11
Mar
2011
jloomis

Atlas 10 Series Snowshoes Review

Product Rating: 
4
Atlas 10 Series Snowshoes

Features:

Atlas 10 Series Snowshoes are built on a 6000 series aluminum frame with Nytex decking. The new Wrapp™ Comfort binding allows effortless entry and removal of the snowshoes. Traction is achieved with steel front All-Trac™ toe crampon and Traverse Trac™ rails. Atlas 10 Series Snowshoes also feature Spring-Loaded™ Suspension for greater comfort and maneuverability. Available in three sizes: 25, 30, and 35 inch.

07
Mar
2011
jloomis

REI Lookout 40 Liter Backpack Review

Product Rating: 
5
REI Lookout 40 Liter Backpack

Features:

The REI Lookout daypack has plenty of pockets for organizing gear and its contoured fit feels great over miles of trail. The molded-foam back panel increases comfort and features channels to improve air circulation. The internal sleeve accommodates a hydration bladder with drinking tube exits on either side of the backpack. The wide opening main compartment allows easy access to gear. Additional pockets include the zippered front organizer pocket, zippered top stash pocket, two zippered stash pockets on the waist belt, two zippered vertical side pockets, and two mesh side pockets. The backpack also features side compression straps and a single ice axe loop that tucks away when not in use. To top it off, the pack has a polyurethane coating for weather resistance.

06
Mar
2011
jloomis

Ziplining with Kauai Backcountry Adventures

Katie, Jason, Mom, and Grandpa Geared up for Ziplining

The weather changed for the worse on Thursday after our mostly sunny hike to Hanakapi'ai Falls on Tuesday. We decided to go ziplining anyway. We drove to the Kauai Backcountry Adventures headquarters off hwy 56 in Hanamaulu (SE part of island). At the warehouse we geared up in full body harnesses and climbing helmets. As we waited to leave, we could hear the rain pounding the metal roof. It was really coming down and sounded as though we were under a waterfall.

03
Mar
2011
jloomis

Kalalau Trail to Hanakapi'ai Falls, Kauai

Hanakapi'ai Falls

On Tuesday the sun was shining and we were up early (5 AM) securing hiking permits for our June Half Dome hike in Yosemite. This was our second day on vacation with my parents and grandpa. Since we had an early start, we decided it would be a great day to hike to Hanakapi'ai Falls on the beautiful Hawaiian island of Kauai. The 8-mile round-trip hike starts at the end of highway 560 on the Northern part of Kauai. The trail becomes dangerous and nearly impassable during heavy rains, so the sunny weather worked in our favor.

23
Feb
2011
jloomis

Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe Review

Product Rating: 
5
Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe

Features:

The Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe is a traditional mountaineering piolet. It's offered in lengths from 55 cm to 90 cm. The shaft is built from lightweight yet strong and durable aircraft grade aluminum alloy. The stainless steel head is designed for years of dependable use.

21
Feb
2011
jloomis

Climbing Mount Hood to Crater Rock

Mount Hood, Oregon

I finally had a free day Sunday with okay weather for a solo climb up Mount Hood to Crater Rock. This was my first trip to this elevation on Mount Hood and my plan wasn't to climb all the way to the summit. I am saving that for a future trip. Mount Hood is Oregon's tallest peak at 11,239 feet elevation. It's known as Wy'east to the Multnomah Tribe. The route I took is known as the South Side Route and starts from the historic Timberline Lodge. It is about 6 miles to Crater Rock and back with an elevation gain of 4,000 feet.

20
Feb
2011
jloomis

Snowshoeing to the Summit of Ghost Ridge, Oregon

Mount Hood from Ghost Ridge

After Katie and I returned from our overnight stay at the Barlow Butte Hut on Saturday morning, we headed out on our next adventure to Ghost Ridge. This is a fairly easy 1.6 mile (each way) trail to snowshoe. The first mile is along the Pacific Crest Trail. After that, the unmarked trail veers to the Southwest (to the right if coming from Barlow Pass SnoPark), away from the PCT.

19
Feb
2011
jloomis

Snowshoeing with Overnight Stay at Barlow Butte Hut, Oregon

Barlow Butte Hut

Cascade Huts LLC has three huts for rent in the White River Valley and along Barlow Ridge. We had the opportunity to snowshoe two miles to the Barlow Butte Hut and spend the night Friday. We started at the Barlow Pass SnoPark around 5:15 PM just as the sun was setting. The temperature was about 26° F and there was no wind. One to two feet of fresh snow had blanketed the area during the week.

16
Feb
2011
jloomis

Columbia Sportswear Men's Core Glove Review

Product Rating: 
4
Columbia Core Winter Gloves

Features:

Columbia Sportswear's Men's Core Gloves are basic winter gloves with many great features, including a waterproof, breathable bladder. The elasticized wrist with hook-and-loop adjustable strap allows a secure fit to seal out winter weather. The polyurethane palm grip helps you keep a hold of things in slippery conditions. Polyester fiberfill insulation keeps hands toasty warm.

14
Feb
2011
jloomis

Snowshoeing to the Summit of Mud Creek Ridge, Oregon

Summit of Mud Creek Ridge

After snowshoeing around Trillium Lake on Sunday, Katie and I decided to hike to the top of Mud Creek Ridge (SE of Trillium Lake). According to my map, the easiest approach is from the North with a gradual climb to the summit at 4,368 feet in elevation. The round-trip climb is less than two miles.

13
Feb
2011
jloomis

Snowshoeing Around Trillium Lake, Oregon

Trillium Lake, Oregon in the Snow

After the howling winds and rains last night, this morning was calm and dry. The storm finally brought a little fresh snow to the mountains. We took advantage of the weather break and headed to Trillium Lake SnoPark for a day of snowshoeing. There were a few other cars in the lot by 8 AM (most left overnight), but it wasn't busy yet. The temperature was just below freezing and rising as the sun was peeking out. We planned to snowshoe down to Trillium Lake and then loop around the lake before heading back for a total distance of 5 miles.

10
Feb
2011
jloomis

Yukon Charlie's Trail Series Poles Review

Product Rating: 
3
Yukon Charlie's Trail Series Poles

Features:

Yukon Charlie's Trail Series Poles are made of sturdy lightweight aluminum. The three piece poles are easily adjusted to accommodate different height people and changing conditions. Great for hiking and snowshoeing with included snow baskets.

09
Feb
2011
jloomis

Yukon Charlie's Pro-Guide Aluminum Snowshoes Review

Product Rating: 
4
Yukon Charlie's Pro-Guide Aluminum Snowshoes

Features:

Yukon Charlie's Pro-Guide Aluminum Snowshoes are a basic, lightweight, and durable snowshoe designed for use on flat to rolling terrain. They feature 1-pull adjustable bindings that make putting them on and taking them off quick and easy. The snowshoe frames are built with 7000 series aluminum and have aluminum crampons. This package includes snowshoes, trekking poles, and a storage bag.

07
Feb
2011
jloomis

Snowshoeing Barlow Butte Trail, Oregon (10 mile loop)

Barlow Butte Trail, Oregon

It continues to feels like spring in the middle of winter with warm temperatures and rain in the mountains. On Sunday, Katie and I decided to brave the wet conditions and head to Barlow Pass SnoPark for a full day of snowshoeing. I wanted to try the Barlow Butte Trail #670 and Katie eagerly agreed. If only she knew what she was getting herself into! I failed to mention the trail listed a difficulty rating of "Expert/Strenuous".

05
Feb
2011
jloomis

Catch-And-Release Sturgeon Fishing on the Willamette River, Oregon

Sturgeon Fishing on the Willamette River

Instead of snowshoeing on Mount Hood today (due to poor weather), I decided to go sturgeon fishing with my friend John. Experts claim White Sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus) numbers have been declining, so fishing is currently catch-and-release only. No fish for the table this trip. We launched John's North River boat at Meldrum Bar just as it was getting light. We saw a few other boats set on trying to catch one of the first few salmon in the Willamette River. Lucky for us, it was not crowded and we had most of the river to ourselves.

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