Friday, May 29, 2020

Holiday Gift Guide: Our top picks for your outdoor enthusiast!

November 26, 2012 by  
Filed under Gear, Miscellaneous

Our yearly search for the best gifts for your outdoor enthusiast, Enjoy!

Click thru any link.  Your purchase benefits AdventureBuddies (and costs you nothing). Thank you!

Shop Amazon – Top Gift Ideas

Anyone who uses poles knows how important a headlamp is.It’s one of our favorite travel accessories.We can read at night without keeping the light on or get up in the night more safely. This particular model has a red light for seeing better at night and other helpful options.Those of us who live in earthquake land know to keep our shoes by the bed. Keep your headlamp in one of your shoes, your socks in the other.  Remember to pack it when you travel! 

Shop any headlamp or any item at all at REI by clicking on the headlamp.

Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

Quality vs. Quantity. Do you really need 37 band-aids?

AdventureMedical Sport Specific Medical Kits are designed by an emergency room physician.

These two are our favorite day kits, but you can look around and see what suits you best. I like to put a few extra things in the handy zipper pouch to customize it.

The .5 is $17; the .7 is $27. Use in a day pack or in a car.Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .5 First-Aid KitAdventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .7 First-Aid Kit

Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .5 First-Aid Kit

Winner of Best Stocking Stuffer Ever!

Over and over we’ve said it.
Take good care of your feet!  They’re the foundation of your body.

These massage balls are magic!  Use to treat or prevent plantar fasciitis.  Use the relaxed weight of your leg and allow your foot to relax on the ball.

 These balls are not for everyone, just for people who have FEET!

Do you love your teeth?

We’ve covered this in a separate post all its own, but it really belongs here in our top picks.

Both Bob’s dentist and my beloved hygienist recommended exactly the same thing.

Replacement Brushes:
Philips Sonicare Brush Heads

We LOVE our Soda Stream.We have wonderful water, this handy, space-saving Soda Stream helps us save money.  We also don’t buy any more plastic soda bottles.

Add a spash of lime, a slice of cucumber, a sprig of mint or a drop of lavender and it’s gourmet Fizzy Water!Or, my favorite pro-biotic beverage:

  • 2 parts Fizzy Water
  • 1/2 to 1 Part Good Fruit Juice (orange, tangerine, pomegranate, etc.)
  • 1/2 Part Organic High Quality Kefir
  • This makes an amazing, healthy SODA CREAM

Free Shipping at REI!

Bay Nature Magazine, Special Holiday Offer


Shop any Amazon or Kindle Item from this link


 Gift Certificates available:

  • Percussion Therapy for plantar fasciitis or tendonitis
  • Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD) session or consultation
  • Massage therapy session
  • Personalized Pole Fitting
  • Pole Coaching Session for small groups of hikers
  • Pole Coaching Session for loved one with mobility challenges
  • Foot care/foot massage session

Photo is Wall of Windows at Bryce Canyon


Stay tuned for part 3 of the Utah journey; this post will focus on some pole tips as well as stunning vistas.  Thanks for visiting our blog!

Handy auto tool to help prevent falls

April 16, 2012 by  
Filed under Gear, Poles for Balance & Mobility

This lever fits easily in the car door latch  (when open).  It’s an ideal gift for anyone who has trouble getting in and/or out of a car.  Universal fit, portable, supports up to 300 lbs, lifetime guarantee.   It’s really cool!

I keep one in my car stashed so I can reach it easily.  When I transport an elder or someone who has trouble getting out of the car, it’s so easy to position it so that my buddy has excellent support – a sturdy handle to assist rising.

Trail Tip: Blue Jeans on the Trail?

April 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Gear, Trail Tips

3 reasons why we think blue jeans are TERRIBLE for hiking:

  1. If the bottoms get even a little wet or damp, they wick up your legs.
  2. Wet jeans stay wet.  When compared to the lightweight hiking pants, there’s really a huge difference in drying time.  Even a light morning dew can create wet pants for hours.
  3. Most jeans are somewhat form-fitting.  This means that the leg has to work harder at the knee joint.  If you meet resistance with every step, it’s not efficient.

Falling is BAD: Ice & Snow Safety Balance Tip

March 4, 2012 by  
Filed under Gear, Trail Tips, Uncommon Sense

A dear friend with Multiple Sclerosis  (who lives in MN) shared a WONDERFUL tip yesterday.   She keeps a set of YakTrax on a pair of shoes (in her case – slip on boots for ease of application) in her car so that when she arrives at a client’s home, she can safely walk in and out.  This is brilliant!

From another friend:   Jayah, I finally got a chance to use those slip-on crampons yesterday at Sugarbowl.    They were great!  Walking in an icy and snowy  parking lot is usually the most dangerous part of a ski day. 

Click on image below to see which model of YakTrax we recommend.

Yaktrax Pro

I slipped in the parking lot on the way to cross country ski.  I landed on my hip on the hard pavement.   I’ve been a YakTrax fan ever since.  Note about sizing – Order a size larger than you think so you can more easily put them on your heavy walking shoes/boots.

Trekking Poles: Travel Tips

June 20, 2011 by  
Filed under DVD Updates, Gear, Pole Tips, Poles, Travel

Question from the Facebook PoleWalking page:

“In mid-October I am going to northern Spain to walk the Camino de Santiago and would like to get information on air travel with poles and any other info about this walk and the weather you may have.”  Margy S.

I’ll address the travel with poles question and hope fellow AdventureBuddy  Lee Sandstead might address the other questions as I believe he’s there right now.

POLES in carry on: Good Question.  Far be it for me to predict what current airline policies are.

Carrying your poles onto the plane:  Another quagmire.  If you look like you NEED them, then maybe.  But only if you have your rubber tips on.

POLES in checked baggage: Absolutely!

  • Make sure you know how to easily take apart and put together your poles  (you might not believe the number of people who have trouble with this).
  • Take them apart for travel if they do not easily fit into your luggage.
  • Secure expanders if they are the removable kind.
  • Put a rubber band around all sections
  • Put all sections in a pillow case.  Lose one section and you’re sunk (yes, this happened to a buddy in a remote section of China, yikes!).
  • Rubber tips are considered an accessory.  I consider them an essential part of your poles.  Use them instead of travel tips.
  • Make sure your rubber tips are securely affixed.  We like LEKI tips for the models of poles that we recommend.

As I like to convey in my Yoga classes – enjoy the journey as well as the destination.  Happy Travels!

Outdoor Activities: Hiking and Biking SAFETY TIP

April 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Gear, Trail Tips, Uncommon Sense

The first thing rangers will tell you:  Make a copy of your ID and insurance card.  Put it in your pack. I add:  cover it in plastic wrap or in a small plastic baggie.  Write your emergency contact name and phone number on it.

People often ask me what’s in my hiking pack.  I’ll get to answering this in another post.  But for now, and FIRST, make this copy  and put it in your pack as well as with your kayak stuff and in your bike pack.  For biking, I have a small fanny pack that I keep with my helmet and bike gloves.  In it I have my ID copy, some cash, a headband (to protect my ears on cold/windy days), lip protection, full finger gloves, an energy bar and a bandana.

New Facebook Page for people who love to walk and hike with poles

I just created a new Facebook Page for people to use as a FORUM for asking questions, discussing how poles enhance their outdoor experiences and help them achieve their goals.

Please check it out and click the LIKE button to enjoy:  FaceBook Page for Pole Walkers

Yaktrax Sizing: Improve performance on snow and ice

January 3, 2011 by  
Filed under Gear

At the risk of being redundant, Yaktrax are fantastic for walking on snow and ice.  To answer your questions about sizing, here is the information on the Yaktrax package:

  • Men:        Small  5-8.8,    Med  9-11,    Lg 11.5-13.5,    XL 14+
  • Women:  Small 6.5-10,  Med 10.5-12.5,  Lg 13 – 15,  XL  15.5+

However, I am size 9.5 and wear Med Yaktrax.  Bob wears size 10 hiking shoes and is comfortable with Large.   Since the Pro have straps, ease of use is a factor.  If you’re on the upper edge of sizing, I would opt for the next size up.

Please remember to order from this blog or websites as it helps AdventureBuddies (and costs you nothing extra).  You’ll see REI, Amazon, even Sierra Trading Post on the side bar to the Right.  Speaking of traction, here’s one of our local birds of prey (click on any photo on this blog to enlarge):

American Kestrel

Bird Photos by Len Blumin

Hiking Gear: Safety and comfort ON THE TRAIL

December 13, 2010 by  
Filed under Gear, Travel

What to take?  Having the right gear can make such a difference for both comfort and safety on the trail (OTT).  Hmmm, what goes in the pack?

Sorting gear for Island in the Sky Hike

Outdoor Research Gaiters

We wore our long gaiters on this trail – Neck Spring Loop, Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park.  Even though it was not raining or snowing, it was cool and the long gaiters were great for protecting our lower legs. So many hazards on the trail are right at ankle or calf level.   It’s easy to be looking around at the glorious sights and inadvertently snag lower legs on cactus or thorns.  The gaiters we like are made by Outdoor Research.  Click on this link to learn more about gaiters:   Outdoor Research Crocodile Gaiters

Yaktrax for easy walking on snow & ice

Bryce Canyon National Park, Thanksgiving 2010

We are huge fans of Yaktrax. They’re compact, lightweight, easy to carry and keep us from slipping and sliding.  A lady in sturdy hiking boots fell right in front of me on a slippery patch of pavement. Yes, you can even walk on pavement wearing Yaktrax.   We put our Yaktrax on at the car and did entire hikes with them on.   We felt secure and stable on icy trails, narrow stretches and on all kinds of terrain.

We like Yaktrax Pro because they strap onto our shoes.   To carry, we nest them  together, fold them up, put a rubber band around them and put them in a plastic Ziploc. We carry them if we have any hint of snow or ice conditions.   Falling is bad and, since Yaktrax are so easy to put on and walk with, there’s really no reason not to have them in our packs.  Also, at under $30, they’re an amazing bargain (and a great present).  Click on this link to learn more:   Yaktrax Pro

Geared up & Blissful!

Bryce from Sunrise Point

Bryce Snow Angel

Preparation and good gear can make such a difference. We had a glorious day in 10 degrees on Thanksgiving Day.  It’s easy to give thanks when looking out at the abundance of such beauty.  Wishing you and yours a happy holiday!

FAQ: What kind of POLES should I buy?

November 24, 2010 by  
Filed under DVD Updates, Gear, Poles, Poles for Hiking

Learning about gear is an important aspect in mastering the skills necessary to achieve the many benefits of using poles.  Because models and features of poles change regularly, our hiking DVD does not address specific types of poles.
Our website endeavors to stay abreast of current models of poles.  We update the website as models and features change. The Pole Buyer’s Guide page on the site includes a comparison of pole features.  We discuss different grip materials, grip size, long foam grips, grip shape, straps, anti-shock features, baskets, rubber tips and more.

Our approach is simple.  We focus exclusively on top quality gear (yes, you get what you pay for) and let the user determine what feels best.  Like trying on shoes, we often put one pole in one hand and another model in the other hand, and let the user decide.  This instant feedback enables the user to feel, and us to see, how they perform.

To determine which poles best suit an individual, we look at 3 things, a person’s:  Structure, Issue & Goals

  • Structure deals with hand size, height, weight, etc.
  • Issues might include balance problems, arthritis in the hand, shoulder trouble, neck pain, etc.
  • Goals include whether a person wants to hike or walk or exercise as well as preferred terrain.

Every person is different. Determining which poles best suit a person can make a huge difference in the quality of the experience and how many benefits a person can achieve.  For people who have seen either DVD, we have a Pole Purchase Consultation Form.  You can fill it out (completely please) and we’ll call or email you to discuss what poles might best suit your body, your issues and your goals.

We hike with LEKI poles that are about 12 years old.  They have a lifetime warranty.    We take good care of them and they take good care of us!

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