Stio Hometown Down Jacket for Kids

Stio Hometown Down Jacket for Kids Practical Travel Gear 1

I love outdoor wear companies who make kids' clothing with the same attention to quality and detail as their adult versions. At Stio, the kids' Hometown Down Jacket is just like Mom's and Dad's. Stio is based out of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, so they know winter and they know what outdoor travelers need. The designer of the Hometown jacket solicited feedback from his own outdoorsy kids when deciding which features to include in this light but substantial down jacket.I don't know about your … [Read more...]

Transpack Heated Pro Boot Bag

Transpack Heated Pro Boot Bag Practical Travel Gear

What do you get the skier or snowboarder who has everything? Heated boots whenever and wherever. I've reviewed several models of Transpack boot bags (they're all we use now at home), and their Heated Boot Pro is definitely the poshest model yet. Do you need one? It depends on your priorities.Are you the type of skier or snowboarder who is used to swanky ski butler service, during which your boots are always warmed before starting your day? Lacking the above, do you keep your boots on your … [Read more...]

Helly Hansen Mission Stoke Shell Jacket

Helly Hansen Mission Stoke Shell Jacket Practical Travel Gear

Ready for winter and the 2015 ski season? The Helly Hansen Mission Stoke Shell just might be the last ski jacket you need to buy for a long time. With every bell and whistle for bell-and-whistle-loving guys, this jacket plays just as hard in the backcountry as on the front side. There are many great features to this jacket, but here's the headliner: the H2 Flow system controls body temperature with mechanical ventilation.My husband tested out the Mission Stoke during four days of skiing in … [Read more...]

Icebug Diana BUGrip Winter Boot

Icebug Diana BUGrip Winter Boot Practical Travel Gear

I've been a fan of Icebug shoes and boots ever since I reviewed my first pair over two years ago. Why? Killer grip on rough or icy terrain, great support, and stylish designs. Last winter, I tried out the Ivalo boot, which I loved for its BUGrip traction system. However, it's low cut didn't give me the calf and leg coverage I needed in snow and slush.Enter the Diana BUGrip boot, which features the same traction system in a design that covers to just below my knee. The Diana is extremely … [Read more...]

Pakems Packable Boots

Pakems Packable Boots Practical Travel Gear 2

In my quest for the perfect apres ski boot and all-round, packable outdoor travel shoe, I gave Pakems a trial run. This brand new product designed by a single mom is marketed as a lightweight, compressible shoe designed for use after a ski day. Pakems come in two styles (for both men and women): a high top for winter use and a low top for summer. Both are made from water-resistant ripstop fabric with an insulated, DWR-coated upper, and EVA midsole, and a rubber outsole. Both tighten with a very … [Read more...]

Hillsound Super Armadillo Gaiter

Hillsound Super Armadillo Gaiter Practical Travel Gear

A good pair of gaiters is one of those winter gear items you think you might not need until you realize (too late) that you really, really do. If you're snowshoeing, nordic skiing, or traveling to a glacial destination this winter, or doing any serious backcountry trekking any time this year, do yourself a favor and invest in gaiters now. Alternatively, they make for a great gift, so put them on your list and hope for the best.I've been playing in some early season Tahoe snow with the … [Read more...]

Teva winter boots: Jordanelle 2 and Chair 5

Teva winter boots: Jordanelle 2 and Chair 5  Practical Travel Gear

Don't get confused by the names: men and women are set up with nearly the same winter boot this year from Teva, simply with different titles and slightly different design. The Teva Chair 5 for men and the Teva Jordanelle 2 for women both feature Thinsulate insulation, a grippy sole, and lace-up closure. And they're both adorable. With waterproof uppers and seam-sealed construction, both boots offer winter weather protection with 250g insulation. Both feature a removable boot liner, … [Read more...]

Transpack ski and snowboard boot bags

Transpack ski and snowboard boot bags Practical Travel Gear

Alternate title: OMG, I'll never carry my ski gear in a shoulder bag ever again. Transpack specializes in backpack-style ski and snowboard boot bags, with several distinct models to choose from. What they all have in common: high quality construction, intelligent design, and comfort.Transpack calls its design the 'isosceles storage system', which reminds me unpleasantly of high school geometry but, unlike my math education, turns out to be something I can actually use in the real world. What … [Read more...]

ColdPruf Performance and Eco base layers

ColdPruf Performance and Eco base layers Practical Travel Gear

Autumn is here, and it will be ski and winter travel season in no time. I've already worn my ColdPruf base layers on more than one occasion here in Oregon, and will be packing them when I head north to Alberta, Canada next week.ColdPruf offers multiple product lines, rating them from cold to extreme cold and low activity to high activity. I appreciate that each line falls somewhere on this scale, so you can easily identify which base layer you'll need based on what you plan to use it for. I … [Read more...]

Adidas Yunga Felt Boots

Adidas Yunga Felt Boots Practical Travel Gear

You could fill a suitcase with winter footwear that perform different functions. In this day and age of luggage fees, however, this really isn't a viable option. The Adidas Yunga Felt Boot is both stylish and functional, appearing to be one boot to meet multiple needs. That said, after using the Yunga happily for a few months (accompanied by many a compliment), I worry that in trying to be an all-purpose boot, it manages to fall just a little bit short in several categories.What the … [Read more...]