Posts in Review
Gear Review: Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera

In 2015 I picked up the Sony a6000 from Amazon. It came with the standard kit lens, and with it I also bought the the Sony 10-18mm. Previously, I had been using a Canon T2i and while I didn’t have any major complaints with the T2i (other than being old), I decided to see what all the fuss was about with these new Sony mirrorless cameras.

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Gear Review: Zamberlan 1025 Tofane NW GTX Hiking Boot

The Zamberlan 1025 Tofane NW Gore-Tex Hiking Boot is a big, burly, badass hiking boot. They’re built with a beautiful hazelnut colored full-grain leather upper thats complimented on the inside with a Gore-Tex lining that provides amazing waterproofing. The soles of the Tofane boot are made with Norwegian welt construction, meaning the Vibram soles are stitched to the upper instead of glued, ensured maximum durability, as well as giving you the added bonus of being able to easily replace the sole down the road.

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Gear Review: REI Half Dome 2 Plus

If you’re currently looking for a tent and you haven’t already stumbled upon the REI Half Dome Tent Models, then it is clear that you live so far under a rock that it’s almost impossible for you to have found me here. If you have already seen the Half Domes then you already know there are many different models and variations. The exact tent model I’m reviewing today is the REI Half Dome 2 Plus.

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Gear Review: The North Face Basecamp Duffel Bag

Being that traveling is kinda my thing, bags are an absolute necessity. They have become a piece of my life that I really can’t live without. Since nearly every trip I go on is to a new place that I haven’t been to before, I usually find myself having different wants and needs from the luggage that I am going to bring with me. Over the last few years I have grown to love the process of preparing for a trip. It involves researching the place we’re going, deciding how we’re going to get around, finding the activities we might be interested in doing and then planning out the gear we’re going to want to bring accordingly. Once we get all that info then I begin investigating the bags best suited for the trip, comparing them with their competition and then finally trying them out on a trip.

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Gear Review: Adidas Pureboost

Every year before we take our annual multi month trip away from the great pacific northwest I snag myself a new pair of super comfortable shoes to wear while we’re away. For the last few years my go to shoes have been Nike’s with an Airmax or Lunarlon sole. From what I had experienced they were the most comfortable footbeds in the game. This last winter trip (Jan - Apr 2018) to Spain though I decided to switch it up and try out some Adidas Boosts and see if the hype was real. After far too much google research, youtube reviews and ridiculous side by side comparisons, I landed on the Adidas Pureboost.

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Gear Review: Patagonia Triolet Jacket

I’m going to be honest, for most of my life I had an embarrassingly poor choice in jackets for a native PNW dude. Skateboarding fashion dominated my style choices. I never cared about quality, fabrics or lifespan. I pretty much only cared about affordability and look. Several years ago though, that changed. I’m not sure if it’s being outdoors more, being exposed to more ideas or just getting older, but I began to pay more attention to things that mattered in a jacket like how long it lasted, what is was made for and how it was made. I’ve had the opportunity over the last few years to try out many different brands like Arcteryx, Craghoppers, Marmot and more. The reason I give you all of that background is to say that one of the best all around hard shell jackets I’ve found is the Patagonia Triolet Jacket.

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Gear Review: Adidas Fast X High GTX Hiking Boots

Over the last years I’ve had MANY pairs of hiking boots from Salomon to Merrel to Zamberlan. When I started using the Adidas Fast X High GTX I already had a pretty new pair of burly, heavy backpacking boots, but I found myself not wanting to wear them on day hikes or adventure photography trips due to their weight and bulkiness. So a little over a year ago I started testing the Adidas Fast X High GTX Hiking Boots and I really fell love!

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Gear Review: Alps Mountaineering Solitude 24 Pack

Before our 3 month trip to Spain in Early 2018, Laura and I were sent 2 Alps Mountaineering Solitude 24 Packs. Our plan was to bring only carryon baggage for the whole trip, so we would each bring a regular 22” carryon size suitcase and then we would use these Alps packs as our main day packs for all of our adventures throughout the trip. After 3 months of heavy use abroad, and then regular action back home here in the NW after that, I figured it’s time to check in with a gear review.

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Gear Review: Rhone Basecamp Jogger Pant

The Rhone Basecamp Jogger is a simple and stylish sweat pant. These things are so damn comfortable they make putting on my normal pants pretty difficult. Unlike many other big name joggers I’ve tried out, these things aren’t too long, too tight or too baggy. I’m 5’ 10” and the medium is perfect fit for me. The fabric is soft and stretchy enough to feel great on the skin, but thick enough to feel durable. The stretchiness allows for free movement when out hiking, at the gym or even doing yoga (see below). To boil it all down, the Basecamp Jogger is a well built, comfortable pant from the the ankle cuff to the waist band. They're available in 3 colors and come in all sizes.

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Gear Review: Sony E 18-105mm f/4 G OSS Lens

Okay, lets start with something you might not know. The Sony E PZ 18-105mm f/4G OSS is my most utilized lens, probably ever. It’s on my camera 80% of the time when I’m out shooting. Through using it regularly for the last several years, I’ve discovered it’s not the most popular lens, and I can understand why people might be afraid to try it out being that isn’t exactly cheap or extensively praised. Hopefully my review will help a few to give it try though.

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Gear Review: SOG Seraphim 35 Backpack

I’ve had the pleasure of trying out several SOG backpacks over the last few years from the biggest to the smallest versions, so I was stoked to try out the SOG Seraphim 35. This thing is *packed* (wink) with a long list of features. In fact, it has far too many features to list off every one but I’ll give you a few of the real world things I like most about it. First off, it’s a super clean looking pack, and all black is always a good move for a color way. I also really enjoy the ability to strap my gear to the outside of the pack. There’s several ways to attach stuff either with the pack’s shock cord tie downs, the Hypalon MOLLE field, or the endless loops and lash points. Also, the fold down panel on the outside of the pack has the ability to carry long items like an axe, fishing rod, rifle or if you’re like me, a tripod!

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Gear Review: Coast TX399 Knife

The Coast TX399 Knife is a tactical folding knife. I love the way it looks and feels. It's long and sleek with an all black finish. It's built extremely well for the price, with durable construction and a lightweight design. The TX399 is part of Coast's Spec-Ops line, geared towards tactical and industrial use as a heavy duty cutting tool. It has a 4" blade made from super strong 9Cr18Mov stainless steel. The exterior has a glass bead finish with an all black titanium nitride coating. I really like the handle on this thing. It's textured stylishly and made from a nylon/fiberglass composite that keeps its weight down. The pocket clip on the knife can be switched for right or left handed carry, and it sits deep in the pocket for an easy carry. Overall, the Coast TX399 is badass knife for the price. It's well built, good looking and easy on the budget.

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Gear Review: Alps Mountaineering Red Tail 65 Pack

ALPS Mountaineering is a company that I've only recently begun to work with, but they have been in the game for a long time. They're a family run company, which I really love. They were started back in '93 by a guy named Dennis Brune, who had previously been the head of the outdoor brand Kelty. Since their inception ALPS has grown to produce many camping and hiking products including tents, backpacks, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, air mattresses, and camping furniture like chairs, cots, and tables. The ALPS product I'll be reviewing today is the Red Tail 65L Pack.

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Gear Review: Minus 33 Kodiak Expedition Hoody

I have been testing out and shooting for Minus 33 for several years now. One of the products I've been wanting to get my hands on is the Kodiak Expedition Wool Hoody. Earlier this month I got a box from Minus 33 and lo and behold there was the hoody! What better way to break it in then take it up to Mount Rainier and see how it holds up to the cold. 

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Gear Review: Liberty 24 & 32 oz Bottles

I discovered Liberty Bottleworks several years back when I was perusing the internet looking at blogs, review sites and top 10 lists dedicated to products Made in the USA. They are the only metal water bottle manufacturer that is produced fully in the USA, and better yet, they make them right here in my home state of Washington. The take pride in making the bottles here because they get to provide living-wage jobs, use quality US suppliers, and make everything in an ethical, responsible way at a safe factory.

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Gear Review: SOG Tomcat 3.0

The SOG Tomcat 3.0 is the third generation of the award winning Tomcat series. The original Tomcat folder was released back in the 1980's and was met with widespread love. The newest version of this awesome knife resembles a bit of the original look but adds modern features and updated styling. The Tomcat 3.0 is a beast that anybody will love from the hardcore knife enthusiasts to the amateur knife consumer (like myself).

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Gear Review: Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS Lens

Lets just address the main complaint first, price. Yes, it's expensive. All of the good Sony lenses designed for APS-C-format E-mount cameras are expensive. Why? Sony wants to make money of course. While I'm not happy about it, can you blame them?! In my opinion though, using a cheaper Sony mirrorless camera body like the a6500, a6300 (or even cheaper a6000) with expensive glass like the 10-18mm delivers beautiful images that can hang with any full frame camera body and lens combo. The only noticeable difference is the extra few thousand dollars you will have in your bank account to go do fun shit 😊.

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