We all have our favorite gear from that all season pair of Chacos (socks or not) to our dearest base layer that hugs close to our hearts. After traveling over 7,000 miles living in a van this summer and now settling in for ski season with over 30" of fresh pow in Angel Fire, our family put together this list of favorite gear we used in 2018.
#1 The Burton Throwback Snowboard
On those days where the big flakes just keep falling, when you're too excited to strap in before running out the door, no worries. Just grab your Snurfboard on the hustle out, slap it down in the snow, and hop on for the best ride of your life.
#2 The Burton Riglet
Who said you get to have all the fun? Bundle up your little one in her warm layers and strap her in the Riglet so she can get in some pow-time, too. This was how we spent our most recent snow day in the backyard with the whole fam using their favorite gear.
#3 Burley Solo Trailer with Attachments
Here's the thing. Before the Burley, I didn't know how we were going to keep doing things we love outside with our precious cargo. After the Burley, that question has never arisen again. With the We-Ski kit, we can pull her behind us in the snow hiking, snowshoeing, and fat biking- which we can't wait to try this winter! On days she feels extra heavy in the backpack, I load up the Solo with the mountain bike tires popped on and hit the trail. Hiking or biking, we bring the Burley. Even on this snowy hike, when it was 11' F out, we brought the baby and on this 8 mile bike ride on the Creeper Trail.. On our road trip across the country, we were glad it collapsed down to a pack-able size. The rough terrain wheels, ski attachment, and jogger are all super easy to set-up/ tear-down and will make outdoor parent-life so much more enjoyable!
We were stoked to be able to try out a couple Nirvana Self-Bailers through Kokopelli's loaner program this summer. Packrafts are an essential for every adventure family. They are an investment but well worth it. For living in a van or any vehicle, these are a must. They pack down to a few pounds each and are easy cargo in your backpack to hit up any off-grid body of water. We rafted the Nolichucky River, Boone Lake, Icicle River in Leavenworth, Teton Creek, and Colter Bay. Anytime we ended up camping beside a river, we busted out the packrafts from the sky box on top of the van and inflated them in under 5 minutes. On the mountain-fed lakes, we were able to buckle our daughter in her lifejacket and sit her between our legs to come along for the ride.
#5 Balancing Bike for the Kiddo
Strider Bike for the win! Every child needs one of these balancing bikes to kick-start their adventurous lifestyle. Our daughter has been learning to balance on her Strider Bike before she can even walk. It helps her build confidence while encouraging her to stand and pull herself up. She gets stoked when she sees us loading up her bike- it's gonna be a good day!
#6 Nikwax Products
Before gearing up on any adventure, we waterproof our gear with Nikwax. Here's how you can waterproof your favorite Patagonia fleece so it keeps you nice and dry in the heaviest of downpours. We always give our tent a good coating of Solarproof which lasts a while before the next coat.
#7 Sit Means Sit Collars & Training
We saved this one for last, because it's a big one, unless you don't own one of these beasts. If you do own one of these beasts that make exceptional travel companions and loyal trail buddies, then this one is for you. Invest in a Sit Means Sit Collar with Remote and dedicate a portion of everyday to your pup. It is so worth their time and yours and will make life more enjoyable for you both! I can't imagine traveling the country, parking the van in unpredictable spots overnight, taking hikes outside of our pup's familiar areas without having these collars on at all times. They are waterproof, fence-proof, pretty much dog-proof. If you start training them before a big trip and work with them daily, just having this collar on will make all the difference in the world. However it is also reassuring if you are in an unfamiliar state and your dog takes off after an alpine squirrel, zap & command- and they are back to their safe zone with the fam.
For a full list of gear that we do and don't recommend, Click Here.
Dogs & Diapers