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Dual Snowboards Create a New Meaning For Splitboard

Splitboards typically refer to boards that are split down the length of the board, turning into two skis for ascending mountains. Dual Snowboards has what you could call a downhill splitboard. The board is split into two across the width, giving you two separate snow skates of sorts. Why would you want two separate boards? Quite frankly, I have no idea. These things look like a twisted ankle or ball-numbing split waiting to happen. I'd...
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The Gifts You Really Wanted: New Gear and Fear for a New Year

The holidays are over. The family is back home (thankfully). The leftovers are tucked neatly in the way back of the fridge (better get rid of those). Once again, it's officially life as we know it. One problem: All the fanfare, the twinkling lights, the booze, the wrapping paper ... and you still haven't gotten what you wanted. Hopefully what you did get was a couple of Christmas cards with checks or bills in them,...
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5 “Big Gifts” For the Outdoor Lover

Growing up, the patriarchs of my family made a Christmas tradition of the “big gift." Similar to Ralphie’s father saving the Official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle until after all the other presents were accounted for, my grandfather and father would save the biggest gift for last. Sometimes they’d tell me to open a certain gift last; other times they’d hide the gift in a distant corner of house or car, revealing...
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Forget the Pot...The Kelly Kettle is a Smarter Way to Boil Water

At the summer's Outdoor Retailer, I came across a new piece of gear that is actually more than a century old. The Kelly Kettle was invented in Ireland in the 1890s but is just now making it over to the United States. The kettle is an all-in-one solution for boiling water for cooking and purification. Its double-wall design leaves a hollow center that fuels the flames like a chimney stove. Simply start a fire in...
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Review: Baffin Scott, a Great Apres Ski Shoe

For the past several years, I've been looking for the ideal apres ski shoe - essentially a I've warm, waterproof shoe that I could get on and off easily without dunking my foot in cold, muddy ski-parking swamp (I prefer standing outside my hatch when I'm changing in and out of my snowboard gear). I've found it in the Baffin Scott clog after testing a sample last winter. The insulated shoes are rated down -4...
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Recon Instruments Skydiving GPS Goggles

  Recon Instruments has already revolutionized the way we track vert, distance and other measures on the ski slopes, now it's leaping off the mountain. Recon's new Flight HUD goggles use the sensor and GPS hardware from its ski goggles to provide a direct-to-eye read-out of forward speed, glide ratio and altitude for informational purposes. The system is designed for skydivers, BASE jumpers and wingsuiters. As in its ski system, the information appears on a...
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Cuissential SlickBoil Collapsible Kettle

Ordinarily I don't buy outdoor gear at kitchen supply stores, but the Cuissential SlickBoil looks pretty..well, slick. Like those collapsible cups that some people use for camping and backpacking, only in kettle form, the silicone kettle packs small (2.5 inches thick) and expands into a cooking tool. I'd imagine you'd want to avoid a campfire, but its stainless steel base should be plenty comfortable on a stove. It boils up to 4 cups of water....
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Old Brands Become New Faces In the Winter Outerwear Market

After much of ski country suffered one of the warmest, most disappointing winters on record, hope is on the horizon. The 2012-13 is weeks away, and hopefully it proves a little colder and snowier than winter 2011-12. Because the winter outerwear market, which already seems flush with competitors, is about to get even bigger. Last winter, several outdoor industry staples announced the launch of a new outerwear line, which was just a tad ironic given...
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Grill Gadgets and Essentials

For me, grilling is a year-round affair. Whether it's a blizzardy, 0-degree night in January or a warm, humid afternoon in June, dinner (and lunch) tastes better when served sizzling and smoking off the grill. There may be no better time than the early fall, though. Mid-summer may be the most popular grill season, but cool sunny days, Saturday and Sunday afternoons filled with football games, and exploding colors make autumn an ideal time to...
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New GSI Accessories Bring Single Malt to Camp

GSI is adding to its already impressive line of alcohol-in-the-wild accessories. The 750-ml Highland Fifth ($9.95) and 275-ml Highland Flask ($5.95) are basically just repackaged Scotch versions of GSI's soft polypropylene wine bottle. The bottles combine with the new Highland Glasses ($7.95 ea) for the perfect pour. Whether you like your whiskey Scotched, bourboned or Caniadianed, you can now enjoy it anywhere, in style. The Highland accessories are part of GSI's 2013 collection.
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The World Outside GoPro: 5 Action Cam Alternatives

GoPro cameras, and their footage, have become a ubiquitous part of outdoor and action sports of all types and levels. While a handful of competitors like Drift and Contour have served as alternatives, GoPro has ruled the roost. Competition doesn't appear to be capitulating, however. A recent visit to the Outdoor Retailer show revealed more 1080p action cam alternatives than ever. Sony HDR-AS15 Action Cam Sony fully detailed its new HDR-AS15 Action Cam this week....
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Snow Peak Lapel Torch Lights Up Your Collar

It seems that Snow Peak launches an innovative new light every summer. In the past, we've seen the miniHozuki Lantern and SnowMiner headlamp, among others. This summer, it's the Lapel Torch. The new light is a headlamp alternative that uses a magnetic clip to secure to your collar, pocket, jacket, hat, etc. etc. The small, square lithium ion pack can be stored in a pocket or clipped to your clothing. You can also stick the...
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Tent Tech Madness: Composites, Inflatables and Magnets Invade Tent Market

More so than any other Outdoor Retailer I've attended over the past few years, this year's show included some serious tent innovation and technology. At no other show can I say that I've seen not one, but two ~$2,000 tents. And from no other show do I recall a family tent that pitches in less than a minute. I didn't even make it to the outdoor "tent city," but the show floor itself was simply...
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Grower's Cup Coffeebrewer Coming to US

A couple of weeks ago, we took a look at the Grower's Cup Coffeebrewer, which is essentially a small pot of Joe in a bag. At the time, we didn't see any sign of US availability, but that's about to change. Colorado-based Sport Hansa, which imports a lot of gear from the Scandinavian/northern European market, will be bringing Grower's Cup to US retailers, including Campsaver.com. The press release doesn't list pricing but says that it...
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Black Diamond Voyager Lantern-Flashlight

One of the latest products to hail from Black Diamond, the Voyager Lantern packs a lantern and torch into one. Unlike the Eureka! Magic 185, Black Diamond uses two separate bulbs for lantern and flashlight functions. An 80-lumen LED bulb combines with a frosted globe for lantern functions, while a 50-lumen bulb at the lantern's base gives you quick access to a torch. The lantern and flashlight function separately but can also be used together....
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Breaking Out of the Mold: New Hydration Systems Keep it Clean

Dilemma: It's early spring and you're about to break trail on a 20-mile hike. You step out the door to load the car and find your old, moldy hydration bladder buried deep in your trunk. Turns out, you never cleaned it after last fall's epic, and it's a grimy, moldy mess. Solution(s): Yes, you could wash it out. But that takes time and may leave your water supply tasting like cleaning agents. You could also...
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New Therm-a-Rest Sleeping Bags Strap to Your Pad

Therm-a-Rest, a Cascade Designs company best known for its inflatable sleeping pads, has introduced a line of seven sleeping bags designed to work with those pads. The bags use "SynergyLink" straps to keep you centered on your sleeping pad, providing a still, comfortable and insulated night of sleep. Another interesting design element is in the concentration of loft in the top of the bag. Since your sleeping pad insulates from underneath, Therm-a-Rest wagers that you...
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Form Follows Function: Multi-Tools in Strange Packages

Multi-tools don't need to look the same. They need to get the job done. These multi-tools don't really look like multi-tools at all. But they do look like they get the job done. Like a boss. Wenger HypeX We've covered Wenger HypeX in the past, and the "toolery" certainly fits the bill here. A series of multi-tools built into necklaces, HypeX has earned itself the "Wenger" name (that's one of the two big Swiss Army...
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Grower's Cup Coffeebrewer is a French Press in a Bag

There's no shortage of outdoor brewing solutions, but we're always interested to see a new one, especially one that's remarkably easy. The Coffeebrewer from Grower's Cup is basically a big, pre-filled, enclosed coffee filter in a bag. All you need to do is pour a half-liter of hot water in it, and you have yourself three cups of coffee. The downside is that it takes 5 - 8 minutes to steep and brew, so there'll...
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A New Type of Energy Bar: Cricket Bar

When it comes to energy bars and mixes, protein is the name of the game. Usually that protein comes in the form of nuts, but in the case of the Chapul Bar, it comes by way of crickets. While it derives protein from crickets, the "world's first cricket bar" isn't the chocolate slathered pile of crunchy night-swooners that you might envision. Chapul bakes the crickets and then grinds them into a sort of flour. The...
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