’t let the chunky sole fool you; Hoka One One trail running shoes are light and fast. If you are not familiar with the brand, the Challenger is a good Hoka shoe for anyone with variability in his or her running regime. In other words, if you enjoy trail running but often pound pavement as well, these are the shoes for you.
Hokas have a reputation for luxurious comfort and that reputation is well deserved. Perhaps more impressive is the midfoot design that keeps your foot nice and secure within the sole for greater confidence through uneven terrain. The ATR 5 is an improvement over previous versions because of its aggressive lug patterned outsole. These bad boys are very grippy over loose, wet trail conditions and that’s a good thing.
MSRP: $130 • hokaoneone.com