Field Tested: Optimus Crux Lite Solo Cook System

Awe Yeah! Optimus has sent us some goodies to test, play with, and review! The Optimus Crux Lite Solo Cook System entered the market in 2012 as an Ultralight Camping Cook System that wouldn’t break the bank. This is a flooded market with brands like MSR, and Jetboil taking their share there’s a lot to choose from! Over the past 7 years the Optimus Crux Lite Solo Camp Cook System has stood the test of time while Optimus has made some refinements to their already robust design its vision remained the same. Optimus is marketing this system to solo backpackers,…

Field Tested: Outdoor Research Bolin Jacket

I admit that I have a problem with jackets. Particularly hard shell waterproof jackets.  I have too many! I only wear these jackets in the winter months for hiking and ice climbing, for protection from wind and moisture. I want something waterproof, durable, and VERY breathable. This is a hard combination to get right. Shell jackets always seem to be “too waterproof” and feel like you’re sweating and wearing a trash bag or they’re simply not waterproof enough… a soft shell that wets out. This is where the new Outdoor Research Bolin jacket comes in. New for the 2017-2018 season,…

Field Tested: Outdoor Research Stormtracker Heated Gloves

Electric gloves?! That’s got to be a gimmick right? Well… maybe not! I personally struggle with the unfortunate “cold hands” gene during long pitches ice climbing and when standing still too long on a winter hike. I’ve also experienced the dreaded “screaming barfies” far too many times while climbing (google it)! Wearing big bulky gloves isn’t an option when you’re on the lead and require dexterity to tie knots, place screws, and delicate tool placements. I’ve been on an endless search for the “perfect glove” which as led me to Outdoor Research’s  Stormtracker glove with “Alti-Heat Technology“. The Stormtrackers have…

Review: Furnace Industries Kronos Ice Tools – Wooden Tools?!

Furnace Industries, a USA based company that operates out of New York was generous enough to send me a pair of their premium (and only) ice tools dubbed the “Kronos“. These tools have one major feature that stands them apart from the competition. The Kronos tools are the only Ice Tools available on the market that are made out of WOOD… Yes, wood! Kronos was the name of the Father of Zeus, Greek titan of the universe! But can these tools represent his name? Let’s find out. Specs First, lets get some specifications out of the way. Weight: 1 lb 7.8…

It’s Time For Ice! – Pinnacle Gully’s First Ascent of the Season

Saturday, November 11, 2017 We’ve had a group text message going for about 3 weeks now between my buddies Zac (Instagram), Billy (Instagram), and myself. “Think it’s in yet?” “It’s cold enough right?” “lets get it boys!”. The objective was to be the first party to climb Pinnacle Gully in Mount Washington’s Huntington Ravine in the 2017-18 ice climbing season! This climb is somewhat of a prize among the local climbing community because it’s usually the first ice to come “in” due to the harshly cold environment it takes residence in. It’s also relatively remote compared to a lot of…