Tag Archives: trail-running gear reviews

Gear Review: La Sportiva Wildcat 3.0 Shoes

July 2, 2014  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , ,   |   4 Comments
La Sportiva Wildcat 3.0

La Sportiva Wildcat 3.0

Hiking/Trail Running Shoes
La Sportiva Wildcat 3.0
$115, 1 lb. 8 oz. (men’s Euro 42/US 9)
Sizes: Euro men’s 38-47.5, women’s 36-43
sportiva.com

There are trail-running shoes I can run in, and then there are shoes I can run and hike far in because they simply have greater support and cushion for handling the cumulative abuse that feet suffer on longer outings. On many trail runs of up to 12 miles in the Boise Foothills—plus one 20-mile, 3,600-foot run—the Wildcat 3.0 never caused me the hot toes, sore soles, or foot achiness that I get from some lightweight shoes on runs of more than eight or 10 miles. Even after that 20-miler in the Wildcats, my feet felt good. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Outdoor Research Helium Hybrid Jacket

April 24, 2014  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   3 Comments
Outdoor Research Helium Hybrid Jacket.

Outdoor Research Helium Hybrid Jacket.

Ultralight Jacket
Outdoor Research Helium Hybrid Jacket
$165, 5.5 oz. (men’s medium)
Sizes: men’s S-XL, women’s XS-XL
outdoorresearch.com

On a 7.5-mile trail run in Idaho’s Boise Foothills near my home, on an April morning with temps in the 50s and a strong, cool wind blowing, I stopped after climbing uphill for close to an hour. Sweating hard in that wind, wearing a lightweight, long-sleeve top that was now wet, I felt almost instantly chilled. Ahead of me were the last few, mostly downhill miles. So I pulled on this ultralight shell. While I was still perspiring for the rest of my run, the jacket delivered enough wind protection that I stayed warm. And when I finished, the inside of the jacket was only slightly damp. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Outdoor Research Lodestar Gloves and Ibex Point 62 Gloves

January 13, 2014  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
Outdoor Research Lodestar Gloves

Outdoor Research Lodestar Gloves

Winter Gloves
Outdoor Research Lodestar Gloves
$89, 5 oz. (men’s large)
Sizes: men’s XS-XL
outdoorresearch.com

Ibex Point 62 Gloves
$85, 4 oz. (medium)
Sizes: unisex S-XL
shop.ibex.com

What’s your winter activity? Nordic skiing? Snowshoeing? Hiking? Running? Whatever you do, you can bet there are gloves made specifically for it. Both of these models have become go-to handwear for me in moderate temperatures (20s and 30s) this winter, but for different activities. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Black Diamond Coefficient Jacket

October 21, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
Black Diamond Coefficient Jacket

Black Diamond Coefficient Jacket

Fleece Jacket
Black Diamond Coefficient Jacket
$139, 11 oz. (men’s medium)
Sizes: men’s S-XL
blackdiamondequipment.com

Keeping your body from overheating or getting cold while active is a challenge in shoulder seasons, or anytime you encounter fast-changing weather and temperatures from the 20s to the 50s Fahrenheit. The key is clothing that provides just enough warmth without making you perspire too much, and that moves moisture out quickly when sweating becomes unavoidable. On numerous spring and fall days of hiking and rock climbing in Idaho’s City of Rocks National Reserve and Castle Rocks State Park, and dayhiking in July in Mount Rainier National Park, the Coefficient Jacket hit that ideal balance that kept me from cycling between hot and chilled. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Princeton Tec Vizz Headlamp

September 30, 2013  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , ,   |   1 Comment
Princeton Tec Vizz

Princeton Tec Vizz

Ultralight Headlamp
Princeton Tec Vizz
$50, 3 oz. (including three AAA batteries)
Max burn time: 160 hours (dimmable white LEDs), 150 hours (red LEDs), 110 hours (brightest mode)
princetontec.com

With backcountry headlamps getting lighter yet brighter, choosing among the sub-4-oz. options out there gets a little overwhelming. The Vizz stands out for hiking, backpacking, trail running, and climbing not just for its low weight and impressive brightness, but for versatility and remarkable ease of use: You don’t need a Ph.D. in electronics to operate the Vizz. I used it numerous days this summer on backpacking trips in Sequoia National Park, Washington’s Glacier Peak Wilderness, and Idaho’s White Clouds Mountains—including hours of hiking in the dark—a hut trip in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, a pre-dawn start on a dayhike in Mount Rainier National Park, and camping at Idaho’s City of Rocks. Continue reading →

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