Friday, January 31, 2020

Camping in the River Country Trekker 2.2 Tent - Testing Grounds 4

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This is Testing Grounds...

A Camping Adventure featuring all sorts of new gear which Luke is currently testing out and amongst those products the focus is the newest version of the River Country Trekker 2.2 tent.

Rain is on the bad can this tent possibly be?

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Hot Tent Challenge Part 3 - Fixes and Improvements

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This is part 3 of the Hot Tent Challenge and in this episode, Luke is working on some Fixes and Mods for the Black Orca Iron Wall.

In the previous episodes, you all got to vote on the tent that we are to use and the majority selected the Black Orca Iron Wall Tent.  From there we took it out for a night of rain to discover if it would leak and it did; now it is time to fix the shortcomings and issues of the Iron Wall before we vote on the stove that we are to buy to use with it.

With the Hot Tent Challenge, this is the order;

Part 1 involves a setup, overview and initial impressions of the tent which you decide to base the challenge around.

Part two will be to test out its waterproof abilities to learn if anything needs to be addressed before moving on to the next step.

Part 3 will be the installation of a stove jack and fixing issues.

With Part 4 we will locate and install a stove.

Part  5 Lastly it will be the adventure with the stove itself.

Video Links :
Part 1 :

Part 2 :


Agenda Free Iron Wall Link :

Monday, January 27, 2020

Sportneer Adjustable and Non Adjustable Foldable Chairs

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Today Luke is reviewing two foldable chairs from Sportneer; one is Adjustable and the other is not.....but does it really make a difference?

Which one does he recommend?

Find out now!

Agenda Free Link Adjustable Version :

Agenda Free Non Adjustable Version :

Adjustable Price : Retail is $34 for 1 or $53 for 2

Non-Adjustable Price : $30

Weight of Adjustable : 2lb 5.2oz

Weight of Non Adjustable : 1lb 15oz

Colors : Black and Orange

Features :

Material : Aluminum +60D Nylon

The frame made of heavy-duty aluminum ensures stability and durability of this camping chair. Also, each camping chair comes with small attached storage bags to keep your small accessories organized.

HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE : Sportneer folding camping chair has 3 adjustable height level:

I measure approx. 13" at the lowest, 14", 15" at the highest content you different heights need, give you better seat experience.

Non adjustable version sits at approx. 13.5”

ULTRALIGHT & COMPACT : These portable chairs can be folded into a small piece of 14.25" x 5.25" including the carry-on bag and still weights 2 lbs. It is extremely easy to carry during outdoor activities such as hiking, camping and backpacking

EASY SET-UP : Aluminum shock-cord pole structure makes this camping chair for quick intuitive setup

WEIGHT CAPACITY : This robust chair is capable of taking weight up to 350 lbs. This heavy duty chair is a necessity for campers, hikers, backpackers, adventurers and anyone who loves outdoor activities

Review Pros :

For the money, excellent quality.

Have held up without any issues with all of our use.

Easy to setup; easy enough to do so without instructions – takes a minute

Stable when on flat and semi-flat ground


Comfortable – not oversized and I like that – there are a lot of camping chairs and some are overly huge – you’ll see people sitting in them and they are swallowed in material

Light enough to hike with and to carry; I like to bring one with me on day hikes

When sitting on a hill or any other uneven surface the adjustable legs are a must!

Review Cons :

Low profile even with being adjustable.

For large users, they may want a larger size chair to be really comfortable.

Heavy storage back; you can drop some weight by not using it

Storage bag is a little small; can take some work to get the chair back into it.

Legs can be a bit finicky to adjust as you have to hold the leg with one hand and pull with the other.

Summary :

When it comes to small backpacking chairs, there are numerous companies who make similar products with some of them being really, really expensive.  This is a budget friendly version which offers you very good quality for the money.

Excellent for day hikes and if you don’t mind carrying the weight, overnight trips too.

Car camping, fishing, hunting, etc.

When it comes the two chairs, the adjustable one is the version that I would select as it’s only a few dollars more and the legs allow for versatility that the other version doesn’t.  The height differences between the two is so little, it really doesn’t matter as you won’t notice the difference but for setting up on uneven terrain, this does give you options.

Also, it has pocket for your drink and so on.

It is slightly heavier than the  non adjustable version but only slightly and in my opinion, with the adjustable version, there really isn’t a need for the non adjustable version especially since they are so similar in terms of design, weight and cost.  Think of the adjustable version as the upgraded version and the non as the old gen.

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Best Chest Rig for the Money? Helikon-Tex Numbat Chest Pack

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Today I'm reviewing the Helikon-Tex Numbat Chest Pack;
is it the best Chest Rig on the Market Today?


Agenda Free Link :

Price : Retail price is $65 – That’s what I paid on Amazon.  When I looked at the cost last night, I couldn’t find them for this price as the sellers there were offering these for $75 plus shipping.  $55.25 on the Helikon-Tex web site.

Weight : 17.28oz

Dimensions :

19.5 X 28 X 6 cm / 7.68 X 11 X 2.36 in

Colors : Numerous Colors – 9 variations (Shadow Gray)

Part of the Helikon-Tex Bushcraft Line;


Made of 500D Cordura® - YKK zippers

Two elastic pockets on front

Made of laminate, compatible with MOLLE/PALS mounting points on front and bottom

Elastic cord on bottom

Internal organizer

Internal velour panel, compatible with VIS

Detachable organizer with map pocket

Up to 90 degree opening angle

Minimalistic, comfortable harness with mesh panel on back

Back covered with 3d mesh

Pros :

Excellent quality – top notch materials

Excellent zipper pulls – easily opens

Very adaptable – lots of pockets and is user adjustable

Can be used easily with backpacks

Comfortable - The shoulder harness is excellent with no issues with rubbing or even moving around and causing issues.

Easy to use and open

Easy to put on and take off – TIP : undo one buckle and throw it over your shoulder and then buckle it in.  I’ve seen people try to put it on in other ways – talk about awkward.

Can hold a lot - Great size, not too bulky.

Two front stretchy pockets

Impressively water resistant

Excellent solution for Concealed Carry

You can easily attach to the pack and even to the straps

Opens in the form of a tray

The main compartment has a velcro loop back panel to attach your own pouches or dividers

Stretchy material allows for additional stuffing.

Shock cord on the bottom so you can attach addition items such as a rolled up poncho

Middle of the road design – it doesn’t scream tactical which can be a good thing as you can carry this in town or on the trail.

Strap keepers on all for points.

Buckles at each corner so you can easily put it on or take it off no matter what your dominate side is

Cons :

Map sleeve (aka admin pouch) took me a while to remove; it is nice that the carrier is included but I tend not to need it often so I have taken it out.  My preference would be simply stow it in side without attaching it so you can take it out and view it as needed.

With the map sleeve is fairly small for serious navigation but does feature lots of pockets – can be locked to the back of the rig

Will you sweat while wearing this?  Yes!  You do have ventilated padding on the back of the pouch but if you are pushing hard enough, there will be some moisture build up.

Features laser cut MOLLE; I’m not the biggest fan as I like strap based more.  Yes this looks more modern but it’s not as ridged which can be a negative.  It certainly doesn’t feel as robust as traditional MOLLE

Can take some work to adjust to go over larger jackets/layers

Summary :

I purchased this numerous months ago and I have no problem recommending it to those who are interested in such a carry system.  It’s a high quality, versatile system which you can easily adapt to your needs.

This chest rig is excellent for just about any sort of outdoor adventure that you are to go out on; hiking, backpacking, fishing, kayaking, law enforcement, military, Motocross, etc; whatever you do, it'll work for you.

I personally use this rig in all sorts of situations; it’s great for a day hike with all of the smaller items that you need quick access to –

I often wear this for filming purposes as I can throw batteries, lens cleaning kits, my GoPro and even a small tripod.

For Bushcraft, it’s excellent; you can mount a knife to the straps, throw in your gloves, add a saw, ferro rod, compass, flashlight and so on.

This is an excellent alternative to a Hill People Chest rig and in fact, I personally like it better than my Hill People setup and it is less expensive.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Thin Air : LiteFighter Olympus II Deployment Bag (Travel, Overland, Vehi...

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LiteFighter Olympus II Deployment Bag

Agenda Free Link :

Price : Retail is $360 – Used military surplus can run $50 up to around $170

Weight : I haven’t thrown this on a scale but it is substantial; around 18, 20lbs is my best guess

Colors : OCP Camo, Black, Coyote, Green and others. Four of these colors are Military and have NSN numbers from what I understand.

Thin Air and LiteFighter :

The pack is made my Thin Air but is also known as the LiteFighter Deployment bag and I want to explain why that is;

This bag is made by Thin Air Gear and isn't exclusive to LiteFigther but LiteFighter represents Thin Air when it comes to the US Government concerning contracts?

LiteFighter is a sort of middleman so to speak when it comes to government acquisitions and so on.

Features :

·      ABS Frame w/ 360 Foam Protection
·      Fully Retractable 14” Steel Handle with Two Settings
·      Integrated Ruck Suspension System W/ Adjustable Padded Shoulder & Waist Straps
·      Three Point Entry Lockable System with #10 YKK Pulls
·      4” Heavy Duty Polyurethane Wheels with Replaceable Steel Housing
·      Top Opening 12” Wide Lid for Easy Access and a Clear Marking Window
·      Three Removable ABS Divider Shelves Turns Bag Into Rolling Footlocker
·      Integrated Front Document Pocket
·      Lifetime Warranty

Unexpanded Dimensions: 30x15x15 (6,750 cubic inches)

Expanded Dimensions: 40x15x15 (9,000 cubic inches)

Expandable, Wheelable, Ruckable
Retractable Composite HD 14" Metal Telescoping Handle
9" Cloth Pull and Hanging Handle
1000D Cordura Fabric
Ballistic Back
Top Opening 12" Access Flap
Vinyl 4 x 6 Marking Window

1 Identification Insert

Front Document Pocket

4" Polyurethane HD Wheels

3 Point Removable Wheels

YKK #10 Lockable Zippers

360 Degree Closed Cell Foam Protection with Removable Side Panels

210D Packcloth Interior

3 Shelves with Top 360 Degree Velcro

3 Interior Compression Straps

3 Inside Storage Pockets

3-D Aerospace Mesh

TEK69 Twisted Filament Thread

Double Stitched/Bartacked

TSA, TAA, and Berry Compliant

Summary :

In the future if you all like, I could do a VS episode comparing these Thin Air / LiteFighter Deployment bags against others which I have from Force Protector Gear.

Excellent quality

Very well thought-out

Excellent for travel.

Excellent for overland use

Excellent for an emergency bag that you keep in your truck –

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Thankful! - Viewer Mail Episode #70

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It's mail time once again and the question is; will it fit?
Find out in the video what I'm talking about.  :D

As always, I am very, very thankful for all of the kindness and generosity.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

60MPH Winds - 3 Days in the Windy Mountains

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It's Windy....Really Windy and Luke and Susan are heading into the high mountains for a 3 Day Adventure which promises incredible views, some snow and bitter conditions!

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Japanese Fire Pit - Snow Peak Pack and Carry Fireplace Review

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Japanese Design and Japanese Quality!
This is my review of the Snow Peak Pack & Carry Fireplace!

Agenda Free Link :

Cost : Retail $190.

Weight : 11.9 lbs (5.4 kg)

Sizes : This is the Large version but there is a small and medium available

Material : 1.5 mm thick chrome coated steel - Stainless Steel

Dimensions :  17.75" W 17.75" H 13"

Size Stowed : L 22" W 1.7" x H 25"

Contents Include : Fireplace and Nylon Case

Made In : Japan


Attachments :

Base plates for ashes

Grill grates

And more.

By the way, any grill grate will work perfectly so if you want to save some money and go with a less expensive wire option you can.  You can also use any sort of pan or plate to prevent the burning of grass, ground and containment.

Uses : Car camping, rv, hunting, overland, heat, cooking, tail gating, rafting, etc

Pros :
Compact design

Operates perfectly – plenty of air holes

Easy to setup

Easy to ignite

Easy to add wood too.

Easy to clean

Exceptional Warranty!

Add a grill to and you can easily cook

Smartly designed

Very stable

Excellent materials

Top notch quality – there are a lot of rinky dink fireplaces out on the market, this isn’t one.

Folds flat and can be stored basically anywhere

Lots of attachments available

The large size allows for you to loud the stove up with wood for warmth or control it for cooking

Offers level cooking surface

Excellent heat radiance

Because of the design, you can warm your feet as well as the body when sitting close to it.

Cons :
Very, very expensive.

Carry bag is nothing to write home about but it works.  If you really fall in love with the stove, a canvas carry bag is available… a cost.

Summary :

With this stove, it does come at a price but for that price you are getting a product that will truly last a life time.  It’s heavy duty, very well made and includes one of the best warranties in the business.

Out of the three sizes, my advice would be to go with the large size as it present you with the most options including larger pieces of wood.

After spending my hard earned money on this fire pit, would I do it again?  Absolutely!  It’s an incredibly well made piece of gear which offers you the perfect balance of portability, function and strong construction.  All of which comes at a price!

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Wow, That is Different! - Viewer Mail Episode #69

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Say, this axe is different!

Without a doubt Susie and I have the best viewers in the entire world and we are thankful for every single email, letter and package.

Friday, January 10, 2020

�� Cut Chop Feather - Hogue EX-F01 5.5" Knife - Field Test

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Thanks to a friend who encouraged me to pick up this knife, we have a new blade to test out!  This is the Hogue EX-F01 5.5" Knife and today I'm getting it out into the forest for a Field Test!


Agenda Free Link :

Price : $200 on amazon at the time of filming; retail is $240

Weight of knife : 10.1oz

Weight of Knife and Sheath : 17.2oz / little over a pound

Made in the USA

Limited Lifetime warranty

Versions : At the time of filming, there are 23 different versions of this knife.  I have linked to the Hogue web site and the version that I purchased. It’s available with different materials and finishes for a low-key visual footprint. It’s available with either a drop-point or Tanto blade profile. Tanto blade models feature a saw back.

Hogue : Hogue, well known for their gun related accessories was founded in 1968 by Guy Hogue and the company today is carried on by his son’s which I think is cool.  While they are well known for their gun grips, stocks and hostlers they have ventured into the knife market with excellent results from what I have been told.

All Hogue knives are designed by custom knifemaker and former Recon Marine. Allen Elishewitz

This is my first experience with a Hogue knife with a friend of mine hounding me to death about his EX-F01 blade.

• Blade Length: 5.5”
• Overall Length: 10.5”
• Weight: 10.4 oz


• Style: Drop Point with Flat Grind
• Thickness: 0.235”
• Material: A2 Tool Steel
• Hardness: 57-59 HRC
• Treatment: Cryogenically Heat Treated – fire arms finish
• Finish: Black Cerakote®
• Flat Grind - Hand Honed Edge
Full tang


• Frame: Cocobolo Hardwood Scales
• Includes Ballistic Nylon MOLLE Sheath
• Lanyard/Lashing Holes
• Impact Pommel

Thoughts :

The blade size is perfect for myself; this is a 7 inch version but for most tasks I find that 5.5” is the perfect balance of useability and utility.  Not so big that it becomes awkward for certain tasks.  Generally once you go pasted the 5.5” length, in my opinion the blade becomes excellent for very specific tasks such as battoning and less effective as an all around camp tool

Excellent balance.

Most comfortable grip I have ever experienced.

Sheath is fine but isn’t my personal preference. It doesn’t have any glaring issues. The quality is excellent and if you are into tactical, then it will serve you well. Cordura® Ballistic Nylon with bar-tack stitching. The sheath is ambidextrous and jumpable. MOLLE Compatible. – When fully seated, there is absolutely no rattle!

Excellent quality
Thick steel
Well designed

Middle of the road design; Combat/Tactical/Survival type knife

A2 is known for its toughness and edge-holding ability. It will hold an edge better than 01 tool steel and 1095 and is more corrosion resistant. It takes a very sharp edge and is fairly easy to resharpen. The EX-F01 blade features a durable, non-reflective black, green, or tan Cerakote® ceramic coating that provides additional corrosion resistance.

Tool : The hidden storage spaces in the handle of the EX-F01 can be used to store small survival items. A Torx wrench nested in the handle allows easy removal of the scales to access the compartments. Milled recesses in the scales match up with the skeletonized compartments in the tang.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Japanese Folding Table - SOTO FieldHopper Mini Pop Up Table ST-630 - Review

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Luke has been testing out a Japanese Folding Table for the last couple of months and it is time for the review!  This is the SOTO Field Hopper Mini Pop-Up Table (ST-630).

Agenda Free Link :

Price : Retail price is $40. At the time of filming it was $62 on amazon but it was $36 on Campsaver.

Weight : 14.1oz with bag

Materials : Table Top: Aluminum. Legs: Stainless steel – Nylon storage bag

Measurements -

When Open : W 11.7 x D 8.3 x H 3.1 inches

When stowed : W 11.7 x D 4.3 x H 0.7 inches


Book style table which opens and closes….like a book.

Can be used for just about anything; I like to bring this along when I am going to be doing some cooking as it makes an excellent surface to prep and to cook on.  If you are going to use it to cook on, you may need a tall wind screen to block out the wind.

You can even dual use it; for an example, you could use it as a night stand in your tent; put your phone on it, you glasses, whatever you have in you pockets.  That’s just an example that comes to mind.

If you use a tarp for camping or a tent without a floor, this gives you a clean/dry place to place some items so that they don’t get muddy.

Pros :

Excellent quality
Excellent design
Easy to deploy and put up
Good sized storage bag – large enough for table and a windscreen
Not flimsy at all

Cons :

A little heavy – definitely a luxury item

Costly but at the same time, comparable to other products that are on the market.  There are a handful of similar products and most of them are around the same cost.

If you want one of these, make sure to pay attention to the details so that you don’t pay too much for these.  You can find them on Ebay but the shipping fees can be high.  The same applies for Amazon; some sellers charge for shipping, some don’t.

Monday, January 6, 2020

These are the Winners! Christmas Hammock Giveaway

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It is time to announce the winners of the Go-Outfitters Hammocks as part of the Christmas Giveaway!

A special Thank You to Go-Outfitters for making this giveaway possible.  It was incredibly generous of them to donate these hammocks to the channel so make sure to check them out.

Email :

Agenda Free Link :

Thank you to Go! Outfitters for making this giveaway possible; make sure to check out for a wide range of gear and products including specialized cordage, hammocks, under quilts, and more.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Setting Up a Day Camp in an Ice Storm

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Freezing rain hit the area and roads are closed;
in this episode, Luke is exploring the mountains alone and sets up a Day Camp in the ice and rain!

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Hot Tent Challenge Part 2 - Onetigris Iron Wall Tent - Test Night

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This is part 2 of the Hot Tent Challenge!

The majority voted to use the Black Orca Iron Wall Tent and now it is time to see just how waterproof that it is.  Will it leak?  Will we have problems which need to be addressed and fixed?

Find out now!

With the Hot Tent Challenge, this is the order;

Part 1 involves a setup, overview and initial impressions of the tent which you decide to base the challenge around.

Part two will be to test out its waterproof abilities to learn if anything needs to be addressed before moving on to the next step.

Part 3 will be the installation of a stove jack and fixing issues.

With Part 4 we will locate and install a stove.

Part  5 Lastly it will be the adventure with the stove itself.


Agenda Free Iron Wall Link :

Agenda Free Wild Haven Link :