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Dispatches : Gear

Campfire Classics: Coghlan's S'mores Maker

#1230 Camper's S'mores Grill[1]

Nothing says autumn like campfire s'mores. There is a certain delight in getting little bits of bark in your mouth from the stick you jammed your marshmallow on, and in the sticky fingers that come from smooshing your marshmallow, chocolate and graham crackers together. Unless, that is, you are camping in bear country or there isn't a water source nearby to rinse off.

That's why Coghlan's invented the s'mores maker. A graham cracker-shaped mini grill, this car camping gadget takes backcountry cuisine to the next level.

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Nikon Coolpix S800c: Bringing Back the Point-and-Shoot

S800c_WH_front34r_lo_1.high

Most of us have ditched our point-and-shoot cameras and we're taking photos with our phones. iPhone cameras are pretty darn good, and by using a phone as your camera, you carry one device and you can upload pics instantly. Phones lack a lot of the features of a good camera, but we’ve learned to settle.

Now Nikon has announced a device that means we don't have settle. Nikon's new Coolpix S800c point-and-shoot is a 16-megapixel, Android-enabled camera with a 10x Nikkor vibration reduction lens that, like a smartphone, connects to the Internet instantly so that you can upload pictures you just shot. It lets you edit images in-camera. It shoots full HD 1080p video. And it has a built in GPS, so you can geotag the spot where you saw that stellar sunset, and you can retrace your route back to the car in the dark. It’s a bit like having an iPad inside your camera.

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Easy Carry: Two New Backpack Suspension Systems

4633_Glittertind 55L Black-SolidLtGrey

The holy grail of backpacking is a suspension system that makes your pack carry as if you have nothing on at all. It's an admirable goal, and pack designers are making progress toward it. Black Diamond made solid inroads with its reACTIV and ergoACTIV suspension—shoulder straps that slide through the backpanel, freeing your shoulders. And manufacturers including Ergon have used lumbar swivel balls in the suspension to let a pack bag rotate more freely.

Bergans, the company that invented the frame pack, says its new suspension takes the no weight on your back challenge to the next level. Bergan's Glittertind pack provides not only freedom of movement but shock absorption with suspension that “follows the body's contradictory movements.”

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Get Dressed for the Beach With Pabst Blue Ribbon and O'Neill

Pabst

In an effort to assert their authenticity and iconic status, Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and O’Neill are teaming up on a full line of clothing and accessories made by O’Neill and plastered with PBR logos. Board shorts, tees, coolers, towels, trucker caps with built in bottle openers and flip flops are just a few of the PBR/O’Neill items you’ll be able to purchase at retailers nationwide come this spring.

“This season, we stayed true to our roots and designed with the American heritage in mind. The collaboration with PBR is a great way to celebrate the legacy of two American brand,” said Shawn Peterson, vice president of O’Neill Men’s Design.

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An Expandable, Rolling Ski Bag That Packs Small for Storage

DB 2

We're not sure what inspired a couple of inventors to name their new ski bag the Douchebag. If it was just a ploy to get some attention then, well, it worked.

But it wasn't the name that made us want to introduce you to it here at the Gear Shed. It was the smart design. This six-and-a-half-foot-long ski bag is length-adjustable, it rolls easily, and when you're not using it, it compresses smaller than a sleeping bag for easy storage.

DB 1

But that's not all. Possibly the Douchebag's most awesome feature is the sling shoulder strap that's set up so you can drag the whole pack through the airport even when both hands are full.

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