Gear and Clothing
Saturday, September 10, 2005
Suggested Retail:$69.95

Color or Scent: Black and Orange

Reviewer Info:

I have a shorter torso and tend to like a bit more frame support. I also generally don’t prefer top loading packs as you have to dig for the stuff at the bottom and as a guide, you are invaribly carring a lot of everything.

At first glance:

Love how light the pack is as well as all the features that I look for (bladder pocket for a one liter hydration system, side mesh pockets for waterbottles with security strapp, mesh back pocket and bundgie,zippered waist belt pockets,two zippered pockets on the top hood) and lots of room inside if you need it.  You can fit a ton of stuff inside and outside the pack and there are just enough pockets and excessories to keep it interesting without loosing your stuff in TOO many pocket.

Details:

Jazz Pack
  Series: Specialty Travel Description: Jazz Pack  
  Style: K08-35 Fabric: 200 d rip  
  Color: Size(LxHxW): 13 ” x 20 ” x 5 ” (33cm x 51cm x 13cm) 
  Weight: 1.75 lbs (.8 kg) Capacity: 1300 cu inches (21 litres) 

Through the Ringer:

I used this pack for 5 weeks leading hiking tours in the Dolomites, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and St. Petersburg.

What I Liked:

Light, place for everything, easy to figure out, good waist belt.  Well thought out design.

Room for Improvement:

Too long for me (need a women’s model!).  I would prefer more of a frame as my shoulders started hurting when I had too much weight in it. The chest strap kept slipping down as it doesn’t have a secure fastener.

Ideal for:

Adventure Racing
Day Hiking
Travel Hiking as you can put it in your suitcase
General all around great pack

Reviewed by Kathy Dragon

Read all articles by Kathy Dragon
(0) Comments | (0) Trackbacks | Tell-a-Friend | Link It
Saturday, September 10, 2005
Suggested Retail:$70

Size: sm


Color or Scent: Chocolate

Reviewer Info:

I wasn’t sure about the GymGirl as the challenge of these skirts with shorts under is always if the shorts will ride up, and stay up. I had spoke with Nicole about my concern. When they deveolped it they realized that their is some “rising” but the shorts tend to stay put once you begin to sweat a bit.

As much as I love the color, chocolate with pink piping, finding a matching tank is a bit of a challenge and, when you have something that makes this much of a statement, you want to complete the outfit.

At first glance:

I’ve seen these great skirts around town as they are made by local professional triathlete Nicole DeBoom. They jump off the rack and you can spot them on the trails…I couldn’t wait to try one. I met up with Nicole for a few minutes at Outdoor Divas and introduced her to ActiveWomen.com and she was excited to have us review her skirts.  So far there are five styles:

The TransitionGirl, a mesh skirt for competition.
The MarathonGirl, a running skirt with “spankies” sewn inside.
The GymGirl, with mesh “shorties” sewn inside.
The SchoolGirl, a plaid pleated skirt for fashionistas.
The PartyGirl, a skirt that can go from beach to nightclub.

Details:

Today I took the chocolate GymGirl on one of my favorite trail runs in South Boulder…the Doudy Draw loop.  It was prefect late summer a sunny Saturday (pretty typical), 82 degrees and a light wind.
The skirt is short!, about the length of some of my shorter running shorts. I had tested out the PartyGirl skirt which is significantly longer (but not too long!) and perfect for the evening.  I adjusted the pink shorts underneath, clipped on my Ipod, and Mila (see photo) and I were off.

I must say that I was suprised at how well the undershorts stayed put. They were comfortable if you are used to wearing thongs (like the wonderful Patagonia thongs) but take some getting used to if you haven’t worn something similar.  The skirt length, which I had been concerned about, was pefect. The short slits on the side actually allowed some extra wind under but not too much to feel like the skirt was moving about.

While I was running I felt great. It was like I had on a cute dress and everyone else was wearing jeans. Running in a skirt is kind of like having a bike jersey vs wearing a t-shirt biking. People look at you and you feel like you are making a statement!

Through the Ringer:

I made a couple of adjustments just to see if the shorts were pulling up. They definitely came up about 1 inch but then stayed put.  All and all a very positive experience!

What I Liked:

The newness of running with a skirt. The fabric and colors, the little inside pocket.
This is a perfect gym short, you’ll be the envy of everyone.

Room for Improvement:

I’d like to try the MarathonGirl for running…I don’t feel like I needed the shorts but rather a traditional running “spanky”.
The colors are great but would like to see a black, more all around but still fun, model.

Ideal for:

gym, cruiser biking about town

Reviewed by Kathy Dragon

Read all articles by Kathy Dragon
(0) Comments | (2) Trackbacks | Tell-a-Friend | Link It
Saturday, September 10, 2005
Suggested Retail:$29.98 /case of 12

Size: Serving Size: 1 bar (42g)


Color or Scent: Favorite: Fair Trade Espresso Chocolate

Reviewer Info:

  I’m a bit “barred” out and approach the new energy bars out there at an arms reach.  They have to be really good, healthy and interesting to take on an international hiking trip… but now the only challenge is which to choose from!

These bars come in a variety of unusual flavors…packaging is great and flavor is incredible.
Plums and Currents : The combination of plump currants and plums with roasted almonds and hemp nuts gives the perfect amount of sweetness to this incredibly satisfying snack.
Apricots and Cranberries:  The sweet tartness of cranberries and sun-ripened apricots combine for the ideal tangy taste experience.
Coconut, Mango & Pineapple:  The subtle flavor of the dried unsweetened coconut complements the mango and pineapple for a deliciously tropical treat. 
Fair Trade Dark Chocolate:  Rich dark chocolate, aside from making these bars absolutely incredible, is a high source of anti-oxidants,so you can have your cake and eat it, too! 
Fair Trade Espresso Chocolate: Nothing like a little espresso chocolate to give you that morning or afternoon buzz. Perfect at any time of the day

At first glance:

The packaging is different than most…not glossy or flashy but typical of Dr. Bronner’s products.  Nice muted colors consistent with associated product inners.

Details:

ALPSNACK energy bars contain hemp nut, an ancient food source that supplies high amounts of the two essential fatty acids (EFAs) omega-3 (over 500 mg) and omega-6 in perfect balance, as well as all essential amino acids with a high protein efficiency ratio.Organic, Gluten-Free, Vegan.

Ingredients: Organic Almonds, Organic Fair Trade Espresso Dark Chocolate (Organic Sugar, Organic Chocolate Liquor, Organic Cocoa Butter, Organic Coffee, Soy Lecithin, Organic Vanilla)*, Organic Hemp Nuts, Organic Plums, Organic Currants, Organic Apples, Organic Rice Crisps (Organic Rice Crisps, Organic Cane Sugar, Sea Salt), Organic Rice Syrup, Organic Lemon Juice, Natural Vitamin E *May contain traces of milk.

Nutrition
Facts
Serving Size: 1 bar (42g)
Servings: 1
Calories: 190
Fat Cal : 80  
Total Fat 9g 14% Total Carb. 25g 8%
Sat Fat 2.5g 13% Fiber 3g 12%
Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sugars 16g  
Sodium 125mg 5% Protein 5g  
   
*Percent Daily Values(DV) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
Vitamin A 0%  Vitamin C 0%  Calcium 4%  Iron 6% 

Through the Ringer:

If you really need to squeeze it in a pack, think soft cookie. They don’t break up but sort of crumble due to the fact that they are moist rather than cardboard like.

What I Liked:

The Espresso Chocolate is amazing! substantial little chunks fill the bar.

Room for Improvement:

A bit pricey.

Ideal for:

trail, work, travel snack that you feel really good about!

Reviewed by Kathy Dragon

Read all articles by Kathy Dragon
(0) Comments | (1) Trackbacks | Tell-a-Friend | Link It
Monday, September 05, 2005
Suggested Retail:Daypack $1.50, Tube $32

Size: Daypack .13 fl. oz. tube or 3 oz./88.7 ml


Reviewer Info:

I’ve had a bout with skin cancer on my nose so have to keep it REALLY covered.

At first glance:

I was given a couple of these “daypack” samples at the Outdoor Retail show in January of 2005. Perfect to store in your pack, car, purse…all the places you need a shot of sunscreen and generally forgot to move a bigger tube around.

Details:

Light, non-greasy and fast absorbing moisturizers Safe for sensitive skin - we don’t add any irritants like fragrance and coloring .
Provides protection from UVB and UVA long and short rays with truly full-spectrum Avobenzone.

There are only three sunscreen ingredients approved for use in the US that block UVA long rays. Long wavelength UVA rays penetrate deeper into the skin than UVB rays and can cause excessive dryness, fine lines and wrinkles, irregular skin pigmentation and even a weakening of the skin’s immune system, and cancer. They come through in overcast weather and they come through glass. You should make sure your sunscreen contains one of these three: Avobenzone (Parsol™ 1789), Titanium Dioxide or Zinc Oxide.

Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide are topical, that is they work by forming a barrier to the sun penetrating your skin. They are white and can be wiped off easily. Avobenzone is absorbed into your skin.

Through the Ringer:

I used this product in the Dolomites hiking (summer 2005 and it was HOT)...as well as in the Baltics (Estonia/Lithuania/Lativia) and St. Petersburg, Russia for three weeks.  If I hadn’t run out it would be with me on my upcoming Peru Women’s Trek Oct. 2005.

Great absorbtion and stays on through the sweat and high altitude conditions…

What I Liked:

LOVED it.  Pefect size, as I said, and just creamy enough to feel like you have something between you and the sun without feeling like you have a paste on.  Great protection for adventure travelers as well as athletes.
Small “daypack” tube that lasts much longer for small areas than they quote.

Room for Improvement:

Nothing really…well, when the small daypack tube runs low it is a bit difficult to get the last drops out!

Ideal for:

Putting in every place you might need sunscreen without having to have a bigger tube.
Ideal for trail runs, first aid kit, glove compartment, bike underseat pack, adventure race pack, smallest purse.

Reviewed by Kathy Dragon

Read all articles by Kathy Dragon
(6) Comments | (1) Trackbacks | Tell-a-Friend | Link It
Monday, September 05, 2005
Suggested Retail:$4.79

Size: 8 OZ


Color or Scent: Lavender

Read
Reviewer Info:

What does “Castile” mean? Is the bar soap also a castile soap like the liquid? What is the difference between the bar and liquid soaps? 
 
In earlier centuries, an all-vegetable based soap was made in the Castile region of Spain from local olive oil. By the turn of this century, “Castile” had come to mean any vegetable oil-based soap, versus animal (tallow) fat-based soap. “Pure-Castile” is now also your guarantee that what you are using is a real ecological and simple soap, not a complex blend of detergents with a higher ecological impact due to the waste stream during manufacture and slower biodegradability. Unfortunately, many synthetic detergent blends are deceptively labeled as “Liquid Soap” even when they contain absolutely no soap whatsoever.

At first glance:

Dr. Bronner’s Soap, our favorite all-in-one organic travel soap, now comes in a 8 fl oz. size in wonderful selections (we like the lavender) as well as
Almond
Peppermint
Eucalyptus
Baby-Mild
Tea Tree

Details:

Ingredients of Lavendar Liquid Soap: Water, Saponified Organic Coconut & Olive oils (w/ retained Glycerin), Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Lavandin & Lavender Oils, Citric Acid, Vitamin E

Through the Ringer:

On my recent 5 week active travel stint in Italy, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia I tried to use the soap sparingly.  Two bottles lasted me the 5 weeks. Best part was my clothes smelled GREAT…and when you are wearing the same items repeatedly that counts for a lot!

What I Liked:

The 8 oz size is PERFECT for traveling…larger sizes for home use or refill. No need to feel guilty disposing of the bottles as they are made of 100% post consumer recycled plastic. 

Ideal for:

Travel laundry and body washing

View the Gallery Photos!
Reviewed by Kathy Dragon

Read all articles by Kathy Dragon
(0) Comments | (0) Trackbacks | Tell-a-Friend | Link It
Return to the Top | Page 2 of 2 pages  <  1 2