Out of sorts

As consumers embrace vigrorous outdoor activities, shoe firms are pursing them with product and events to satisfy their rugged urges.

In many ways, multisport outdoor shoes are sport-utility vehicles for the feet (balance bike). This footwear, like a four-wheel drive, is comfortable, functional, works well on a variety of surfaces and looks good when spotted on downtown streets.

Just as the demand for sport-utility vehicles has exploded in recent years, so has the demand for sport-utility footwear.

According to vendors and retailers, the number of people who participate in multiple outdoor sports, such as mountain biking and trail running, and those who aspire to be perceived as such, continues its phenomenal growth. Intent on continuing this trend, footwear companies are creating and sponsoring a growing number of events that require participants to compete in several different rugged-outdoor activities.

Although most people would never consider actually participating in life-threatening ultraendurance tests such as the Eco-Challenge, Southern Traverse or the Raid Gauloises, these events generate public interest in outdoor activities, much like the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii did for running, swimming and biking a decade ago, some vendors said. Continue reading “Out of sorts”

Adidas Adventure asks ‘how far will you go?’

Adidas is actively marketing their Adventure collection of outdoor shoes as athletics shoes. Adidas Adventure’s international business unit manager David Pompel states the company’s main market is to athletes, but outdoor activities are athletic and draw many of the same customers. Adidas is focusing on running hiking shoes for fall 1995, sandals and canvas shoes for spring. Pompel says the company is aiming at customers who currently are involved in outdoor activities but do not yet own outdoor footwear.

Talk to any of the number of outdoor companies showing here during the Outdoor Retailer market two weeks ago that have put a stripe, piece of spandex, Lycra or any other athletic-inspired features in their outdoor” shoes and they’ll give you some song and dance about how they can do it and remain true to the outdoor category with the rest of their line.

Adidas, Portland, Ore., has taken a different tack.

With the most radical looking collection, and even more outrageous styling promised for 1996, Adidas is having no trouble defining its place in the outdoor market.

“We’re an athletic company,” said David Pompel, the former Reebok outdoor executive who recently made the move to Adidas to take the position of international business unit manager for the Adventure collection. “We’re not going to fool anyone by saying something different. I have no aspirations to make Adidas an outdoor company.”

So, according to Pompel, Adidas will march on, targeting Adidas customers — its core athletes — with its outdoor line, because outdoor activities require the same degree of athleticism and agility that other more traditional sports require. Continue reading “Adidas Adventure asks ‘how far will you go?’”

Unforgetable Fishing trip

A. Neville Cutting will never forget his first fishing trip to Costa Rica. He had planned on fishing for tarpon and maybe some snook.

But plans change.

One part of the trip took him to a shallow lake only five miles from an active volcano. He was looking to catch guapote, a fish similar to rainbow bass.

“Those fish are fighters like you’ve never seen,” Cutting says.

But not only did Cutting and his group fight the fish, they also ended up fighting the ash falling from the volcano. Cutting says the members of his group had to keep dipping their reels in the lake because the ash got so thick.

Fighting the volcano wasn’t enough adventure to satisfy Cutting, though. So he led his group to northern Costa Rica, where they rented a boat and traveled to the Nicaraguan border in search of tarpon. Nevermind that the country was in the middle of a revolution.

Cutting says the group never crossed Lake Nicaragua and into the war torn country, but the effects of the war could be seen from where they were fishing.

And when they went into a nearby town, Cutting says, it seemed they were transported back in time. The town had a dirt road and a few buildings and looked like a classic Zorro movie.

“The people carried sidearms and machetes and I didn’t see anything automatic,” Cutting says. “We were running around the town in our tarpon gear.”

Not all of Cutting’s fishing trips gets the heart pumping like that one, but some do. That’s Cutting’s business. He arranges fishing-trips-of-a-lifetime through his company, Cutting Loose Expeditions.

Cutting, whose business allows him to shun ties and wear dock-siders rather than loafers, founded Cutting Loose Expeditions because he once spent good money on an entirely forgettable fishing trip. Continue reading “Unforgetable Fishing trip”

Choosing the perfect weapon for your hunting spree

With a great desire to run away from daily stress and challenge themselves in the wild, many people pursue hunting as an amazing hobby. This activity can surprisingly bring about rewarding experiences. Once you have decided to take up hunting, you should carefully pick your best weapon. Below we will provide some useful steps in choosing the perfect weapon for your hunting spree:

hunting spree

Step 1: Assessing your experience

  • Different levels of experience require different calibers. If you are totally a freshman in weapon operation, you should pick a light caliber. The most suitable one is .22 caliber, which is easy to handle and appropriate for those who are still getting to know about firearms. On the other hand, if you are new to this activity yet you are already accustomed to using rifles, you can choose calibers with higher power. You had better look into trustworthy brands offering weapon matching your skill level.
  • Experience also affects the types of rifle actions. Actions can be understood as an engine which ejects a used cartridge and put a new one in. Generally, rifle actions are divided into single shot and repeating. While the former are preferred by many skillful hunters, the latter is much suitable for beginners as they are easier to handle. This is because with single shot action, you have to fire one shot before you can switch to a new cartridge, but the opposite is true of repeating one. This means that you must be a very careful and skilled hunter when operating a single shot rifle.
  • Among various styles of single – shot rifles like rolling – block, break – open,.., falling – block is claimed to be the most precise. Repeating rifles can be either bolt/pump – action or semi – auto/full – auto action.
  • The most highly recommended automatic ones are AR 15 rifles. According to some trustworthy websites for hunters, the best AR 15 optics for the money 2015 include Simmons Predator Quest TruPlex Reticle Side-Parallax Adjustment Rifle Scope, Bushnell AR Optics FFP Illuminated BTR-1 BDC Reticle AR-223 Rifle Scope and Nikon P-223 BDC 600 4-12×40 Rifle Scope with Rapid Action Turret,… These rifles are reviewed as easy to manipulate with accurate penetration, which is really suitable for beginnners.

Step 2: Consider your hunting style

  • Determined prey: Depending on your expected hunting animals, your weapon’s calibers may vary a lot, for which you can research from experienced hunters around you. Normally, .22 calibers are used in case of squirrel or rabbit while .30 ones are recommended for hunting deer and bear.
  • The size of your game: The distance from which you are about to hunt will determine the type of cartridge. You need to ensure that your cartridge obtains proper amount of power to fire a gun. Commonly it is suggested that calibers ranging from .17 to .22 should be used for distance not excessing 91 meters while for larger games, you should utilize .24 or .25 calibers.

Step 3: Take your budget into account

The amount of money you want to spend on a weapon will determine its materials. Basically it can be made from either carbon steel or stainless steel. The latter is more expensive yet possesses greater durability. However, carbon steel, which may cost you a lot less, is more vulnerable to harmful elements and can become rusty if you are not careful. Nevertheless, if you can make sure of a thorough and regular maintenance, rust is not a big matter.

In order to save money, you can definitely purchase a used weapon, as long as you bring it to a gunsmith to check that there is nothing wrong with its operation.

The proper use of ground blinds

Though many hunters appreciate tactical side of tree stands, in some situations ground blinds are far more suitable. They can allow for more convenient mobility, as well as protect you from harsh weather conditions. Moreover, ground blinds prove extremely practical in hunting deer, hog and turkey. Since you may not be fully aware of how to use ground blinds properly, below are some valuable tips for you:

ground blind

Picking the right spot

In order to conceal yourself, choosing the most suitable site is extremely important. According to some experienced hunters, your location should be:

  • Downwind
  • Supported by a natural structure (a downed tree is highly recommended)
  • Far from the sunlight (to make your shelter more undetectable)
  • Foreground and background must be safe
  • Should be 20 yards from the path (in bow hunting)

Use debris to camouflage

You may first feel uncomfortable with so much debris around you, however, it is a perfect material for you to conceal your ground blind. Beside, if you clean them away, the sound of brushing may make animals easily recognize you.
Whether you are about to hunt in private or public land, your blind should be set up in advance a couple of hours so that animals can gradually feel familiar with your spot. If you want to use limps to support your blinds, remember to tie them with black cloth to turn them into natural debris.

Creating silence in your blind

Animals are relatively sensitive to strange sounds. Therefore, it is important that you remain silent as much as possible.

  • Clean the debris: You can use a lot of debris to cover your ground blinds, however, if you leave too much on the inside ground, you may make yourself detected. Just a small step can produce a big strange sound. Do not forget to clean the floor where you intend to sit.
  • Use a carpet: Sometimes in winter, you may need some debris to create a barrier between you and the cold ground. Since debris can create sound with just a little movement, you had better cover the floor with a carpet. Not only can this carpet reduce noise, it can also keep you warm in cold weather condition.

Get a screen

Of course you can not sit still for several hours. You need to shift your position to obtain a correct sight of your prey. Nevertheless, such a slight movement can still become recognizable. You should get a screen, putting it in front of you blind. In this way, you can both hide your movement and reduce the sharpness of the noise. Everything you do will blend in the surroundings.

Use suitable clothes

Since ground blinds are mostly for hunting deers who are colour blind, you should wear black clothes. Many people would like to use camo ones, but actually a camouflage shape moving against a dark background will be easily noticeable to deers, even with just a little sunlight. Therefore, you can reduce the risk of being busted by concealing yourself with dark or black clothes.

The basics about bows and arrows

Archery is definitely an exciting sport and can be a memorable experience. Before getting engaged in this activity, you had better obtain some basic knowledge about the equipment. Below we will provide some general information about bows and arrows.

bow and arrow


Archery bows are available in various types, which can be divided into 3 main forms:

  • Longbows: This has the most traditional design with a string and a long curved piece of wood without any rest and sight, making it the most difficult type to handle. However, many pure archers still favour longbows to challenge their patience and technique.
  • Recurve bows: This fairly basic type consists of a riser, a string and a pair of limps. The distinct design in which the limp at the centre curves towards the user while the other curves backward gives archer more power to shoot and requires little effort. Barebow recurve is suitable for beginners. Once you are more experienced, you can add some other attachment like sight, pressure button, clickers,…
  • Compound bows: This is a modern model with a complex system of cables, pulleys, a riser, limps with cams at the tips. The system effectively produces more power without requiring much muscle effort from the archer. Since this type does not utilize natural materials, it is hardly damaged by harmful elements outside. However, it is recommended that compound bows should be used by skilled archers because of its complex operation.

With recurve and compound bows, you can shoot either in barebow style (with no assisting devices, similar to longbows) or in with – sight style (using some aiming devices attached, producing much more aligned sight and helping you shoot more correctly)


Just like bows, archery arrows are available in 3 basic forms:

  • Wood: This is the oldest type of arrow and it is oftenly used for long bows or recurve ones with low power. Due to its natural material, wooden arrows can be broken easily, therefore, archers possessing modern kinds of bows should not utilize it.
  • Carbon: Some people may like this type because they may appear alright at first with lighter weight than others kinds, making it fly faster. Nevertheless, carbon arrows are not strong since they can splinter into several pieces, resulting in some unfortunate incidents for users. Before using carbon arrows, you must examine them carefully.
  • Aluminum: Though its weight is slightly greater than the previous, you can trust its durability because this type is less vulnerable to air pressure than carbon arrow. Hence it will hardly injure the user.

Each type above requires different grades of stiffness, point weight, and types of cams,… The rating system for carbon arrows spine is quite simple with just 3 series: 500 series – 400 series – 300 series while that for aluminum is rather complex.

You should also pay attention to other features, especially fletchings. When you shoot, fletchings will turn into a spin, helping the arrow stay stabilized. Fletchings can be either feather or plastic vanes. While the former is lighter and less deflected, the latter operate with greater durability.

Climbing Equipment for the Head: Choosing a Helmet

Definitely mountain climbing is an extremely exciting activity, yet there are several dangers in store for you. One of the most common accidents is getting your head injured by falling debris or by swinging into rocks. Therefore, it is essential that you pick a good helmet to protect yourself against any unfortunates. Here we will provide some features that you should look into when purchasing a helmet:

climbing helmet

Kinds of climbing helmets

There are 2 basic types of helmet, both of which will save you from unexpected objects, but each of them will serve in different situations.

  • Hardshell/Suspension helmet: This type has a traditional design with hard plastic outer shell with an interior webbing system. Though it is heavier, this type has greater durability than the other. Hardshell helmet serves best in case there are vertical attack, which means you should use it in case you know you have to face up with a lot of falling stones.
  • Foam/Hybrid helmet: This type is constructed with a crown of foam inside a thin plastic shell. Thanks to the layer of foam extending to the rim of the helmet, it can protect your skull against side and rearward impacts even when its outer shell is broken. This is perfect if you have to prepare for potential falling from mountain wall.

Assess fitting level

After choosing your ideal type of helmet, you had better check if your helmet is perfectly fit to offer you the best protection.

  • Placing your helmet squarely on your head, prevent it from veering backwards, and tighten the front trim across your forehead.
  • Shake your head from side to side to make sure that it fits perfectly without any loose.
  • To ensure its fitting level once more, buckle the chin strap and see if the front and back straps already form a “Y” shape around your ears. There should be no slack so that it can stay fit on your head during the whole mountain trip.

Other features

  • Headlamps: Even if you do not intend to climb until after dawn, you should still pay attention to headlamps in case the journey may take longer than you expect. Therefore, many helmet suppliers now provide clips attached on the front top so that climbers can attach their lamps. Try installing your headlamps to check whether your lamp and clip are compatible.
  • Weight: If you are about to bring with you a lot of gear, weight of the helmet should be taken into account. Try on different helmets to see whose weight is most comfortable for you.
  • Layering: Different weather conditions will require different layers. The outer shell should be highly adjustable so that for winter climbing you can put in a balaclava or buff to keep your head warm.

No alternatives

This is extremely important since many people tend to underestimate possible dangers and replace climbing helmets with bike ones. Each types of helmet will serve different purposes, which means substitutes can hardly keep you safe, even leading to tragic results.

Some tips before climbing a mountain

The exciting feeling you get when reaching the top of a mountain turns climbing into an extremely recreational activity for many people. However amazing it may appear, there will be several dangers in store for you if you do not spend enough time and effort preparing carefully before a mountain trip. Below are some necessary tips you should keep in mind before climbing a mountain:

climbing a mountain

Research the area

You should learn about the desired area as much as possible since different areas have different features. Some basic things that you must find out are weather condition, height, length of the journey, and most possible routes. Besides, you should check whether you may need a permit to enter the area. As for a few mountains located in remote regions, you had better pay attention to available safety service nearby and learn about local ethics.

Boost up your mental and physical strength

Climbing is relatively painstaking and risky, therefore, a number of people tend to give up in the halfway. To reach the end of the trip, you should first prepare your mental condition. The assessment involves not only testing if you are determined enough, but also figuring out your ability of making a decision, remaining calm when facing unexpected incidents, as well as your positive attitude towards nature.
Mountain climbing is definitely made for fit people. If you do not obtain enough physical strength to take part in this strenuous activity, not only will you give up easily but also encounter possible accidents. Before climbing a mountain, it is important that you should practice your physical skills with a lot of running, jogging, weightlifting, climbing, or anything that reinforces physical strength and endurance.

Prepare gear

  • Clothes: Remember to bring warm coats (but avoid cotton ones), well – padded hiking socks, boots with strong ankles, crampons, fleece and rain gear,…, all of which will keep you warm and dry along the journey.
  • Support kit: The condition on a mountain is rather harsh, bringing about different minor incidents. Matches or lighters will prove extremely effective at night. Besides, you should pack some needles and thread, knife, whistle and ziploc bags. Most importantly, do not forget first – aid kit, so you can save yourself in case of unavailable nearby health care service.
  • Food and water: Mountain hiking requires a lot of endurance, which means the food you bring must be high – calory one to recover your energy quickly. A lot of water is a must – have item, since it will keep you stay away from heat stroke.

A training course

Actually, as a freshman in this activity, you really should attend a course with professional instructors. You may do a lot of research and get advice from many experienced people, but nothing or no one can ensure that you are preparing for your health condition in the right way or you have bought suitable kit. Hence learning with an expert will help you train both your body and your attitude better, plus you can be guided to properly prepare for your trip.