All Articles: Product Reviews
Merrell has recently made its way into the limelight (once again) thanks to its minimalist shoes. The minimalist style of shoe became an ''overnight'' success, and Merrell has not looked back, creating a plethora of models for any and every body (we reviewed two models last year). The word 'minimalist' is often thought to be synonymous with running shoes, but that is just not correct. Although Merrell has produced some wondrous Barefoot models like their Pace and Trail Gloves, they have not limited the technology to just their running shoes, and their 2013 lineup clearly illustrates this point.
The new Proterra Sport is the perfect example of a men's versatile, minimalist shoe from Merrell. The Proterra Vim Sport is the women's equivalent. We take a look at the men's model from Merrell, and you may be pleasantly surprised just how versatile this hiking shoe is.
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There are two kinds of people: those who camp with chairs and those who camp without chairs. This article will be of the utmost importance for the former, but may convince the latter to jump on the comfortable and ultralight bandwagon (and take a seat on board).
We will be reviewing the Big Agnes Helinox Chair One, a collapsible, ultralight chair that will do its darnedest to convince you a camping chair belongs in your pack every time you head outdoors.
Good luck chair.
Read more here
That's right folks, we will be talking about gadgets, toys, and technical knick-knacks- possibly my favorite subject matter. Spring is the time when companies like to unleash cool, innovative ideas to us. I will take the opportunity to look at five that caught my eye. Know that there are many more on Altitude-sports.com, but I just found a few which I really liked the cut of their jibs.
We will be reviewing an Ultralight Tarp/Poncho by Sea to Summit, a hard-core hydration running pack by Salomon, photochromic sunglasses by Oakley, an ultralight and watertight drybag/pack, and a revolutionary carabiner by Black Diamond.
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The Timbuk2 Power Commute does not make you do more chin-ups or increase the average speed on your bicycle commute. The 'power' is not referring to anything muscular, but of a more important kind- at least for today's person on the go. Charging power.
''Whenever they's a fight to keep your phone alive, it'll be there. Whenever they's an airport with no available sockets, it'll be there...It'll be there on your shoulder, carrying everything you need.'' Clearly, Steinbeck would have had nothing to write about if everyone had a Timbuk2 Power Commuter messenger bag during the depression.
So my segue is a little weak, but let's just ignore that and dive right into my look at this bag by Timbuk2.
Read more here
Earlier we were talking about appropriate clothing for bike commuting, now let us look at the fun accessories you can adorn yourself with. Call it bike porn, bike bling or whatever you like; there are some sweet (and useful) toys for your bicycle commuting adventures. Let's dive right in.
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You finally realized the benefits of bicycling, and now want to integrate it into your daily commute. Good on ya. You will be happier, more fit, and will generally be a better person for it. Doing it is a whole other discussion. Bike commuting can be done in a cotton t-shirt and jeans if you want, but you may find yourself arriving at work odorous and wet. If you want to know about a few products that will make the transition much easier (and safer), then have a read of this article.
This article will focus on appropriate commuting clothing, while a second article will look at accessories such as lights and packs.
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Montréal-based Lolë is a company about women. They are more than just a brand of clothing for women, they are an emotion, an idea, a mantra. Look at their collection season after season and you will realize that Lolë celebrates the female form unabashedly. Sexy, cute, empowering, you will find it all in their collection.
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You have spent all winter using you 'new' toys from last winter, but are getting bored of the gimmick that is known as skiing (poetic license- I would never say this in reality). Well spring is upon us and companies are releasing all sorts of goodies to get you excited. I have already told you about a few here, but since when has four new products been enough? Enjoy a few more new spring 2013 products.
Let us know what you think about these or any of our new spring collection. Post a little yea or nay at the bottom of this article if you feel so inclined. Until then sit back a have a look at products I found interesting and/or from The North Face, Playtpus, Bogs and MSR.
Read more about new products
Spring makes me think of delightful sunshine warming my opaque skin, and terraces, but it also reminds me of brown grass and melting dog poo. What it should make us think of are the new toys outdoor brands unleash on us at this time of year. Everywhere I look there are new gadgets, new colours and new products making my heart skip a beat. Sure it may be a heart murmur, but I like to think of it as gear love.
I thought I would introduce to you a few models that are new this spring. Some are technical, some are colourful and some are just there because I want them. Let's have a look.
Read about more new products
Winter is sort of, kinda, maybe over soon. Yes, that means we may get more vitamin D soon, but it also means we will be combating the evil enemy known as slush. It strikes fear into the hearts of many, but with a good boot your sole may rest easy (boot puns, love them).
If you don't know about Bogs, early spring is the time to learn. Using neoprene to keep you warm and dry, their boots are revolutionizing fashion and function. Varying thicknesses of neoprene allow you to decide if you want it for winter, fall/spring, or summer (they are also releasing a summer line of thin rubber boots for the hot-feeted). Fully waterproof and extremely comfortable, Bogs are a good bet for sloppy conditions.
The Bogs Harper is definitely a model to look at this spring.
Read more here
Money and fame are two reasons most ideas are pushed into fruition. But sometimes ideas are created for an entirely different reason: to help make the world a better place. Maybe it is because I love technological gadgets, or because I have a penchant for translucent plastic, or maybe because I have an MA in Third World development, but the LuminAID light really got me excited.
When I showed up at work and saw an iPhone shaped toy on my desk I must admit I didn't know what I was looking at, but when it dawned on me, I knew I was holding something undeniably important.
I was holding the LuminAID solar light.
Read more about the LuminAID
Since it first came out in 1998, the Alpha SV has been the quintessential icon of technical shells. This jacket set the standard, defined the genre and brought the term hard shell into popular parlance. But does it deserve its reputation? I took the αsv for a spin to find out.
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We are continually on the lookout for new brands. When you like having the best, funkiest stuff out there, you just can't ever stop looking for new brands. We have been noticing a few people rocking a brand called Fjallraven recently, and it got our buyer's nose (and some of our trendy staff) a-twitching.
Gather round children and I can tell you a little bit about Fjallraven: meaning 'Arctic Fox' in Swedish, this brand started making framed backpacks over 50 years ago. Since then they have been making clothing and equipment, often out of their waxed, and tough poly/cotton fabric. Whether it is a down jacket for frigid temperatures or a urban jacket, you will often find their G-1000 fabric in use. We also like that they keep the wilderness close to their heart and are trying hard to save the arctic fox from extinction.
Okay, enough about the history lesson, let's have a look at their Kanken classic backpack.
Read more about Fjallraven
Two months ago I got my hands on a Patagonia R3 Hi-Loft jacket. Here are my impressions of this mid-layer.
I am always trying to improve my outdoor apparel and gear closet, and since I have started doing 50km bike commute to work everyday I have been in dire need of doing just that. That sort of daily exertion really made me question my already substantial technical clothing. Simply put, I was not happy with what I had.
Read more here
We recently had our brick-and-mortar store on St-Denis renovated, and we walked away with not only a more beautiful store, but important realizations about outdoor apparel thanks to our interaction with the construction workers. The renovations were done by two guys who spend a lot of their time outside in the city working for hours on end, rain or shine, hot or cold. As the work progressed they began to tell us construction horror stories, such as a day in November where they had to redo siding in the rain for eight hours. After a few minutes they were completely soaked and had to constantly rotate clothes throughout the miserable day. Needless to say they were not happy, but the job had to be done.
We didn't understand?
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Canada Goose has been making extremely warm down jackets for years. Everyone knows about the Expedition Parka, the Resolute Parka, and the Snow Mantra Parka, as models that mean business when winter strikes. Serious jackets for serious climates. And climates are the exact reason they produced (and still do) models such as these; they were selling a lot of product to people in the North who work(ed) in frigid conditions. I don't mean cold, I mean cold.
However, Canada Goose realized most of us do not live or work in the Arctic Circle so they have been graciously bringing out new models for less extreme conditions. The Burnett jacket and Lodge hoody are two such models, that may in fact be much more practical for the likes of you and me.
Read more about the Burnett and Lodge hoody here
Looking back on all the articles we have written about bomber-style jackets I begin to notice a serious bias towards men's models. Year after year we sell out of the women's bomber-style jackets, yet the focus remains on men. Not on my watch. I am going to remedy this ASAP.
In this article I want to compare the Canada Goose Chilliwack, a classic in the bomber-style jacket market to the Nobis Audrina, a more recent addition. We will have a look at their similarities and a few differences as well. Come with me now on a journey through aviation history (but mostly about jackets, honestly).
Read more about the Chilliwack and Audrina here
Every now and then I discover a piece of gear that is revolutionary. Not an improvement on something I already have, but a new invention altogether. Something that opens up new doors and gives me new capabilities. Something I always needed, but I just didn't know it.
I caught my first glimpse of the GoPro over a year ago when we received the HD Hero 2. I had a vague notion of GoPro as a camera brand, but didn't really know much about it. The HD Hero 2 was a small and neat looking thing but I didn't think of it as much more than a gimmick. Truth is, I’m not much of a photographer and for all the cool sports that I do, I rarely bother to film any of it.
But as time went by, videos started surfacing by the thousand on YouTube. It seemed that everyone doing anything cool was capturing it on a GoPro. Not only that, but the videos look amazing. The images were crisp, fluid and high-def. Before long I was having hours-long session of sports-porn watching behind video-after-video of waterfall drops, wingsuit jumps, aeroacrobatic skydives, rally drifts, rock and ice climbs, speed boating, dirt biking, extreme ironing and underwater basketweaving. All filmed on this curious little device.
Read more GoPro review here
Ski season is upon us and I can only assume you have already purchased your ski kit. The jacket and pant combo is arguably the most important to stay warm and look good during the ski season. But what about the rest? Socks are super important, but no fun to write about, gloves or mitts are great, but I'm not in the mood today. Goggles- now those can be fun to play with.
When you foresee purchasing ski goggles you will undoubtedly end up looking into Oakley. They are renowned for making some of the best goggles around. Find out why as I look at a game-changer in the goggle industry: the Oakley Airbrake Snow.
Read more about the Airbrake Snow here
Fashion trends come and go, but some stay with us for the long haul. Bell bottom pants do not fit into this category. Peacoat jackets do. Having existed since the 1700's, and made for cold conditions, the peacoat is a sure-fire choice when the temperatures drop. The fact they are aesthetically pleasing never hurts either.
Historically made with heavy wool, the peacoat needed a serious revamp on the technological side. The North Face and Nobis have both done so by taking the classic look and integrating new fabrics, technologies, and life into the aging peacoat.
Read more about the peacoats here
- February 18, 2013 15 New Brands – No.9 Smartwool Merino Clothing in Events, What’s New?
- February 15, 2013 Snapshot of Spring ’13 products: Icebreaker, Bogs & Lolë in What’s New?
- February 15, 2013 15 New Brands – No.8 Moncler in Events, What’s New?
- February 12, 2013 How to get an additional 20% discount on outdoor gear! in Events, What’s New?
- February 11, 2013 A Bright Idea: LuminAID light review in Product Reviews, What’s New?
- February 08, 2013 Canada Goose: Thermal Experience Index in Tips, What’s New?
- February 05, 2013 Arc’teryx Alpha SV jacket: a calculated review in Product Reviews
- February 05, 2013 Buy More, Save More: Get an additional 20% off when you buy 2 or more products* in Events, What’s New?
- February 01, 2013 What is a DWR? in Tips
- January 31, 2013 Fjallraven Kanken school pack: a retro review in Product Reviews, What’s New?
- January 29, 2013 Top Secret: Arc’teryx, Sorel, The North Face and more in Events, What’s New?
- January 21, 2013 Outdoor Retail Show 2013: the products of tomorrow in Events, What’s New?
- January 18, 2013 Patagonia R3 Hi-Loft jacket: breathability at its finest in Product Reviews
- January 14, 2013 Tough Gear for Tough People: Arc’teryx, Patagonia, and more in Product Reviews, Tips
- January 11, 2013 Canada Goose Burnett jacket and Lodge hoody in Product Reviews, What’s New?