TomTom® Adventurer is the Ultimate GPS Outdoor Watch

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of TomTom®.  The opinions and texts are all mine. For those of you who've considered a fitness watch, GPS watch, or any other type of sports tracker, or maybe you're just ready to upgrade your watch tech, and would love to see a product that offers more than ever before, you're going to be very excited to see the new TomTom® Adventurer GPS Outdoor Watch. Just released this fall, the TomTom® Adventurer packs a powerful punch of functionality and convenience.  Plus, it's perfect for the outdoor enthusiast. TomTom® Adventurer as a Fitness Watch I've personally never worn a step tracker or fitness watch of any kind.  But I've always been curious if it would motivate me to be more active in my daily life.  Since I work in an office full time, I spend way too many sedentary hours at the computer, and have become lax about taking some ergonomic breaks and taking a walk. Wearing the TomTom® Adventurer the past two weeks has … [Read more...]

The Ultimate Outdoor Woman Gift Guide

It's been another year of trying out all kinds of outdoor, travel, and fashion gear for the Colorado Mountain Mom site.  I'm an outdoor gal with a wide range of tastes, but at our core we all love some of the same basic things. Here are a few of my absolute favorites I've found for this season.  There's a nice range of prices, so hopefully this may help you find the perfect gift for that outdoor gal in your life! Ultimate "Outdoor Woman" Gift Guide Sunday Afternoons ~ Shasta Trapper Hat, $48 I knew they made great sun hats, but didn’t realize the awesome variety in styles that Sunday Afternoon designs.  This company knows hats, and I feel you’ll not find a better fitting, more comfortable option for your head. I'm loving the cute yet practical Shasta Trapper Hat, new this season.  Furry warmth of the fold down flaps will keep your neck and ears cozy, while a handy brim shades the eyes.  Perfect for winter adventures! Native Eyewear ~ Penrose Sunglasses, … [Read more...]

Gear Girl Review ~ Tamrac® HooDoo 18 Camera Backpack

You adventure into some amazing outdoor places, and having a real camera along (not just your phone) to take photos is highly desirable.  But do you want to risk tossing it in your backpack with your other hiking gear, to get scratched or damaged?  That dilemma is solved with the comfortable and practical Tamrac® HooDoo 18 Camera Backpack. Tamrac® HooDoo 18 Camera Backpack Review The Tamrac® HooDoo 18 is a specialized camera backpack, which contains a handy, top loading padded compartment to safely store and easily retrieve your camera.  This protected compartment is large enough to also hold a lens and some other accessories, yet a good depth so that the contents are still easily viewed and retrieved. "But I need a real backpack, for real hiking" you say?  Read on... you'll get that, too. Features: This is a legitimate backpack, with all the comfort features you'd want while taking a decent hike.  In addition to the padded camera compartment, This small-to-medium sized pack … [Read more...]

Summer Beach Essentials Roundup 2016

I know what you're thinking.  Why is the "mountain mom" writing a gear review for beach products?  Well, first off... I know a good outdoor gear product when I see one.  And many of these awesome eco-friendly, lightweight, and easy-to-pack items work just as fabulously for an adventure in the woods, as a day at the beach. And although we live in Colorado, almost every family vacation we take involves heading to a coast for some ocean time.  We recently returned from a road trip to California, where we were able to enjoy multiple beaches along the Pacific Ocean.  Before we left, I packed a few summer beach essentials to take with us. So here you go.  Check out these clever products, perfect for your next day at the beach (or mountains!). Matador Pocket Blanket The Pocket Blanket is perfect for comfortable seating while watching the sunset at the beach —no more bulky blankets. Ultra compact made of lightweight, revolutionary parachute material Water- and … [Read more...]

Commemorative National Parks Centennial Gear from Coleman & Pendleton

This year, 2016 marks the centennial for the U.S. National Parks Foundation.  To celebrate, Pendleton, Coleman, and other select outdoor brands have partnered with the organization to offer collections of unique & memorable items for use in the great outdoors. Don't forget about National Parks Week coming up April 16-24, when you can visit the Parks for free!   If those dates don't work for you, be sure to check the list of Free National Park entry dates, and plan a visit for your family this year. Coleman National Parks Centennial Gear   Nostalgia Lantern ($149.99) – Coleman’s Nostalgia Lantern, designed specifically for the 2016 NationalPark Service Centennial commemorative line, harkens back to the good ol’ days of camping with a heritage-inspired full metal body. This battery-powered 700-lumen lantern includes a Lithium-ion battery. When you aren’t using the lantern, switch on Coleman’s BatteryLock technology which disconnects the batteries from their contact … [Read more...]

National Geographic Debuts New National Park Guides for Centennial [Giveaway, Ended 4/24]

Hot off the presses, some exciting new guides from National Geographic!  In honor of this year's National Parks Centennial Celebration, they've just released some brand new park guides.  These gorgeous, informative travel guides will help you and your family plan your vacation to any National Park that catches your fancy.   They are perfect for both planning a visit to a park or just exploring them from home, and even include an awesome kids edition. National Parks Week is coming up soon... on April 16-24, 2016!  Keep in mind, this year there are many National Parks free entry dates to take advantage of.  It's a perfect time to #FindYourPark and enjoy these unique and breathtaking natural areas, preserved because they are this country's most majestic treasures. Good news... I've a full set of these wonderful National Geographic Guides to give away!  Here's the scoop on each.  Be sure to enter at the article end. Guide to National Parks of the United States   First … [Read more...]

High Sierra Introduces Great Outdoor Apparel

High Sierra has been making outdoor gear and backpacks for some time now, and has built a reputation of quality at a value.  This Spring they've branched out, and they are now offering some great outdoor clothing.  This is an exciting development, as these thoughtfully designed pieces are being sold at reasonable price points.  And from what I've seen, they aren't skimping on quality in the process. The Spring line from High Sierra introduced some awesome new pieces, a couple of which my daughter and I have been trying out these past few weeks.  The items we sampled were made from fantastic fabric, with solid construction and a well designed fit. High Sierra Women's Lizze Pullover The  High Sierra Women's Lizze Pullover is to die for.  The fit is spot on, and true to size.  The Lizze envelopes you in a sleek, smooth exterior.  Inside it cuddles you with a fuzzy, cozy interior.  Made from space-dyed stretch fleece, this thick soft fabric is very warm yet it breathes and dries … [Read more...]

The Versatrail: KEEN’s New 10 Ounce Hiking Shoe

My first glimpse of the Versatrail was seeing instagram photos from home, as outdoor gear enthusiasts posted photos during the Outdoor Retailer show.  The KEEN Versatrail hiking shoe definitely has a great look, and is available in men's, women's, and even kid sizes.  What about fit and performance? I've been testing out a pair the past few weeks, and have been quite happy with them.  Here's my overall review of the Versatrail, KEEN's new lightweight hiking shoe. KEEN Versatrail ~ New Lightweight Hiking Shoe   The great thing about an attractive, lightweight shoe like the Versatrail is how versatile it is.  (See what I did there?  Oh wait... maybe it's what KEEN did there...)  I love having a low height, easy on, comfortable shoe with a great tread like this for everyday casual wear. I may not be fortunate enough to have a hike on the day's agenda.   But in theory, if the opportunity spontaneously arose, I'D BE READY.   I believe that's called "adventure ready". … [Read more...]

The Vital Piece of Gear All Outdoor Lovers Need

What if I told you there was one, vital piece of gear that could be used year-round, was affordably priced at around $50, had flexible sizing so it could be easily shared among your family members, and would improve the quality of multiple outdoor experiences?  There is.  And they are commonly known as hiking gaiters. In the past, I'd noticed people wearing hiking gaiters on cross country ski trails.  Not being aware of the advantages of wearing them, I was curious to try out a pair of Hillsound Equipment Armadillo LT Gaiters. After a few uses, I've decided they are game changers!  I've been converted to the Leg Gaiter Camp, and I feel pretty strongly that they are a vital piece of gear all outdoor lovers need in their lives. Hiking Gaiters ~ Many Outdoor Play Uses   Call them what you will:   hiking gaiters, trail gaiters, SNAKE gaiters (yikes), walking gaiters, or waterproof gaiters.  They are easy to put on, and add awesome protection without adding any weight, … [Read more...]

Ella’s Wool Keeps Outdoor Kids Warmer

When a mom from Norway gives you a tip on how they keep their kids warm in winter, so they can still have fun playing outside - you listen.  Because you know she knows what she's talking about.  That's why I was so intrigued with the story behind Ella's Wool.  Founder Vibeke K Johansen wanted to share this solution with all parents, so their children can play outside year-round and stay warm, too. That solution is wool.  The most natural, warm, soft and reliable thing you can dress your kid in when it’s cold.  A single, thin layer of super soft merino wool under your kids’ clothes can make all the difference.   Ella's Wool offers a quality line of onsies, undershirts, long johns and more for young children. Ella's Wool Tubes An exciting new addition to the Ella's Wool lineup is a type of soft pants called Tubes.  Tubes are thick, unisex wool rib-knit pants that come in a nice size-adaptable design.  Becca told me that every child in Norway has at least two pairs of Tubes.  … [Read more...]