Monthly Archives: June 2012

Interview: ‘Ultimate Hiker’ Andrew Skurka

June 29, 2012  |  In Backpacking, Hiking, Skills   |   Tagged , ,   |   Leave a comment

Since his “first backpacking trip” thru-hiking the 2,168-mile Appalachian Trail in 95 days (thru-hikers normally take five to six months) in 2002, Andrew Skurka, 31, has put his own indelible stamp on ultra hiking and long-distance backpacking. His many adventures include:

•    Thru-hiking the California section of the Pacific Crest Trail at an average pace of about 40 miles per day;
•    An 800-mile trek across the Colorado Plateau from Arches National Park to the Grand Canyon; Continue reading →

Gear Review: Solio Clip-Mini Solar-Rechargeable Light

June 29, 2012  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Solio Clip-Mini

Solar-Rechargeable Light
Solio Clip-Mini
$35, 3.5 oz.

File this under “very cool.” This LED light recharges using either solar power or a USB cord, eliminating the need to throw away batteries. It recharges in six hours on sunlight or one hour via the USB connection—so a day on the trail with the Clip-Mini attached to your pack (via its convenient, big carabiner clip) juices up the lithium-polymer battery completely. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Evolv Bolt Approach Shoes

June 29, 2012  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Evolv Bolt

Approach/Scrambling Shoes
Evolv Bolt
$100, 1 lb. 10 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 4-13

Approach shoes, designed for multiple duties from hiking to scrambling steep, rocky terrain and easy rock climbing, come in a variety of forms that reflect the category’s somewhat nebulous definition. Some are basically hiking shoes with a sticky outsole, while at the other end of the spectrum are beefed-up rock climbing shoes that lack the comfort or support for hiking very far. The Bolt from Evolv, a maker of climbing shoes, nails a difficult objective: performing well at all of the roles we expect approach shoes to fill. Continue reading →

Gear Review: Adidas Terrex Fast R GTX Shoes

June 29, 2012  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Adidas Terrex Fast R GTX

Hiking Shoes
Adidas Terrex Fast R GTX
$155, 1 lb. 12 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 6-14

Adidas might have named this low-cut shoe the ATV, because it really is an all-terrain vehicle. On local hikes in the Boise Foothills in all kinds of conditions—dry, packed dirt, mud, wet snow, and rain-drenched rock—the outsoles bit without a slip. That’s thanks to deep and widely spaced outsole lugs and Continental rubber, the same kind used for mountain bike tires. Continue reading →

Gear Review: REI Venturi Shorts

June 29, 2012  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

REI Venturi Shorts

Hiking Shorts
REI Venturi Shorts
$70 men’s, $60 women’s, 7 oz. (men’s size 30)
Sizes: men’s 30-42, women’s 0-16

This seems an awkward confession to make, but I admittedly have conflicting desires when it comes to hiking shorts: I want them to be as light as possible, but to have at least a couple of zippered pockets and offer more than shorty-shorts coverage (mostly for sun protection). In a quest for something that straddles those competing objectives, I found REI’s Venturi. Continue reading →

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