Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Goat Man: And I thought I was Outdoorsy....

I like to think of myself as an "outdoorsy" person; in fact, all of us at are passionate about the outdoors. But I'm not quite convinced that any of us are as exuberantly enthusiastic, or crazed, about our outdoor pastime as the newly famous and colloquially titled: Goat Man.

'Goat man' spotted in mountains of Utah
This photo, taken on July 15th by a hiker approximately 40 miles outside Salt Lake City along Ben Lomond  Peak, has gone completely viral. Apparently the hiker was observing a herd of Mountain Goats from across the ridge when he noticed that one was unusually clumsy and lagging behind. Upon further observation the hiker noticed the obvious- that aint no goat. He posted the photos on an online photo sharing website, and before long most news companies had a story published covering this confusing mountainside creature.

After a week and a half or head-scratching and shoulder-shrugging, Phil Douglas of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources had the whole story explained to him. It turns out that the Goat Man happens to be a 57 year old California hunter who was trying out his goat suit in preparation for upcoming hunt in Canada. The hunter decided to call in and explain due to the widespread popularity his story received, while remaining anonymous to maintain his personal safety. He never broke any laws, but everyone can agree that this bizarre display of dedication could have gotten him seriously injured- by goats or hunters. This was a baaaaaaaaad idea and goat figure somebody got it on film.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Vermont's First Rock Climbing Guidebook!!

There are scarcely any feelings alike to the overwhelming rush and reward that is experienced when rock climbing. Vermont is a well regarded state for ice climbing, but for the majority rock climbing is unfound. Mostly because the convenience is lacking, but author Travis Peckham, 41 of Underhill Center, is making his bid to acquaint us to the crags of Vermont with his upcoming release "Tough Schist: Rock Climbing in Northern Vermont."

Peckham outlines around two dozen destinations in his book- some spots well-known to locals, with many other coveted gems formerly confidential, in hopes that fresh climbers could incite further development. Areas spanning from Prospect Rock in Johnson to Deer Leap outside of Killingon are covered, as well as locations in Groton State Park and Smuggler's Notch. Peckham's contribution to the climbing realm marks the first Vermont rock climbing guidebook, a great way to tap into our state's potential for verticality.

Vermont, once referred to by a New England guidebook as a "wasteland" between the Adirondacks and the Whites, offers a different kind of climbing. The domes and faces are present, it's the little bit of extra navigation, time and effort put into getting to them that may have possibly deterred others in the past. In my opinion, that adds to the challenge, makes them much more special, and inspires a deeper appreciation.

Not only does the author assure readers his book features some of the best lines and routes in New England, but some of the best this 20-year climbing veteran has ever laid eyes on. Hitting shelves at the end of this month, check out "Tough Schist: Rock Climbing in Northern Vermont," by Travis Peckham. 

Local rock climbing guidebook author Travis Peckham clips a bolt on the sport route 'Doggfather' at the 82 Crag at Bolton.
Travis Peckham, author of "Tough Schist: Rock Climbing in Northern Vermont," in Bolton

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Are You Vermont Strong? Prove It. Run Strong VT 5K on 9/1/2012

As all of us Vermonters know, we're a little bit rougher and tougher than the rest. In fact, following our resolute reaction to the pillaging Tropical Store Irene, a term was coined: Vermont Strong; and if you're traveling by roadways you're sure to pass numerous vehicles with proclaiming license plates that read "I Am Vermont Strong."

Nearly a year after Irene flooded our community, the folks at Bolton Valley are putting on a 5k race with 100% of the proceeds to benefit Rebuild Waterbury. On September 1st, 2012 the first Run Strong Vermont 5K will be held to any competitors interested. Limited to only the first 300 who sign up, the race will have differing terrain- from groomed trails to gravel to mud to rocks, along 3.1 miles of Bolton Valley's Nordic trails.

The race is scheduled to start at 10AM, with a required registration before 9AM. The cost is $35 per runner and anyone who registers before August 15th is guaranteed to receive a Run Strong VT 5K shirt and "swag bag." A challenging course in a very beautiful setting can be expected.

Come get some exercise for a GREAT cause, and prove to yourself that you truly are VT STRONG.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Nemo Bugout- Nemo's Bug Barrier

Bugs love us. To insects, our blood is the sweetest saltiest serum imaginable, and when we're near they can't help themselves. Check out Nemo's newest line of defense for us humans, the Nemo Bugout.
As simple as tying a line to a few trees and setting some stakes, the Bugout is a super quick and easy way to emancipate yourself from gnat misery. The Nemo Bugout can be propped up with trekking poles, paddles, or Nemo's own adjustable tarp poles. The mesh walls also offer protection from any rain that could blow in from the sides. The 9x9 Bugout weighs only 69 ounces and is also available in 12x12. If bugs bug you in the back-country or the front yard, do yourself a favor and pick up the Nemo Bugout!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Kelty Lumapivot: Modern Day's Lantern

Kelty Lumapivot Lantern

Remember the dark days before headlamps and flashlights? The night belonged to a historic and forgotten about item that rarely gets used today- the lantern. Cumbersome and capricious, it took dad's aplomb to maneuver a lit match through a narrow gate to get things going. Well, check out the 2012 reincarnation of the lantern: the Kelty Lumapivot High Performance LED Lantern.
This extremely innovative design features 30 5mm LED lights split up on two unrestricted pivoting and rotating panels. Far from a faint flicker, the Kelty Lumapivot shines a glowing light of 110 lumens on high and 60 lumens on low. And compared to the big hunk of metal that is an old school lantern, the Lumapivot's 15.9oz dainty body is featherweight. Constructed of durable weatherproof abs plastics, scratch resistant polycarbonate lenses and an anodized aluminum frame, this Kelty innovation will endure and last to light as long as you nourish it with 6AA batteries. Available online anytime at (and if you want to save 20%, click "Become a member" on our homepage!).

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

Kelty Gunnison 2.1-4.1; The Essence of America

Kelty Gunnison 2.1-4.1

Kelty is an all-American company founded in 1952 that has grown up with the baby boomers. "Kelty is a 60 year old brand that has gotten more Americans out into the mountains, and the deserts, on the rivers, into the wilderness, probably than any other brand we know of right now." That is a quote, that I believe to be quite accurate, from a definitive video on Kelty's website.

A great option for all things outdoors, Kelty offers wonderful products at such reasonable costs! Take for example the Kelty Gunnison 2.1- winner of Backpacker Magazines "Best All Around" award in 2009.
The Kelty Gunnison 2.1 is a two-person tent (also available in the three-person "3.1" and four-person "4.1" versions) for any purpose. Weighing only five pounds nine ounces and priced at $189.99, are major statistics that have led to this tent's success. Not to mention the intuitive set up of two crossing poles that giving this tent its free-standing edge, its durable 1800mm PU Nylon floor, and the Gunnison 2.1's pair of spacious vestibules under the fly. Dual entry access, multiple interior storage spots-the pros go on and on. 
Pick up the Gunnison 2.1-4.1 off our website or stop by our retail hub in Waterbury- it's a no brainer.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Staff Pick: Big Agnes Insulated Q-Core, a Luxurious All-Season Sleeping Pad

If you have ever felt unsatisfied with a sleeping pad, one thing is certain: you've never tried the Big Agnes Insulated Q-Core. The Q-Core uses alternating I-beam technology that has a quilted look and feel (hence the q in Q-Core). With a layer of synthetic insulation underneath the pad's surface, the R-value is bolstered to an estimated 5.0.
Available in four sizes, ranging in weight from 25-36 ounces, the packed size of the Q-Core is comparable to a Nalgene bottle. What separates this Big Agnes sleeping pad from others is the fact that it has an undeniable capability to keep its users warm and the fact that this badboy blows up to 3.5 inches thick! In the lightweight sleeping pad realm that is like a king sized bed! When inflated, simply reach over your shoulder and you can let air out to customize the comfort of you Big Agnes pad.

The Big Agnes Q-Core Insulated inflatable sleeping pad comes with a mesh stuff sack, a repair kit and a guaranteed better night sleep than on your old pad. Come check it out at our Route 2 location in Waterbury or order online anytime at

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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Kylmit Inertia X Frame Ultralight Sleeping Pad

The Klymit Inertia blew my mind! Close your eyes and imagine yourself holding a 12 ounce can of Coca-Cola. Now imagine yourself being able to sleep comfortably on something the same size! Mind-blowing!!

The Kylmit Inertia X Frame Ultralight sleeping pad uses body mapping technology to outline and provide supportive cushion in only the most necessary areas. The body's natural contact points with the ground, the head, shoulders, hips, calves and feet, are all accounted for with a seriously surprising level of comfort (trust me, I've laid on it and Reed has slept on it).

And the best part? It weighs 9.1 ounces. 9.1 ounces! It comes with a hand pump (the same type of pump as when you have your blood pressure read), a repair kit and a teeny tiny stuff sack. It also has 35d ripstop layering on top and ripstop 75d on bottom- which means its super tough. All this can be yours for just $99.95!!

The Kylmit Inertia X Frame Ultralight sleeping pad is assuredly the perfect gift for any gear junkie or ultralight backpacker. Check em out at

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Obi Elite 1 & 2

One of the easiest and most painful backpacking mistakes is over-packing. A few ounces or pounds here and there quickly add up to equal a backache at the end of the day. Usually the heaviest item one carries is their tent, but Nemo's new Obi Elite series is a game changer, and changing the way people look at tents. Obi 1-Person Elite Tent

The Nemo Obi Elite series was contrived to be light enough to carry as an emergency shelter but still maintain the functionality of a one or two person backpacking home. Intricately designed to one-up Nemo's own Ultralite series, the Nemo Obi Elite 1P & Nemo Obi Elite 2P features even thinner material and more weight saved. The result: Nemo Obi Elite 1P's minimum trail weight is an astounding 31 ounces and the Nemo Obi Elite 2P an amazing 35 ounces.

As seen in the floor plan, the Obi Elite 2P has two entrances and both a vestibule and a generous storage space. Each version uses a single pole with two shoulder-like joints that split and extend to the tent's corners, and each have water-tight raised tub floors. Cutouts in the Obi Elite's fly save space, weight and exponentially increase ventilation.

At $419.95 and $479.95 the Nemo Obi Elite 1P & 2P are priced marginally below what you could pay for a similar tent. Come say hi and check out this remarkably lightweight tent at the twin silos in Waterbury, or check it out online at