As I pack for a European walking tour with The Wayfarers, I’m astounded by the obscene pleasure I derive from planning what gadgets and goodies to bring. While my eldest sister, Kathy, who will join me for the trek, preps with language lessons and historic research, I get ready in true Gadget Girl form. I purchase a digital pedometer, download French music to iTunes, upgrade to the new BlackBerry Tour and the latest Flip video UltraHD.
But, it’s not only the techy toys that have me as excited for the adventure as my sister’s French lessons. It’s also the chance to put my favorite gear to work. Out comes the Outdoor Research rain hat I bought in Alaska last summer that has languished unused in my sunny New Mexico closet. Then there’s the Keen hikers I’ve been breaking in on the mountain trails near home. And, the Naneu camera backpack that’s just begging for a walk through southern France.
So, fellow gadget and gear addicts, if you were looking for an excuse to invest in a few more toys, read on….
Keen Targhee II hiker shoe: The Keen Targhee II waterproof cross-training shoes deliver tenacious traction, stability and comfort. Perfect for a French walking tour, a stroll around the neighborhood or wherever your multisport needs might take you. www.keenfootwear.com
Naneu Sahara 217F camera backpack: Perfect for a walking tour, the water resistant Sahara 217F is specially designed to fit everything I need on a shoot- two DSL bodies, a full range of lenses, flash, memory cards, plus lots of extras - without looking like a camera bag, including a dedicated handy heavily-padded compartment for my laptop. www.naneupro.com
Sigg water bottle: Got a thirst for saving the planet? You’ll dig a Sigg. Clean, sleek and stylish, the Swiss made aluminum bottles are my favorite alternative to plastic. I take one everywhere – in the car, on the trail, at my desk. www.sigg.com
BlackBerry Tour world phone: With world phone capabilities on a 3G network, a 3.2 MP camera and enhanced multimedia features, the BlackBerry Tour™ 9630 smartphone keeps me connected, whether it’s around the corner or around the world. People tell me that the purpose of travel is to disconnect. But, for me, it’s thanks to the BlackBerry, that I can be off eating foie gras in France AND accept the next dream assignment, sell a cover shot or share a new discovery with my twitter group. www.blackberry.com
Cocoon Traveler’s Tree Silk Travel Pajamas: Simple and stylish, these lightweight silk travel pajamas are perfect for active people and experienced travelers who are serious about packing light. www.cocoonusa.com
U Hydration tablets: My new favorite for planet-friendly on-the-go refreshment: 7-calorie delicious, healthy and natural with vitamins and electrolytes. Turn your water bottle into a deliciously refreshing pick-me-up. www.uhydration.com
Overland Equipment Cambridge Tote: Perfect for long-haul adventures yet stylish enough for Paris. Carry it as a briefcase, tote, or backpack; this tote has pockets for everything! www.overlandequipment.com
Patagonia Freewheeler suitcase: My husband and I both own this bag and won’t even look at another. Why would we? The designers at Patagonia seem to have thought of everything a traveler needs. Click here for my full review.
Lei Spa energizing facial mist: I discovered this travel beauty essential in Maui. Providing a refreshing spritz of mint, lavender and eucalyptus, it’s the perfect pick me up. And when my supply runs low, as much as I’d love the excuse to Maui, fortunately it’s available for purchase online. www.leispa.com
Flip Ultra HD vdeo camera: The mightly mini Flip UltraHD, is a sleek, high definition, YouTube-ready pocket camcorder with 4GB of built-in memory. Perfect for recording that smooth talking Frenchman, or the sights and sounds of nature or catching the excitement of market day. www.flipvideo.com
prAna Eden top: This top is a work of art and there’s no way it’s gonna hang on a wall. It’s too darn pretty and comfortable for that. Who says you can’t be fashionable and active? Not prAnah! www.prana.com
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