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Archive for August, 2012

True Love: Trail Running The Sierra

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Guest: Ryan
Running in the Sierra is a treat when it comes to trail running. The awesome views and developed trails are both reasons why I love running here.

My Story:

I wasn’t really a trail runner to begin with, or a runner for that matter,  in fact, I hated running especially on pavement in cities. It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I was exposed to trail running. A group of friends and I were finishing up a scramble mission in the Mt Whitney Zone and upon reaching the summit we preceded to run the Mt Whitney Trail. After summiting three peaks and traveling an unknown amount of miles we found our selves with beer and Portal Burgers in hand, a glorious end to a long day in the mountains. After this trail running experience I was hooked.

From that moment on I make it a yearly goal to make it above 14,000 feet. This pilgrimage started my love of trail running and living in Tahoe leaves endless miles of trails to run. The graded trails, especially the more popular trails like the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) for example, are graded so much that it can be done riding a mule. Sections of the PCT that run through Desolation Wilderness are some of my favorite. In some cases on the PCT you will encounter large stone stairs, yes a lovely stone staircase in woods. This type of human development is what makes these types of high traffic trails perfect for trail running. Long gradual down hills and up hills, swooping around the contours of the Sierra make up most of the development in the Northern Trails system. While there are many sections that do not fit this description and have much steeper up hill and down hill sections, these are mostly avoidable due to the remoteness of the section of trail.

Everyone I know who runs, has their own little circuit that they run on a regular basis. These circuits are great for a quick run before work, or a beautiful sunset run in the evening, but after running a trail a couple of times I find those circuits to be a little monotonous. A case of tree vision usually sets in and my motivation to run fades. That’s why I like running with a general goal in mind, like running to a summit or lake for example. Setting a goal like this can really help motivate you when on a trail run, especially a longer run. Sometimes I’ll even bring a small fly rod to check out new water and add a little variety to the days run. Catching fish and a work out is a win-win.

A rewarding aspect of trail running is the distance covered, as well as the elevation gain and loss, one experiences when running in the Sierras. I love looking down ridge lines and seeing the trail snake it’s way around the contours of the mountains. Approaching the tops of passes is also exciting, especially if you are unfamiliar with what features lay beyond it. The amount of elevation gain and loss gives a sense of the work put in for those spectacular views. Being able to see the lower elevation start of a run from the high point gives you a sense of the vertical attained, no place makes this more apparent than the Eastern Sierra mountains along the 395 corridor. The amount of vertical relief is astounding down in this section of the Sierra as well.

Running in the Sierra is also a bit of a game. There is a saying in the Sierra “If you don’t like the weather wait an hour.” This couldn’t be truer during the later summer and fall months in the Sierra. Thunderclouds can build rapidly and cause a down pour when, in the first half of the day, the sun was shining. These types of weather changes give a natural time clock for your run. Trying to bag a peak? Better make sure you beat the thunderclouds there first! Racing thunderstorms can be  fun, or terrifying, in the High Sierra especially above tree line. In most cases you can see the storms coming, but if your unlucky they can build in no time and really catch you by surprise.  Finding yourself above tree line during such events would fall under the terrifying category, but running just bellow tree line can be quite fun. Personally, I love running in the rain, the thunder and lighting shows can be spectacular!

What ever your motivation is to trail run, take it and run with it!


Salomon XR Sensibelt
Salomon XR Sensibelt
MSRP: $39.95
Gu Energy Gel
Gu Energy Gel
MSRP: $89.95

TMS and Boreas Introduce The Pack Tester Adventure Team!

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

Boreas Gear is an exciting new outdoor equipment company that states that “The best gear is neither complicated nor expensive yet as versatile as the person using it.” The undercurrent here is that Boreas has figured out the secret formula for such gear, or, at least, is working hard to find that formula.  How does a new company find the secret ingredients that it needs to be the best? It partners with Tahoe Mountain Sports to put together a pack testing adventure team! This team will be responsible for testing and providing real world feedback on the stylish backpacks. Who are the lucky seven  that have been chosen for the pack testing team, you ask? Let’s meet them, shall we?

Introducing The TMS/Boreas Pack Tester Adventure Team!


Name:  Ted Teske

Pack Testing: Buttermilk 55

“My job requires that I travel to some fairly remote and inhospitable locations. I’m always looking for gear that can keep me organized, dry in the field and stand up to the “not so gently” rigors of modern travel. Boreas packs interest me with their flexible  sleek designs that seem to hide the rugged construction under their well thought out features and aesthetics. We’ll see!”



Name: Andy Pattison

Pack Testing: Buttermilk 55

“I spend at least 2-4 weeks on the trails every year. As a result, I have become picky about packs and gear. This is why I am very excited to be a pack tester for the Boreas Buttermilk 55 and why I’m looking forward to checking it out during the second half of my honeymoon this fall.”



Name: Michael Detwiler

Pack Testing:  Repack 15

“I own a few Dakine packs and they have treated me well over the years. I’m interested in testing out a different brand to see what more modern-designs and different manufacturers have to offer. When I’m on my bike the Dakine packs seem to flop around a bit, I’m hoping the Boreas pack fits a bit more snug.”



Name: Adam Tirella

Pack Testing:  Lost Coast 60

“As someone who works at a job involving the outdoors, being able to play around with new gear is one of my favorite perks. I especially like the opportunities I get to try and support new brands that are pushing the envelope as far as form and function goes. I know firsthand, Boreas is one of those companies!”



Name: Anne Greenwood

Pack Testing: Lost Coast 60 Women’s

“I am working on completing the Tahoe Rim Trail this summer.  I have been solo backpacking and find my Gregory Pack to be like hoisting a bag of bricks onto my back. I am really looking to lighten up so I can move faster and not feel so broken after three-four days. I did get my pack down from 49 lbs (ouch!) to 28lbs, and I think the Boreas pack will get me down to 22….a very reasonable load! I may actually be able to bring a stove!”





Name: Sandy Jean Borden

Pack Testing: Lost Coast 60 Women’s

“I’m a gear junkie! I’m always critiquing and analyzing gear this is why I’m excited about this opportunity to share my experience with a Boreas Pack. Practicality, durability, comfort and unique features will be what I will be checking out and reporting on!”



Name: Mike Rommel

Pack Testing: Lost Coast 60

“The reason I would like to test Boreas Packs is that the pack looks innovative in design, contour and light in weight. I will be testing the pack on a full day high alpine, multi-pitch climb in the Palisades at Temple Crag. I look forward to the pack being comfortable with its ergonomic design.”


For the next month, these courageous testers will be embarking on grand adventures with their Boreas packs, giving them the ultimate “real world” challenge. Will these packs hold up against the vigors of our  outdoor adventure test team, or will  Boreas  actually wear out our mighty seven? Regardless of the outcome, this test can only make the world of outdoor adventure, a lot stronger.  Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion of the Boreas/TMS Pack Challenge!

See Previous Post “Gear Testers Wanted: Boreas Backpacks”

Back to the Smarts: A few back-to-school necessities

Monday, August 13th, 2012

School starts in a few weeks and now is the time to get ready for class. Tahoe Mountain Sports has all the essentials to help you gear up your brain from summer mode to smarts. Here’s a few necessities that will keep you nourished, store your gear, and even keep your pants on.

The Dakine Campus LG BACKPACK has a padded laptop pocket to keep your hardware protected. It also features an insulated cooler pocket for storing sustenance and a fleece lined pouch for your shades.

Keep your coffee hot or your water cold with the Hydro Flask WATERBOTTLE, an absolute necessity for keeping you hydrated during long cram sessions. Part robot, this water bottle regulates temperatures, keeping hot beverages steamy for up to 12 hours and cool beverages refreshing for a full day.

Books, sports gear, computer, lunch, wallet, pens, phone — check. If your backpack is stuffed to the brim, you might want to check out the Vapur Element soft WATERBOTTLE. This waterbottle allows you to stow-n-go when your bottle is not in use and comes with a clip on the cap so you can attach it to anything. It’s durable, freezable, and has an antimicrobial lining to keep it clean.

We all know what it’s like to be on a student budget. So save some cash and pack your lunch. The Kelty ToTo Cooler is an insulated FOOD TOTE that is large enough to pack enough food for two or a big eater. It keeps food cold and packs easily when not in use. Also check out the Dakine Lunch Box, which packs your food in style and keeps it fresh.

Not quite 16? Or saving the planet? We know you love your two-wheeled ride. Keep it safe while you’re in class with the Kryptonite Keeper BIKE LOCK.

A couple other ACCESSORIES you might want to check out: The Nite Ize WrapLit will shine on your reading or writing from any precarious spot. Wrap it around a chair, a tree, a bed post or whatever and shine on.

Also, keep your pants on with Arcade Belts.

Arcade Belts
Arcade Belts
MSRP: $24.95
Kelty ToTo Cooler
Kelty ToTo Cooler
MSRP: $14.95
Hydro Flask
Hydro Flask
MSRP: $25.95


This Weekend In Tahoe – TMS Annual Summer Sale & Ta-Hoe Nalu

Thursday, August 9th, 2012

With temps over 100 in the Sacramento and Reno areas, it’s going to be a big weekend in Tahoe, so make sure you are here to enjoy it!

Annual Summer Sale 20-70% Off Everything

Annual Summer Sale 20-70% Off Everything

Tahoe Mountain Sports is taking 20 to 70 percent off everything in the downtown Kings Beach store during our 5th Annual Summer Blowout Sale. Yep, we said EVERYTHING (well, just about everything!)

Find deals on camping gear from Snow Peak, Mountain Hardwear, Marmot, Black Diamond and Klean Kanteen. Clothing, swimwear and footwear from the likes of Patagonia, Merrell, Chaco and Lole are all marked down. Backpack and bag prices get chopped, too, so go ahead and treat yourself to that much-needed trekking pack from the Deuter ACT Lite series, a dry bag from Outdoor Research, a sturdy laptop backpack or an Osprey hydration pack like the Manta 25. And, lots of leftover ski and winter gear from our lack of winter last season that is priced to move!

Sleeping Bags and Tents on Sale

Stoves and Water Filters

Stock up for that Labor Day trip, for any back-to-school needs, to finish out the summer in style or to prep for the upcoming winter. Whatever your gear needs, we’ve got you covered!

Tahoe Mountain Sports is just a block from the sandy shore of Lake Tahoe (about a quarter mile east of the Highway 267/North Lake Boulevard intersection), so stop by for some serious discounts this weekend during our regular store hours, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

ALSO, one of the biggest and most awesome stand up paddleboard events will be going on and we have teamed up with UGG of Australia to represent their awesome line of summer footwear and sell it at the event.

Ta-Hoe Nalu Elite Race Start

Just keep a lookout for the Tahoe Mountain Sports tent on the beach and come visit to check out the coolest and hippest in summer footwear!

Both the store sale and Ta-Hoe Nalu Event will be going on Friday-Sunday 10-6 daily. See you there!!!!

Eight Things You Forgot to Bring to Burning Man

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

This year’s installation in playa preparation is for the virgin burners. There are plenty of all-inclusive packing lists for surviving a week in the Black Rock Desert, but this is not one of them. I wanted to focus on a few key things that are often overlooked when packing for Burning Man.

Kluft-photo-Black-Rock-Desert-Aug-2005-Img 5081

Now’s The Time To Speak Up About Lake Tahoe Forests

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

The Snowlands Network, an advocacy group representing “those who venture into the winter backcountry in search of peace and solitude,” recently contact Tahoe Mountain Sports about a revised land management plan the Forest Service is currently drafting for Lake Tahoe. They wanted to let us know that if we want to have any input in this plan — if we want to let the Forest Service know what is important to us about the mountains and woods in our backyard — that now is the time. They are taking comments on this plan, which will influence decisions and land use for the next 15 to 20 years, until Aug. 29.

Here’s what Bob Rowen, vice president for advocacy at Snowlands Network, had to say:

What are your favorite activities in the Lake Tahoe Basin? Would you like the Forest Service to  give more attention to certain issues? Well, now is your time to speak up because they are listening. The Forest Service is revising its management plan for lands in the Lake Tahoe basin. They have circulated a draft revised plan and are taking comments on the draft plan through August 29. This revised land management plan will provide overall direction for management of the forest for the next 15 to 20 years. So it is very important that you speak up now!
You can access and review the draft plan on the Forest Service website. However, you do not need to read the plan to make your voice heard. Simply tell the Forest Service what activities you enjoy in the Tahoe Basin and what activities you would like to see the Forest Service support.

This is OUR forest and OUR government agency.  We urge you to take ownership of the issues by participating in this process.
One issue of concern to the Snowlands Network is the failure of the draft plan to address motorized recreation in winter. Snowmobiles are exempt from most prohibitions against motorized travel and the Forest Service does not propose to change this in the revised plan. Snowmobile use has effectively foreclosed skiers and those on snowshoes from enjoying certain areas of the Basin and this trend continues with more areas at risk of being taken over by snowmobiles. We are asking the Forest Service to include winter motorized travel management in the draft plan and hope you will too.

Other issues of concern include whether the Forest Service will propose (and then manage) additional lands as Wilderness. (Actual Wilderness designation must come from Congress.)  A group of environmental organizations are pressing for more Wilderness designation and have sought to define new Wilderness areas so as to NOT impact existing mountain bike trails — something the Forest Service failed to do in its own “alternatives”.  You might also comment on whether you support additional Wilderness, in particular Wilderness with boundaries drawn that are consistent with existing mountain bike trails.
Comments to the Forest Service may be emailed to:

Include “Draft Land Management Plan” in the subject line of your email.
Comments may also be mailed to:
Draft Land Management Plan, 
35 College Drive
, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Please note: Comments on the draft plan should address overall management direction for the Lake Tahoe lands, rather than particular complaints about specific facilities.


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