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Josh Good

Josh Good

Unalaska Island, AK

Josh Good's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking
Paddling
Skiing

Josh Good's Bio

I'm a teacher in the Aleutian Islands, loving life. I do my best to ski the snow we get, but my real passion is kayaking. I've been paddling since I was a tike in PA. Moving to Alaska introduced me to sea kayaking in some of the (arguably) most beautiful places in the world. After spending several winters enduring Fairbanks' Arctic Chill, and a few summers paddling Prince William Sound, I got engaged, moved to this Awesome rock of an island, got married, and began dealing with the pre-teens that are my students. The kids can't believe the weather and difficulties my wife, dogs, friends, and I all endure to do what we love. I can't begin to imagine the influence and ideas I've created in their minds, but it's definitely for the better!

For 2015 I've set a goal to paddle 300 days or more. So if you visit Unalaska, look me up, and we'll go for a paddle cause I'm going today. And tomorrow.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on July 7, 2015

4 5

Thanks to Backcountry.com and JammyPack for hookin me up with JammyPack's Icechest to review for the backcountry.com community.

This unassuming soft cooler, clad in black, packs a serious punch. More like, packs some serious bevvies. Fitting 24 cans or 12 bottles, you can keep everyone supplied for an afternoon, not just with your favorite bev, but also with your choice of tunes- after all, you brought the speakers, you pick the music.

The the Icechest blasts your tunes out of two 3 watt speakers with power from any USB capable battery pack. We had no problem cranking the volume so that it could be heard from the other end of the yard or beach, or over the noise of air compressors, shop vacs, and running motors. The provided battery pack holds 4 AA batteries, and eats em up. I use a rechargeable powerbank to keep the tunes coming, but JammyPack also offers their own rechargeable pack (not included). Your music hooks too the speakers with a 3.5 mm headphone jack. (Where's the Bluetooth JammyPack?) The cords from the power and the music to the speaker run through the front pouch into a larger front pocket that provides some padding and has a spot for both an iPhone sized music player and a battery pack (a deck of cards would fit in each slot) with extra space for other goods.

To get at the goodness inside, the lid of the Icechest has a quick access port so that you don't have to fumble with the zipper and let out all the frosty air that's keeping everything nice and cool.. With its own block of insulation, it velcro's to the roof and swings open leaving a hole sized just right for a hand holding a can! When filling the JammyPack, the top zip allows full-on, uninhibited accesses for dumping in beers, ice, soda- if that's your jam, or heck, why not a watermelon?

The interior liner of the cooler provides a waterproof barrier over the insulation that feels like a soft floppy version of closed cell foam. The liner is kinda wrinkly and after a spilled beer (abuse) it can be tough to clean. Which brings up another issue- the exterior of this thing isn't waterproof. I've been hesitant to take my JammyPack out on the boat because of this, which is a bummer- because most of my summer activities involve the water. I've overcome this by on certain adventures because the whole thing is soft, so when the shows over and the beers are all gone, it squashes down and packs up nicely and can stuff into a dry bag.

Overall, the JammyPack Icechest has been a pretty outstanding addition to our adventures. On the few days I've left home with out it, my buds asked, "Where's the Jammy?!" It quickly became an integral part of our summer, from backyard cornhole games, to mountain hikes, to days spent sitting on the beach fishing.

Thanks again JammyPack for having the foresight to combine a two essential parts of a party: Bevvies and Tunes. As JammyPack says: Let there be Music!

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Josh Good

Josh Goodposted an image about on July 7, 2015

Connections

The JammyPack's speakers hook up to your phone or mp3 player (I guess you could even hook up a WalkMan if that's how you roll...) with a 3.5mm headphone jack (that's a normal headphone jack). The USB connects to the included battery pack (which eats 4 AAs) or your rechargeable battery pack (which JammyPack offers: http://www.backcountry.com/jammypack-rechargeable-battery?s=a)

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on June 10, 2015

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Bought this tent on steepandcheap.com for a pretty killer price, but no deal Howie.

To start off, I'm pretty well versed in tents. I've done a bit of guiding and plenty of camping myself, thus using many different tents. So I put it in quite a bit of research when looking for a lightweight shelter for my wife and I along with our two big dogs.. With all that, I was super stoked to get a new tent (as any happy camper should be), and when the Zephyr arrived I promptly set it up in the living room- much to this dismay of my dogs.

With the poles dialed in and after fastening the guy lines I transplanted the tent from living room floor to backyard.

After staking 'er down, I tossed over the fly and began tightening the attachment points. At this point the proverbial turd hit the proverbial fan, and things became less than ideal.

-The long section of the poles (which afford a ton of room on the interior of the tent) began to bow inwards. This was all before the tent's fly was even nearing taut. All the room from the high interior was lost with this bend. I would also assume that the tent's structural integrity was also compromised at this point.

- With the fly loosened and poles back to their expected stance, I began staking and tightening the guy lines. With this, the front center guy line tie point ripped the seam away from the fly.

With these two failures, I called it. I was super bummed and gave up on the tent. Like the title of this review says: Maybe I got a Lemon? And while Alps' service was willing to send a fly, this is not a tent I'd trust in the places I'm planning to take it. Sorry Alps, but I won't be purchasing any of your goods.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on May 22, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I?ve had my pair of Hiyaks for a bit over a week now, and have used them sea-kayaking every day since.


Sizing/fit: I wear a 12 in just about every pair of shoes I?ve ever owned, and the Hiyaks are no different. They fit fine with no socks, a 1.5 mm neoprene sock, waterproof socks, or a Smartwool like hiking sock.


Warmth: The water I paddle in is hovering just below 40 degrees right now, so a pair of waterproof or neoprene socks are a standard at this point. There?s a bit of cushion around the ankle and above the heel that also works as a bit of insulation. The rest of the inner shoe is lined with an almost grid-like quilted material- Astral calls it ?Airmesh?- that traps bits of air in the channels which leads to some warming. If I were standing in the sub-40 degree water for extended amounts of time, I?d have less than warm feet, but after a quick dip during loading, my feet stay plenty warm propped on my foot pegs inside my boat.


Drainage/Drying: One of the features that Astral touts about the Hiyak, along with their other shoes, is that they are better than traditional booties because of their ability to dry quicker than neoprene. If you have any neoprene gear, you?re probably well versed in the potential funk associated with the material. I?m not saying that the Hiyaks will be funk-free, but they do dry quickly. The outer shell is made of a hydrophobic bombproof 1000D nylon, so not absorbing water in the first place lends to drying quickly. As for the inside of the shoe, the Airmesh allows water in, but like all synthetics, allows water to drain quickly. With drain holes in the toe and heel paired with raised bumps/channels on the insole, any water that does enter (through those drain holes, the laces, or over the top) has an easy way out. When walking the water squishes out the toe (pretty fun little squirts), and when in the boat it drains out the heel holes. One thing I really like about the drain holes is that they act almost as a scupper- with a bit of nylon just inside them, they allow water out (and in) while keeping out a lot of the dirt and sand that comes with stirring up the bottom. As far as drying goes, Astral is right, the Hiyak is dry and ready for tomorrow. I paddle every day, and when I?m done I prop them up so they can drain and they?re good to go for the next day. The part that remains wet the longest is under the insole, but even that is set by paddle time.


Support: The shoes are pretty minimal; super lightweight and thin- both top and bottom. With this, they?re comfortable and fine for walking around, but they don?t offer a ton of support. I wouldn?t want to carry my boat any serious distance on a cobbley beach with them. The insoles allow some drainage with the circle patterns on them, but also provide some cushion for the rocky entries. If you?ve got high arches, you?re gonna need a bit of extra help. The part of the Hiyak that excels in support is the heel cup- its stout and great for resting your foot on while in your boat in true paddling fashion.


Soles: The soles on these have curved diamonds as a main tread pattern, and like high end snow tires, each diamond is siped with small zig-zig slits. The traction is about as good as it gets for such a low profile sole.


Laces: Obviously, laces are the best way to get premium fit in a shoe, and the laces in the Hiyak do exactly that. I?ve found that really cranking down the laces puts some unneeded pressure on certain spots and becomes uncomfortable, and preferring loose shoes (I rarely tie any shoes I wear) I usually tie them pretty loose. Because I tie them loose, the laces are a bit short, so I skip the top lace hole (like anyone does in a pair of sneakers) which I wasn?t a huge fan of anyway. (I like the height of the shoe, just not having the laces tight that high on my ankle!) The Velcro strap across the top is great for keeping the laces from catching on anything inside of the boat, and also helps to keep the knot tied.


Continued Below...

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on May 13, 2015

Less than Calm days
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

On days that are less than calm, I don the Bomb Dry Top. Right now the water is around 36 degrees, so a spill would definitely be chilly! The wrists on the bomb are stout, with tough coated neoprene over the latex wrist seals. The softer neoprene guard around the neck's latex seal is less abrasive, and while a bit restricting (better that than loose and letting water in), it is comfortable and easily forgettable by the time you're in the boat. The material of the top is great. Not only is it super waterproof, but it is tough enough to stand up to pricks and pokes. The shoulders and tops of the arms are lined an even burlier material. All these factors combined with a good fit and a comfortable waistband help this top to live up to its name. Well done Bomber Gear. Well done.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on April 30, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

I got these babies in a size Large, but no dice.
I never got to swing a hammer with them, but have impressions to share...

First off, we'll talk sizing of the John Henry. I followed Fly Low's size chart, and I was just inside the top end of the Large range. When they arrived, I got one glove on- with some serious pulling- and the second glove was even more of a chore. Once on they were way too tight (which was pretty obvious right from the get-go). Getting them off, that was a different story.

So they didn't fit, and I have no idea how they'd hold up for skiing, or anything else for that matter.

But what I do know, is that they are a Rad pair of gloves!

The blue (or Lake, as they call it) was a good color.

The seams were adequately placed as to not irritate fingers (if they fit correctly) or cause premature wear.

The leather on the fingers and palms seemed to be pretty stout and was somewhat stiff, but I'm sure they'd break in quite nicely and within a reasonable amount of time.

The material on the back of the hand was nice and airy, and even with my big mitts stuffed inside, allowed for a reasonable amount of breathability. These would be great for keeping hands cool while schussing downhill or working on the slopes on all but the hottest days of the season.

So all in all, I wish they'd have worked for me, but well done Fly Low, the John Henry seems like it has some serious potential to live up to its name.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on April 1, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've had this paddle for going on 4 years now, so this more in-depth review is an update to my previous review.

I love this paddle. (Take note of the period.)

Right now I'm working on a year of paddling- going for 300+ days of paddling this year and nearing the 70 day mark. I paddle in all kinds of weather, including strong consistent wind and strong wind gusts, and waves (non-breaking waves) of all sizes including wind generated chop and large swell. Our temps are pretty mild, maybe cold by some standards, with winter time temps between 25F and 45F and summer between 45F and 65F. I usually start on beaches with small rocks rather than sand, and paddle in the salty sea. So there's that for putting the amount and type of use into perspective.

I'm 6 feet tall with a wider grip and paddle a boat that's 22 inches wide. I've got the 240cm, which- according to the sizing chart- is a bit long for my situation. Regardless, I think it's an outstanding fit.

This paddle is exactly what it says it is, a low angle touring paddle, and is perfect for that. Its boundaries can be stretched to rougher days and speedier paddling, but the performance declines in situations when a fatter blade is needed.

On a calm day the Camano's blade is the perfect combination of width, length, curve, and overall shape. The blade pulls through the water easily and provides consistent and un-fluttering propulsion. The blade allows good water entry and exit, and also has sufficient surface area for strong supportive bracing when needed. I've had this paddle out in plenty of days that were or became less than calm. In rougher seas more of a high angle stroke is needed, and despite its narrow profile, the Camano holds its own. With waves, the longer blade tends to catch on the crest as it exits the water, and when you really need the power of a wider blade, there is some left to be desired. But, just as a skier with skis, a paddler should have a few paddles in their quiver!

The shaft of the Camano incorporates Werner's locking ferrule to adjust the feather angle of the blades. While my stickers with an arrow and the degree of angle are long gone, the inside of the ferrule has the numbers clearly printed where they have shown no wear. The big advantages this system really stand out in constant salt water use. Regardless of how a multi piece paddle locks, sand and dirt are the enemy, but paddles with the steel button tend to freeze up with all the salt exposure. I'm not sure exactly what's inside of the paddle working the mechanism (it's sealed so that it floats even when taken apart), but mine rarely has time to dry before the next day and is doing great. It goes together and comes apart without issue every day.

With all this use, the blade of my Camano is showing a bit of wear with scratches from loading and unloading on the beach, some on the back of the paddle, and very little around the edges. After 4 years of hard use, easily over 150 days, and probably nearing 1000 miles logged, this paddle is in outstanding shape and continues to provide high quality and light weight propulsion day in and day out.

This is an outstanding paddle.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodposted an image about on February 10, 2015

Everyday

I'm working towards paddling 300+ days this year, and this jacket has been my go-to. Even after spending repeated days being drenched by salty spray and pelted by wind driven rain, the material is still keeping my dry as a bone. The only wetness i'm getting is from face shots dripping down my chin- zippers are super water proof as well. I've got plenty of room in the shoulders for unrestricted movement. And after almost 3 months of solid use, the only spot showing wear is just under the hood between the shoulders- it's starting to pill from where my PFD rests in the middle of my upper back.

This jacket continues to be outstanding.

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Josh Good

Josh Goodwrote a review of on January 19, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: Runs small

Thank you to Backcountry.com and Ortovox for hand-selecting me to review this jacket for the benefit of the backcountry.com community.

Filling puffies with wool. Pretty cool idea, and sustainable too. Not to mention the ability of wool to stay virtually funk-less even after some high output use. The wool filling definitely feels different to the touch, but when wearing the jacket, it sits just like your average puffy. For its weight and its thickness, this jacket provides exactly the level of warmth you’d expect. The level of breathability, again, is just as you’d expect with any puffy- it keeps you toasty and allows the moisture out. And if you’re too warm with the jacket on, it’s not going to take up much space in your pack, this thing is super compressible and weighs in at just 12oz.

As far as sizing goes- make sure to size up. Ortovox being a European company runs small. I am usually on the border of Large and X-large, and the X-large in this jacket fits just right with not much extra room. Another thing that comes along with being European is that the zipper is backwards- a bit odd and frustrating at first, but no big deal once you’re used to it.

I’ve got the jacket in Black with bright green on the inside (I think they call it “Happy Green”). The black is super shiny, and seems almost reflective! It’s reversible, so I can wear it with the green side out, but the drawback is no pocket access. Back to superficial-ness, my zipper is white, and while I like the seemingly random color combos (check out some of Ortovox’s other stuff for more rad color combos), the white zipper is super dirty, especially right along my belly where it rubs on everything.

I’m really liking this jacket, but concerned about the longevity. No doubts about the quality or insulation, but the shell is super thin and I’m not the most careful person.. Also, the price seems a bit steep, but it is almost on par with other top-end lightweight synthetic puffies.

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