Articles in Category: Gear Spotlight

BCA Float 18

Keep on top of your Christmas Shopping

2011Christmasgearguide-sm
FloatWhite
BCALogoOrange-sm

This holiday season, give the gift of safety to the powder enthusiast on your list.  Over the past few years, avalanche airbag systems have grown rapidly in popularity, and we can see why. The float line from Backcountry Access helps to greatly reduce the chance of burial in an avalanche, and that is the key. The most time consuming and labour intensive part of an avalanche rescue is the excavation of someone under the snow surface. By keeping you on top of the slide, float packs help minimize this part of the rescue. This should never take away from the need for education, training, and having the proper gear, but it is another amazing tool in your toolbox.

The Float 18 is a new addition to the Backcountry Access float pack line. The pack is slightly smaller, but the 150 litre airbag system is the same in the Float 18, 30, and 36. Affordability and a smaller profile design make this pack ideal for the sidecountry and mechanized ski crowd, as well as people looking for a minimalist approach to their gear. Offering 18 litres of gear storage and essential features such as internal shovel and probe pockets, helmet and diagonal ski carrying systems, and an optional snowboard carrying system, this is pack takes you from adventures on the backside of the ski hill to your next Catskiing expedition.  BCA utilizes a highly efficient compressed air system that is easily refilled at you local shop, such as Union Cycle in Kelowna, so there are no worries about buying expensive refill cartridges once the airbag has been deployed.

Check out the whole line of float packs from Backcountry Access online and find nearby retailers here.

Check out the Video of the Float 18 being deployed ( Just below the gallery ).

{gallery}Gear/BCA/Float18{/gallery}

Outdoor Research Dry Bags and Sacks

You wouldn't buy a Wet Peak Bagger would you?

2011Christmasgearguide-sm
OR-Drycomp-Ridge-Sack-1
OR-logo-smOutdoor Research is an industry leader when it comes to gear storage and dry bag technology. Combine that with the fact that everything OR makes comes with an infinite guarantee, you can't go wrong. So, whether you are throwing gear in the back of a snowy pickup, or making a bootpack to the summit, OR has a number of options that would look great under your Christmas tree with a big bow.

The Dry Peak Bagger is an ultra lightweight, weatherproof bag designed for quick pushes up the mountain. This will keep your gear dry and fit comfortably, all for a very affordable price. Simple, straightforward, that's what we like. Even the name says it all. You wouldn't buy a Wet Peak Bagger would you? Didn't think so.

The Drycomp Summit Sack is a versatile bag with multiple functions. It works as a waterproof compression bag for storing jackets, sleeping bags, and other gear. Then, when needed, the compression straps turn into shoulder and waist straps for a unique, roll top backpack. Who said you're too old to get transformers for Christmas?

When you need extra features like compression straps and a mesh pocket to accommodate a hydration bladder, you need the Drycomp Ridge Sack. A waterproof roll top closure, combined with comfortable mesh shoulder straps make this a great daypack choice. Waterproofness and strength are made possible with radio frequency welded seams. We don't even know what that means, but we're pretty sure it has something to do with lasers. Awesome!

For more info on these and other dry bag storage options, check out Outdoor Research online.

{gallery}Gear/OR/Bags::::2{/gallery}

2011 Christmas Gear Guide

Your Christmas Shopping Guide for that Powder Lover on your List!

2011Christmasgearguide

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.

As the Christmas season approaches, we know that you are extremely busy. You have skis to wax, leg squats to do, and smelly long underwear to dig out of the closet.  Since you may have less time for that critical Christmas shopping, the crew here at Catskiing.ca want to help you out with some gift ideas for the powder enthusiast on your list.

Over the next couple weeks (or until we run out of ideas), we will be posting great gift ideas that are sure to satisfy the ski bum you are shopping for, even if it's yourself. No sweaters from grandma here, just high quality ski gear to enhance your season this winter. We have some great pictures and video of new gear from Icebreaker, Outdoor Research, and Backcountry Access. So grab some eggnog, put up the mistletoe, and stay tuned to the Catskiing.ca 2011 Christmas gear guide.

2012 Moment Skis - Jaguar Shark

What is the scientific purpose of this ski? Revenge!

Moment-0963We just picked up a pair of the new 2012 Moment Jaguar Sharks in 192cm. As soon as we saw the name of this ski and the beautiful top sheet they were on order. 

They are not mounted up quite yet so we will have to get back to you with a review a little later in the season but we can say that we have been very impressed with the 2 pairs we have in our current fleet (Donner Party and Ruby).

All Moment Skis are Handmade in the good ol' USA, Reno Nevada to be exact. Moment uses 95% domestically sourced materials and FSC-certified wood cores.

What is the scientific purpose of this ski?  Revenge!

Check out the full line of 2012 Moment Skis.  If you would like to demo some Moment Skis in the Kelowna Area check out Union Cycle.

Moment Demo Skis at Union Cycle Kelowna

  • 184cm Bibby Pro (2012)
  • 180cm Tahoe (2012) 
  • 180cm Ruby ( 2010 w/ touring bindings)
  • 170 Sierra( 2010 w/ touring bindings)

{gallery}Gear/Moment/Jaguar{/gallery}

 

It's Ski Movie Season, Go out in style with Icebreaker

The Pureplus Merino Jacket brings a little class along with fit and performance

Icebreaker-Pureplus-Jacket
It's is ski movie premier season and that means digging through the closet for your favorite technical top, vest or jacket to wear. You know what I am talking about, you pull that sticky poly top and peel it over your head and you're good to go. Well this season we have some advice: Get yourself an Icebreaker Pureplus Merino Jacket and hit the movies with some style. You'll still get the respect of a techie outdoorsman trust us. It's Icebreaker man! You can wear it all season and it won't even stink (we have done this test, it is true!)

What we got our hands on is the new for Fall Icebreaker Pureplus 380 Merino Jacket. Icebreaker has upped their game again this season bringing a new level of style and sophistication to their line-up of merino products. The Pureplus Jacket is one of the most comfortable jackets we have tried in a long time. This is due in part because of Icebreaker's familiar fit and cut but also to the fully lined interior of the jacket. It just slides on and forms to the body.

{gallery}IBPURE{/gallery}

This jacket is super versatile too. It looks good enough to dress up and go out in the evening, wear it with work clothes during the week and the head out into the elements on the weekends. The jacket is designed to keep you cozy in the wild and windy weather that these shoulder seasons tend to throw at us.

We are off to the first of the many ski movie premiers this evening. Tonight it is Sherpas Cinemas "All.I.Can" followed by TGR's "One for the Road" You will know who we are, we will be the ones sporting the latest from Icebreaker and we won't stink!

For more info on the Pureplus Jacket from Icebreaker, click here>>>
All.I.Can Trailer
One for the Road Trailer

Skiing Style Accesories

Ski Bum Style Accesories from FlyLow

FlyLow-SkiBum
Sometimes it is easy to tell that you are a ski bum, other times not so much.  The people at Flylow decided to let you fly your ski bum flag proudly with this stylish trucker hat.  Flylow Ski Bum Trucker Hat.

While wearing said ski bum hat you might want to enjoy some tasty beverages.  Whether you need to adjust that finiky ski boot or crack a cold one you will be the envy of your dirtbag ski friends with the Flylow Keychain Beer Tool.

shotgunner

The New Float 18 Avalanche Backpack from BCA

Editor's Pick from the 2012 Freeskier Magazine Buyers Guide. (and we like it too!)

BCA Float 18 Avalanche Airbag
Being the beginning of September and all, we often find ourselves with nothing better to do than hang around coffee shops and leaf through the magazines on the rack. I mean, why pay for them if they are just sitting there, right?! Anyways, on a recent trip to the caffeine store we found ourselves glued to the pages of the latest Buyer's Guide from Freeskier Magazine. One of their better Buyer's Guides yet actually. As we got through the regular hype on all the new skis we saw that BCA had been recognized with an Editor's Pick on their new Float 18 Avalanche Airbag. We were stoked because we absolutely love our Stash packs and got to play around with a Float 30 at Valhalla Powder Catskiing last season.

The Float 18 is new for this season. It is the smaller cousin to the Float 30 and an awesome choice for lighter weight safety gear. The Float 18 is only 6.5 lbs and still has an 18 litre capacity giving it plenty of room for skins, extra gear and of course, snacks. As with all BCA packs, this one comes standard with the stash pockets for the rest of your avi gear. With the weight savings and ample storage space, we think BCA has hit it right on with this Float 18 pack. We will give more detailed reviews and videos when we are out catskiing in the mountains of BC this season!

For more info on the BCA Float 18 Avalanche Airbag, click here >>>

New for Fall from Icebreaker Pure Merino

Icebreaker raises the bar yet again with the all new RealFleece 260

Icebreaker-realfleece-260-zip

So it is August and we are in the midst of a heatwave here in BC. What better time to have a box full of new merino wool goodies show up from Icebreaker Clothing! We decided that we would head to the mountains to see what we could find and test out the new product.

As expected, our enthusiasm far out-measured the abundance of snow as you can see by the greenery in the accompanying photos. None-the-less, Todd decided to practice trudging through creeks in the new Icebreaker GT200 zip. He seems seems to be the one to end up in them when we are on skis so the practise is good for him...

Next up was the new for this season Icebreaker RealFleece 260 Full Zip Top. Now this comes in hooded and non-hooded versions and is quite the sharp looking piece. It has refined, articulated stitching and fits amazingly. It is a little too warm out there in the BC backcountry to give you a full review of the latest offerings but when the snow starts to fall, be sure to check back for our point of view.

In the meantime, get down to your local Icebreaker Dealer and check out the new threads. Especially the RealFleece 260, the original release of RealFleece 320 sold out real fast last season.

Enjoy the rest of summer because winter is coming!

PS – sweet poles eh?!

{gallery}IB050811{/gallery}

The Ski Logik Experience

Testing the Ski Logik Howitzer and Bomb Squad's

Review of Ski Logik Howizter and Bomb SquadThumbing through the pages of a buyer's guide for the 2010/2011 ski season and one thing is quite obvious: there seems to be a plethora of new ski companies designing the latest and greatest new skis. We love this new movement in the ski industry where small manufacturers are developing new shapes, using interesting materials and building a story into every ski. Ski Logik is one of the many new kids on the block and by our accounts, have the product to stay around for a while.

On a recent trip to Wildhorse Catskiing and Valhalla PowderCats, Dave Ellison (local Kootenay skier and Ski Logik rep) slid us a couple of sets of skis to try. Armed with a pair ofHowitzers and Dave personal set of Bomb Squads we hit the cat aiming at discovering what makes these skis special.

First things first, these skis are beautiful! Ski Logik hand-makes each pair of skis putting a little sweat and custom artwork in each pair. They don't have a traditional screened top sheet either. Instead, the have a unique wood veneer artwork placed on top of the full wood construction (sidewalls included!). I didn't want to scratch these babies, I just wanted to sit and stare at them. The style reminded me of my custom cedar guitar with darker wood inlays and mother of pearl up the fret board. Seriously, they are on to something with the look of these skis.

But looks can only get you so far...The real question always is: What do they ski like?

Let's start with the Howitzer. First impressions where light, quick, nimble, yet with tremendous powder to the edge. For skiing the steeps and deeps all day long there are wider options out there, but the Howitzer would be hard to catch on the skin up. (Plus, you would look damn good waiting at the top with your hot looking skis!). The Howitzer really felt like an all mountain machine. A one ski quiver if you will. It definitely held it's own in the powder and also had characteristics that would make it a wicked touring ski as well as an all round ripper at the ski resort.

Now, the Bomb Squad is a different story. This ski lives up to it's name. It is bomber tough. Skiing through the trees they begged me to go faster. Upon coming into an open powder field I had to let these babies run. And run they did. I spent the entire day trying to find the top end of the Bomb Squads and never found it. You can bet I want more days on a pair! Even though the Bomb Squad is a bigger profile it didn't feel big and cumbersome. It still had a hint of the nimbleness of it's younger sibling which I think separates it from alot of the other independent skis out there.

The hard facts:

The Howitzer

Ski Logk Howitzer
Size: 186 cm
Tip: 137 mm | Waist: 110 mm | Tail: 131 mm
Weight: 3900 g

The Bomb Squad

Ski Logik Bomb Squad
Size: 188 cm
Tip: 148 mm | Waist: 122 mm | Tail:143 mm
Weight: 4300 g

Would we ski em?

Heck yes! The Bomb Squad was the overall favorite for the powder hound and definitely the ski of choice if you are packing some muscle. The Howitzer suprised us and would be the perfect ski if you do some skinning or just want a super nimble and light set up. The wood construction is very tough and looks fantastic. Dave had about 40 days on his already and they looked almost new. It feels kind of cool skiing on a piece of art!

Where to buy?

See our friends at Union Cycle - http://www.unioncycle.ca/

Company Website: http://www.skilogik.com