Oboz Emerald Peak hiking shoe


I've become quite the fan of Oboz Footwear. Now that I've been wearing their boots and shoes regularly for over a year, I can attest to the fact that Oboz doesn't mess around with quality. Their low-cut shoes are as rugged and sturdy as their high-topped boots, and their lightweight offers don't force you to sacrifice the security of your foot on all types of terrain.I've reviewed the Oboz Mystic Low BDry for a quality waterproof low-top option for trail hiking, and am now back with the … [Read more...]

Patagonia CragDaddy 45L

Patagonia CragDaddy 45L Practical Travel Gear

The Patagonia CragDaddy is a popular choice among outdoor enthusiasts and climbers for schlepping gear to climbing routes. It can easily hold ropes, racks, draws, and all your food and layers for the day, with plenty of pockets to keep things organized and a well-fitting shoulder harness to keep the load bearable. But what if you're not a climber? Buy the CragDaddy anyway, and be a poser like me.I never climb, but I love the CragDaddy for weekend trips during which wheeled luggage would … [Read more...]

Eureka Jade Canyon 6 tent

Eureka Jade Canyon 6 tent Practical Travel Gear 2

The Eureka Jade Canyon 6 appears to be your standard single room dome tent. And it is: it's simple to set up, basic in design, and well-suited for general family or group camping. However, the Jade Canyon also has some interesting features worth looking at closely.First, the nuts and bolts: the Eureka Jade Canyon 6 weighs in at 16.2 pounds (yowza...but it's not meant to be anything but a base camp option) and offers 10×10 feet of floor space plus a generous ceiling height. It felt roomy … [Read more...]

Jade Yoga Travel Mat

Jade Yoga Travel Mat Practical Travel Gear 2

I'm often asked how to stay active and healthy while on the road. Since we frequently travel, I have plenty of opportunity to figure out what works, and what doesn't, when it comes to exercise in hotel rooms and vacation homes. While at home, I practice yoga, and I find that continuing a yoga practice while traveling is one of the best ways to feel revitalized, energetic, and healthy during busy and uncomfortable travel days.The Jade Yoga Travel Mat is the mat I have stashed in the back of … [Read more...]

L.L. Bean Down Sleeping Bag with DownTek

L.L. Bean Down Sleeping Bag with DownTek Practical Travel Gear 2

Out of the box, or bag, as the case may be, I wondered if the new L.L. Bean Down Sleeping Bag with DownTek might be too bulky for my needs. It's certainly a full, thick bag, with surprising loft. However, it packs down as small as any sleeping bag in its price category, fitting into its included stuff sack with ease. After my first night using it on the damp and chilly Oregon coast, it became my new favorite sleeping bag.The L.L. Bean bag differs from most in my gear stash because it's made … [Read more...]

Enlightened Equipment Revelation Quilt

Enlightened Equipment Revelation Quilt Practical Travel Gear

After gear testing a lot of outdoor travel products, it’s not too often that something really knocks our socks off. Enter the Revelation Quilt by Enlightened Equipment. This blanket and sleeping bag hybrid, available in either down or Downtek, solves all the complaints my teen sons have about traditional mummy-style sleeping bags. The Revelation gives them the freedom of movement they want, while still delivering the warmth they need.So what is it? In essence, the Revelation is a high … [Read more...]

Timbuk2 Copilot Wheeled Luggage

Timbuk2 Copilot Wheeled Luggage Practical Travel Gear

I’m a fan of Timbuk2 products. Before anyone else seemed to know the brand, I had my trusty three-toned messenger bag, which I used in college, then repurposed as a rugged diaper bag when my kids were small. I’ve since tried out several additional Timbuk2 bags and backpacks, but the Copilot is my first piece of Timbuk2 luggage.At 21.7 inches tall, the medium-sized Timbuk2 Copilot I tried comes in on the larger end for carry-on luggage. While this feature is usually a positive (yay, more … [Read more...]

GSI Outdoors and HydroFlask Pint Glasses

GSI Outdoors and HydroFlask Pint Glasses Practical Travel Gear

Walk into any outdoor gear store, especially in craft brew hot spots like the Pacific Northwest, and it won’t take long to notice everyone is making travel-ready pint glasses. In my book, this can only be a good thing, and not just for beer consumption. In fact, we use the following travel pint glasses and tumblers both at home and on outdoor trips, hardly ever for the frothy craft brews found everywhere in my home state of Oregon. Depending on the trip and user, they’ve been holding water, … [Read more...]

IceBug Acceleritas Trail Running Shoes

IceBug Acceleritas Trail Running Shoes Practical Travel Gear 2

 Let me start with this: if you’re looking for an all-purpose women’s running shoe, the Icebug Acceleritas is not your gal. However, if you need a highly specialized trail-running shoe as one tool in your exercise gear toolbox, read on.The Acceleritas (made for both men and women) is the lightest weight running shoe I now own, and that’s including my near-barefoot runners. It’s streamlined and sleek, weighing in at only 180 grams, without compromising on a tough-as-nails tread. … [Read more...]

Summer Aventura Clothing Accessories for Women

Summer Aventura Clothing Accessories for Women Practical Travel Gear 2

I love Aventura Clothing because it’s always practical while remaining stylish. This summer, Aventura has multiple new pieces perfect for travel, but beyond their new headliners are the clothing accessories that complete the outfit, all of which pair well for easy mixing and matching from your suitcase. Add a few nice sun dresses, travel pants, and tops, and you’re good to go. If I don’t have to think too hard about my wardrobe, I’m happy! My favorite new Aventura accessories add layering to any … [Read more...]