Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Mobile Bike Shop Comes To The Space Coast

While driving to work today I happened upon a Velofix mobile-repair bike shop van. I had never seen one of these before so I took a few photos with my Iphone.

Velofix Holdings Ltd. is a Canadian company expanding into the United States.  There is a Space Coast franchise where Craig is the owner and mechanic.  He covers Brevard County from Mims to the north to Grant in the south.  HERE to send him an email.  You can make a service reservation on the Velofix website. Click HERE to make a service reservation.  Velofix has goal to be the biggest cycle-repair service on North America.  Get your franchise today.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great doors.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

ICAST 2017 Open July 11th

ICAST is now just a few short weeks away.  If you have not already made your hotel reservation you may not get a room close to the show. The main show will be in the west concourse with the on-water exhibit being held the first time this year in the north side of the north/south concourse. Buses will be used to transport attendees from the west to the south concourse. Next year ICAST will move from the west concourse to the north/south concourse.

Keep in mind that ICAST, the world's largest sport fishing trade show, at the Orlando, Orange County Convention Center on I-Drive is a closed show.  It is not open to the general public. Click HERE for the ICAST show schedule.

Each year over 13,000 sport fishing buyers, store owner,  media and sport fishing celebrities gather for the three-day sport fishing experience.  The ICAST Cup will still be held on Lake Toho.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Monday, May 29, 2017

2017 America's Cup Day 2

 The second day of the 2017 Louis Vuitton America's Cup Series went off without a hitch. The racing was just as exciting as on day 1.  The collision during the last race of the day between Land Rover BAR and Softbank Team Japan on the first day did not hamper Land Rover BAR after their boat was repaired overnight.  The Land Rover BAR team was assessed a penalty for initiating the collision. At the end of day 2, Land Rover BAR had lost two races putting them tied for second along with the Emirates Team New Zealand with three points each.  Oracle Team USA remains in first place with 5 points after winning two out of three races.  They were defeated and blown out by Artemis Racing in the second race.  On day three Oracle Team USA has the day off.  The other five teams will be racing. Groupama  Team France is the only team on day three to race twice.  Like the first two days of racing, NBC Sports Network will be carrying the broadcast.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

2017 America's Cup Day 1

The first full day of racing is finally one for the record books after high winds on May 26 caused the first race day to be cancelled.  You might ask why cancel the race because of high winds because sail boats need wind to race.  Well the reason is the fact that these racing boats were designed for a specific wind speed range.  On Friday, the wind speed exceeded the design criteria of these racing sail boats.  Racing them in these high winds would have been very unsafe.  

One amazing fact that helps allow these high tech racing sail boats to perform at the level they do is the Internet of Things (IoT).  Take the Oracle Team USA boat.  This racing boat has hundreds of sensors collecting data from 1,000 data points using Blue Tooth, WiFi and fiber optic cable. The data is collected in real time.  After the data is collected it is analyzed to adjust the boat and to better prepare the crew for each race.  Click HERE to read more about how Oracle Team USA use the IoT.

The Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series (LVACWS) started in July 2015 and will end at the end of June 2017.  The series is made up of nine (9) races. These races were held in Portsmouth, GBR - Gothenberg, SWE - Bermuda, BAR - Muscat, OMA - New York, USA - Chicago, USA - Portsmouth, GBR - Toulon, FR and Fukuoka, JPN.  Following the 9 race series, the six teams gather back in Bermuda for the qualifier and challenger playoffs which started yesterday on May 27.  When the qualifier and challenger playoffs are completed the  America's Cup Match between the two top teams will end the 2017 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series with a new America's Cup champion being crowned.  This year, Team USA is defending the Cup it won back in 2013.

NBC Sports Network is doing a great job covering the 2017 Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series.  Click HERE to watch the 2nd day of race online at 1:00 PM EST.

At the end of the first day of the qualifier and challenger playoffs, Oracle Team USA and Land Rover BAR were tied with 3 point each.  This is because even  though Land Rover BAR lost one race, they came into the qualifier and challenger playoffs with 2 points for winning the 9 race series where Oracle Team USA had 1 point for coming in second.  The second day of racing should be just as exciting as Day 1.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great out doors.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Paddle Sports Retailer 2017

There is a new outdoor recreation trade show that debuts this year that paddlers have been waiting for. It is the Paddle Sports Retailer.  This new trade show focuses solely on paddle sports.  It is all about paddling.

This is a closed show. It is not open to the public.  This show is for Retail Buyers, Independent Reps, Manufacturer Reps, Working Media, and Industry non-profit. Registration is free.  The show is being held at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, WI August 29 - September 1, 2017.  At this time, if you are a buyer, you can get a three night lodging credit of $129.00 per night if you register and attend.  This is limited to one credit per store.  This sounds like a deal that is too good to miss.

The Paddle Sports Retailer is the perfect show where buyers can see everything about paddling under one roof.  I especially like this.  When attending ICAST or Surf Expo  the paddle sports booths are scattered among surfing and fishing gear booths.  At Paddle Sports Retailer one gets to see kayaks, canoes and SUPs side by side.  

I am not going to be able to attend this year but I have added it to my bucket list along with the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market.  Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

America's Cup World Series Bermuda 2017

The 2017 America's Cup World Series will be held in Bermuda. This great sailing race begins on May 26th, 2017.  The American team sponsored by ORACLE won the 2010 and the 2013 races.  Jimmy Spithill and the America team will be defending the cup they have won two times.  The challenger teams are Artemis Racing, Emirates Team New Zealand, Groupama Team Frasnce, Land Rover Bar, and Softbank Team Japan.  The television coverage of the race spans 8 days and will be provided by NBC Sports Network & App.  The first day's coverage starts on Friday at 6:00 PM and runs to 8:00 PM.  The rest of the coverage starts at 1:00 PM daily.   With the new catamaran design with hydrofoils this year's racing is going to be great.  Click HERE for a America's Cup report from May 18, 2017 to see these racing yachts sailing at 40+ knots.  That's just nuts!  I cannot wait to see videos from the race recorded by using drones.  

Over the years the design of of America's Cup racing yachts have changed dramatically.  The typical America's Cup racing yacht of the 1980s was the 12 Meter Racing Yacht pictured on the left.  The race in 2010 was the last race where this type of design was sailed. In 2013 the race rules were changed to allow winged-sail catamarans.  In 2013 the America team won.

This year ORACLE Team USA on behalf of the Golden Gate Yacht Club will defend its title sailing their magnificent winged-sail catamaran.  The first America's Cup race is held 1851. Since that day there have been 35 races. The American team has defended the cup 30 time.  Only five times have the American team lost.  If you love sailing and have deep pockets, I recommend the book America Cup Yacht Designs. Click HERE to see the book on Amazon.  The boat artwork is very impressive.  So make your calendar for the start of the 2017 America's Cup Yacht race from Bermuda starting on May 26th, 2017.  Do not miss daily updates on the race by visiting the official America's Cup Yacht race webpage.  Click HERE for their webpage.  Until next time be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Chaco Supports Protecting Bears Ears

Chaco, a major outdoor recreation footwear brand, has stepped up to the plate doing their part to support blocking the Trump Administration's effort to explore and drill for oil and gas in 27 National Monuments. Bears Ears in Utah is the poster child for the effort to "Keep Public Land Public".

Chaco is one of the leading brands of outdoor rugged footwear that is really hard to wear out.  I have been wearing Chaco footwear for about four years and I love my Chaco shoes and Z sandals.   Currently Chaco has a special offering of Bears Ears theme products where Chaco will donate 100% of the net proceeds to those groups battling to keep our public lands public especially Bears Ears.   Click HERE to link to the Chaco webpage where you can support "Keep Public Land Public" by purchasing one of their new Bears Ears Z Sandals, graphic tee shirt and/or the really cool wrist wrap.

I will be ordering my wrist wrap today. I am sure that Chaco will sell out so order yours today.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Cocoa Beach VW Classic Car Show 2017

This Cinco de Mayo weekend along the Space Coast had more fun things to do beside going to your favorite Mexican restaurant to eat and drink Mexican beer.

On Saturday May 6th, in Cocoa Beach the 2017 Cocoa Beach VW Classic car show was held.  All the classic VW cars and  vans were there.  There were beetles, Karmann Ghias, 411s, Things, micro-buses and dune buggies.  Along with classic cars there were a few food vendors lining the main thoroughfare.  Most of the cars on display were more than 30 years old and exhibited a Florida Antique license plate.
I fell in love with VWs back during the 1970s when I purchased my first VW a Karmann Ghia in Charleston, SC. She was a British racing green coupe.  What a sweet car.  My second VW was a modified micro-bus converted into a surf wagon.  Purchased her when I was stationed at MacDill AFB in Tampa, Florida.  After the micro-bus came the VW Thing (Type 181). An updated version of the WWII VW Kubelwagen.  Did not keep our Thing long because the USAF transferred my family to Alaska.  During the first winter the plastic windows froze.  With a small child we need a care with glass windows and a good heater.
The VW Thing was not that car.  My last VW was a 1980s Westfalia Camper.  I purchased it in Germany from a Canadian soldier.  This VW had U.S. specifications so I was able to ship it home when I was transferred to Norton, AFB in San Bernardino, CA in 1984.  We lost the camper  in 1986 when it caught fire when the fuel lines ruptured leaking fuel on to the top of the hot engine.  You see the fuel tank was mounted directly above the motor. I later bound out that many VW camper owners had replace the rubber / paper fuel lines with stainless steel to avoid such a problem.  After that fire, I never purchased another VW again.  But today, I have fond memories of all the VWs my wife and I owned.

The Cocoa Beach VW Classic was a big hit.  There were loads of VW fans checking out all the different VWs on display.  At this show, the VW Beetles seem to steal the show.   Click HERE for my video of the VW Classic.  And click HERE for my slide show of my VW car and van photos.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

The Wilderness Society Fights For Pubic Lands

As the Trump Administration expands its influence over oil and gas exploration on America's public lands, Trump has asked Department of Interior to start the process of allowing oil and gas exploration on many of our great National Monuments.

The Wilderness Society has reported that the Department of Interior has started the review of the Antiquities Act, the law that protects National Monuments from commercialization encroachment, and to reduce the protection of National Monuments from development by oil and gas companies.  Click HERE to read The Wilderness Society's blog article on this crazy move by the Trump Administration and to see the list of endangered National Monuments, especially Bears Ears.

The Wilderness Society is just one of many environmental organizations and major outdoor retail brands like REI, North Face and Patagonia and the Outdoor Retailer (OR) trade show that support keeping public lands public. Click HERE for a Washington Post article on Bears Ears and the Outdoor Retailer trade show pulling out of Utah. This summer's OR is the last one to be held in Utah.  On July 27, 2017 there will be a "This Land is Our Land" public march from the OR location in Salt Lake City to the State Capital to show support of keeping U.S. Public Lands public.  The entire outdoor sports and recreation industry is invited to join in the march.  Click HERE to learn more about the march and how you can participate.

There are many environment organization that support keeping public land public.  The Conservation Alliance (CA) is one such organization along with The Wilderness Society.  CA has as its mission to engage business in providing funds to organizations like the Appalachian Trail Conservancy or the National Wildlife Federation to protect wild places.  CA has support from more outdoor retail brands than one can name.  Click HERE to see the entire CA membership.  When you buy their gear and apparel you are supporting the Conservation Alliance without knowing that you are a supporting keeping wild places wild.

As we continue to fight against a commercial takeover of public lands, do not be fooled by stated from Washington that appear to support public land.  Behind the scenes there is a public land takeover in the works.  Stand up and fight and be heard.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great out doors.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Brevard County Earth Day 2017

Earth Day 2017 here in central Florida was full of outdoor activities. There was a sailing regatta held by the Melbourne Yacht Club on April 22nd and 23rd. Click Here for the Spring Regatta - Small Boats results.  And there was a boat show in Rockledge, Florida.  In additon, I had the opportunity to check out the Earth Day celebration at the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands in Viera, Florida.  These wetlands are a very short two mile drive from the traffic circle just past the Viera Walmart at Wickham Road and Lake Andrew Drive.  Below is a photo of the wetlands layout and berm trails.  This is a great bird spotting location along the Great Birding Trail.

Click HERE for the Brevard County Natural Resources webpage to learn more about these wetlands. The Earth Day celebration was located at the parking lot for the wetlands.  Exhibitor tents lined the grassed area with a special tent where celebration visitors could sign up for a guided tour around the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands.  With an overcast sky, the Earth Day celebration went off without a hitch.

On your next visit to Brevard County and the Space Coast do not miss a pleasurable walk around the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Friday, April 14, 2017

2017 Mountain Khakis Hell Yeah! Tour

As a member of LinkedIn, I am always looking for leads when I visit the Inside Outdoors Magazine Group page. Inside Outdoor Magazine had a shout out about Mountain Khakis not to long ago which turned me onto this clothing line.

Mountain Khakis is a mountain inspired lifestyle brand of clothes, shoes and gear ideally suited for your outdoor recreation trips to the mountains and flatlands across America.  The brand started in Jackson Hole, WY in 2003. According to Mountain Khakis the business idea was sketched on a napkin at the Shady Lady Saloon in 2001.  Since that time, Mountain Khakis has become a favorite purveyor of mountain inspired clothing.  Mountain Khakis has a great website and a Youtube Channel. Be sure to visit them both.

Hey gang, keep an eye out for the 2017 Mountain Khakis Hell Yeah! Tour visiting a location near you. The tour started at the Sweetwater Brewery in Washington, DC on April 10th.  Five months later the tour will end in Denver at the Great American Beer Festival. The Hell Yeah! Tour will visit 150 outdoor retailers, craft brewhouses, and outdoor lifestyle festivals.  Mountain Khakis is celebrating the intersection of the mountain lifestyle and craft beer. Sounds like a loads of fun especially when beer is mentioned. You know how I love my craft beer.  Be sure to post your photos of the Hell Yeah! Tour on Twitter using the hashtag #HellYeahTour.

Until next time be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Ricky Carroll Surfboards Part and Customer Appreciation Day & Sale

On a bright sunny day in Rockledge, Florida, R&D Surf Inc. and Ricky Carroll Surfboards held their annual party, customer appreciation day and sale at their Gus Hipp Boulevard location.  The event started at 10:00 AM and lasted until the evening.

Event visitors were parking long Gus Hipp Boulevard because the limited parking in the front of the shop was full.  Vendor tents were lined up long one side of the shop.  The live music stage was set up under the shop canopy with folding chairs lined up in front of the stage in the grassed area.  There was food provided by Dusty Joe's Smokin Eats.  Click HERE for Dusty Joe's Facebook page.

One of Brevard County's mainstay at any outdoor surfing event like this is Captain Steve Bowman. Captain Steve is a master at carving amazing traditional surfing and marine necklaces from New Zealand bone and cast-off resins he gets from surf shops.  Click HERE for his Facebook page.  I am a proud owner of a few of his masterpieces.

The music while I was there was great.  It started with Karalyn and the Dawn Patrol (click HERE their webpage) and ended with Josh Miller (click HERE for his webpage).  Click HERE for my video from the 25th Ricky Carroll Surfboard Party, Customer Appreciation Day and Sale to hear their music  All and all this was a fun day for everyone who attended.  Here are some photos from the party.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Outdoor Retailer Fights to Keep Public Lands Public

Last year, at the end of the Obama Administration, President  Obama designated the "Bears Ears area of Utah as a National Monument.  This designation caused a stir amongst the Republicans in Utah.  As long as Obama was president, Bears Ears National Monument was safe.  

Since the November 8, 2016 election of Donald Trump as president there has been a move afoot to turn over public lands to the states, especially in Utah. Because there are 33 states with Republican governors there is a big risk that if public lands were turned over to these governors, corporations will be given access to develope these public lands for profit taking away our rights to have access to our public lands like we have today.  After Trump was elected, Orrin Hatch, Senator from Utah, has been working to remove the Bears Ears National Monument designation and to exempt Utah from the Antiquities Act which gives the president the power to create National Monuments.  He has help from Utah Senator Mike Lee. HERE/ for the OR unity page to learn more about their fight for our public lands. Click HERE for a Denver Post article on Bears Ears National Monument.

This year OR will return to Salt Lake City, Utah.  But next year OR winter and summer market will not be held in Utah.  An RFP will be released this year to select a new home.  
 In light of the actions by Hatch and Lee and Utah Republicans, the Outdoor Retailer (OR) made a decision to help organize and fight for our public lands. Click

In support of Outdoor Retailer (OR), largest gathering of outdoor recreation retailers in America, REI, The Conservation Alliance, Ibex, The North Face, Vasque, Smartwool, Cascade Designs, Thule Group, and Adidas Outdoors have issued statements of support.

If you support keeping public lands public like I do, then shop outdoor retailers who support keeping public lands public.

Until next time, be safe in the sin and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Backpacking & Hiking First Aid Kit Accessories

I have been meaning to share with you some products that you must add to your first aid kit especially if you are a through hiker on the AT or Pacific Crest Trail.

Silipos contacted me a month a go about their orthopedic products.  When I got samples I immediately thought of through hikers.  Through hikers have been know to run into some nasty foot and toe problems being on the trail for an extended period of time.  I have to believe that having these light weight toe guards and foot support devices could go a long way in keeping you on the trail.  The same goes for the zipper repair.  This morning on cable TV I saw my first zipper repair kit demonstrated.  Looks like these have been on the market for sometime now.  But I guess that I just missed them.  With lots of your gear with YKK zippers, every hiker or backpacker should have these in their backpack or day pack.  One never knows when you will blow out a zipper.  These will surely come in handy.  

So the next time you head outdoors be prepared.  Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

ICAST 107 Days Away

Now is the time to make your reservation to attend ICAST, the world's largest sport fishing trade show, at the Orlando, Orange County Convention Center on I-Drive.

ICAST is a closed show.  It is not open to the general public.

Each year over 13,000 sport fishing buyers, store owner,  media and sport fishing celebrities gather for the three-day sport fishing experience.

 This year the water products on-water demo will take place at the Orange County Convention Center instead of using Lake Toho.  The demonstration will be held at the rear of the North/South Concourse.  Shuttles will be available to transport attendees from the West Concourse to the demonstration area. Also, the ICAST Cup will still be held on Lake Toho.

As we get closer to July and the opening of ICAST, I will post updates. So come back soon.  Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Ron Jon Beach 'N Board Fest 2017

February and March are always great times to hit the Space Coast beaches to enjoy some of Florida's best surf and SUP events. This past March 10-12, 2017, the Ron Jon Beach N Board Fest was held at Shepard park in Cocoa Beach.  The Fest was a great family affair.  There was surfing, high school girls volleyball, skateboarding, wake boarding, music, food and product displays.  Something for everyone.  Click HERE for a video from the Ron Jon Beach N Board Fest.  Here are few great photos from the Ron Jon Beach N Board Fest.  Click HERE to visit the Board Fest webpage.  Hope to see you there next year.  Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day n the great outdoors.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

The Normal Brand at Surf Expo

Each year as I cruise the rows at Surf Expo, I am on the hunt for a brand that puts a different spin on its products as the brand tries to get the attention of surf lifestyle buyers and store owners.  In January I discovered 'The Normal Brand".

The Normal Brand? That seems like a very  nebulous name for an upscale mens' and women's clothing line.  That is why I had to find out what The Normal Brand was all about.

To start with, this clothing company is a family affair.  At the show were three brothers, one of which started the brand.  Jimmy Sansone was the brainstorm behind The Normal Brand.  If you search for Jimmy Sansone you can easily find him. But click HERE for a very good article from Entrepreneur Magazine about The Normal Brand.

The Normal Brand booth was tucked away on one of the rows in the clothing area of Surf Expo.  When I arrived three of the brothers were sitting on the booths front steps.  There I met Lan Sansone pictured above.  He gave me the history of the family business started by his brother Jimmy.  We talked about how their Midwest lifestyle had a big impact on their clothing design.  As Entrepreneur Magazine article noted, the Normal Brand was filling a gap between office attire and outdoor clothing where office attire was not suited for the outdoors and outdoor clothing was not suited for the office. Through Jimmy Sansone's ingenuity and vision, The Normal Brand was born. Lan showed me the great book they had made when he and Jimmy went fly fishing in Oregon with their father.  He was real proud of the family's accomplishment taking The Normal Brand where it is today.

You can shop online by clicking HERE for their storefront.  You can also find The Normal Brand at retailers like Urban Outfitters. Click HERE to find a store near you.  Find a store near you and try on their great outdoor clothes for men and women.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Kayak Fishing Sarasota, Florida

The fishing community here in Florida is a diverse collection of pond, lake, inshore and offshore fisheries.  Anglers from all across the world work travel to the Sunshine State to test their angling skills.  Whether or not you fish from the shore, pier, boat, kayak or SUP, you can find your little piece of fishing heaven here in Florida.

If you are looking to hone your kayak fishing skills, there is a kayak fishing guide out of Sarasota who has a reputation of putting his clients on many different species of fish.  His specialty is fly fishing from a kayak.  Steve Gibson has been guiding kayak anglers along the west coast of Florida for as long as I can remember.  Click HERE for Steve's biography.  

Steve offers his clients trips to Sarasota and Tampa Bay, Charlotte Harbor, Matlacha and Pine Island Sound and the Everglades.  His trip prices vary from $200 for a half day up to $350 for a trip to the Everglades.  

When fishing with Steve, you will get a chance to try out the NuCanoe fishing kayak. NuCanoe has designed their Frontier Fishing Kayak especially for fly anglers with its stable wide deck. Click HERE for the NuCanoe webpage.  In addition to fishing from a NuCanoe Frontier, the Pursuit maximizes kayak speed and agility with its sleek design.  Both of these fishing kayak are stable enough to stand up and fish.  This is why these kayaks are loved by fly anglers.  The stand up and fish accessory package is available on both the Frontier and Pursuit fishing kayaks.  No matter what kind of kayak you have at home, fishing from a NuCanoe just might be a new experience. 

As spring and summer approach and you are planning your Florida vacation, making Sarasota your base camp would not be a bad idea.  Sarasota is just two hours from Orlando with Disney World, Universal Studios and Sea World and a short one hour drive to Bush Gardens in Tampa.

To learn more about vacationing in Sarasota click HERE for the Visit Sarasota web page.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors. 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Stainless Steel Thermal Bottles & Glasses By MIzu Life

This year, in advance of the January Surf Expo, I started planning how I would schedule my time to see many of the exciting exhibiting brands that come to Surf Expo each January and September at the Orlando Orange County Convention Center.  My first booths to visit were those who contacted me in advance of the show.  One of those brands was Pukka.  These guys are best custom hat company at the show.  Check out my Pukka article coming soon. When Ryan O'Leary contacted me about stopping by, I noticed that his PR company also represented Mizu Life.

Mizu Life is a purveyor of stainless steel thermal bottles and glasses.

Because I have done past articles on many of the stainless steel thermal bottles and glasses, like Orca, Yeti, and Engel and after visting the Mizu Life webpage, I wanted to do this because; 1)  Mizu Life was not coming to Surf Expo and 2) their product line competed head to head with Yeti and Orca and all the other brands that have focused on the stainless steel thermal product market.  I reached out to Ryan about doing a Mizu product review.  This past week I received a assortment of Mizu Life product samples delivered by UPS.  In the box were a thermal coffee cup, a V10 thermal 1000 ml bottle and a set of wine glasses.  At first look, after a close inspection, the quality, fit and trim were very good - equal to Yeti, Orca and Engel.  That is important because the Mizu Life MSRP price points are in the same price range as Yeti, Orca and Engel products.

Here is my "First Look" review of the the Mizu Life stainless steel thermal bottle, coffee cup and wine glasses.  The V10 thermal insulated stainless steel bottle which holds 1000 ml is a member of the V-Series of small medium and large thermal insulated stainless steel bottles.  The V6 small bottle holds 19 oz / 560 ml, the V8 medium bottle holds 26 oz / 760 ml and the V10 large bottle holds 34 oz / 1000 ml.  The V8 is the perfect size for that 750 ml bottle of wine. What is missing from their lineup is a 64 oz beer growler.  They really need that to round out their V-Series thermal insulated stainless steel bottle products.

The V-Series bottles are perfect for taking chilled or  hot beverage on an outdoor trip.  Where the V10 comes with a handle that makes carrying the bottle easier the V6 and V8 do not.  As an accessory you can get looped V6 and V8 cap for each bottle that allows you to clip the bottle to your backpack.

 Mizu Life rates their V-Series bottles at 12 hours for hot beverages and 24 hours for cold beverages.
 I have been using thermal insulated stainless steel tumblers and bottles for about two years now.  For me, buy the time I have reached 4 hours, what ever beverage I may be carrying will be gone.  So the Mizu Life heat and cold rating will be perfect for my outdoor activities.

My wife Kathi and I take long car trips from time to time traveling from Florida to Fall Church, VA where my son and his wife live.  We always carry a special traveling box of kitchen gear.  In our box we have a set of plastic wine glasses because we have broken far to many glass wine glasses. Now we never have to worry about that again.  The set of two thermal insulated stainless steel wine glasses are going into our traveling kitchen gear box.  Mizu Life does make a thermal insulated stainless steel pint beer glass.  That would be perfect for me because I drink more beer on a trip than wine.  Wine is my wife's go to beverage.  We have a trip planned for March to Fall Church.  I will be able to give a full report on how the V10 and wine glasses perform.

In addition to their bottles and wine glasses, Mizu Life has a two thermal insulated stainless steel tumblers / cups the T20 and T30. Each comes with a plastic lid.  These are very similar in shape to the Yeti and Orca tumblers.  The T20 has a MSRP point of $29.95 and the T30 of $34.95. But today the T30 price has been reduced to $29.95 on their webpage.  Click HERE to see the price online.

The coffee cup is the perfect size  and shape to go into my backpack.  It is light enough to carry on weekend trips.  It will get a lot of mileage from this cup on future trips.

An interesting feature Mizu Life provides its customers is the ability to private label their thermal insulated stainless steel products. On their webpage you can see examples of the artwork that has been applied to their products for their  customers.  Click HERE to visit their custom bottle page.  They can put your logo on all their products.

All and all, I am really looking forward to running the Mizu Life wine glasses, V10 bottle and coffee cup through their paces.  So stay tuned for further updates.

Check out the full Mizu Life line up of their outdoor products by visiting their webpage.  Click HERE.

Until next time, be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

New Ice Mule Beach Cooler Bag from Surf Expo

When I attend Surf Expo I like to visit old friends to see what new products they have coming out.  At the 2017 January Surf Expo, Jim Collie, Ice Mule President and CEO could be found in the booth showing the full lineup of Ice Mule products.  This year I got advanced notice of the new Ice Mule Beach bag.  Having seen the Beach Bag from the outside I could only imagine what the inside of the bag looked like.  Wow was I surprised when I actually got to see the bag.  Thinking that the entire bag as the cooler, boy was I wrong. What Jim Collie did was to design a smaller Ice Mule Cooler that would fit inside the middle of the bag between open spaces where beach towels and other gear could be stored.
Designing the bag like this made the bag multipurpose.  The bag could be used with or without the Ice Mule Cooler.  What a great idea.

Along with the Ice Mule Coolers, there were full lineup of coolers.  Coming out along with the Beach Bag, is the new sea-foam colored cooler.  You can see the new color in the photos to the left.  Jim said that the new sea foam color was a big hit at the show and he expected strong sales from the new color.

Also Ice Mule is offering their customers a new product display  stand.  It is the one pictured along side of Jim Collie shown below.  I have been  using mine for two years now and I love it.

I especially like that I can roll it up and put it in my luggage when traveling by air.  At my destination I will have my cooler with me.  That is real sweet because I cannot tell you how many times I have purchased a cheap Styrofoam ice chest to leave it behind in the hotel room when flying back home.  Ice Mule has solved that problem for me.

As you get ready for the 2017 spring and summer seasons and you are in the market for a new cooler, you need to check out all the different Ice Coolers because they work as they were designed to do. If you do not have a Ice Mule re-seller in your neighborhood, click HERE to visit their webpage.

 Until next time be safe in the sun and have a great day in the great outdoors.