Water filters are really stepping up their game in today's hiking world. You've got a lot of options and can spend lots of money... Today we are going to take a look at an excellent, budget friendly water filtration system from HydroBlu.
The Clear Flow Water Bottle double filter bottle is a great little filter that includes a water bottle, hollow fiber filter, and a charcoal filter. You can literally scoop the water right out of the river and drink it! The filter system it uses meets EPA standards and filters out everything nasty you can think of in mountain streams.
As an added bonus, the Clear Flow Water bottle has a charcoal filter above the hollow fiber filter to give your water a clean, fresh taste. We were surprised at how well the system works. There is a bit of squeeze needed to really get the flow going, but overall it isn't difficult to use at all.
This system was tested on multiple weekend hiking AND backpacking trips. It performed without issue.
The Clear Flow eliminates the need for extra bottles or filters, and while it won't necessarily be our choice for every backpacking trip due to its slightly heavier weight and smaller water capacity, we will definitely grab it for day hikes and day to day use.
We really like that you can simply toss out the filter once it reaches its 400 gallon limit and replace it with a new one from the HydroBlu site.
Be aware that the filters and straw take up some space in the bottle, so you really only get about 75% use inside the bottle. This wasn't a deal breaker and I still took it on a weekend backpacking trip. It performed wonderfully and while others were pumping or squeezing their water, I simply filled up my bottle and went!
The Clear Flow Water Bottle only costs $21.95 from HydroBlu and in our opinion is well worth that price!
Xero Shoes has been turning out some great stuff lately. Our last review was the DayLite Hiker and with some very small caveats, we absolutely loved them. We are still using them and still loving them.
New for 2018 is the TerraFlex Trail shoes. These are pegged as trail runners and/or hikers.
Obviously, we are much for trail running (although I sure do try) but we sure have used these for some serious hiking and backpacking. Keep on reading for our thoughts on these!
We hope everyone had a very merry Christmas/Kwanza/Festivus/Hanukkah! It's been a busy, but amazing year and we are so excited for what 2018 has to offer! We've been busy busy reviewing products and getting outside as much as possible.
We are excited to share our review from one of our favorite companies!
Xero Shoes has been a staple in our review line for a number of years and we not only love their products, but we love their people and what they stand for!
They recently stepped into (no pun intended!) the close-toe shoe arena and what they offer has been wildly successful. We've reviewed their Prio model, as well as they more casual Hana/Lena shoes. We loved both and while their sizing seems to be a bit whacky (not unusual for new shoe companies) the shoes themselves are an A+ in our book.
Their newest offering is the DayLite Hiker. The wide toe box, super flexible, tough as nails boot for everyday adventures as well as backcountry excursions comes in at only 10.2 oz for a men's 9, and packs down completely for easy travel and a comfortable fit.
When it comes to minimalist style sandals, the market seems to have plenty of options. You've got various brands and within those brands you typically have different models in varying thickness, grip, etc...
What we've found is that every minimalist sandal has the same problem... they are a pain in the butt to adjust, and they don't ever feel completely secure on your foot.
In steps the new(ish) Bedrock Cairn sandal...
Having a baby has had some challenges for outdoorsy people like us. Usually, fall is when we kick it into high gear with backpacking and hiking. A standard week for us held at least three evening hikes, and usually a couple backpacking trips per month....
Obviously, with a 4 month old, you can't operate on that sort of schedule. Naps, feeding, overstimulation, etc.... the list goes on, and nobody likes an unhappy baby; even if she is gorgeous.
This has forced us to get creative in our outdoor endeavors, which has led to discovering some new (at least to us) areas to hike in!
If you haven't heard of Xero Shoes by this point, we aren't quite sure where you've been. They shook up the sandal game with the huarache style barefoot sandals. Next they introduced they Z Trek sandals which took on styles like Chaco and Teva (and quite well I might add).
They've gone the next step (pun intended!) and added a closed toe casual kick to their lineup...