Athena’s First Camping Experience

oTENTik in Fundy National ParkOne of the items on this year’s bucket list was to take Athena camping. I’m embarrassed to say that she’s never been before, especially since I loved camping as a child and it’s one of my earliest memories. We wanted her first overnight camping experience to be in eastern Canada so it would be similar to what I remembered as a child. We packed our bags and made our way to Fundy National Park in New Brunswick to experience camping like never before for all of us. Continue reading

Ultimate Camping Gear

With summer just around the corner, I have camping and hiking on the brain. Although I’ve transitioned to more local/car camping trips, I still look forward to quality gear that is easy to set up and ultra light weight. I’ve found the best of the best and I can’t wait to take Athena on her first official camping weekend.

Big Agnes Copper Spur UL3

Big Agnes’s Copper Spur UL3 is just right in almost every camping situation. At 3lb 14oz and plenty of space, it beats out the competition where it matters most.  The Big Agnes Copper Spur Ultralight 3-Person 3-Season Tent gives you enough room to move at night without adding too much weight to your pack. Thanks to gram-saving poles and a silicone-treated, ultralight nylon rainfly, it offers 44 sq. ft. of space at an ultralight weight. The lightweight hubs, featherlite pole system with press fit connectors, color-coded rainfly attachments, and curved clips make the Copper Spur quick and easy to pitch, while abundant mesh, two roof vents, and good cross-ventilation kept warm nights cool and cold nights condensation-free ($499.95; www.bigagnes.com/). Continue reading

Waterproof Packing Made Easy – Exped Torrent 50

Backpacking, caving, biking, mountaineering, canyoneering, paddling… the list of adventures where you need to keep your gear dry goes on and on. The Exped Torrent 50 backpack keeps water away from your precious gear so it stays dry and you stay carefree. Take on wet conditions with this waterproof pack that offers welded seams and waterproof closures. If you find yourself battling wet conditions, this should be your go-to pack. Continue reading

Ultimate Hiking Gear

Some gear is just too good to pass up!

Sherpa Resham 3-Layer Jacket

Built to deflect wind and rain, the Resham Jacket is one streamlined, high-performance piece of equipment. The fabric is an ultra-light, 3-layer polyurethane laminate that’s both waterproof and breathable. Every seam is sealed for durable water repellency. And when you need to ventilate your core on the ascent, unzip the front hand pockets – they’re lined in mesh. The collar is extra tall for maximum face coverage, and the hood adjusts around the face via interior front pulls; volume control is done via a device at the back of the head ($199;http://www.sherpaadventuregear.com).

*Sherpa Adventure Gear manufacturers 80% of their products in Nepal with a local workforce to support the local economy. They also employ actual Sherpas as brand ambassadors who use and test the products in the Himalayas. In short, the great Sherpas of Nepal are directly-benefited by the success of Sherpa AG.With a flagship store in Katmandu, Sherpa AG promotes the use of their products to all climbers and locals alike — offering jobs and opportunities for Sherpas and their families. Continue reading

“Darn Close to the Perfect Daypack for General Duty” – Gregory Z30

Backpacker Magazine claimed that the Gregory Z30 backpack was “Darn close to the perfect daypack for general duty”, and I knew I needed to check it out for myself. The Z30 is part of Gregory’s ‘Fast and Light’ series, which probably tells you everything you need to know. The company says the intention is to “strike a balance between low weight and durability without sacrificing performance”. The positives are endless: the suspension system is lightweight and the thin shoulder straps and hip-belt are wide enough to distribute pressure; the pockets are endless; and the single main compartment of the Z30 is long and wide enough to make loading easy. This ventilated hiking pack is ideal for light and fast overnights and daily hikes. Continue reading

Performance at its Best: Jetboil Sol Ti Premium Cooking System

Open any camping, hiking, or trekking magazine and you’ll find the Jetboil. What makes the Jetboil system so appealing? the answer is simple: convenience plus efficiency. The Jetboil Sol Ti Premium Cooking System is a self-contained cooking system made with the solo hiker in mind. The Jetboil Sol shaved ounces off the weight by including a small, thin, light cup made of titanium, as well as trimming down the plastic housing that surrounds the burner head. Jetboil also incorporated their new Thermo-Regulate Technology into the new Sol cook system.  With a heat exchanger built right into the pot, the stove delivers astonishing fuel efficiency and ultra-short boil times.The Jetboil Sol Ti Premium Cooking System is Jetboil’s lightest and most technically advanced integrated canister fuel cooking system. Continue reading

Ultimate, Integrated Cooking & Eating Solution – The GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Camper

A camping trip to somewhere completely remote without computers, television, and cell
service would be right up my alley… a year ago. With the arrival of my bundle of joy came some limitations for now. A more current reality is camping where walking back to the car to get all the good for dinner is the only hiking involved. Maybe some of you are capable of hiking Everest with a baby strapped to your front and everything you need to survive for a month strapped to your back and all I have to say about that is more power to you. As for me, I’ll stick to my campsite twenty minutes away from home. One of the advantages to this is that I can bring more than I can personally carry, including cookware. There is no better way to end a day outdoors with my family than a proper meal, and the GSI Pinnacle Camper is the ultimate, integrated cooking and eating solution. Continue reading