Wolverine Boat Shoe Travel Gear Review

Friday November 18, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 0 Comments

"Wolverine Boat Shoes"

Wolverine Boat Shoe – Travel Gear Review

Wolverine Boat Shoe for outdoor travel

For the traveler, footwear is important. It has to be comfortable, durable and protect your feet from the elements.  The Wolverine C3 Boat shoe meets all of the aforementioned requirements and  looks fashionable while protecting the all important foot. This performance water shoe features fast drying materials in the upper, meant to wick moisture  from the foot – and we all know how important dry feet are to the traveler! The rubber outer sole offers grip and stability – important on boats, as well as out on the trail. Unique to the Wolverine Boat shoe is the patented mid-sole which forces water out of the shoe and draws fresh air in to cool and dry the feet.

The full-grain waterproof leather and mesh upper combination looks sporty and serves the dual purpose of keeping air circulating in the foot bed.

"Wolverine Boat Shoe"

Wolverine Travel Gear Review, durable footwear designed for the active traveler

Wolverine Boat Shoe on San Francisco Bay

I wore the Wolverine Boat shoes to the Napa Valley for a full day of winetasting in the rain and in the sunshine.  While my palette was fatigued from all of the wine, my feet were comfortable the entire trip.

Also known as a lace-up water moccasin, I wore these shoes in San Francisco, out on the bay, during a RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) adventure. With the Vibram sole, I felt confident on deck and in the vineyards with the no-slip tread.

If You Go:

Pack your Wolverine boat shoes. Priced at $123, Wolverine Boat Shoes are ideal for general travel or on boats, of course. The shoes also look fashionable when paired with jeans and they easily slip on and off when traveling through  airport security screenings.

For more information on Wolverine you may follow Wolverine on Twitter. For all things travel-related, follow travel expert Nancy D. Brown on Twitter Wolverine supplied me with this travel gear for review.

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ExOfficio Women’s Storm Logic Jacket – Travel Apparel Review

Friday November 11, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 3 Comments

"ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket"

Monitoring Napa Valley Grape Quality while wearing ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket – travel apparel review

Packers Delight in ExOfficio Women’s Storm Logic Lightweight Jacket

Having had my luggage lost in Chicago before a speaking engagement, my motto is now “carry-on, carry on!” And so it goes with jackets. I wear or carry on my jacket on the airplane or in the car when I travel. The reason behind this logic is two-fold: As I never know what the temperature will be on an airplane, I carry a jacket to mitigate the risk of being cold during the flight and 2: the ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket was actually designed to keep a body warm and to serve double duty as a travel pillow via a built-in stuff sack. How clever is that?

"ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket Travel Apparel Review"

Northern California Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown wearing ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket in St. Helena’s Whitehall Lane Vineyard

ExOfficio Napa Valley Travel

I had the pleasure of wearing the ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket recently in Napa Valley. While it wasn’t exactly storming in St. Helena, it was raining and the ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket kept me warm and dry. I’ll be taking this jacket with me to Darby, Montana on an endurance horseback ride. Stay tuned.

ExOfficio and Montana Snow

The Storm Logic Jacket performed like a pro in Missoula, Montana’s winter weather. I rode horseback in the snow for several days with my ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket worn underneath a Western Duster.  The Storm Logic Jacket proved to be lightweight and thermal, keeping me warm and dry in the Montana Rockies.

ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket Design Features

  • Lightweight and packable means this jacket will become your go-to travel clothing
  • Thermal to keep you warm against the elements
  • Wind resistant clothing
  • Water resistant to keep you and your clothing dry
  • Quick dry clothing ensures comfort
  • High warmth-to-weight ratio keeps you warm without weighing you or your pack down
  • This travel jacket is engineered for warmth performance with Primaloft insulation in the body and sleeves
  • A packable, highly compressible jacket that quickly and easily converts into a soft travel pillow via a built-in stuff sack
  • Dedicated travel pockets for glasses, passport, tickets, and cell phone, plus key clip
  • Shell is a made of a mini rip-stop fabric that’s featherweight
  • Versatile, slightly shaped zip front jacket features a soft tricot-lined collar and chin guard
  • Wind resistant and treated with an ExOfficio durable water resistant finish
  • Security zip pocket
  • Zippered front hand warmer pockets lined with soft brushed tricot
  • Bungee cinch at hem comfortably seals warmth in to fit around you
  • 1.5 inch back tail drop for extra coverage
  • 100g of Primaloft in the chest and 60g in the arms
  • Sizes:S-XL
  • Colors: black, deep lapis, light jade, wine

If You Go:

Pack the ExOfficio Women’s Storm Logic Jacket.  Priced at $150. the Storm Logic Jacket was designed for those who prefer to travel light.

For more information on ExOfficio you may follow ExOfficio on Twitter. For all things travel-related, follow travel expert Nancy D. Brown on Twitter. ExOfficio supplied me with this jacket for review.

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Things to See and Do in Maui, Hawaii

Friday November 4, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 6 Comments

"Wailele Polynesian Luau at The Westin Maui"

Experience the Wailele Polynesian Luau at The Westin Maui Resort

Maui Insider Tips

Looking for insider tips for things to see and do in Maui, Hawaii? I have recently returned from the Hawaiian Islands and I’m happy to share some Maui “must do” recommendations with you.

The first experience I do with visitors from out of town is to go to a Luau – it is a must see for people who have never been to Hawaii.  A favorite is the Old Lahaina Luau. Their performers are very talented and the pacing of the show keeps your interest.  The buffet is also one of the best from any luau. I recently tried the Wailele Polynesian Luau at The Westin Maui Resort and enjoyed the five member fire knife dancers, as well as Fiji and Maori performances.

"Fairmont Kea Lani"

Ko Restaurant at The Fairmont Kea Lani offers plantation era-inspired cuisine

Authentic Hawaiian dining Maui-style

If you are looking for an authentic Hawaiian dining experience,  Ko Restaurant at The Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui offers plantation era-inspired cuisine.  They have truly represented  Maui cuisine  from the main cultures of the island all brought together when working the sugarcane fields.  The menu features Portuguese stew,  lobster tempura, chicken and mushroom lumpia, Maui Cattle Company ribeye, pancit, and coconut gelato. FYI, the restaurant is undergoing a major renovation and will be opening in February of 2012.

Want to impress your dining companion?  Go to Restaurant Nick’s Fishmarket Maui and order the Strawberries Panzini – Ulupalakua Ranch strawberries flambéed tableside with Grand Marnier served with Hawaiian brown sugar, Devonshire Cream & Chocolate sauce – the presentation of this dessert alone is worth it!  Located at The Fairmont Kea Lani Resort. Save me a bite!

And if  you like fresh fish at a great price, locals know to go to  Eskimo Candy in Kihei (South Maui).  They have the freshest fish caught by the owners, but hurry because they will sell out!

Kihei Caffe has got great breakfast treats and espressos.

If you haven’t been to Maui before, you should try Mama’s Fish House, just past the hippy town of Paia. The menu lists the fresh fish and who caught the fish daily.  Another splurge and one of my favorite restaurants is Lahaina Grill located on Front Street. They are known for quality cuisine, knowledgeable servers, and expansive wine list.

Maui works outs

If I want to be adventurous or simply get a cardio work out on the water,  go to any of the beaches in Kihei and Wailea for stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, Hawaiian canoe experience or surfing lessons.

Fitness buffs will love an active day outdoors in Maui. There are an unlimited amount of activities to try, from walking or hiking, to SCUBA diving, outrigger canoe paddling, surfing, kite surfing, windsurfing, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, ziplining, snorkeling, paragliding, and, of course, horseback riding!

My favorite walking route is the 1.5 mile winding walk along the Wailea beaches – it is perfect in the early morning.

Early birds, bring your camera with you for sunrise at Haleakala (and lesser known – sunset AND late night at the top of Haleakala)   Other “must do” photo opportunities: Seven Sacred Pools on the road to Hana, Iao Valley, Twin Falls, Front Street Lahaina, Honolua Bay, Bamboo Forest, Black sand beach, Hookipa lookout point

If you walk to the top of Pu’u ‘ula ‘ula (Red Hill) – summit of Haleakala in the West Maui Mountains – you’ll be rewarded with a stunning view.

"Hawaiian Canoe Experience" "Fairmont Kea Lani"

Try the Hawaiian Canoe Experience – anyone can try it – free to guests of Fairmont Kea Lani

Insider Tip: Listen to your mother

My teenagers wanted to be sure to return home to California with Hawaiian tans.  Of course they didn’t listen to dear old mom me when I shared that the Hawaiian sun was very strong and the importance of re-applying sunblock. Needless to say, they both fried themselves on our first day in Hawaii and spent the entire next day in the hotel room drinking Gatorade to re-hydrate and slathered in Aloe vera lotion. By the way – they missed out on surf lessons due to their sun burns.

Upcountry Maui

At  Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area the weather is usually cooler and sometimes misty, but always beautiful.  The intoxicating scent of the trees will encourage you to journey farther into this state park located upcountry Maui near Kula. While you are upcountry, visit O’o Farms located in the Waipoli (misting forest) district of Kula for a farm to table garden tour.

"Aloha Mixed Plate Beachside Grill"

If you come to Lahaina, visit Aloha Mixed Plate Beachside Grill

Lahaina, Maui

If you come to Lahaina, Maui, get your picture taken at the famous banyan tree off Front Street.  It is one of the largest Indian Banyan trees in the world expanding over a 200 foot area. While in Lahaina, stop at Aloha Mixed Plate for the affordable food and stay for the water front views.

Are you looking for some Maui night life? For dancing, go to “the triangle” in Kihei (South Maui).  There are several different types of bars from Dog N Duck to Tiki Lounge, to Ambrosia, to Life’s a Beach – each has live entertainment.

Insider Tip: If you like sushi, Sansei Kapalua and Kihei is the place for late night dining.  They offer half  price sushi after 10 pm plus karaoke!

MauiTime is the newspaper the locals read to keep up on what’s happening on the island.

If you happen to be visiting Maui in June, check out the Maui Film Festival Wonderful movies are shown outdoors on a golf course, under the stars.

Go on a whale watch in the winter time to view the majestic humpback whales!

"Westin Maui Water Slide"

Come play in The Westin Maui’s 87,00 square foot aquatic playground

Traveling with kiki?

Will you be traveling with  keikis? The Maui Ocean Center in Maalaea is worth a visit.  This Hawaiian aquarium features a turtle lagoon, hands-on tide pool, discovery center, and a 54-foot clear tunnel allowing you to walk among sharks, stingrays, and other fish.  Book online for discounts. Check out The Ohana Mama for additional tips from a local Maui mom blogger.

What are your favorite things to do on the Island of Maui?

Thanks to Wendy Harvey for assistance with this post.  Photos and YouTube video by Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown. I was a guest of Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau and Hawaiian Air.

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