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  • Sock Liners And Glove Liners

    Posted on December 1, 2006 by Justin

    I get asked all of the time: "How much good do sock liners or glove liners actually do?" While the results can vary from person to person, liners are a great way to add warmth and keep your skin dry.

    Polypropylene Sock Liners

    Your feet have more than 250,000 sweat glands. Just one foot is capable of sweating 1 pint in a single day. So, when you are out on the ski slopes or hiking up a mountain, your feet can get wet with sweat pretty quick. Polypropylene sock liners will pull the sweat off of your skin allowing your feet to stay much dryer than with regular socks. The liner can also aid in preventing blisters as the liner takes the beating instead of your skin.

    Polypropylene Glove Liners

    Your hands are capable of sweating as much as your feet. Wearing a glove liner will produce the same benefits as we just discussed with the sock liners. There are some added benefits when using them in the snow. As you take your gloves off and put them back during skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports, your hands can likely get wet and sometime snow can even get inside your gloves or boots. Once again, the polypropylene will keep your skin dry and warm even though the inside of your gloves may be wet. It's worth checking out the thermolite glove liners as well.

    This post was posted in Outdoor Gear, Stay Dry, Winter Sports

  • How Do You Stay Warm When It Gets So Cold?

    Posted on November 6, 2006 by Justin

    If you find yourself asking this question each year shortly after daylight savings time kicks in, then you need to pay close attention. There is no need to freeze when the weather turns cold. The proper clothing and proper clothing layers can eliminate any discomfort that winter typically causes. When I say proper clothing, I'm refering to the design of the clothing as well as the materials used to make it. For proper clothing layers, you can read my Layering Guide for a complete description of proper clothing layer techniques.

    So, lets talk about proper clothing. What will keep you the warmest? There are two factors to consider here. First, you want a material that has a very low heat transfer. This means that the material stay warm longer once it is heated by your body. Second, you want a fabric that will trap as much air inside of it as possible. Air is a perfect insulator. So the more of it that is trapped inside a fabric, the warmer it will be. Fleece fabrics have excellent insulating properties because they trap heat in between all of the fluffy fibers. One fabric out there that maximized both of these insulating properties is called polypropylene fleece. Polypropylene has the lowest thermal conductivity of any clothing fabric produced. Because of this, the fleece version of polypropylene retains more warmth than almost anything else you'll find. There are plenty of other similar fabrics. Polyester fleece is probably the second best insulator. Polyester also has a low thermal conductivity. There is an added bonus to polypropylene and polyester fleece clothing. They both retain warmth when wet. So, if you start to sweat a little, you will not get cold like you would with a cotton fabric.

    So, stop freezing your way through the winter. Proper dress means starting with the right long johns and then utilizing the proper clothing layers.

    This post was posted in Base Layer, Clothing Layers, Outdoor Gear, Stay Dry

  • Polypropylene Vs. Polyester

    Posted on October 2, 2006 by Justin

    I've had many people ask me what the difference is between polypropylene fabric and polyester fabric used to make thermal underwear. In this post, I'll point out ony the factors that I think are the most relevant.

    First of all, polypropylene and polyester are synthetic materials. They are both polymers, which is essentially plastic. As a result their colors won't fade or bleed when washed because the colors are built into the material. Polypropylene however, is more hydrophobic than polyester meaning that it does not absorb as much water. Since the water cannot be absorbed into the fabric, the water(or sweat) has a tendancy to spread evenly throughout the garment which in turn helps the water to evaporate much quicker than a fabric that absorbs and retains the water. As a quick example, if you cup your hand and put some water in it and continue to hold the water in your hand with your hand still in a cup shape, the water will take a very long time to dry. But, if you uncup your hand and use your other hand to spread the water evenly all over both of your hands, the water will dry in less than 1 tenth of the time.

    So, having explained this, polypropylene will dry much faster than polyester. Polypropylene has a much lower melting point than polyester so you will want to avoid washing polypro in hot water or drying it. For this reason, polyester materials are much easier to care for than polypropylene. Polyester is also more UV resistant than polypro. If you wear polypropylene as an outer layer exposed to the sun, eventually the polypropylene fabric will break down and the color will fade. Polypropylene has a lower heat transfer rate which means that thermal underwear made from polypro will retain more heat than polyester.

    So really, whether one fabric is better than the other really depends on what it will be used for. If you just need a fabric to wear next to your skin that will dry very quickly and thus keep you skin dry, then polypropylene is probably what you want. If you want just a good all around fabric that also dries quickly, but is very easy to launder and care for, then polyester is probably your best bet.

    This post was posted in Base Layer, Fabric Types, Polypropylene Underwear, Thermal Underwear

  • Free Thermal Underwear Giveaway

    Posted on September 29, 2006 by Justin

    OuterSports is giving away a free set of Thermal Underwear every Friday. All you have to do is visit and sign up. No purchase is neccessary. Signing up will also subscribe you to OuterSports' newsletter and as long as you are subscribed, you are eligible to win each week. You can also see a list of the winners on the entry page. Good Luck!

    This post was posted in Uncategorized

  • Fox River Corn Socks

    Posted on August 29, 2006 by Justin

    Fox River has recently announced a new addition to their sock lineup. Their "Good Earth Collection" is made of 100% renewable resources and unlike other synthetic fibers, it does not use petroleum. Instead, making the Ingeo fiber involves a process of extracting sugars or corn starch from corn, which is then transformed into a polymer(plastic). The result is a hi performance product that is totally environment friendly. Fox River's testing of the new line of socks revealed that wearers preferred the comfort of the Good Earth socks over other synthetic socks.

    The Good Earth Collection of socks range in styles from Athletic, to Casual, to Outdoor. If you support the movement to make more clean earth friendly products, you'll want to try Fox Rivers newest line of socks. Fox River is also a member of "One Percent For The Planet," which is an organization that donates 1% of their sales to environmental organizations worldwide.

    This post was posted in Outdoor Gear, Socks

  • Thermals: Get Ready for Winter Early

    Posted on August 8, 2006 by Justin

    Last winter, I planned a snowmobiling trip to Utah. Now, I'm a native a Florida and I now live in South Georgia so, the thought of winter time in a place like Utah used to send chills all through me. I've watched most of Warren Millers ski videos. They depict these hardcore skiers taking choppers to the very tops of mountains to ski down. But, one thing you never get from those videos is any inclination as to just how cold it gets at those elevations. Even on the close up shots, you don't see any hint of shivering or coldness. In fact, on some of the interviews at the bottom the are actually sweating. The first time I visited the mountains as an adult was in the summer time. I hiked to the top of mountain that was just over 12,000 ft. Since it was summer time, I didn't bother to bring anything warm. That day just happened to be cloudy and I froze. In the middle of summer! So, how do these skiers keep warm in the winter time? They use a clothing system called layering. The most important being the base layer. If you wear the proper base layer in any weather condition, you dramatically increase your comfort level. Particularly in cold weather. You can read more on layering here.

    Now, what happens each year is that more and more people catch on to this layering system. But, they don't prepare in time. Often, a trip gets planned somewhat spontaneously, and at the last minute, they find themselves running from store to store to find the right thermals. The problem is that each winter, outdoor retailers stock their shelves with a limited amount of thermal underwear. They usually base their stock on how much they sold the year before. They might stock a little more if the predictions are for a longer, colder winter. But, either way, they only stock so much. Not to mention how many of each size gets stocked. So, the would be toasty recreationist ends up compromising their layering system with something inferior. Instead of a nice fitting, warm, base layer, a 100% cotton gym sweat suit is substituted and the misery on the mountain begins. The point I'm trying to make here is that if you are serious about staying warm this winter, you need to get the right thermals well before your trip. Don't wait until everything that you would prefer to wear is sold out and you stuck "substituting."

    This post was posted in Base Layer, Clothing Layers, Thermal Underwear, Winter Sports

  • Clic Goggles and Sunglasses: Never Loose Your Eyewear Again

    Posted on July 28, 2006 by Justin

    For those of you not satisfied with the current products on the market designed to keep your eyewear on your face or around you neck, there is a better product. It is a new line of eyewear that has the "granny-chain" built in. Ron Lando, founder and CEO of Clic says goodbye to lost eyewear with his ingenious new invention. The earpieces of Clic goggles and sunglasses continue around the back of the head and are seamlessly connected. You see, to remove them, you simply unclick the eye pieces just above your nose to remove them. The picture here speaks for itself. So how do they stay together? Two high strength magnets hold the bridge of the sunglasses or goggles together. Unclick them, lower them and click them back together to allow them to dangle around your neck. Clic eyewear has been around since 2000 and since then has added a number of new products to their line including Clic Readers, reading glasses with the same clic technology.

    This post was posted in Outdoor Gear

  • Recent What to Wear Kayaking Post

    Posted on July 24, 2006 by Justin

    I just added to our kayaking post for all of you kayakers out there wanting advice on what to wear. The advice and suggestions come from Peggy Sherman of Florida. You can read more about Peggy's kayaking experiences on her blog Paddle Tales.

    This post was posted in Athletic Wear, Outdoor Gear

  • Get $1000 Worth of Gear For Only $200

    Posted on July 18, 2006 by Justin

    While that may seem like a discount that is too good to be true, there are thousands of online shoppers that are able to save big on high priced items. How do they do it? By shopping on eBay and other online auction sites. They use a practice called auction sniping. Most online auctions allow bidders to place bids right up to the last seconds of the auction. Because of this, an auction sniper can wait until the last few seconds of the auction to place their maximum bid. Auction sniping works so well because the majority of bidders are inexperienced. The typical bidder is unaware of auction snipers. They place their lowest bid each time they bid. When they see that the auction price stays low, they figure noone else is interested in that particular item. This provides the perfect setup for an auction sniper to jump in and outbid them just before the auction ends leaving the other bidder no time to rebid. There is even auction sniping software available that will take care of the dirty work for you so that you don't have to stay up till 3am waiting for an auction to end.

    So, how does this relate to saving you money on gear? Most of the popular products mentioned on this blog and other review sites can be found on online auctions. Sellers will often list a product with a starting price of $0.99 which sets up the perfect opportunity to get it cheap using the sniping technique. I have personally saved thousands of dollars on the outdoor clothing and gear that I currently use by sniping on online auctions. There are also many items that were purchased and never used that end up on eBay and other sites for a fraction of the original cost. I just picked up $350 worth of diving gear for $30 including shipping this week. So, if lack of funds is keeping you from investing in the gear that you want, give auction sniping a try. There are some risks involved. To read about some of them check out this article on online auction fraud.

    This post was posted in Outdoor Gear

  • Camelbak Hydration Systems!

    Posted on June 28, 2006 by Justin

    When You Take Hydration Seriously, Camelbak Has Your Back Covered

    As the originators of the world leading hands-free hydration systems backpacks, Camelbak's name is synonymous to the desert camel that travels extensively through arid regions, with a unique source of nourishment contained within the humps on their back!

    The Camelbak hydration systems work in the same manner, where many sports enthusiasts such as mountain and motocross riders have openly adopted this hands-free convenience of Camelbak's unique systems. When it came to safety at all levels of their sport, a Camelbak hydration system was a popular necessity.

    With more athletes taking their sport to the extreme knowing that they can count on a reputable hydrating system, they were capable of concentrating more on their activities, versus worrying about where to find their next water source to get hydrated. Soon the Camelbak backpacks became so popular, a great number of different athletic groups adopted the same hydrating convenience as the mountain and motocross bikers!

    Before you knew it, not only were there cyclists using these systems, however, now you noticed more hikers, runners, snowboarders, skiers, and outdoorsmen increasing the use of these Camelbak packs, and experiencing their true benefits.

    Why Would You Choose A Camelbak Hydration Pack Over Others Out There?

    Sports in the new millennium have become more extreme, and many athletes are pushing their physical abilities harder than ever before. So when it comes to maintaining their energy levels, strength, dexterity, and their all-important mental focus, then a proper hydration system to keep them fully hydrated during their intense activity was a must. The bottom line is if the Camelbak's are good enough for the majority of the US Marines, and Army, then they're sufficient for many professional, and intense leisure athletes out there!

    How Much Water Should You Drink, And How Much Do These Packs Hold?

    On average it's recommended that many athletes that are exerting moderate energy in approximately 80° degree weather or hotter, should consume a minimum of one litre of water per hour.

    Keeping that in mind, if you plan on spending an entire day on large mountainous trails, or in that isolated marathon where you're not going to have access to any water sources, then the appropriate hydration system to accommodate your needs will be required, and you can view a select few of popular packs below:

    · Camelbak H.A.W.G.® 100 oz. Hydration Pack: The H.A.W.G. is the best choice for mountain bike riders that are looking to spend most of their day on the most extreme terrain. With a 100 0z reservoir bladder with tethered cap, and the taste-free Pure Flow™ tube- incorporating in the polyethylene liner, your water will be tasting fresh, and keeping cool with the 5 mm cell phone insulation for the best body absorbtion while you're hitting those challenging trails. You will feel confident that the Ergo Hydrolock that places the Camelbak's Big Bite Valve™ in the ergonomic position will maintain a proper position for drinking!

    Combined with the strap management system, slider sternum straps, and the Air Director™ back panel that provides an AirMesh harness for proper ventilation, you will have not only the most effective hydration system, but also a very stable and comfortable backpack with tons of storage for all your biking accessories, and additional reservoirs.

    · Camelbak M.U.L.E.® 100 oz. Hydration Pack: This pack is very similar to the one above, but the M.U.L.E. has very little differences that cater to the ultimate hiker. It's comfortable enough for hikers that plan on spending many hours on the trails, and it offers plenty of space for storage. This pack includes one more zippered compartment with a total of 3, a Bungee Cinch System™ that allows you to lash on additional gear, and 2 mesh overflow compartments for more storage space. With 500 cubic inches, you will have no worries about taking all the necessities required to get you through any weather that comes your way.

    There are other models available with many water hydration system options, and if you don't require a reservoir as large, you can find a selection of smaller ones to suite your athletic needs.

    Remember this one tip! Only being in the sun for a couple of hours without consuming enough fluids can quickly drain your energy level and impair your endurance, and can prevent you from keeping focused and alert while participating in very extreme activities, especially in hot weather.

    A hydration system, including the highly recognized Camelbak system is a great solution to your hydrating requirements. It carries more clean fresh water than the standard water bottles, or canteens, and I highly recommend that the Camelbak should be your choice over many of the other systems available online, and reason for this is that they only do one thing, and that is making the best hydration systems!

    About the author: William is the owner and Author of "Hydration" - your source for Camelbak Hydration Backpacks! Visit our site to read informative articles on quality Camelbak systems that come in a variety of backpack styles and options for all your hydrating needs.

    This post was posted in Hiking, Mountain Climbing, Outdoor Gear, Winter Sports

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