12/31/12

Clif Bar turns 20

Clif Bar this year has been around for 20 years. To celebrate they have introduced a new bar GARY’s PANFORTE. Watch Gary tell the story of how it began.

Clif Bar also invites you to “Share Your Epiphany” on Facebook by sharing your life-defining moments. Five grand prize winners will receive a $5,000 donation to their favorite nonprofit, with 20 additional winners receiving a month’s worth of CLIF Bars. Enter here

One of my new reviewer Nancy Bangerter gave it a try, here are her thoughts.

My first impression of Clif Bar’s GARY’S PANFORTE was “Wow, is this really a fruit and nut enery bar?”

I  have tried many of these type energy bars and come away thinking “Not my cup of tea”.

Well,  Clif Bar delivers with this new limited-edition energy bar.

This bar has been 20 years in the making inspired by the flavors of the traditional Italian Panforte a must have in the Italian people’s diet.

GARY’S PANFORTE does not disappoint, it delivers with its organic ingredients, not only is it sure to please your taste buds, it will deliver the energy needed to climb that mountain, surf those waves and hike those trails or cycle through the country side.

It packs a wallops of flavors guaranteed to please your taste buds, the fruit and nut combination is an amazing blend of 23 ingredients, with sweet figs, pears, citrus peel and nuts such as walnut, hazelnuts and pistachios.

The spices used remind me of a Christmas fruit cake on steroids.  I’m not a fan of fruit cake at all but after tasting GARY’S PANAFORTE CLIF BAR add me to the list of fruit cake enthusiasts.

Not only is it a mouth full of  watering flavor, the texture of this energy bar is soft and chewy. No worries about chipping your tooth on this bar.

I found this energy bar to be very filling despite it only contains 260 calories.  Not like some energy bars so full of sugar you want to eat the whole box.

It has 5 g of protein, and 3 g of fiber, perfect for slow carb digestion and sustaining energy.

It won’t spike your sugar level and keeps you feeling full longer, which is definitely an added bonus for those trying to maintain or lose weight.

GARY’S PANAFORTE will be available on store shelves nationwide beginning in June and will be available until supplies last.

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12/6/12

Keen Tryon WP Shoes First Impressions

I have been interested in finding a light hiker/trail runner that was waterproof and came across these.  I wanted to see how they preformed so I asked for a pair for my female reviewer and me.  First I’ll go over some of the key features then I’ll go over my experiences.

Features

  • Abrasion resistant and breathable mesh upper
  • KEEN.DRY™ waterproof breathable membrane
  • KEEN.Zorb Strobel
  • Removable metatomical dual density EVA footbed
  • S3 Heel support structure
  • Stone bruising protection plate guards feet against rocks on trails
  • Torsion stability TPU shank
  • TPU heel stabilizer

I have been using these for about two weeks so far and I have really enjoyed them.  Like I said earlier I was looking for a super light hiker/trail runner that was waterproof, and these have done really well.  One of my first excursions taking these in the wild was trail running in a small canyon here in Utah Valley.  Rock canyon was covered in snow the time that I had decided to go, and these shoes held up well, my feet were dry and warm the whole time.  Running in snow can be pretty crazy, but the support in these shoes made it work out fine.

I took these backpacking last weekend.  They preformed pretty well.  They gave a good amount of support for a overnight backpacking trip.  If I had a much heaver pack I would want some more ankle support with a higher cut.  I went up to Rock Canyon again.  There were a few streams to cross and lots of snow.  The waterproofing upheld well for super shallow crossings.  If the water had been much deeper it the water would run in to the top for sure.

I have also run with these on the streets and on the treadmill.  They have preformed really well, and the shock absorbing structure is great.  I am a fairly big guy so when I come down fast and hard I really need some good shock absorption and these have just held up really nice.

These have a real nice stylish modern design.  My female reviews first thoughts when she saw these were wow these are so cute and yet functional.  The laces are asymmetrical which is kind of different but I dig.  They come in a lot of different colors and also come in women specific styles.

Here are Kamilynn Fletchers thoughts on the women’s pair

First a confession:

I love high heels.  I love ridiculously-tall-incredibly-uncomfortable-sexy-beautiful heels.  I even have scars on my feet from blisters so bad they were literally pooling blood in my shoes.

Crazy, I know.
Two weeks ago I put on my first pair of Keen shoes, specifically Tryon WPs.

I haven’t taken them off since.

Gone is ridiculously tall – I’m now average height with a non-marking rubber outsole that adds less than an inch.  They have a stone bruising protection plate to guard my feet against the popcorn kernels I spilled in the kitchen or the gravel under the bridge at 400 South I cross on my way to work.

Done is incredibly uncomfortable – I’m now moving freely at the beginning, middle, and end of my day.  I’m not only NOT limping when I get home; I throw on sweat pants and go running.  With the S3 Heel support structure of shock, suspension, and stability, not only are my odds of twisting an ankle reduced, they’re just so comfortable I’m tempted to pair them with skirts on Sunday.

Continued is sexy-beautiful – I’m still rocking my colorful style with the sea blue and neutral gray breathable waterproof top mesh.  I love that they’re sporty but not overly masculine.

I’m excited as the weather continues to warm up to take my affectionately termed “magic shoes” further off road and see how they fare.  I’m looking forward to my first summer without massive amounts of Moleskin and stained socks wearing my Keen Tryon WP shoes!

Here is a gallery of some more images of the shoes and the kind of terrain I was hiking through.

Click here 

Purchase these shoes at currently $120.00 rei.com or $83.97 backcountry.com and the woman’s at $84.95 sierratradingpost.com 

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12/26/11

Patagonia Men's Piolet GORE-TEX® Shell First impressions

I got this shell last week from Patagonia to review.  I have been wearing all around town and have gone it the snow once so far.  First I want to talk about the features and then I’ll go over what I have experienced so far.

Patagonia Piolet Jacket, Photo by Richard Keele

Key Features

  • 2-layer nylon GORE-TEX® Performance Shell
  • Helmet-compatible, 2-way-adjustable hood with laminated visor for optimal visibility in bad conditions
  • Touch Point System™ embeds cord locks in the hood and hem for quick adjustments to seal out rain and snow (patented)
  • Modified Y-Joint™ sleeve construction for overhead mobility without jacket lifting
  • Pockets: Harness- and pack-compatible pocket configuration (one chest; two handwarmers) and pit zips feature Slim Zip installation with watertight, coated zippers for reduced zipper bulk and weight; internal zippered security pocket
  • Cuffs have low-profile closure with pleated gusset
  • Shell: 2-layer, 2.7-oz 40-denier GORE-TEX® Performance Shell 100% nylon. Reinforcements: 4.3-oz 70-denier GORE-TEX® Performance Shell 100% nylon. Shell and reinforcements have a DWR (durable water repellent) finish
  • 644 g (22.7 oz)

I have been using this shell for about a week and a half.  I have mainly just been wearing it around town and such.  I have taken it on a trip up to the canyon in the snow.  This jacket is super comfortable, provides great waterproofness, and is fairly light weight. I fine this jacket to be extremely comfortable.  It has lots of places to make adjustments, to make feel just right for you.  I really liked the adjustable cuffs, you can leave them open when you want to vent some heat or close them up when you want to keep out the snow and water.  The pit zips are also great to vent out some heat.  I haven’t been in any really adverse conditions with this shell yet but it has GORE-TEX® linings so you know its going to hold up pretty well.  I have however been in some pretty windy conditions and this jacket doesn’t let any wind in. I really like the pack weight of this shell.  Some of the other GORE-TEX® shells I have had were much heavier; this jacket is fairly light and compresses down to a reasonable size.

I hope to go hit the powder soon and test this more intensely but it just hasn’t snowed forever here in the Utah Valley, so hopefully that will happen soon.

Check out this video from  Patagonia’s Youtube describing The Piolet’s key features

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