Merrell Bare Access 2 running shoes – Brand new shoes by Merrell, if you’re looking at getting into the minimalist shoe craze, these would be a great transition shoe since they have a little bit of cushion while you’re building up strength and flexibility in your feet before going for the vibram five finger shoes or newbalance minimus type of shoe with pretty much no extra cushioning.
Jungle Juice Bug Repellent
Jungle Juice Bug Repellent – If you’re going to be planning a summer vacation to an exotic location this year don’t forget that if it’s beautiful, near water, and has a warm climate, then you probably have to fight the mosquitoes off at night. One of my favorite spots to vacation is the island of Sardinia in the Mediterranean, and I know that the difference between a good trip and a bad one is bug repellent. The island has such a bad problem at night that I recall seeing a flyer at one of the resorts for a citronella pajama party. After doing some research before my last trip in 2012, I read the reviews on this brand, it was kind of scary to hear about it melting watch bands and plastic water bottles. But hey, if it’ll take out a water bottle it’ll keep off the bugs, and with it being 98% Deet, how could it not? Well I can definitely vouch for its effectiveness, at night I could hear the mosquitoes doing laps around my head but no bites. Definitely a good thing if you don’t want to look like a pin cushion at the beach… I’m pretty sure I could make a living selling this bug repellent at the beach based on how many pasty English, German and the occasional American tourist I saw, for some reason red mosquito bites really stand out on skin that’s been hiding from the sun for the last 9 months. Another interesting fact was that the locals seem to never get bit and when they did, it was only a lil tiny dot.. me on the other hand, it was practically a mountain.. non va bene! Oh and one last thing, apparently prolonged exposure to Deet isn’t a great thing. One of the side effects that I read about on the reviews was crazy dreams. I didn’t believe it till one morning I woke up after having a dream of a drunk Tom Cruise trying to break down my door and claiming to breath fire.. When I told my friend, he couldn’t stop laughing and said that he never dreams but it must have been working because he was having some crazy dream too. Moral of the story is, don’t forget the bug spray, some anti histamines and maybe even an after bite pen just in case you miss a spot.
Canadian Tulip Festival Ottawa
Skagit Valley Tulip Festival in WA
Holland Michigan Tulip festival
Tulip Festival – April Showers bring May Flowers, there are a multitude of tulip festivals come spring time in the United States, Canada and the Netherlands. Some of the largest festivals are held in Ottawa Canada, Amsterdam’s Keukenhof Gardens in the small village of Lisse, Skagit Valley Washington, and Holland Michigan to name a few. So if you want to get in on the Tulip Mania, (no we’re not talking about the crash of 1637) and want to feel like a real dutch-man or dutch-woman, Make sure to grab your wooden shoes so you can go tiptoeing through the tulips..or maybe more appropriately said, clod hopping through if you’re more like me and lack that kind of grace. Either way it only lasts while they’re in bloom so no procrastinating, time to get your flower on.
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm Sleeping Pad – I just had my birthday a couple of days ago and one my presents from my family was my choice of a new sleeping pad. Well I started doing some research and I ran across this article where they tested over 17 different sleeping pads and this one had the highest overall rating. This pad definitely seems to have the best of both worlds when it comes to durability and packability. It’s not the lightest one but, I think I’ll sacrifice a little weight for comfort. I should also mention that from everything I’ve read about all the inflatable pads, I’m going to try and buy this from REI or Backcountry where they have a 100 satisfaction guarantee just to be on the safe side should I ever run into any kind of leak or hole issues down the road.
El Camino del Rey
El Caminito del Rey
Kings road in Spain.
El Caminito del Rey – The Kings little pathway is an old path that was built in 1905 to provide workers access to the hydro electric dam. From all the reports, this is known as one of the most dangerous hikes in the world. In fact the Spanish government tried to close the path in 2000 due to a couple of fatal accidents.. I say tried because there are still people that have been accessing it since(Illegally I might add). In 2011 they decided to have the regional and local governments work together to restore (aka take all the fun out of) this daring hike. I’m not exactly sure if it’s a good thing, or a bad thing, but the Spanish government must not work too fast because it was supposed to take about 3 years and 9 million to restore.. I just watched another video on youtube that was filmed about a month ago, March 2013. Comparing the recent video to the older one from 2008 shows the that the path still looks the same = scary, and I didn’t see any difference in any work having started yet. The newest video link from 2013 is below, also check out this blog post, it’s a little old from 2010 but has some pretty good pictures of how sketchy the hike really is http://blog.thecheaproute.com/guide-to-el-camino-del-rey-el-chorro-spain/