Month: June 2014

Outdoor Research Onrush Cap

When it comes to wearing things on my head, I’m the world’s biggest not fan. This also includes my hair, which I have been contemplating a big chop off, but that’s an entirely different story.

Head garments never quite fit my head. They’re either too big, or headachingly small. I’m not a fan of having something block my field of vision and slipping over my eyes. I don’t really wear head things to catch sweat. I can’t keep my wild and ridiculous hair off my neck. In general, they’re pretty uncomfortable to me.

When Outdoor Research sent me their Onrush Cap, my first thought was “Oh no, another hat that I’ll hate and it’ll collect dust in my things I’ll never wear drawer”. They proved me wrong. I’m not a hat lover still, but this cap is a-okay.

Outdoor Research Onrush Cap Hat Review Outdoor Research Onrush Cap Hat Review Outdoor Research Onrush Cap Hat Review

At 1.7 oz, this thing is light! It’s like wearing a protective feather on your head. The material is a perforated, polyester mesh, designed to to be super breathable and moisture-wicking. I don’t tend to sweat much on top of my head (I think) so I can’t comment on that. I will say that it wasn’t bulky and didn’t weight me down or cause me to sweat more.

The hat’s piping and logo are reflective, so if you’re running at dawn, dusk or night with this on, people might be able to see you better. I can appreciate the white fabric this is constructed out of; nothing is worse than wearing a hat that absorbs heat. However, for people who sweat bullets, the white fabric might be more of soon to yellow/brown nemesis than an ally. Luckily, it comes in two other colors!

It has a standard hat hole for you to loop your ponytail through. The cap has a buckle closure making it easy to clip onto your pack when you don’t need it. Landon Faulkner of Make Adventure raves about it here. On a side note, Outdoor Research has an Echo Hoody with a ponytail hole, why can’t there be things with better ponytail holes? Granted, it might look a little ridiculous having a high pony coming out of my hat, but it could work. Nothing makes me hate hats more than not being able to pile my hair as far away from my skin as possible. Just a thought.

Final thoughts: the Outdoor Research Onrush cap is a very lightweight cap. It is a tolerable cap and I will probably wear it again when I absolutely hate the sun. If you’re a hat person, you’ll probably like this hat.

Buy through Outdoor Research for $20.

Purisima Creek Redwoods OSP: #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup

Hike: Whittemore Gulch, North Ridge, Craig Britton and Purisima Creek
Where: Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve
Trailhead: Higgins-Purisima Road
Level: Moderate
Duration: 4 hours
Length: 9.9 miles
Gear: Outdoor Research Ignitor Tee, Outdoor Research Women’s Turbine Short, Farm to Feet Boulder sock, REI Flash 18 Pack, Black Diamond Ultra Distance Trekking Poles – Pair, and Ahnu Sugarpine Waterproof Boot
Cost of Parking: Free

I am super happy and excited to announce that I’m joining this year’s Hell Hike and Raft crew! I’ll be heading off to Idaho and Hell’s Canyon early September for three days of backpacking and three days of rafting with some stellar folks.

It just so happens that two of my teammates, Russ Beebe the Winehiker and Annie Yearout the OutdoorsyMama, are located in the Bay Area! We decided to have a little tweetup to get to know each other and do some mild training for the trip.

Our adventure began at the Higgins-Purisima Road, and we took off on the Whittemore Gulch trail to start climbing up the hills of the Santa Cruz Mountains listening to Annie exclaiming about the size and height of the redwoods.

After Whittemore Gulch ended, we turned right onto North Ridge Trail down to where it meets Harkins Ridge. From there, we hopped onto the Bay Area Ridge Trail which turned into Craig Britton Trail until we reached a picnic area. We split from the Craig Britton Trail and took the Purisima Creek Trail next to a tiny babbling Purisima Creek back to the trailhead.

It was lots of fun meeting up with some of the Hell Hike and Raft crew! Say hi to Russ on Twitter, and stop by Annie’s blog!

Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup Purisima Creek Redwoods #HellHikeAndRaft Tweetup

Outdoor Research Ignitor Tee and Giveaway!

Outdoor Research Ignitor Tee ReviewOutdoor Research Ignitor Tee ReviewOutdoor Research Ignitor Tee Review

The Ignitor Tee is an incredibly versatile shirt, designed out of a 100% heathered polyster. Though it’s designed for running, I absolutely hate running so I take it hiking, backpacking and climbing. The trim fit, clingy and heathered fabric prevents the shirt from looking super technical, allowing you to take this seamlessly from the office to the trails.

At approx 4 oz. for a size medium, this shirt takes up very little weight and very little space in your pack, allowing you to travel ultralight. This shirt had no problem performing under a hipbelt or under a harness. I was worried there would be a ton of lift, but the shirt stays put and doesn’t climb.

This has a Polygiene® anti-bacterial treatment to prevent odors, but I didn’t find it effective. After tons of sweating and/or a few days of wear, the stink was pretty noticeable. Luckily, it washed out pretty well. Airing out the shirt for a day or two between wears helped with the odor, but not by much after I got moving. The silky material is very lightweight and moisture-wicking, keeping you cool and dry-ish, even when you’re sweating buckets.

Outdoor Research Ignitor Tee ReviewOutdoor Research Ignitor Tee Review

The shirt has reflective trim and logos to keep you visible in the dark. It also has a small hip pocket for you to hold a credit card, ID, or other small knickknacks. The shirt could honestly do without the hip pocket. It is very small on the XS and wouldn’t fit more than a house key comfortably. The pocket is a foldover pocket, so any intense turbulence might cause things to fall out. A Velcro closure could be added, but that would add extra bulk and bumps. I prefer to not have it at all.

I’m also super duper excited to announce that Little Grunts is now ONE! As a big thank you for reading, supporting, following, tweeting, etc., I’m giving away one Ignitor Tee to one lucky adventurer!! Details are below the break.

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Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder

Sometimes planning for camping meals can be a drag. Great Outdoors Food makes shopping for camping meals convenient and easy. I’d seen Laura and Great Outdoors Food lurking around on social media, so when she reached out to me to review the meal builder, I said sure!

As first and foremost a meal planner, it allows you to select a variety of pre-packaged meals from various offerings of meats, veggies, desserts, condiments, beverage packets and snacks. The site also offers a store to easily stock up on favorites.

The site itself is very basic. You start off by naming your meal. If you opt not to name it, the default is “My Meal”.

Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder Review

From there, you are taken to a screen to choose the first part of your meal: protein.

Clicking on each individual item shows you the nutritional label and allows you to specify a quantity. This screen would be more useful if it allowed you to view how to prepare the package too. The majority of the time it will be add hot water and, but sometimes those instructions are little tricksters.

Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder Review

Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder Review

Unfortunately, once you make a choice and hit the next button or skip a screen, there’s no way to go backwards without starting from scratch. This makes it difficult to peruse what exactly the site offers. As a workaround, add everything you think you might want, and then remove at the end of each meal.

The review your order screen doesn’t actually allow you to make an edits to individual meals. You are only given the choice to remove and start from scratch again. It would be much more user-friendly if you could update quantities of meals and individual items.

Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder Review

The checkout process is handled through Shopify. The store accepts credit cards or Paypal.

After placing an order, Great Outdoors Food will pack, label, and ship them to you individually so you can stay organized. Each meal will be packed individually in a resealable plastic bag that you can reuse to collect your trash.

Prices are the comparable to REI or any sporting goods store. I found it a little odd that you’re charged for little condiment packages like ketchup, mustard, salt, pepper, etc. But you are paying for the convenience instead of fetching those from a fast food restaurant yourself. If you sign up for the mailing list, you’ll receive a 20% off coupon your grand total before tax.

Shipping prices are reasonable. For items under 1lb via USPS, it is $3.50, saving you some gas money from making you a trip to the store. I was not given any other options for my items.

The Great Outdoors Food Meal Builder is a great tool for putting together meals quickly without leaving the comfort of your couch. The idea is great but the usability of the site could use a good overhaul to make it more click-efficient and time friendly.

I was sent a promotional code to review the website. However, the compensation does not affect my opinion of the site.

Sun Bum SPF 30 Continuous Spray Sunscreen

Sun Bum SPF 30 Continuous Spray Sunscreen Review

With summer just around the corner, it’s time to start talking sun care! I previously covered Sun Bum’s PRO SPF 50 Sunscreen here. Today, I have the Sun Bum SPF 30 Continuous Spray sunscreen!

If you’re looking for a hands-free, easy to apply sunscreen to keep you protected, Sun Bum has got you covered.

The ultra sheer, lightweight, quick drying spray will be your best friend in the summer months. It won’t clog your pores or leave you feeling super greasy. And the best part is, look, ma, no hands! No rubbing in necessary. Just spray and be on your way. It is broad spectrum UVA/UVB Protection, water/sweat resistant for up to 80 minutes.

Like all aerosols, apply liberally for best coverage and don’t inhale the stuff.

Sun Bum SPF 30 Continuous Spray sunscreen is paraben free, PABA free, and oil free. It also contains Vitamin E to help fight premature skin aging.

The bottle is your standard aerosol sunscreen container with a turn-to-lock spray nozzle to keep it from going haywire in your pack.

The only con? This sunscreen contains fragrance. If you’re sensitive to smells, especially sweet smells, this might make you feel sick. It has a light coconut scent that is most fragrant (or pungent) upon application. It wears off as the day goes on and it’s not very strong, but it is still noticeable.

All in all, the Sun Bum SPF 30 Continuous Spray is a solid item to have in your pack for sunny days.

Buy for $15.99.

This was sent to me for review.