FalconGuides just announced the first 12
titles in a new line of interactive outdoor guides the company developed in
partnership with Inkling, a platform for interactive learning.
For the price of the download, readers get
expert content optimized for iPhone, iPad, and Web, with features that bridge
the gap between apps and ebooks: slideshows with high-res images not found in
the print editions, guided visual tours, hyperlinks, and smart search that makes
it quick and easy to get to the information you need, from a list of dog-friendly
hikes to a river name. Hiking guide
users can give tips to other readers and share trail notes on washed out bridges, best photo ops, bees nests to watch out for, or anything else. An animal tracks feature lets you click through a series of questions that narrows down which animal tracks you’ve spotted based on pattern, shape, and size. Rock climbing instructional guides have stop-motion animation
illustrating specific techniques.
Historically, installing chains on your car to get over a mountain pass has been an awful task. Nearly always it involves crawling around under your car, usually in the middle of a storm or in deep and cold snow drifts, freezing your hands off. It's typically wet, cold, miserable, and dirty—and unavoidable. Chains are required on many Western passes and ski area access roads. No chains, and you head home or wait until the road is plowed and clear, and others get first tracks.
There are three easy ways to put the chains on, all of which you can do without taking off your gloves: 1. Extend the rigid arch,
which means popping the chain open; 2. Lay the chain on the tire starting from
the top; 3. Open up the pedal and push down with your foot to tension the chain.
And it’s just as easy to get them off.
Still don't believe how fast these are? A month ago, Thule snagged a Guinness Book World Record for most snow chains put in one minute. It took the Thule team about nine seconds to install each chain.
To make sure that even the most mechanically challenged can be successful, Thule packages the product in a nylon bag that you turn inside out and use as a mat when installing the chains. It has printed instructions and even marked dots where you should kneel for best positioning. It’s one more way Thule makes sure installing the Easy Fits is easy—and that you don’t lose the directions. Available now, $450; thule.com.
many cultures, your life depends on your knife.
A knife is the tool you use to prepare food, hunt and dress animals, work skins, cut firewood, clear brush and vegetation. In southern cultures that knife is a often a machete. In northern Europe, the indigenous Sami people, who live in northern Sweden, Norway, Finland, and the Kola Peninsula of Russia, use a smaller machete-strong and versatile knife. Helle modeled its Lappland after the Sami blade.
A semi-nomadic Sami reindeer herder uses his knife like an axe for the heavy work of maintaining
his homestead, feeding his family, and making his clothing. The Lappland is suited to all of the above—it's a work of art that's designed to be used. It's the ultimate camp knife, whether you're working or whittling.
The made-in-Norway Lappland is not as large as a machete, but it is a hefty tool outfitted with a thin, 8.5-inch non-laminated steel blade made for
slicing. The birch handle with cast brass fittings brings the knife to 13.25 inches. It comes
in a traditional Scandinavian-style etched leather sheath, where the knife sits
deep and secure.
You’re late getting home from
work, and your buddy will be over in 10 to pick you up for the epic mountain
bike ride you’ve been scheming all summer. You still need to get dressed, but
you also need to find your wrenches, chain tool, patch kit, and all of the other
stuff you know you should bring along.
Get the Original Hero Kit,
and you’ll never scramble to pull together the right bike repair kit for your trail
A mountain bike repair kit small enough to fit in
your jersey pocket, the Original Hero Kit has everything you need to get you or
your riding partner out of the most common trail conundrums. Herokit.com
assembled essential tools in a durable waterproof Aloksac (a durable zip
closure bag big enough to keep your cell phone dry in an unexpected storm) that’s
packed flat so it sits comfortably against your back when it’s stuffed in your pocket.
The included tools are high quality and practical, from a sturdy multitool with
an easy to use chain breaker, to zip ties, cleat bolts, master link, patch kit
and other bits and parts that at some point every cyclist wishes he had along for the ride.
But the kit isn’t just tools. The Original Hero Kit includes survival
supplies, like water purification tablets, toilet paper, and duct tape. And, lest you
get stuck out in the wilds with no idea how your chain tool might fix your
breakdown, the Original includes basic instructions.
Whether you’re night riding, hiking, skiing, cooking or just rummaging
around your tent, a bright and long-lasting lamp can make a big difference
between loving the great outdoors and cursing it.
Light and Motion’s new
250 will help you choose the former. The light uses the same battery as your
iPhone, which helps keep it working at about 1.7 lumen’s per gram. And, it’s designed to be versatile—use it as a headlamp,
flashlight, picnic table light, or bike light. No other light that we’ve tried
here at the Gear Shed does such a good job at so many things. In fact, we recently used it
during the Lunar
Quarry 12, a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. bike race in southern Vermont. It lit up the night
and helped our team pedal to victory.
Because the Solite is regulated, the beam of light is bright and
consistent across the entire life of the battery. Most lights don’t stay consistently
bright through their charge—their brightness degrades rapidly as the battery
drains. And riders barely noticed they were wearing it during the Lunar Quarry 12. The next brightest
contender had a massive battery to deal with.