NordicTrack Incline Trainer X10
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There’s a reason elite athletes train in the mountains: To build ultimate fitness, nothing beats running up steep hills until your legs and lungs surrender. At the touch of a button, the X10 tilts to a punishing 50 percent incline, putting a virtual Mount Whitney in your home gym. You can choose any grade between Florida flat and Colorado steep, in 5 percent increments. It’s a quality treadmill in all the usual ways—cushioned platform, one-to-12-mph speed control, 37 preprogrammed workouts, displays of training and heart-rate data, a three-horsepower motor with lifetime warranty—but the X10’s ability both to inspire and humble (try 40 percent at 4 mph!) sets it apart. Think of it this way: The X10 is cheaper than moving to Boulder.
NordicTrack Incline Trainer X10NordicTrack Incline Trainer X10
NordicTrack Incline Trainer X10 $2,499 www.nordictrack.com
Electra HellbillyElectra Hellbilly
Been avoiding cruisers because you think bikes should be built for speed? So was I—until the Electra Hellbilly lured me in with its swooping lines and blaze of metallic-red flames. Built of aluminum (rather than the standard hefty steel) and equipped with three grip-shift-driven, internal-hub gears, the Hellbilly tears up the pavement. Unlike typical cruisers, which forsake performance for comfort, this bike feels lively on the hills and agile through corners yet still maintains that easy-on-the-back, “don’t even think about hurrying me” ethos. Plus the fatty tires and one-handed steering make it a breeze to ride while carrying a steaming mug of coffee. But I like the Hellbilly most because it’s slowly changing my whole bike sensibility: More than once, I’ve found myself stepping on the coaster brakes when there was no need, slowing down, taking my time, and letting everyone on the roadside soak up my laid-back, leather-tasseled vibe.
Electra Hellbilly $570 www.electrabike.com
Porsche Design P’3701 Swiss Pocket Knife
Porsche Design P'3701 Swiss Pocket KnifePorsche Design P’3701 Swiss Pocket Knife
The next best thing to driving a Porsche Cayenne to the trailhead? Pulling out this classy tool in camp. Dreamed up by Porsche’s boutique design shop and made by Wenger, the company behind the “genuine” Swiss Army knife, the P’3701 blends form and function so seamlessly you’ll want to slice more cheddar just so you can hold it. The silky casing is made from ruthenium, a precious metal in the platinum group of elements (number 44 on the periodic table, for you pocket-protector types). And, yes, it has all the requisite tools, including self-sharpening scissors, two screwdrivers, and a corkscrew. It even has a can opener, though we’re confident this pocketknife will inspire you to move beyond beans.
Porsche Design P’3701 Swiss Pocket Knife $200 www.porsche-design.com
Olympus PT-030 Underwater Housing
Olympus PT-030 Underwater HousingOlympus PT-030 Underwater Housing
Are you really going to travel all the way to Palau for the dive of a lifetime and come back with . . . postcards? Bring home your own subaquatic pictures by pairing your Olympus digicam with this sophisticated underwater camera housing. Made of a transparent polycarbonate with cherry-red accents, Olympus’s new PT-030 housing for the eight-megapixel SP-350 opens like a locket, then seals up watertight with a rubber O-ring and two locks. On the back are large, clearly labeled buttons that line up with the camera’s controls, providing easy access to all functions—even macro, to capture the tiniest blenny. And it’s not just for budding Cousteaus. The PT-030 is light and compact enough for kayaking, sailing, and fishing. So now you can show your friends how big those rapids—or fish—really were.
Olympus PT-030 Underwater Housing $300 www.olympusamerica.com
Sony ReaderSony Reader
The pointy heads at Sony have saved us from bad-novel syndrome. You know the drill: Agonize over which book to pack on vacation, then, once there, settle into your hammock and start turning pages, only to discover it’s a bore. And the nearest Borders is 4,000 miles away. The Sony Reader, an 8.8-ounce digital reading device, stores almost 80 e-books (downloadable at Sony Connect) that you can read page by page with the touch of a button. But make no mistake: A computer screen this is not. The Reader employs “electronic paper,” which looks like the stuff made from trees—and has no annoying fluorescent backlighting. Plus you can increase the font size to eliminate eyestrain. And with 7,500 page turns on each charge of the lithium-ion batteries, you’ll have to take a very long trip to run out of reading material on just one tank. Go ahead, pack the fattest travel guide you can find—it won’t slow you down.
Sony Reader $350 www.sonystyle.com
TAG Heuer Link Chronograph
TAG Heuer Link ChronographTAG Heuer Link Chronograph
My lustful fantasies generally lean toward custom road bikes, convertible sports cars, and vacations that require passports. But that was before I laid eyes on this watch. To say it’s merely for telling time is like saying a ride from Waterford Precision Cycles is for getting around town. This particular Link, with its milky mother-of-pearl face, is inset with 72 sparkling diamonds weighing a collective 0.91 carats. The first time I fastened its sleek and sexy stainless-steel band around my wrist, I felt like I’d just slipped on one of Wonder Woman’s indestructible wristbands. Time was suddenly mine. In addition to being drop-dead gorgeous—and far more useful than a diamond ring, which has no function other than to scream “I’m taken!”—this TAG has a one-tenth-second timer and is waterproof down to 650 feet. The only downside? I’ll never again be able to blame tardiness on an inaccurate timepiece.
TAG Heuer Link Chronograph $3,995 www.tagheuer.com
ClimbingPhotograph by Jens Mortensen
1. PATAGONIA‘s fleece DOPPLER TOP takes the chill off of early-morning starts but has good mobility thanks to strategically placed Capilene across the shoulders, arms, and sides, as well as a harness-compatible hem. $75; www.patagonia.com
2. Call it performance fashion: Made of two types of denim—tough and stretchy—SALOMON‘s DENIMUTATION is an ideal climbing capri, with gusseted crotch and articulated knees. $85; www.salomonsports.com
3. MOUNTAIN HARDWARE‘s ARETE T 3/4 SLEEVE is a summer-weight spandex-poly-cotton top that fits close, and its abbreviated sleeves never snag when you’re jamming your arms into off-width cracks. $40; www.mountainhardwear.com
4. With a glovelike fit, sensitive 4.2mm Stealth Onyx rubber, and a torsionally stiff Duraflex midsole, FIVE TEN‘s versatile SIREN smears, hooks, and points better than most men’s shoes. $109; www.fiveten.com
5. BLURR‘s LUCY TOP has it all for summer cragging: a built-in shelf bra, unobtrusive shoulder straps, and a cool cotton-and-spandex blend. $36; www.blurrstuff.com
6. Think of LA SPORTIVA‘s WOMEN’S MIURA as the ultimate project shoe. Combining the original Miura’s infinitely fine-tunable lacing system with a women-specific last (one tester called the heel cup the best she’s ever worn), the shoe offers unsurpassed technical-edging precision and power. $125; www.lasportiva.com
7. With incredible freedom of motion and molded-nylon gear loops big enough for Indian Creek–size racks, TRANGO‘s DEVI trad harness is ready for the long haul. $50; www.trango.com