2. Gear Junkie

Reviews of every product imaginable, from ski goggles to survival knives

Gear Junkie

Gear Junkie blog     Photo: Courtesy of Gear Junkie

Good for: Gear heads of every stripe, but especially endurance athletes and adventure racing types.

Written by: Minneapolis-based Stephen Regenold—a vagabond adventure racer, travel journalist, and frequent Outside contributor for whom mountaineering, marathons, and ultra-endurance races are practically weekly events—and his team.

Originally a newspaper column, Gear Junkie was founded in 2002 to bring in-depth outdoors product reviews to a national consumer audience. Regenold and team review everything from walking sticks to GPS-enabled ski goggles to water purification devices. The site has especially good coverage of the various industry trade shows, including Outdoor Retailer and Interbike.

Sample post: Thoroughness is why we enjoyed this review of the Core Lite Survival Knife. And the fact that the reviewer owns a collection of whistles.

The Core Lite’s short steel blade comes sharp enough to razor off arm hair. Its edge, just over 2 inches long, is touted to be able to cut wet tree bark to “expose dry inner wood” as well as be used for “notching and grooving branches” if you need to construct a shelter. In reality, your wooden wigwam would be a tough build with this little blade. It’s sharp and usable for any small task, though in my test the drop-point blade did not scream “durability” in use. Gripping the knife’s plastic handle and working the edge in wood I could see and feel the locked-off blade shifting subtly from side to side.

The whistle and the light, a small single L.E.D., are similarly mediocre. Touted to blast 100 decibels of sound, I found the whistle, which is integrated into the end of the handle, to be quieter than most of the standalone outdoors-oriented whistles on my gear shelf. ...

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