August 30, 2006

Ski Trax Magazine

“North America’s Nordic Skiing Magazine” features news and information about competitive cross country and backcountry skiing. You’ll find authoritative articles on technique, technology, and gear. The magazine is much better than its web site.

Ski Trax is the official magazine of Cross Country Canada and the United States Ski and Snowboard Association.


August 29, 2006

Survival Kits

Survival KitsThe only survival kit that matters is the one you have with you. Field & Stream magazine shows how to build your own in three sizes: pocket (in an Altoids tin), belt pouch, and fanny pack.
Each provides means for obtaining food, water, heat, fire, signalling, navigation, medical care, and repairs. The two larger kits contain more supplies and tools.

Abundant photographs illustrate the contents which are identified by brand and model name. These kits are not specifically intended for the winter but can be readily adapted.

See also the articles in the Winter 2006 Ski Patroller magazine.


Duct Tape Bandage by Nexcare

Duct Tape Bandage  by NexcareIf duct tape holds the world together, it ought to hold a wound together. With this in mind, 3M’s Nexcare division introduces rugged, larger bandages made of duct tape. They stick, last, and seal better; the strip and sterile pad are longer than usual: 1 in x 3-5/8 in. They should serve well for minor repairs to clothing and gear.

Sold at Walgreens and other pharmacies.


August 27, 2006

Surefire G2™ Nitrolon®

While LED lights are hard to beat for long life and close-up work – reading maps and rummaging through packs – you need a more powerful torch for signalling and search & rescue operations. The Surefire G2™ Nitrolon® more than fills the bill. Surefire has become the brand of choice for military and law enforcement due to its reputation for performance and reliability.

The G2 is almost four times brighter than much larger D-cell flashlights and does so in only 5 inches and 4 ounces. The non-corrosive Nitrolon™ construction and the Lexan lens are highly resistant to breakage. The power – a whopping 65 lumens – comes from two 3-volt lithium batteries and an incandescent xenon bulb. Although a more powerful bulb is optional, you don’t need a brighter light in snow. The bright yellow model of the G2 is easy to find in your pack and hard to lose in the bush. Read the specs and user manual. Check out the reviews by Kevin Kelly and Rainy Day Magazine or read the extensive technical report at

On the down side, the batteries will last only 60 minutes at full power, and replacement bulbs are expensive. There is no attachment point for a lanyard.

Among many sources, the G2 is available at Cabela’s and L.L. Bean.

Surefire has recently announced the G2 LED which puts out 80 lumens of light and runs 12 hours. It’s reviewed at EDC Forums and EDC Reviews.

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