Author: Kevin Glover

Kevin Glover is an outdoorsman living, climbing and biking in Spokane, WA. Originally from the Nevada high desert, he moved to the PNW for its mild winters and allergen-free summers. He has guided throughout the Cascades and Enchantments for Peak 7 Adventures.

Today I’m reviewing a product that’s unusually close to home: my eyeglasses. If you have poor vision or require corrective lenses at all, then you’re familiar with the struggle of finding good outdoor eyewear. It needs to lightweight, of high optical quality, and ideally durable. I’ve used everything from cheap online prescriptions to boutique mountaineering-specific lens grinders in Colorado, and I can tell you that the quest for the perfect glasses continues. My Fall outdoor eyewear has been dominated  by the Oakley Crossrange frames with lenses courtesy of SportRx. I have had a phenomenal experience, and I’m eager to share…

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My relationship with Sierra Designs goes back to some of my earliest days of doing stuff in the outdoors. As a teenager, I had a tent and sleeping bag from them that I absolutely loved. I still have the tent (a Nitro 2) and, while it’s dirtier and smellier now, it’s still a favorite. So today, when I look at a Sierra Designs product, I have really high expectations for quality because that’s what their customers are looking for, too. With that, this Fall I’ve been rocking the Sierra Designs Whitney Hoodie. Sierra Designs Whitney Hoodie Features: 800 Fill DriDown™…

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If you’re squarely in the world of alpinism or traditional backpacking, you might not recognize the name Triple Aught Design. If you have even an inkling of hunter or anything remotely tactical, though, you definitely have a lot of reverence for the name. Triple Aught Design is a company that makes exceptionally high-quality tactical gear, alongside a whole slew of products that are meant to support and equip active lifestyles. My test piece for this review, the Talisman jacket, is a capable piece that embodies so much of what Triple Aught Design is about. Triple Aught Design Talisman Jacket Features:…

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If there’s one thing that you can expect in the Pacific Northwest every fall, it’s the return of sloppy wet weather. That can pose a challenge for footwear, since it’s easy to ruin shoes in the muck or to opt to just put on my big, clunky hiking boots to make sure my feet stay dry. A stylish, in-between option would be ideal, and so when I saw the word ‘waterproof’ in the name of a new Timberland boot, I was intrigued. Timberland Courma Guy Waterproof Boots Features: Premium leather uppers from a Silver-rated tannery TimberDry™ waterproof membranes Padded collars…

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Every fall, I take a great deal of enjoyment from selecting a handful of lifestyle items to review for our readers. They’re usually something that blends the outdoors lifestyle with casual city aesthetics, and I try to focus on companies that are making strides in the area of sustainability. One of the exciting names that fits this category to a ‘T’ are Toad&Co, purveyors of stylish and sustainable clothing. This fall I’ve been rocking their Jet Cord Jacket. Toad&Co Jet Cord Corduroy Jacket Features: Moisture-wicking fabrics Comfort stretch material Center-front zipper Flannel lined for added warmth Double chest pockets with…

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As the price of mountain bikes seems to keep climbing and climbing, some parts of the industry are pushing back against that. One thing that comes to mind is the genre of the ultra-capable hardtail, a rebuke to the uber-expensive world of carbon full-suspension bikes. One remarkably strong player in this world is the recently introduced Sync’r Carbon Hardtail from Diamondback Bicycles. Diamondback Sync’r Carbon Features: New Sync’r Monocoque Carbon Asymetrical Chainstays Euro Standard Threaded BB, ISCG-05 Tabs Internal Dropper Post Ready 148x12mm Boost Hub Spacing Fox 34 Performance Float, 140mm of Travel, Grip 3 POS, 15mm Thru Axle SRAM…

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I don’t know about your part of the country, but here in the Pacific Northwest things are starting to feel like Fall. The mornings are cooler, the rain has come and, like many of you, my thoughts have naturally started to drift to seasonal concerns – like high-tech, ultralight down insulation. That’s only appropriate, since it will soon be very cold and my wimpy body will be shivering atop the skin track as I desperately pull over a layer on my sweat-soaked torso. What layer will that be for me this year? Why, The North Face’s L3 Down Hoodie, obviously.…

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Prior to this review, I had never worked with NEMO Equipment. Founded in 2002, they’re a relatively young company and maybe that is some of the reason that I hadn’t previously taken any adventures with NEMO gear along. That said, I knew friends who loved their NEMO sleeping bags; when the opportunity arose to test the Kayu 15 Down Mummy Bag, I was seriously interested. All the specs were there: great down, thoughtful baffle design and some cool extra features promised a winner. I had some epic adventures in the Kayu 15, so it’s time to share how it went. NEMO…

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What does it take to make a bib short and call it ‘classic?’ I’ll give you a hint: it’s not classic technology. The Rapha Classic II Bib Shorts are recently updated with high-tech fabric, fit and stitching and they’re trying to become your go-to shorts. Rapha Classic II Bib Shorts Features: 74% polyamide/26% elastane mix Updated chamois pad Size – specific chamois Available in a range of colours with complimentary Rapha logos Highly breathable back Soft grippers and flatlock stitching Rear key pocket MSRP: $235 These are the bibs that you’re looking for There are plenty of dynamics to consider…

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There are plenty of people who want to buy a dedicated backcountry shell. There are also plenty of people who want to buy a shell that can cross boundaries. The Black Diamond Helio is positioned at an interesting place because it is marketed as a lightweight backcountry ski touring jacket, but it totally has the chops to be a great year-round shell. Black Diamond Helio Active Shell Features: Gore-Tex® 3L Active Soft hand Gore-Tex® C-Knit® backer Integrated Cohaesive™ cord management system Harness compatible hand pockets Full-length pit zips 30D Nylon Plain Weave 3L Active, with C-Knit Backer and DWR Finish…

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The best jackets are the ones that you can use for many activities in any different season. That has been my experience with the  Montane Fleet Jacket. It’s tailor-made to be lightweight but strong, making it a perfect combination Montane Fleet Jacket Features: Fully adjustable roll-away hood with three point adjustment and stiffened peak Features Gore-Tex Active Full length YKK AquaGuard® VISLON front zip with internal storm flap YKK AquaGuard® zipped chest pocket Articulated arms with engineered tailoring Two zipped map-sized,mesh lined hand pockets Adjustable hook and loop cuff tabs Adjustable hem with cinchable drawcord MSRP: $340 USD Go light,…

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If you were riding bikes in the late-1990’s, you might remember the introduction of a colorful little frame from California-based Santa Cruz Bicycles called the Chameleon. It’s kind of funny to think that the kids I see on the pump track, hitting way bigger stuff than I feel good about, have never not been alive in a world that didn’t have a Santa Cruz Chameleon for them to shred on. It’s a storied frame with a long, successful history, and the most radical change has been the most recent adaptation of the frame and fork to be able to fit either 29″…

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Springtime is just barely beginning to poke its head around the corner up here in Spokane. The mountains and resorts got nearly a foot of powder last week, which was all the more reason to continue enjoying the Black Diamond Cirque 35L Pack that I’ve been testing this winter. Black Diamond Cirque 35L Features: SwingArm™ shoulder straps, stretch-woven hipbelt pocket and single gear loop Unique CINCH closure opens or closes with a single pull Integrated avy tools pocket with drain holes Tuck-away diagonal ski carry and A-frame carry, stowable helmet flap Ice-tool PickPockets™, tuck-away rope strap and quick-deploy piolet system…

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In my mind, when I think of Patagonia I think primarily of warm days fly fishing, or hot days on steep slabs, or backpacking. The touring season here in the PNW started slow but really ramped up through February, and the Patagonia Descensionist carried the load throughout a ton of fun. Made with durable CORDURA® nylon for puncture and abrasion resistance Asymmetrical spindrift collar opens wide for easy packing; drawcord simultaneously cinches collar and closes lid for a secure seal; side zipper for easy access to main compartment High-density foam back panel gives pack structure and helps to support heavy…

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I can’t think of many things that say ‘dialed’ better than a top-to-bottom Arc’teryx powder outfit. I’ve been throwing down throughout what’s become an increasingly good winter here in the PNW in the Arc’teryx Sabre LT Jacket and Sabre Pant. Are they any good? Oh you bet they are. Arc’teryx Sabre LT Jacket and Sabre Pants Features: Sabre LT jacket features Gore-Tex C-knit backer Sabre pant features 3L Gore-Tex Pro. Fully seam-taped with Arc’teryx’s signature micro-seam allowance. Both top and bottom feature Recco locators Snow skirt works with Slide ‘n Loc technology to seal onto pants Jacket features helmet-compatible storm…

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Ah, wintertime. Sure, there is plenty of fun to be had out in the snow, but it’s also the time of year to curl up by the fire with a good book. That means that you need a good sweater, and the Patagonia Woolyester Fleece Pullover has got your back with warmth, style and sustainability. Patagonia Woolyester Fleece Features: Quarter-zip with zip-through collar Rib-knit trim on cuffs and hems 6.2oz 46% recycled wool/46% polyester/4% other Fair Trade Certified sewing MSRP: $139 More than one reason to feel warm and fuzzy Wool is a classic material. I still have some of…

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You know what gear you probably haven’t taken a good look at lately? Your ski poles. If you’re anything like me, you’re using a pair of rickety, noisy, increasingly unstable poles look like they’ve been drug behind a truck. Or maybe that’s not you and you’re just looking for a good upgrade. In either situation, the MSR DynaLock Explore poles have a lot to offer for the backcountry traveler. MSR DynaLock Explore Features: Light, high-strength 7075 aluminum lower sections for increased durability. DynaLock™ adjustability with tool-free tensioning; anodized aluminum lever provides lasting durability. Extended EVA foam grip for comfort while…

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It’s Fall, and that means it’s time to dig out your best sleeping bag for cool, wet weather. In the northwest, a synthetic bag is essential for those inevitable wet weather trips. The Big Agnes Picket SL 30 is a high-tech, high-performing sleeping bag whose generous cut makes it especially comfortable to sleep in. Big Agnes Picket SL 30 Features: Primaloft® Gold Insulation Active in the stretch side panels Low profile cordlock lets you un-cinch the hood with one hand Anti-snag draft tube is soft and prevents heat loss along the zipper Zipper garage Interior fabric loops for sleeping bag…

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If the word ‘baja’ conjures images of beautiful days with laid-back friends, then I think you’re thinking along the same lines of Outdoor Research with their new Baja Down Pullover. It’s a piece that balances the fun and the functional, and it definitely will make your buddies jealous. Outdoor Research Baja Down Pullover Features: Water- and wind-resistant nylon face fabric, 10D face 20D liner 800-fill responsibly sourced goose down Fleece-lined kangaroo pocket Left-sided zip for easy on/off Low-Pro binding elastic cuffs Elastic drawcord hem Average weight size L: 9.2oz. MSRP: $249 Half the zip, twice the fun I should state,…

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You know who knows how to make a great jacket? Fjallraven. The quality of their outerwear and lifestyle garments. So when the brand set out to design an eco-friendly shell technology that would still match up to their performance standards, I was interested. Shell technology is one of the most environmentally harmful parts of the outdoor product world, so any attempt to improve here is welcomed. The Keb Eco-Shell is a stellar product move in a positive direction. Fjallraven Keb Eco-Shell Features: Made from stretchy Eco-Shell fabric Helmet-compatible hood preserves peripheral vision Two-way, fully waterproof zipper with storm flap and…

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