We’re getting back to the idea behind this project and starting a “Friday Five” series! Each week, we’ll post a list of five things that we’re stoked about. With the Labor Day weekend marking the unofficial end to summer, I though the inaugural issue should be a big ole high five to five pieces of gear that made my summer. Here we go!

#5 | Therm-a-Rest Slacker Hammock

Therm-a-Rest Slacker Hammock - Burnt Orange

From three nights of cold and rainy camping, to a Nebraska lake weekend, to multiple stays at our favorite Turquoise Lake camp spot, the Therm-a-Rest Slacker hammock went everywhere with us this summer. It’s comfortable, lightweight, compact, and priced right!

See our full review of the Therm-a-Rest Slacker Hammock here!



$65.95 at Backcountry.com

Soaking in a Nebraska sunset in the comfort of a Therm-a-Rest Slacker hammock

Sunset views at Medicine Creek State Recreation Area, near Cambridge, Nebraska.


#4 | Eco Vessel BOSS Triple Insulated Growler

Eco Vessel BOSS 62 Ounce Triple Insulated Growler

I’ve been lucky enough to test quite a few growlers this year. Honestly, I never push the boundaries of how long an insulated growler keeps my beer cold, and all of the stainless insulated growlers I’ve used so far have served me well. I’m sure this triple insulated growler can hang when it comes to keeping beer cold, but what I love most about the Eco Vessel growler is the stainless steel infuser. The first thing I did when this growler arrived, was take it down to 105 West Brewing and filled it with their Blood Orange Gose. Then I brought it home and dropped in the stainless infuser filled with frozen mangoes. I enjoyed a subtle hint of mangoes in the Gose on a sandy beach at Turquoise Lake that evening! With a dual top, including a smaller opening, you can drink directly from this growler if that’s how you roll (tested with the Gose mangoes mix). And I have a ton more ideas for this fall and winter – think big ole porter infused with toasted coconut!

Giving Back
Eco Vessel donates 1% of the purchase price of every bottle directly to Water for People. Learn more here.

$54.95 | ecovessel.com

Beer on the beach, Turquoise Lake, Leadville, CO

Enjoying a cold beer and a Colorado sunset at Turquoise Lake near Leadville, CO.


#3 | ElevenPine Crankitup Shorts

ElevenPine Crankitup Men's Cycling Shorts

Bottom line, these are the best cycling shorts I’ve ever owned. Not only that, I’ve been wearing these shorts all summer for hikes and just chilling around camp. If you know of a more versatile pair of shorts, I’d like to know about them!

See my full review here.


ElevenPine Crankitup Shorts in action on the

“T35” Trail in Telluride, CO. June 2016. Photo by Chris Ruszkowski.


#2 | Helly Hansen Odin Minimilist Jacket

Helly Hansen Men's Odin Minimilist Jacket

This jacket has kept me dry and comfortable on countless outings this spring and summer! Here’s a small sampling. We were slammed with a spring snowstorm shortly after I got this jacket. One of its first outings was a mid-snowstorm snowshoe test outing in our back yard. I pretty much lived in this jacket, on top of a Patagonia down sweater during three days of non-stop wind and rain on a mid-April camping trip in Fruita. It’s the only jacket I take to Red Rocks. And I got rained on multiple times at May and Junes shows. And it pretty much lives in my work bag. You get the point. Sure, I’d love to have some big ole chest pockets, but that’s a different jacket. The Odin Minimalist packs down to the size of a can of beer, and will keep you dry in the nastiest of conditions.

$220 $132 | hellyhansen.com


Lunch Loops, Grand Junction, CO

Cold and rainy riding on the Lunch Loops trails in Grand Junction, CO. Apr 16, 2016. Photo by Mitch Kline


#1 | Zeal Big Timber Sunglasses

Polarized, photochromic, and eco-friendly. If I had to pick just one pair of glasses, the Big Timber would be it. Our pick for 2016 Sunglasses of the Year!

Read my full Big Timber review here.

Colorado sunset from Ridgeline Open Space in Castle Rock, CO

Colorado sunset from Ridgeline Open Space in Castle Rock, CO.


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