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Ecbc's Sparrow wheeled garment bag was designed to make your life easier, at least at getting through security, so you won't need to unpack into a bunch of TSA trays and pack it all back up again while juggling your electronics, your carry-on and your shoes. With ecbc's fastpass® system, all you need to do is fully unzip the outer packet which holds only your laptop on one side and your tablet or other small devices on the other and when your bag makes it through – zip it back up- no devices left behind. With the amount of pockets and zippers everywhere it actually takes it a step further and allows your whole bag to be a beacon of organization. The Sparrow even has its own valet where you can clip in hangers so when you get to your destination you just hang them up, no ironing! Two zip…
Monday, 11 April 2016

EC Lync System Carry-on

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EC Lync System Carry-on ultra-light and durable luggage/backpack by Eagle Creek has the unique ability of changing from a carry-on suitcase with wheels and a pull out handle to a large day pack. Its actually the exact same bag either way (it doesn't fold out or anything) it just has a removable frame with wheels. I really liked the idea of it – it could be the perfect bag for those cheap airlines where they only let you have one bag and no 'personal item', purse or backpack. I end up on those airlines a lot, so I thought it may work well for me. In practice, though, its more cumbersome than I imagined and not especially intuitive. It comes in a stow bag with ikea-style picture instructions. It doesn't take long to put the frame together and that's a one-time job anyways – I don't see any reason you'd…
Saturday, 28 February 2015

The Shouldit

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The Shouldit is a clever infinity scarf that has a hidden pocket so you can stash a few important items while traveling without having to worry about pickpocketers. It can be worn in various styles, though the one I thought looked and functioned best was a double wrap around the neck. When you wear it as a single large wrap it tends to slowly creep down so eventually all the items are resting uncomfortably at the bottom. The wrap can also be worn around the shoulders or converted back to a clutch if you so choose. The Shouldit would be perfect to take the place of a money belt to carry your passport, cash and credit cards discretely without having to wear either a thick belt around your waist or the awkward and obvious pouch that goes around your neck under your shirt. Though its great as a money belt…
Travel planning is a complex business involving many variables and wildly differing requirements, but most trips have at least one thing in common: there will be walking. If the place you’re going involves frigid temperatures, I bring you Bugothermo Techlite Boots by Columbia Sportswear to meet this need. These high-tech, ultra-light hiking boots are designed for cold-weather use and have a very nice added feature: electric heat. Special FeaturesThere are a number of features that these boots share with other high-performance hiking boots: water resistance, high-traction soles, internal cushioning and support, etc. These are important, but not what sets them apart. These are the things that make them different: * Removable, USB-rechargeable batteries* Built-in heating system* Rated to -25ºF* Lightweight at around 21 oz. each for a size 9 What’s in the box? * A pair of boots* 2 batteries with electronics control modules* 2 Micro-USB cables* 1 dual-socket USB-AC…
Friday, 31 December 2010

Android’s Free Travel Apps

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A few months back I gave you the rundown on what’s new in the smartphone world for travelers. So, supposing you went right out and picked up a shiny new Android phone. You got home, opened up the box, turned it on, and found that your new toy didn’t do all you thought it would be able to while on the road. This is not due to any hardware limitations of the little machine; it’s just lacking the proper set of applications to make it jump through the desired hoops. Hopefully this article will get you started in finding the right apps for the job. As you’ll see, with the proper apps, a good smartphone doesn’t just jump through hoops, it’ll do backflips and whistle the Star-Spangled Banner at the same time. I’ve purposely stuck with free applications. If you want any of them, just search for their names in…
Tuesday, 02 November 2010

The Corsair Survivor GTR Flash Drive

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Travel provides many wondrous opportunities to see sights and hear sounds that one might want to record with digital photo, video, or audio recording. While most devices come with some internal storage, there is the possibility that one might want to offload them to external storage for safekeeping. For this purpose, I bring you the Corsair Survivor GTR. This USB flash drive promises both near-indestructibility and extremely high performance. Corsair was kind enough to provide me with the 32GB version of the drive for testing purposes. Features Included with the drive is a USB cable and a metal chain long enough to allow the drive to be worn around the neck. The chain also comes with a rubber-edged aluminum dog tag with the Corsair logo on it, though I’m not really sure why that particular item was included beyond branding. Here are the specs: Weight: 1.6oz. Dimensions: 3.3” long 0.9”…
Friday, 30 July 2010

Best Options in Android Smart Phones

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For those of you who have been reading my reviews since the beginning, you'll know that I've done smartphone reviews before. Since the last one, the Smartphone world has changed enormously. Last time, I asserted that carrying a smart phone can be a viable alternative to carrying a bulky laptop on your trip, which is even more true today. People have finally started treating their phones like little computers and manufacturers are adapting to the needs of consumers. The new generation phones are more like full-featured computers than their predecessors and sport features such as large screens, integrated mapping solutions, high-speed data connections, excellent browsers, and multi-touch controls. Today, I will look at the Android operating system by Google and phones from three of the four major US carriers to give you a feel for what's out there and what to expect in a modern smartphone.
Monday, 03 May 2010

The Cold Steel City Stick

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A couple of issues ago, I reviewed the The LuxuryLite “Carbon Big Stik." While it was a marvel of modern carbon fiber awesomeness, it had a single down-side: the length. While hiking through the wilderness, a walking staff of 50" or more is an ideal tool, but when making your way through a more urban environment you’ll look out of place. If you also consider my personal fetish for things that are as near to indestructible as possible and you'll understand why I felt the need to review the Cold Steel City Stick.
Monday, 22 March 2010

MRE's and Shelf-Stable Trail Food

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When hiking hither and yon across the countryside and your pack is loaded with all the high-tech gear you've read about in previous reviews, there might come a point where you begin to feel an emptiness inside your stomach and your thoughts turn toward food. That is what I'm going to talk about today: portable nourishment. Many hikers favor canned foods, breads, cheeses, etc. These are perfectly adequate low tech solutions for those who don't mind products that are a bit bulkier, heavier, or require more preparation than their space-age cousins. If you're on a longer trip and need things that will last, but won't weigh you down quite so much, you can turn to the wonders of modern science. In recent years, many modern marvels of food science have been created, packaged, and made available for your convenient joyous consumption. To examine the best of the low-weight, low-prep options,…
A major part of traveling is walking and hiking long distances over varied terrain. Traveling by foot is often essential to visit the most interesting sites; in such cases, a walking stick is often useful to increase balance and support. You could choose trekking poles or an old-school style wooden staff. However, the new Big Stik by Luxury Lite might just be the best option on the market today. The concept behind the Big Stik is to have all of the advantages of a full staff such as adjustable length and durability with added functionality including a camera mount on top for use as a monopod, a section with a sharp bit that can turn it into a spear for defense against an unruly animal, and a top bit for use as a shelter pole. For handling multiple terrains you are given two options, either a rubber tip or a…

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