Dropping In With Robin

Dropping In With Robin

We caught up with pro snowboarder Robin Van Gyn to get her winter report.

November 2020

Professional athletes are just like normal people, except for, you know, being faster and stronger. So, just like for everyone else, this year has been strange and challenging for those whose lives and livelihoods revolve around getting outside and getting after it. This is especially true if your work involves flying around the globe chasing winter storm cycles in search of blower pow and untracked lines, which is pretty much snowboarder Robin Van Gyn’s job description. But being flexible and having a good attitude are also part of the what it takes to perform at the highest levels, and those two attributes are at the core of how Van Gyn takes on the world. We caught up with her during some down time at home in British Columbia, as she prepares for a winter season unlike any other she’s faced.

It’s been a crazy year, but winter is almost here. What have you been doing to prepare? (Have you been treating it differently?)

Normally, I’d be in gyms, in workout classes, at the resort early. This year, I’m sort of grounded and doing my training from home. With COVID and not being able to travel the way we normally would, we have to pivot to be in our homes and learn how to do our jobs within those confines.

For me, it’s been interesting to stay home and really explore my own backyard. I fly a lot, so now I get to travel by car. In the spring, I went out into the B.C. backcountry and felt like I was seeing things I’d never seen before. I realized that when it comes to my own area, I really don’t know it all. I’ve barely touched the tip of the iceberg.  So, I’m stoked to expand my exploration of B.C. and really get into my own backyard more. There’s so much to see—you could never see it all!

It’s a really good reminder that we don’t need as much as often think. We can live a bit more simply if we just get creative.

What are you looking forward to this season?

I’m really excited for the Natural Selection contest series. Travis Rice has been scheming up this backcountry-focused contest tour for a long time, and I can’t wait to see it come to fruition. There’s three events—B.C., Jackson Hole, and Alaska. I’m not totally sure how they are going to manage it, but I’m really stoked to see what it looks like.

Personally, I’m in the middle of shooting and producing a 5-part series about women in action sports called “Fabric.” It’s a two-year project, and I’m working hard to make it come to life. Filming, production, and post-production will all be a challenge this year, for sure. For us, it’s all about funding. There’s so much uncertainty, which makes it hard for sponsors to commit, but I’m confident and optimistic about it coming to life.

Things will look a little different on the mountain this year. What’s your approach to tailgating or overnighting in the parking lot or at the trailhead?

I’m a veteran tailgater! So, this is in my wheelhouse. I’m excited to see the larger community embrace this kind of approach and spend a little more time outside together. I’m a backcountry rider, so that’s what we always do. We end the day at the trailhead and celebrate the day and our time in the mountains. For resorts, I think it will simplify things. There’s a lot of expense involved with resort skiing, and this approach brings the mountain experience back to its roots. You come together in the lot, have some snacks, have a beer, talk about the day. I love it.

What are your must-have items for the winter tailgate?

I always have a cooler. Mine’s bear proof, so I can leave it the back of the truck. Inside: hot lunch; cold drinks; lots of snacks. It’s something I love to have—a mobile snack situation. I love having it as a way to gather people together.

Do you have any advice for people heading into this winter in particular?

Be patient. I’m pretty used to being outside, so I know how to be out and be comfortable for long periods of time. But for a lot of folks, it’s not that way. It takes a little bit of getting used to. Don’t give up! You’ll learn what you need, whether it’s better gloves or more layers or embracing the sweat of going uphill.

I truly encourage people to stick with it. Being efficient in the outdoors takes a little time, but once you start to get it, you love it and you never let it go.

Pictured with Yakima OverHaul HD truck towers with HD Bars Medium (60”), and SkyBox 16.

2-for-1 Mug: CamelBak MultiBev Serves Up Hydration and Caffeination in Clever Design

From GearJunkie

Gearheads like designs that offer multiple useful functions. The CamelBak MultiBev brings this ethos to drinkware with a sustainable vessel that cuts the clutter and offers multiple beverage options for life in the fast lane.

The MultiBev is an everyday water bottle that incorporates a travel cup for a second drink on the go. It has great potential for day hikes and camping, too.

Stainless steel bottles are a more environmentally conscious choice than single-use plastics. The addition of the companion travel cup eliminates another wasteful cup from the local café, and it fits back under the water bottle to save space when not in use.

If you carry water while running errands or commuting, yet often stop at a café for coffee or tea in a disposable cup, this is worth a look.

At its core, the CamelBak MultiBev is a convenient way to bring an accessory cup along with your usual water bottle. How it’s put to use really depends on you.

On hiking days, you can use the travel cup on the way to the trailhead and then leave it in the car. That streamlines the bottle for an easier fit in a backpack pocket. It also frees up a little room under the cap for stashing a snack.

On hot summer expeditions, the travel cup can be used for an electrolyte refuel during a break. Then, you can return it to the main bottle when you’re done.

Around the campsite, the second cup works for coffee in the morning and suds in the evening. When not in use, stash it back with the water bottle so there’s one less thing clanking around the site.

Really, though, the MultiBev has everyday functionality in mind, especially for the work commute.

A Part of Your Routine

Here’s a hypothetical day in the life to see how a MultiBev could fit into your hydration routine.

We suggest that you wake up and hydrate with a glass of water. We’ve heard that’s really good for you.

While you wait for your coffee or tea to be ready, unscrew the travel cup from the bottom.

Next, fill the main chamber of the bottle with water and secure with the leakproof Pak Cap. Go ahead and stash that in your bag or purse.

Once your caffeine fix is ready, pour that in the travel cup, unroll the silicone lid, and you’re off.

At your workplace, you can rinse out the travel cup and reunite it with the regular water bottle. The silicone lid rolls up to fit inside the Pak Cap.

Design Highlights

  • Double-wall vacuum, stainless steel construction to maintain temperature for hours
  • Stainless steel interior and powder coat finish are dishwasher safe
  • Silicon base adds grip, especially on wet surfaces
  • Leakproof Pak Cap
  • BPA, BPS, and BPF free.

(In)Disposable

Carrying your own water is a way to ensure that you drink enough daily, which prevents the out-of-sight, out-of-mind trap.

The MultiBev isn’t about drinking water from your own cup, although that’s certainly an option. It’s a solution for people who often carry water bottles but still use other single-use cups.

By combining the cup as part of the body of the bottle, the companion travel cup is around if you need it and doesn’t take up room when you don’t.

What’s more, the bottle and cup are dishwasher safe, which goes a long way in preventing them from getting gunked up. And the silicone base should keep it from sliding on surfaces and potentially save it from some dings out in the wild.

Bridgedale Launches New Lycra® Dry Trail Run Socks for Spring 2021

By Anna Nikolaus From SNEWS

Bridgedale Lycra® Dry Comfort Trail Run Sock

Working closely with a team of thirty amateur enthusiast trail runners, Bridgedale’s new collection brings long-lasting fit with the comfort of dry feet.

After 18 months of rigorous testing, tweaking and redeveloping, the final collection was selected and signed off by the runners. Matt, one of the testers, with thirty plus years of trail running says “Years of poor sock performance and disappointment of many sock brands tested in every weather and bad terrain have led me to re-discover the quality, resilience and performance of Bridgedale running socks. They really are unbeatable. “

The new trail run sock collection delivers on Bridgedale’s commitment to create new and innovative socks, while ensuring they meet the performance runners have come to expect from Bridgedale. Proprietary T2 anti-shock cushioning and Shock Zones provide extra support and comfort to areas of the foot and leg. Over foot Ventilation promotes easy moisture transportation and breathability.

The new Lycra® Dry Comfort Trail Run socks will be available Spring 2021 in six Merino Sport styles in Lightweight T2, Ultralight T2 and four Coolmax® Sport styles Lightweight T2 and Ultralight T2.

About Bridgedale:

Bridgedale, is a global market leader in the manufacture of technical socks for walking, hiking, mountaineering, running and skiing. Bridgedale is governed by three principles…Fit, FusionTech and Guarantee. They have earned the trust of millions of customers and is now sold in more than 40 countries around the world. www.bridgedale.com

POWDER – The Best Touring Boots of 2021

From Powder.com

SCOTT – Freeguide Carbon

Breeze uphill and rail down with these featherweight beasts

Flex: 130
Last: 101.5
Weight: 1430g
Price: $900

The Scott Freeguide Carbon has a progressive flex, which, combined with a solid forward lean and, and heel hold results in an extremely skiable touring boot. It’s comfortable and its wide last will fit a good range of skiers. The boot is lightweight at 1430g, given it’s designed as a touring boot, the Freeguide Carbon has a great balance of weight and power for a higher-end ski boot.

SCOTT’s new boot has a unique design, called cabrio hybrid construction, which combines typical overlap construction with a three-piece cabrio and tongue. I appreciated the intelligently-placed toe and instep buckle locations. The BOA feature on the liner allows for a snug fit, though skiers with lower-volume feet may find they have to over-tighten a bit.

The Freeguide Pro is a touring boot for intermediate skiers looking for something with medium stiffness. Don’t be deterred by the stated 130 flex. For advanced skiers, it can handle most conditions—it just needs to be finessed and perhaps updated with some aftermarket adjustments. —Erme Catino

For more of Powder’s picks check out the full list HERE.

Amie Engerbretson Presents – SNOW PONY

An exploration of the powder filled wonder of North America with the help and thrill of a throttle. I used to ride in the Truckee Rodeo and I always dreamt of being a rodeo queen. I wasn’t allowed to throw my hat in the ring because I didn’t own my own horse. I happily settled for the beer flag carrier between events atop a borrowed but trusty horse. Where do my skier and rodeo queen dreams meet? The moment I handed a country boy a stack of cash in rural Wyoming and got myself a snow pony… The trill of the ride, buck and wild, all to land atop untouched perfect snow, without a soul around.

I am always looking for ways to take things, especially my skiing, to the next level. Launching into snowmobiling for me is all about access. A way to a get to terrain to push and progress my skiing. The caveat? I had to learn something totally new first. Luckily, I have patient, funny friends that are willing to join me for the ride. Snow Pony follows myself and my friends as we sled and ski around the mountains of western North America, from Wyoming, to Revelstoke, to home in Tahoe. It’s an adventure, and I am a novice, but the snow, the skiing and the smiles are plenty! Let’s giv’er a whirl!

Bridgedale – Ski Easy On

One of Bridgedale’s bestselling special boot fit sock.

Lightweight sock with friction-free slide zones for easy boot entry

Boot fitters dream and skiers delight

Lightweight ski sock with friction-free slide zones for easy boot entry. Provides a close supportive fit from foot to calf. Friction free slide zones on the heel and the top of the ankle to make it easier to slide into your boots. Knit with MERINO WOOL for superb softness next to skin while providing excellent thermal and moisture control properties. Made with ENDUROFIL, that is combined with Enduro-Wool and Merino Wool for superb wicking and durability. ENDUROFIL is a polypropylene fiber, which also offers high abrasion and wash resistance.

Specifically designed for the needs of a ski and snowboard boot.

Fusion Technology provides balanced insulation and moisture management, giving you the best fitting, most comfortable and durable ski socks, allowing you to enjoy your winter sports whatever the weather.


About Bridgedale:

We don’t just design Bridgedales… we make them. Bridgedale Outdoor Ltd is located at the tip of the Strangford Lough, Newtownards, near Belfast in Northern Ireland under the shadow of the Scrabo Tower which was built as a monument to Lord Londonderry.

The factory here has been knitting socks in Newtownards since WW1, when the first army socks were made. The strong heritage in hosiery is a feature of the Bridgedale brand and several of our team have been working in the factory for over 40 years, so you could say we know our socks!

When the first Bridgedales were launched in the early 1980’s there were 3 colours, 2 sizes and 2 lengths, just 12 products, now we have over 500 products in the range and we have factories not only in Northern Ireland but South Africa too.

CamelBak Horizon Collection

From A Quick Brown Fox by Ayesha McGowen

This post is sponsored by CamelBak, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

I spend a lot of time celebrating going hard. I work hard, I train hard, I play hard. I noticed that I don’t take nearly enough time to stop and take in the views, sit in the breeze, have simple conversations with my riding buddies, and fully be present in the space I’m occupying. The thing is, I don’t necessarily have to choose. I can go hard on the bike and have the absolute time of my life. I can visit my favorite trails, or secret beach, or revisit a tried and true road loop. I can practice climbing, descending, and cornering, making sure to sharpen my technical skills for the day racing feels safe again. It’s fun to go hard, to push myself and see what my body can do. It’s also nice to take a break. The mid ride break can be just the ticket to make you feel ready to get myself to the endpoint. Stop for a bit, look around and think about all the journeys that crossed this path before me. Let my mind wander while I rest my muscles. The CamelBak Horizon Drinkware Collection has been a lovely supplement to taking full advantage of these peaceful moments. We push the pace to get to beautiful places, and when we get there, we can find a good spot and take in our surroundings. The collection includes various options that you can pick and choose from to suit your needs. I went with the 30oz tumbler, the Rocks Tumbler, and the Camp Mug. That way I can make enough of my favorite beverage in the 30oz tumbler, but Will and I have our own cups to drink from. We’re all set for hot coffee, a cold cocktail, and everything in between. A solid choice to help us take those chill moments extra slow and really enjoy them.”

Photos and words by Ayesha McGowen @ A Quick Brown Fox

Yakima ‘EXO System’ Turns Your Car Into a Pickup

From GearJunkie by Berne Broudy

Bike and ski racks, gearboxes, even a BackDeck to grill out — with the Yakima EXO system, it’s all on the hitch of your car.

The secret behind Yakima’s latest innovation — the EXO System — lies with its modular rack system. With it, car campers of all levels can enhance any vehicle’s storage and organization with seasonal parts and pieces, like bike and ski racks, that swap with a click.

“Inspired by the overlanding space, we saw an opportunity to do something on the hitch that hadn’t been done before,” said Yakima product manager Jonny Wood.

The foundation of the system is the EXO Swing Base, which mounts to any 2-inch hitch receiver and cleats to EXO’s various parts and pieces, tool-free. The Swing Base sits on a swing arm that levers toward the side of your vehicle to move the base and attachments away from the trunk, allowing you to access your hatch or tailgate.

But it doesn’t stop there. Another attachment, the EXO TopShelf, turns that EXO Swing Base into a double-decker rack. Add it to the Swing Base for two levels of gear storage; install a box or basket on the bottom and a bike or ski rack on top.

Yakima EXO System: Accessories to Match Your Needs

The EXO system has parts and pieces to personalize a system that meets your needs. Accessories include the Gear Warrior basket, Gear Locker storage box, DoubleUp two-bike tray rack, Snowbank ski/snowboard carrier, organizer totes, a bamboo tabletop that turns the rack into a camp table, and Warrior Wheels, an adapter kit that converts the cargo basket into a wagon.

For example, the EXO GearLocker has the functionality of a rooftop cargo box, but positioned for easy access. It detaches, even loaded, so you can carry it to your campsite for watertight storage. It also means no unloading and reloading until you actually need something inside.

GearTotes fit inside the GearLocker to keep things organized. Durable, collapsible, and dividable, they’re made from ripstop nylon with a weight rating of up to 50 pounds. Load them with groceries, sport-specific gear, or your camp kitchen.

The EXO TopShelf, meanwhile, holds the two-bike DoubleUp tray rack at a height that keeps the bikes out of road grime. When you’re not carrying a box or basket, the rack also mounts on the bottom shelf. The TopShelf also holds a ski/snowboard rack where it’s much easier to load and unload than on your vehicle’s roof.

Yakima EXO: More Extras

One of the most clever and unexpected pieces of the EXO system is the WarriorWheels accessory. Unclip the WarriorBasket from your base and clip it to these wheels, and you have a wagon to transport heavy, bulky stuff — like firewood, an oversized cooler, or your overloaded Gear Warrior basket. The WarriorWheels and handle attach while the basket is still on your base rack, so you can drop it and go.

If you live or travel somewhere where cops get cranky when they can’t see your plates, you’ll appreciate EXO’s LitKit. Mount it on the SwingBase, and it gives any vehicle taillights and a license plate a mount where they’re most visible.

Last, but not least, the EXO BackDeck may actually tie the WarriorWheels for “cool and surprising” innovation. Mounted to the rack, it becomes a work surface for bike wrenching, food prep, or a backcountry bar. And when you’re not using it, it stores in a bag inside your car.

Yakima EXO System: Price

When I mapped out the pieces I’d like, it’s not cheap. The EXO Swingarm Base costs $499. Add the top shelf for $379. The Gear Locker adds an additional $399 with organizer totes at $49 each.

Then, the two bike rack costs $479, while the back deck table runs $129 — that’s nearly $2,000 for a three-season EXO system. And all that before adding a ski rack or the basket and wheels. It’s close to the same cost of buying a premium roof box and rack to hold it, along with a hitch-mounted bike rack.

So, it’s sure to give some potential buyers sticker shock. But the convenience and versatility could well make the price worth it for some.

Stay tuned for more on the Yakima EXO.

Introducing – Yakima EXO

Check back or subscribe for more info on the Yakima EXO coming 2021.

Yakima OnRamp – E-Bike Hitch Rack

From snews

YAKIMA OnRamp

LAKE OSWEGO, Ore., October 2020 – The transportation of Electronic Bicycles, or “E-Bikes” just became a whole lot easier. Yakima is proud to introduce the OnRamp, an incredibly convenient way to load and transport heavier than average bikes, such as E-bikes. With an included bike ramp and fully adjustable cradles built to carry everything from mountain bikes to beach cruisers, the OnRamp is one of the most innovative and versatile bike racks on the market.

“The OnRamp will change the way that you transport heavy bicycles like E-Bikes,” said Garrett Barnum, Category Director. “If you are a bicycle enthusiast, then you know how much of a hassle it can be trying to wrestle a heavy bike, or multiple heavy bikes onto a rack. The OnRamp now makes that process a breeze when you can simply roll your bike up the ramp and into position. Plus, with its adjustability to fit different frame sizes, it is a bike transportation no-brainer.”

The hitch mounted OnRamp has the highway hauling capacity of two bikes up to 66-lbs per bike, with off-road and RV ratings coming in at 40lbs a piece. Although designed with E-bikes in mind, it has adjustable cradles which will accommodate a wide array of bicycles types, including urban, road, and mountain bikes with a wheelbase up to 50”, and tires up to 3.25”. Wider tires up to 27.5 x 4.5” wide are also acceptable with the FatStrap Kit (sold separately). The adjustable options of the rack also minimize any bike to bike interference that can occur while travelling. The aforementioned bike ramp makes the loading and unloading simple while also neatly storing right on the rack itself. Once the bikes are loaded, the OnRamp can tilt so there is still full accessibility to your trunk.

Like most Yakima products, the OnRamp (MSRP $549) comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty and is available now at Yakima.com and associated retailers.

About Yakima
A pioneer in vehicle racks and cargo management solutions since 1979, Yakima is known for its rugged and dependable products. Built for a wide variety of recreationists, Yakima products embody the company’s commitment to quality and safety and its passion for the outdoors. Yakima Products, Inc. is headquartered outside of Portland, Oregon.

For more information visit yakima.com

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