"It's even more (a story) this year," said Wasatch Running Center owner Glen Gerner. "People are kind of going old school. It worked for centuries, and its natural. You're not using petroleum to make it, and thanks to the sheep, it's renewable."
Needless to say, there are a lot of great winter clothing items available in wool.
Salomon Falcon ski sock. Quick dry fabrication combined with Merino wool, silk, and 200-needle knitting technology provides the highest thread count sock available, with ankle and arch support, shin protection and warmth with optimum ventilation. Available for $90 at www.salomon.com.
Nike wool-dryfit half-zip. Warm and cute in awesome colors. Great under ski clothes or as a base layer for running or hiking. Available at Wasatch Running Center for $75.
The Cold Avenger facemask. If the icy air keeps you from enjoying the great outdoors, you might want to invest in this innovative mask. The ventilator is made of medical grade biocompatible plastic selected for its safety, microbial resistance, and overall cold weather endurance. The polyurethane ventilator mixes inhaled cold air with exhaled warm air which creates a balance of warmth and humidity to protect the airways from the damaging cold, all while keeping moisture off the face. The mask keeps air inside 40-60-degrees higher than outside air. Available at www.coldavenger.com and REI stores in Salt Lake City.
Gibbon Slacklines. If you're looking for a unique workout this winter, this is it. Slacklining, which is something like a tightrope, is an excellent way to build core strength and balance. It is suitable for all ages and is a great group activity. The lines are easy to set up and learn on. Whether a beginner looking to build balance and core strength, or an advanced user doing "yoga" slacklining and "jibbing," they will provide hours of engaging fun. Available at the Front Climbing Pro Shop in Ogden starting at $74.
Petzl Elia Helmet. Protects the head while looking stylish. It comes in great colors and has a pony-tail slot. Available at The Front Climbing Pro Shop in Ogden for $65.95.
Bouldering Pads. The Front Climbing Gym's Pro Shop has a huge selection of crash pads. They carry locally made Revolution and Pusher pads, as well as Metolius crash pads. Crash pads smake great gifts for both beginner and advanced climbers alike. As bouldering is a less expensive form of climbing, it can be appealing to those on a budget. Available at the Front's Pro Shop starting at $140.
Salomon RX Snow Moc. Billed as "everything a ski boot isn't," the Snow Moc has a breathable upper shell with a super cushioned midsole. It is a reward for your feet after a day on the slopes. Available for $90 at www.salomon.com.
Limited Edition Gu Roctane. It's only available for a few weeks in the special holiday flavor of Island Nectars. Roctane is no ordinary Gu with amino acids to speed recovery and a double dose of caffeine. Available, while it lasts, at Wasatch Running Center for $15 per six pack.
Timex Ironman Watch. It's the newest model of GPS watch from Timex. It ranges in price from $300 without the heart monitor to $360 with heart monitor. There is a $50 rebate right now.
Black Diamond Spotlight. Made by a local company it offers a lot of light for a small price. Available at Wasatch Running Center for $40.
If your outdoor enthusiast has all the gear he/she needs, then consider taking him/her to a place where they can use it.
If you're looking for a great deal on everything from winter wear to tents, check out www.rei-outlet.com. It has the most recent deals and allows you to avoid the lines at a retail store. REI stores also offer rentals on most outdoor gear that allows you to try it before you buy it.
Backcountry Skiing Trip in British Columbia with BlueBird Guides. Starting at $275 for a weekend hut trip. An affordable option for a ski getaway, BlueBird Guides offers education and experience-building on-the-go. Most of BlueBird Guide's trips are in the interior ranges of British Columbia, including the Selkirk and Purcell mountains for their consistent snow and easy access. The Monashee and Cariboo mountains are also a zone they cover for hut trips or traverses.
More information is available at www.bluebirdguides.com.
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