Author: Jill

The Amazing Eagle Creek Gear Warrior AWD Suitcase Reviewed

Can you think back to a time when you didn’t have a suitcase with wheels? In some ways it seems ages since then, but in others… I still see people dragging their two-wheeled bag on the wrong side, or taking a corner quickly and making their wheelie bag spin out. Certainly, the solution in the first example is: Know where the wheels are. But in the second example, perhaps the solution is upgrading to a four-wheeled bag. The Eagle Creek Gear Warrior AWD series consists of four differently sized suitcases, all lightweight and with four wheels for easy mobility....

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Scarpa Cosmo Shoes

Perhaps your outdoorsy vacation is a little more vacation than outdoorsy. That’s cool, it’s your time off. But if you’ve got a little hiking or climbing planned in addition to all the lounging about and city discovery, consider keeping the shoe count down and bringing along a pair of Scarpa Cosmo shoes. It’s often difficult to bring along every type of shoe for every type of purpose, and that’s why multi-functional shoes are so great. Instead of having an around-town shoe, a hiking shoe, and light climbing shoe, you’ve got one that does them all well. The relaxed, no-break-in...

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Arc’teryx Arakys Approach Shoe

Packing a shoe style for every single vacation possibility can often ensure that you’re not traveling carry-on only. Sure, if your trip is limited to pool and beach and the occasional fancy dinner, you’re good. But what happens when you need more than a pair of flip-flops and a pair of sandals? The Arc’teryx Arakys Approach Shoe is designed for scrambling into crag and bouldering terrain, with a grippy sole that’s ideal for climbing both outdoors and indoors. But don’t let the intended use and word “approach” make you think that you can’t use it for straight-ahead travel. Grippy...

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Platypus Meta Bottle and Microfilter

You may be lucky enough to travel to places where there’s always a glass of filtered water on the table. But if you go beyond those spots, or are often out in the wilderness away from restaurant water sources (and closer to traditional water sources), you might consider bringing a refillable bottle along with you. What happens when you run out of your trusty water supply? You need more. And unless you know that the water is filtered, you’ll also need a filter. Consider bringing the Platypus Meta Bottle and Microfilter. Most notable about this combination is the ease...

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OluKai ‘Upena Women’s Sandals

In the seemingly endless struggle with keeping footwear needs to a minimum while traveling, one remaining challenge is finding a women’s sandal that looks good for a somewhat dressy evening but is also comfortable to wear while walking around all day. Who knows, maybe you can even wear them on the plane, as well. My latest find that meets all these requirements: the OluKai ‘Upena sandal. The multi-strap sandal has a textured rubber outsole that’s non-marking, meaning you won’t leave scuffs on surfaces of any kind. Whether you’re visiting your Aunt Peggy in her white-on-white design home, or hitting...

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Goal Zero Lighthouse Mini Lantern

Do you really need a gigantic lantern on your travels? Perhaps, when you’re camping, and one big light is necessary at your campsite. But those big lights aren’t the easiest to carry around, and they don’t work well for trips when you need to pack all you need into a suitcase and fly somewhere. The Goal Zero Lighthouse Mini Lantern is a smaller version of the Lighthouse 250 Lantern & USB Power Hub. For the anywhere traveler, the smaller size is more versatile beyond camping, as you can pack the 8-ounce lantern (a tiny bit larger than my fist)...

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Stanley Mountain Vacuum Insulated Switchback Mug

There are plenty of insulated containers to carry your beverages around in, so it’s easy to understand why people switch allegiances so easily. But the one I’ve been using a lot lately goes with me everywhere. The Stanley Mountain Vacuum Insulated Switchback Mug is built from 18/8 stainless steel vacuum insulation, so it won’t rust. It’s also naturally BPA-free. When it’s dirty, just put it in your dishwasher—because it’s dishwasher safe. No extra time hand washing. The slimmed-down design has reduced its weight substantially: the 12-ounce mug weighs 0.6 pounds and the 16-ounce mug weighs 0.75 pounds. The mug...

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Black Diamond Cosmo Headlamp

Reliable headlamps don’t have to cost a fortune. What you need from them is simple: kick out super-bright light, don’t require bulky batteries, have a variety of settings, and don’t lose function in the rain. All those things are covered with the Black Diamond Cosmo Headlamp. The Cosmo features 160 lumens of power that works well for after-dark dinners on the tailgate, darn patrols, late hikes, camping any time, or merely a great light source to have on hand that doesn’t take up much room. The range for the Cosmo is 25 meters at single power, and 60 meters...

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Toad & Co. Jetlite Pant

True minimalists prefer multi-functional clothing items when it comes to packing for travel. Pieces that can be worn different ways, or can function both as daytime and evening wear, are immediately valuable because you can limit the suitcase space needed for your wardrobe. The Toad & Co. Jetlite Pant is one of my favorites and happens to meet this requirement. Made from a stretchy, lightweight weave of 95 percent polyester and 5 percent spandex, these pants are incredibly comfortable for travel, as well as everyday life. The cut is sleek and contemporary, allowing them to work well for city...

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Pacsafe SlingSafe LX250 Anti-Theft Tote

I’m constantly on the lookout for the ideal tote for travel. For me, that means it’s roomy, looks good (so I can use it for nearly anything), fits my laptop and iPad, fits my huge camera, plus leaves room for a few other things (like wallet, phone, notebook, pens), and isn’t easy for thieves to snag. Am I asking a lot? I don’t think so. The Pacsafe SlingSafe LX250 Anti-Theft Tote comes close to doing it all for me. My recent go-to favorite has been the Citysafe LS400 Anti-Theft Travel Tote, which does a great job, however I’m constantly...

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