Tag Archives: gear and product review

Is the Chariot Cougar worth the investment?

Claire sent me the following question (via ask outsidemom). I have a lot of thoughts on this, but would also love to hear from other Chariot owners who could offer some insight on her questions.

I’m thinking about buying a Chariot, primarily because I’d love to ski this winter and I’d like to be able to get some cycling in once my son is big enough. I’d love to hear some detailed reviews, tips, experiences from other women who use a Chariot too. I’d love to hear what skiing is like with it – hills, response to snow conditions, reaction of kiddos… And what using a bike trailer is like too – can you hear your kiddo, how does it handle with a road bike, tips for keeping kiddo safe and happy.


A few weeks ago I had a Chaco shoe giveaway on my blog and asked people to enter by telling me: “What is the one outdoor baby/child item you wouldn’t want to live without.” The item that claimed the first prize? The Chariot.

First of all I just have to say that we own the Cougar 2, and own the bike trailer kit, the jogging kit, the infant sling, baby supporter and we made our own skis. We currently have 3 kids ages 6, 3, and 7 months. Here are my thoughts on the Chariot: (more…)

Review and GIVEAWAY of kids Chacos

Giveaway is closed, thanks to all who entered. Congratulations to the winner MAURA LANSFORD!

My son has two pairs of Chacos now. The Zanda and the Z/1 EcoTread. I reviewed the Z/1 this summer, and after running around the desert and sloshing through slot canyons I’ve deemed the Z/1 the greatest kid shoe ever. And why shouldn’t they be? Chaco sandalas are the greatest adult shoe ever too, in my opinion.

This time around Chaco has provided me with a pair of Zandas to review, which have been my sons primary footwear since summer (pictured below assisting him on a rope swing).

A few words I would use to describe this shoe: (more…)

Road ID Bracelet: Hope it never comes in handy

My husband commutes 16 miles a day by bicycle. Come rain, snow, sleet, hail or most often in Reno, wind, he’s out there pedaling. Most of those miles are busy non-bicycle friendly roads. When we moved here we invested in brightly colored clothes, safety lights, and a life insurance policy.

Most recently Joe added another item to his safety repertoire. A Road ID Bracelet. It’s a bracelet that shows his name, along with phone #’s of people to contact incase of an emergency (and medical info if necessary).  If he’s unconscious along the side of the road I’ll be the second to know about it (after 911 hopefully).

I’m mentioning this because the bracelet is actually really cool, and could make a good (albeit slightly morbid) Fathers Day gift. It’s not only applicable to bikers, but runners or hikers as well. Joe’s also been doing some backcountry trail running. Alone. Sometimes at night. He doesn’t carry his ID when he runs.

Joe tells me the one he has is really quite comfy. I think it’s pretty hip. Just hope it never really comes in handy.

My Favorite Lantern – The Apollo

I just ordered another Apollo Lantern from Black Diamond. I’ll soon be the proud owner of 2 of these. Here’s what I love about this thing:

  • We’ve had our first one for 2-3 years, it’s still working as good at the day we bought it, and we’ve put it through a lot.
  • It’s small, but get’s pretty bright. We stopped packing our coleman lantern the day we bought the Apollo. It’s so much easier to pack, use and maintain.
  • It’s versatile. Hang it in the tent /van as a nightlight (dim setting), clean up dinner by the light of the lantern, read, use it as a spaceship (Ari’s favorite), or if your Joe, use it to attract the nocturnal insects your studying. This is why we need more than one.
  • The battery life is amazing.
  • It’s also small and light weight enough for backpacking.

I don’t know… just thought I’d throw this out there incase you needed a little help spending your REI dividend or have a little extra tax return laying around…

A good ‘technical’ description and a few more reviews can be found here.

The Brakes Work. Instantly.

Comments Off on The Brakes Work. Instantly.

Back in the 90’s I perceived Cannondale as the brand that all the spandex wearing, rich wanna be mountain biking yuppies had. This was back in the day when we would go to Moab and bike slick rock, porcupine, etc in cut-off jeans, tevas and no helmets. A few things have changed since the 90’s, I started wearing a helmet, switched my biking foot gear from tevas to chacos and now have padded butt spandex biking shorts. And while I’m no longer riding the two sizes too big Iron Horse I had back in the day, I have been riding the same bike, my friend Jocelyn rode in some of those later days of Moab. Oh, and another thing has recently changed, I’m now a Cannondale owner.

Joe surprised me with a new bike, a bike I wanted but knew it was against our better judgment to buy it right now; even with a pro-deal on the table. Joe perceived it different, how can we afford NOT to get a bike when there is a pro deal on table. Our Brother-in-law manages a bike shop and therefore is entitled to a certain # of pro deals per year. He and his wife typically get new bikes every year but his wife (Joe’s sister) had a baby this year so there was a pro deal to spare, which they generously offered to us. Thankfully Joe went for it. We can always pay our savings back later. Right?

Here is her glamor shot stolen strait off the internet.

While in St.G visiting family I took her on a maiden voyage down Bear Poppy. A few noteworthy differences between this bike and Gary (my beloved late 90’s Gary Fisher):

1. The brakes work. Instantly.
2. When I go downhill it doesn’t sound like I’m dragging a bucket of bolts behind me.
3. The sifters shift promptly upon shifting.
4. It’s even smaller than Gary. So fun to maneuver.
5. When riding down a drop I don’t have to throw my weight back as far.
6. Riding uphill is effortless. I could have ridden up hill all day*. Now I can see how you people bike in the Wasatch.
7. Perhaps her only downfall is that I can’t catch as much air on the little kickers when flying downhill. Perhaps it’s because I have shocks that work??

Anyway, she’s nothing TOO fancy, but she’s all the fancy I need. I love it.

* And by all day I don’t actually mean all day.


    I'm Lindsey. I'm an environmental educator, my husband's a biologist. The outdoors is infused into everything we do; which explains why I'm better at mud pies than home decorating. More About Me

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