Columbia Mobex Sprint Backpack

, July 27, 2011

The Columbia Mobex Sprint is a scaled down version of the original Mobex, a forerunner to Columbia’s trail running launch collection. If anything, the smaller nature of the Sprint has further … Read more

Vivo Barefoot Neo

, July 25, 2011

Vivio Barefoot and its parent company Terra Plana offer a range of ‘barefoot’ shoes that cover everything from smart office wear to serious athletic shoes. Barefoot footwear bases itself on the idea that the closest experience between the sole of the foot and the ground is the best, supported by Vivo’s guide to barefoot running that takes you from your first bambi-like steps in barefoot shoes to gazelle-like bounding. I’ve been testing the Neo, Vivio’s designated cross-training shoe.

Old Favourite: Helly Hansen Lifa Stripe Crew

, July 3, 2011

I’m moving towards the core with this review, away from the shell garments discussed in the earlier ‘old favourites’ blogs. The Helly Hansen Lifa Stripe Crew is my favourite baselayer and in twenty years of running, mountaineering, climbing and cycling I’ve tried many alternatives, but none do everything a baselayer needs to do as well as the humble Lifa.

Aqua Sphere Vista Goggle Review

, June 20, 2011

Promoted by the growth of triathlon and participation by high profile adventurers, open water swimming’s reputation is rapidly being revitalised. Endowed with fresh water lakes, rivers and temperate coastal waters, the UK is perhaps the best starting point for the sports rebirth. Romantic and natural, open water swimming benefits from the lack of gear and an unrivalled connection with a novel environment. Goggles are however a must-have item, and require a certain degree of specicifity in the open water. Aqua Sphere specific focus on swimming gear and are particuarly relevant for open water swimmers with their collection of wide-angle swim goggles. I’ve been testing the Vista in the Great Swim Series – here’s what I thought.

Old Favourite: Montane Slipstream GL Jacket

, May 25, 2011

The Montane Slipstream GL Jacket shares a common thread with the first ‘old favourite’ review in that this too is a pertex garment. As you may have gathered in the previous blog I’m quite a fan of this brilliant windproof material. Essentially the Slipstream jacket is an ultra-light, single-layer windshirt made with the very lightest pertex available: Pertex Quantum Gossamer-Light. Montane, like Rab, are a British company which designs in the UK but manufacturers abroad. They have an established reputation with outdoor professionals and their products are deservingly popular with mountain rescue teams, the emergency services and the military. Montane specialises in windshells, softshells, hard-shells and pertex and pile garments.

POC Sports Print Glove

, March 9, 2011

Founded in 2004, POC are a young Swedish company who started out specialising in snow sports protection. They have now seamlessly segued into three main areas: snowsports, cycling and eyewear. Pushing environmental awareness, POC’s ‘Bug Series’ is an innovative range of protective gear of which 1% of each purchase is donated to an project in the Amazon Rainforest.

Gore Bike Wear Cross Glove

, March 5, 2011

After a wet and cold winter season over 2009/2010, I decided to go big for this winter. I’ve been riding the Cross Glove from Gore Bike Wear. These gloves are Gore’s most substantial offering and are packed with features; A fully waterproof GORE-TEX® lining, adjustable elasticated cuffs and a soft thumb, ideal for winter snot-mopping. They are much bulkier that the Endura glove with a noticeable reduction in control over the bike, making them unsuitable for mountain bike duty. On a recent 5-hour training ride in the Scottish highlands these gloves coped with wind, snow and rain. My fingers remained tepid during the long decent from the Cairngorm ski centre, with past experience telling me my hands should be freezing. From now on these gloves will be my first choice for cold, wet days. However if I think I can get away with a lighter weight glove then I will switch out for the Endura Strike.

Armada JJ (2011) Powder Ski

, February 2, 2011

Although relative newcomers to the snow scene, Armada have quickly risen to become market leaders in freeride skiing and boarding equipment. Their focused product range and professional technology puts their skis are at the top of their class. The JJ is their flagship all mountain powder ski. With all the aspects that a modern powder ski should have – tip and tail freeride rocker, AR50 sidewalls, a 50/50 Base and a hybrid ultra core – I thought a testing was in order.

Giro Atmos

, January 22, 2011

Five years ago, there were a number of superficial reasons to purchase the Giro Atmos. As the brand’s top offering, it represented the protection of choice for a number of Pro … Read more

SmartWool PhD Ski Sock

, January 13, 2011

The Smartwool PhD light sock is manufactured from Merino wool and utilizes SmartWool’s 4-Degree Fit System, which puts more cushioning where it’s needed for skiing and ski mountaineering. While any pair of socks will wear out in time, Smartwool have managed an ethical portfolio to defend that fresh pair feel.

Norrona Narvik GTX Pant

, January 13, 2011

The Norrona Narvik shell pant is a versatile piece of ski outerwear.  It has a  3-layer Gore-Tex construction with reinforced inner leg panels to prevent sharp edges tearing the fabric. … Read more

Biosafe Solutions

, January 10, 2011

Biosafe Solutions is a Scottish business which supplies alternative, non-toxic cleaning products. The company provide an environmentally safe solution that functions in the same way as a conventional cleaning product,  … Read more

Garmin Edge 500 GPS

, December 29, 2010

First of all, the basics: the Edge 500 is the successor to the Edge 305, though could perhaps be best seen as a stripped-down, smaller, lighter version of the 705. It really is a remarkable package: light and compact, yet offering 41 options to choose from displayed on up to eight customisable fields per ‘page’, of which there are three available for full customisation.The main point of departure is the lack of GPS mapping; though for me this was of little importance and if this is something you consider essential then you are well-catered for by the new, touch-screen successor to the 705, the Edge 800.

MSR Evo Ascent 22 Snowshoe

, December 22, 2010

MSR Evo AscentThe MSR Evo Ascent 22 is a US-manufactured all-terrain snowshoe. It has a modular construction with the option of attaching a 6 inch tailpiece when carrying extra weight or walking in deep powder.

Gore Running Wear Air Lady Jacket

, November 27, 2010

Since 1997, Gore Running Wear has sought to combine the best possible materials and technologies in high-tech apparel for runners.  The Gore Air Lady jacket combines Windstopper® technology with mesh vents … Read more