Outdoor Gear

LifeProof fr? and Arm Band for iPhone 5 Review

When I began doing Couch to 5K again (something I need to do yet again tomorrow because I let too much time pass between runs) I needed a way to carry my iPhone. After all, during a run my phone is not only my music source but it is also my “trainer”… Walk 10 minutes, run half a mile, slow, fast etc. When I did the program the first time…


The ContourRoam2 HD Action Video Camera Lets You Capture Life On the Go

When it comes to HD action cameras there are a few key “musts” the device needs to have if you are going to take it seriously. It has to be tough. After all, action cameras need to endure bumps, bruises, vibration and moisture. It has to be mountable, since an action camera that can only sit on a tripod is called… a camera. It has to be simple to use,…


Scosche boomBOTTLE Weatherproof Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

“Another Bluetooth speaker?” Elana asked when the package arrived? (Okay she actually didn’t say that but she COULD have said it, considering just how many Bluetooth speakers we have reviewed in recent months.) Yes, the Scosche boomBOTTLE is yet another Bluetooth speaker that has made its way into the marketplace. This one, however, is an award winner, having been recognized at CES 2013 this past January. Why does this Bluetooth…


New John Deere EZtrak Z235 Zero Turn Mower Takes the ‘Work’ out of Yardwork

In 1837 in a rural Illinois farming community, a humble displaced Vermont blacksmith fashions a new type of plow from discarded materials, and John Deere Plow Works is born. The rest, as they say, is history – bathed in colorful “John Deere Green.” This year marks the 50th anniversary of the company’s residential product line and recently invited me to “test drive” one of its newest zero-turn mowers. Of course…


Oregon Scientific Launches ATC Chameleon Dual Lens Action Camera

Remember that awesome review I wrote about the ATC Chameleon dual lens action camera?  đź™‚ Well, the ATC Chameleon dual lens action camera finally being launched at several major national retailers, including Target, Best Buy, and Costco.  Now is your chance to grab this adaptable action camera that can capture two videos at one time.  Whether you’re hitting the slopes (like I did), kayaking, mountain biking, or just fooling around with the…


ContourROAM2 Action Camera Is Built for Life in Motion

Perry recently wrote up an awesome action camera that allows you to shoot video in two different directions at once. The Oregon Scientific ATC Chameleon is a neat idea that lets, for example, not only see where you are going but also shows you the slow-pokes behind you on the ski slope or in the bike race. (Check out the review here.) The camera Perry wrote about is only one of a…


FRODO Brings Home Automation to Camper Trailers and Other Mobile Homes

You probably have a certain level of automation that you enjoy in your home already; perhaps you use a smart thermostat, or maybe you have a home alarm. The cool thing about home monitoring and automation is that it doesn’t matter how old your home is, there are products that can be added at any time which will modernize it, making it as self-regulating and automatic as you want it…



DIY Ice Chest Air Conditioner Project

Spring time in Texas is hot; we do not really have seasons, just hot and not so hot. We are deep into the spring turkey hunting season, and some days it is just unbearable. I hunt with a bow, so that is done in a pop up tent blind. Turkeys can see extremely well, so I wear a long sleeve black shirt and black ninja mask. Of course I always…


How To Start a Simple Heirloom Vegetable Garden from Scratch

How many of us have been at a grocery store and been disappointed with the variety and quality of produce? How many sandwiches or other dishes have been befouled with limp lettuce or a feeble yellow-green-pink tomato? It’s no wonder kids (and some adults) aren’t too keen on vegetables. What to do? One solution is to start your own garden, especially an heirloom garden. The term “heirloom” is still often…


The Lifesaver Bottle Is the Filtered Water Bottle That the World Needs

The problem with most consumer filtered water bottles is the fact that they are really only good for everyday uses; like removing Chlorine, Lead, Mercury, etc, and making the already mostly safe water taste a little better.  You would not want to trust those bottles to keep yourself safe while out for a hike without access to clean, trustworthy water.  I use a filtered water bottle every day at work…


Is It Time to Go Solar?

My World Geography class was discussing Africa last week, and the subject of electricity seemed to interest them. There are parts of Africa that are not connected to an electrical grid, so alternate forms of power are a must. A student found an article explaining that 80% of Kenyans do not have electrical service and that they primarily light their homes with kerosene lamps. Long story short, a start up company…


LifeProof Launches Total Water Protection Program for iPhone and iPad

I got my hands on a LifeProof case for the iPhone shortly after the line launched. I was impressed by how great the LifeProof case was at keeping my smartphone safe. In fact, shortly after I got the LifeProof case I was in a T-Mobile store buying a hotspot sim card. Someone asked me if it was one of those new LifeProof cases. I threw my iPhone across the store…


Inventio HD 720P Video Sunglasses Review

A number of months ago I reviewed the PivotHead Video Sunglasses. (Read the review.) I used them in Aruba (watch the video) and then again in Cuba (watch the video). I really enjoyed using the glasses and was bummed when the time came to return the sample I was using. I sent them back and planned to shoot future video “the old-fashioned way”… with my iPhone.  That’s when I was…


Gomadic SunVolt Portable Solar Power Station Review

Last year my congregation became the first Reform synagogue in the country to attain certification in environmental leadership from GreenFaith, a nationally recognized interfaith environmental coalition. This winter our Pre-School completed a nationally certified outdoor classroom. The goal is to help kids, and parents, better balance “screen time” and “green time”. It should be no surprise then, that I love the idea of using the sun to charge and run…


Discovery Trekking’s Ultra-Fast Drying Towels

“Gear” comes in all different shapes and sizes and we do our best to cover as wide a range as possible here on Gear Diary. That’s why, in this review, we will be looking at… towels. Yes, this is a review of towels but, as you might expect, these aren’t just any towels. No, these are special Ultra-Fast Drying Towels from Discovery Trekking Outfitters. These Ultra-Fast Drying Towels come in…


Braven 570 Charges Your Smartphone and Ears On the Go

We met with Braven at CES 2013 (check out the post) and had a chance to see their new speakers. We watched as the Braven BRV-1 went for a swim and checked out the budget-priced Braven 570. Now we’ve got out hands on the Braven 570 for a hands-on review. Before we jump in though take a look at the BRV-1. If you’ve used one of Braven’s speakers or checked…


Oregon Scientific ATC Chameleon Dual Lense Action Camera Gives You Eyes in the Back of Your Head

We’ve all seen those first-person action videos of guys and gals flying down the slopes, jumping out of planes, or slashing through the whitewater on their kayaks.  These videos are entertaining and provide the viewer a peek at exactly how it would look if you were risking your own neck out there, without all the danger and adrenaline.  The problem with these videos, however, is that you can only capture…


TrackingPoint Releases Precision Guided Firearm iOS Simulator App

We first broke news of TrackingPoint and their Precision Guided Firearm system during this year’s CES. The system is a custom-built rifle and scope combination that makes long-range shooting much more accurate. Using the XactSystem, shooters tag, track and hit their target with pinpoint accuracy. TrackingPoint has just released Precision Hunter Lite which allows iOS users to experience their revolutionary technology. The free application is basically a first person shooter…


Dorcy LED Headlamp Review

I’ll admit that the first time Kev slipped his headlamp on to go do something outside in the dark, I smirked. Why not just carry a flashlight? Why go out of your way to look like a coal miner or a caver? I’m being facetious, of course. I totally understood why he would want to be able to do things outside handsfree, but there’s no getting around the fact that…


Tom Bihn Brain Bag with Camera I-O and Accessories Review

If you are looking for a small, light backpack you can stop reading now. If, on the other hand, you are looking for a backpack that is large, flexible, comfortable to carry and tough enough to last and last keep reading. Tom Bihn’s Brain Bag is a pricey backpack that is large and flexible enough to serve as a weekender, as a camera backpack or as a laptop backpack. On…