A good fleece should be part of everyone's travel or camping arsenal. It’s great for layering, has an excellent warmth-to-weight ratio, and retains body heat even when wet. Given the vast array of fleeces available, it's worth considering the conditions under which you expect a certain piece to perform, as well as the purpose you hope it will serve. In a sea of fuzzy choices, these criteria will help you determine whether a $180 miracle of thermal technology is overkill for your needs or if a $50 budget pick might leave you wanting more.Read More
I've reached the point in my life where a knife is not just a camping accessory or a tool for the outdoors. It has become a part of my every-day-carry arsenal. It helps with everything from whittling a marshmallow stick to opening my mail. Knives are one of those products with a vast price and quality range. You can spend 10 bucks for something you won’t mind accidentally dropping in a lake or you can spend upwards of $500 for a custom Benchmade that'll last a lifetime. For most people, though, the best value will be somewhere in the middle. Simply said, you want high quality materials, a long-lasting edge, and comfortable ease of use at an affordable price.Read More
Along with good footwear, a solid and comfortable pack is one of those pivotal pieces of gear that can make or break a hiking trip. It helps keep all the rest of your gear organized, accessible, and comfortably transportable. I've actually had the same pack for the majority of my life – the Gregory Baltoro – and it has comfortably lasted through many trips and many hundreds of miles on the trail.Read More
West Virginia. Wintertime. The first and last time I went cold-weather camping. I woke up to sub-zero temperatures, 2 feet of fresh-fallen snow, and no feeling at all in my feet. Even though I had slept in wool socks, wrapped in a warm sleeping bag and sheltered in a tent, my toes felt like icy metal to the touch. It was not until I left them dangerously close to the morning campfire for a frighteningly long time that feeling began to creep back into my poor numb digits. I wish this sort of experience on no one. But fortunately for poor sods like me, advances in sock technology can make both cold winter months and long summer hikes infinitely more enjoyable.
So let's talk socks.Read More
If you could imagine the perfect t-shirt for all of your outdoor endeavors, what would it be like? If you're anything like me, your perfect shirt would be lightweight, fast drying, sweat-wicking, odor-resistant, reasonably priced, and tough as nails. The great news is that but for the durability component, that dream shirt exists.Read More
When my old Petzl Tikka Plus breathed its last breath a few years ago, I began looking for a new lightweight all-purpose headlamp to suit my outdoor and travel needs. My criteria were fairly simple: long battery life, moderate brightness, red light capable, comfortable, and a price of less than $50. Salvation came in the form of the Black Diamond Spot.Read More
A good hiking shoe or boot might be the most important piece of gear you have. It can determine whether your trip ends in elation or blistering defeat. What kind of foot support you want depends a lot both on personal preference and what kind of hiking you are doing.Read More
The internet is a place where speed is everything. We want everything instantly and can communicate almost as fast as we can think. But amidst all that constant connectivity, perhaps we have lost sight of ourselves. I invite you to take this opportunity to slow down.Read More
I have been finding a lot of inspiration lately in the words of others. I thought I would take this time and share some of the thoughts and insights on life that I've been cherishing.Read More
Here's a nice roundup of a variety of inspiring and thought-provoking websites worth checking out when you get a chance.
1X - Quite possibly the most amazing collection of photographs I have ever seen in one place. Get lost in the beauty.
500px - Another stunning selection of photography. Browse hundreds of collections by both professional and amateur camera junkies.
The Cool Hunter - Beautiful architecture and design from around the world.
Crispme - A great source for art and design inspiration. Features gorgeous photography, vivid illustrations, and artist highlights.
High Existence - Ponder life in a variety of ways. Inspiring quotes, thoughtful articles, and tons of other thought-provoking material.
The Quiet Place - Take some time to relax.
I've had a number of friends recently ask me about the best way to go about transferring a DVD collection to digital format. Since I've got more experience working with a Mac, and all the requests I've gotten are from fellow Mac users, I'll focus on them for this post. PC and Linux users, no hard feelings.Read More
As a Mac user, I'm always on the lookout for fresh programs and simpler and cheaper alternatives to expensive bloated software. Here are some of the Mac gems I've discovered over the years that have been particularly useful. Best of all? Theses are all free.Read More
So, in the interest of posting some content, I wanted to take the chance to share some of the resources that I've found incredibly helpful over the past several years in my design work. A simple google search for a phrase such as "photoshop brushes" or "desktop wallpapers" will yield thousands of results. Among these you can find hundreds of design and graphics-related sites available to designers, if you're willing to cull through pages of results. For the purposes of this post, I'm trying to focus on those resources that I have used the most over the years and found to be consistently reliable, packed with solid content, and refreshingly inspiring.Read More