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Archive | Gear Reviews

The Cavu has a two-foam midsole: a soft and forgiving heel and a firm and responsive forefoot.

Review: Hoka One One Cavu || Light, responsive & fast road trainer

The Houston Marathon is less than six weeks, and for all of my tempo workouts and hard long runs — including multiple 10K’s at race pace and distances up to 24 miles — I have been wearing the new Hoka One One Cavu. The Cavu is a neutral lightweight road trainer that is moderately cushioned, responsive, and […]

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The liner adds warmth and buffers the hand from moisture, but its durability is questionable. Notice the extensive pulling after just a few weeks of use.

Review: Showa 282 Gloves || Preferred cold & wet solution, but imperfect

When hiking or running in cold and wet conditions, keeping my hands comfortable has been a chronic challenge. On multiple occasions I’ve pulled into a campsite, trailhead, aid station, or my house with inoperable and painful fingers. To minimize (or perhaps even, to end) this suffering, this summer I looked beyond conventional rain mitts like the REI […]

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Cowboy camping in Tablelands in September, using the 20-degree Nitro 800 mummy bag from Sierra Designs

Review: Sierra Designs Nitro 800 mummy || Great price, ordinary design

The Sierra Designs spring 2018 line-up has two themes: (1) back to basics, and (2) better pricing. Innovation is not entirely lacking, evidenced by the “zipperless mummy” Cloud series (my review) and the High Side Tent (my review), but the “better and different” mantra was no longer a requirement of new products. Review: Sierra Designs […]

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The uppers are made of breathable mesh and TPU reinforcements. This has proven to be a winning construction for Salomon running shoes.

Review: Salomon Odyssey Pro || Hiking shoe with strong running pedigree

The Salomon Odyssey Pro was introduced to me at Outdoor Retailer as “a thru-hiking shoe with running shoe design cues.” That sounded interesting and right up my alley, so I asked for a review pair to test while leading trips this summer in the Indian Peaks Wilderness and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park. Our routes were […]

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The porch-able awning greatly improves ventilation (and therefore condensation resistance) and increases usable space. The side entry is much more convenient for entry and exit.

Review: Sierra Designs High Side Tent || Light & packable, but small

The most interesting new shelter from Sierra Designs in its spring 2018 lineup is the High Side. I previewed it in my summer Outdoor Retailer coverage, and recently used it on two 5-day/4-night backpacking trips in Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park in the Sierra-Nevada. Testing conditions were varied. We camped in forest, at treeline, and in […]

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The Clifton 4, a firm (by Hoka standards) daily road running shoe that will best fit normal and wide feet.

Review: Hoka One One Clifton 4 || Reliable road trainer, but not characteristically Clifton

The Clifton 2 was my first shoe from Hoka One One. I loved it: its plush midsole was wonderful; its last fit my narrow-ish feet; its reinforced upper provided good control, to the degree that I occasionally used it on moderate trails; and its weight was feathery, all things considered. (Read my full review.) But […]

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The Hoka One One Speedgoat 2, developed with superstar Karl Meltzler, is classic Hoka: it's lightweight and generously cushioned, and offers a smooth ride. For its height, it's remarkably stable.

Review: Hoka One One Speedgoat 2 || Light, plush, grippy & surprisingly stable

On my first three outings with the second-generation Hoka One One Speedgoat 2, I took it out for 13-, 11-, and 25-mile trail runs with nearly 10,000 vertical feet in cumulative climbing. That’s rare for a shoe with which I had no prior history — normally, I start off slowly, with short and low-risk runs […]

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