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4 5

I think that the Shimano XT line provides excellent bang for you buck. Strong, relatively light, and really solid performance. It's a great workhorse line, at a price you can generally stomach. I was only disappointed when I realized I couldn't adjust the tension on the clutch mechanism. (Edit- clutch is adjustable, see comments below). Even with the clutch engaged and proper chain length (on a 1x10 Ibis Mojo HD) I wanted to tighten things up to prevent chain slap that was still occurring over really rough descents. On my newest bike I threw down on the XTR Shadow Plus on which you can adjust the clutch.


Stay dry and steezy
5 5

Comfortable, roomy fit without being too baggy and getting caught on stuff. Quite durable and shrugs off branches and other trailside gnar. The hood is large and fits well over my open face helmets without problem. Breathes well, but most importantly keeps you dry. It packs down nice and small & I toss it inside my Dakine Nomad pack anytime there is a chance of rain. Zippered pockets are handy for light items but if you're riding aggressively heavier items (cell phone or multi tool) will bounce the jacket around because the shell is quite light.
The red looks great on a dreary day, too!


Don't leave home without it!
5 5

So light and packable that it's more or less a part of my first aid kit. Breathes really well while blocking the wind. Perfect for a chilly start to the ride or while waiting along a windy ridge line for your friends to catch up. Hiking, running, biking, and ski touring...times when your activity keeps your body warm, but you are want to avoid the bite of the wind. If you remove it to change layers in a windy place, make sure it doesn't blow away...because it's so light that it certainly could!


5 5

I often wear more casual sunglasses that are decent for athletic endeavors because, well, I think I look cooler. However, now when it comes time to go for a real ride, you can't deny the performance of some top of the line V2 shades. I really enjoy the orange lenses for busting in and out of shade and sun, but the simple clear lense absolutely kills it later in the evening or a stormy day.

Swapping lenses is very straightforward and quick. They're light, good coverage (no eye watering) and I forget that I have them on...until my sweaty head starts dripping onto them. They can't help with that! The adjustable nose piece also helps dial the fit to your face.


A great "go to" pack.
5 5

I use this pack for almost every ride. Adequate space for first aid kit, a rain layer, extra food, cameras, tools, tubes, pads, etc. I find the small base side pocket with a forward facing zipper is ideal for my multi tool, because you can access it without taking the pack off. The outermost portion is handy for stowing knee pads or your full face if you're on a long climb. I appreciate the full sized bladder. There are two fleece lined pockets- the internal one is handy for my cell phone or GoPro, and I save the larger glasses pocket for the...well, glasses.

I've got a lot of other packs, but I choose this one 98% of the time. (For serious adventures, the Apex may be more appropriate. For my road rides, I go with my Amp.)


This is what you want
5 5

Let's get the obvious out of the way: you'll have a little box attached to you, and that can look goofy if you're out for a walk around the mall. But this is hands down the best camera for capturing action sports moments, which is what most people aim to use it for. The variety of mounts is insane and you can get really creative with how you're using the camera.

I highly recommend springing for the Hero2 over other options for compatibility with accessories: lcd screen, battery backpack, wifi backpack...and some special firmware updates (like the upcoming "ProTune") This is going to allow the GoPro record at bit rates that match or exceed most DSLRs.

Shoot at a high frame rate for smooth slow motion. Make sure your mounting job is steady so you don't end up with bouncy footage. If you're looking for high quality audio, pick up a self powered lavalier mic that can plug right into the side of the GoPro. Study up on the workflows (gopro support page) to help you maximize the quality of your video for exporting online. The menus might seem a little difficult at first, but 1 day of playing around with it and you'll be dialed on operating it without needing a cheat sheet.

Really, you're only limited by your own creativity with these things.


Comfy, quick drying, takes abuse
5 5

I've personally tested the jersey by performing high speed cartwheels through branches and rocks with nary a hole or pulled thread. At 6', 165lbs and slender upper body, the medium fits me best. It doesn't carry funk like some of my other jerseys, I use the eyewear chamois on every ride, and it does dry out quickly. Plus its a color that says "I am not a wild animal, you shouldn't shoot."