Monday, October 3, 2011



words/images Judith Ecochard

Lighter=faster=technically better -operative words for many outdoor gear/apparel companies --- are mission critical for us when we go backpacking-as we can't haul heavy packs and equipment on the trails...and unless we're on some tour led, far-flung jaunt, it's up to us to carry what we need.

Clif ROKS=our protein supply @ OR
CLIF Bar & Company have been sponsors of OR for years...and is a leader in good for you nutrition, organically inclined-of which the yummy Luna Bars and Clif Roks ---are part of the yummy mix for tradeshow goers.

Funny how we always manage to swing by their set-up, at least once a matter where the this past show-next to the climbing zone.

High protein LUNA BARS

WHAT's New...

CLIF BARS keeps our palette happy with new and seasonal flavors of their delish and satisfyingly crunchy "sustained" energy bars...packed with vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber ( no hydrogenated oils)-------and composed of 70% organic ingredients.

In theory, we were supposed to share a batch of the latest ---Apricot, Coconut Chocolate Chip, and Peanut Butter Toffee Buzz ®(with caffeine) with our hiking buddies-as the bars are highly portable.

But truth be soon as we 'demoed' the first one, a fab chewy/crispy Apricot-with organic oats and dried apricots-sweetened with organic rice syrup that gives us a boost of energy---not the headaches corn syrup would----

...we knew the rest of the Clif Bar samples would never make it out of our apartment.
even the cat just got the leftovers-empty wrappers
Given the high nutritional value of each bar-including 9-10 grams of protein, 50% of vitamins C/E, 25% calcium etc....(percent of daily values based on a 2000 calorie diets)---we thought these 2.4 oz bars...with a satisfying mix of textures...great dessert options, let alone ideal as a healthy snack for the great outdoors.

Also now available:  the popular limited edition holiday flavors-Spiced Pumpkin Pie, Iced Gingerbread ---and the Peppermint Stick...made with same winning mix of tasty, authentic ingredients that manages to provide a wise balance of protein, carbs and fiber- for athletes and lazy types who couldn't bother with cooking up something so good.

ADDED PLUS: Clif Bar will donate 1 percent of net sales from the holiday-inspired flavors to Winter Wildlands Alliance. (SRP $1.39)

HIGH PEAK® outdoor gear, a German company---has backpacks, sleeping bags and tents ...and also match maked up with the patented,  and we think, inventive TentPak Systems for hardcore haulers - that was developed in Indonesia- after the massive Tsunami disaster of a few years ago...

----now up to USA standards---the resulting backpacks-including one that's even compact enough to fit behind a helicopter seat ---all have a built-in rugged, lightweight emergency shelter for 1-4 people-that's 3-4 season appropriate-depending on the system chosen...AND only adds 4 to 6 lbs to the load. Amazing AND potentially life -saving gear--- for not a lot of added money or added weight----(low $300s)

tent zips in lower part
rescue ready eye poppin' color-two top lid pockets
Some packs we saw with this system---include the Adrenalin 60-with a 3 season tent...roomy enough for sleeping bags---and a toplid that detaches to serve as a fanny pack...clever...

detachable hipbelt, Vario harness system, Mesh Backing, Pre-Formed Alum Suspension bar, EVA foam shoulder straps

TentPak is removable too----

convenient fanny pack/top lid for when gear is left at campsite---just need some essentials for the hike like first aid kit

The Kathmandu  ---- made of Diamond Ripstop Nylon/600D Polyester PU-as are all the packs-has a 10 liter extension---detachable toplid, main compartment with divider and 2 zippers, plus- similar atributes to what the Adrenalin has----in a more streamlined construction (weighs 5lbs, 6 oz).


Rain cover and sound compression straps

room for sleeping bag

Top lid that detaches

sturdy clip buckles/emergency whistle

hip angles to comfy fit

side pockets, ice ax holder, 

lumbar straps-removable from hood

The EVEREST 75 - also part of the TentPak System---is a multi-access backpack (front, side, back) -with anti-gravtty zippers to prevent gear spillage.

PLUS- a skull cavity in the back- "carved out so you can keep your back and neck straight."

Thicker foam on hips

internal back panel micro-adjustment harness system...


Nasty bug bites or painful sunburn are two not fun ways to ruin any outdoor endeavor.

ALL TERRAIN® has been naturally protecting our skin and soothing our muscles (Recovery Rub-with menthol and arnica) for awhile...and now has very smartly, licensed the Disney® characters Phineas & Ferb® (the #1 rated animated TV series for 6-14 year olds)---to get the mini-me's motivated when it comes to using the oxybenzone-free and paraben free Kidsport™ SPF 30 Lotion and Spray (rated "top sunscreen" by the influential Environmental Working Group) 

Also in the Phineas & Ferb® camp-sunburn gel and Herbal Armor™ Insect Repellant-deet-free , naturally effective 2-3 hours.

Equally effective on adult skin---and a welcome compliment to this family  of all natural, chemical free products for backpackers-or for the backyard.


KLYMIT's genius argon gas insulation jackets and Inertia X-Frame sleeping pads (our review)---are on many best outdoor gear lists.

New at the recent OR show last August---a 3/4 length Inertia X-Lite $89.95 sleeping pad that weighs all of 6 ounces and rolls down into ---a tiny clipped thing....

Body mapping guarantees support where needed....

Without the Argon canisters----comfort without the bulk-ready to be inflated



We would argue a massive, souped up espresso machine complete with a speedy server would be an ideal sight on any summit. This gal worked non-stop---dosing out caffeine laden beverages in the popular Paddle Zone.