Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

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Andrew's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking
Running
Skiing

Andrew's Bio

I moved to Jackson, WY to get my PhD in outdoor playtime experiences. All winter I live to ski, and all summer I search for epic mountain bike trails.

I am energized by the idea that every day can be the best one of my life.

Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on June 7, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Ready to dance down whatever you put in front of it, the HDR 650B is quite the quiver killer. If you're riding a ton of park or hard DH, you may be more apt to stick with the 160mm travel/26" version, but I love the subtle improvements that the 27.5" wheels bring about, and haven't been feeling any lack of oomph for suspension.

Really, the only complaints you hear tend be be on internet forums (cough mtbr cough) are that 1) there isn't enough travel and 2) rear tire clearance. To that, I think a 140mm front fork (34mm ideally) mates really well with the 130mm rear, and while it's not ideal for hucking off your roof to flat, it is completely at home getting bashed down the gnar in your local (or EWS) race. The DW-Link pedals (and climbs) wonderfully while providing really active squish in the rough spots, and it ends up feeling like more than 130mm. (That's what she said...)

I'm running a Hans Dampf 2.25 rear and think it's a nice match for my "enduro" build, and haven't had any problems with tire clearance.

Consult the reviews here + the rest of the internet/magazines...but if you can, get out and demo an Ibis. You'll be psyched, and compared to similar products, your wallet will be pleased with your purchase.

(3)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on June 7, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

I've been rocking the Pace shorts for the past couple years because of their breathability & stretchtasticness. They end up serving as my go-to hiking/trail running/workout shorts due to their light weight and range of motion. I really dig them while on the bike because they won't get caught on anything...but this does come with a compromise: the inseam is short enough (14") that my knees are exposed..so if you aren't confident enough to show your patellas off, you may prefer the 8Track or Descent shorts ;)

The lightweight material is also very quick to dry...bonus.

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on May 26, 2014

5 5

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

I took my first ride wearing the Smith Forefront last night. Basic adjustments were quick and easy (twist dial at the back, chin strap, ear triangle- to use technical terms) and I really didn't think about the helmet until towards the end of my 2 hour ride. The Forefront only came to mind several times as I pedaled towards the sun and thought about how my visor (neon orange) highlighted the colors and looked light something I should instagram, but I was having such a good time I forwent social media. Roughly an hour later as I slowly chugged up Hagen's Highway trail, I realized I could feel cooling air coming through the "straws" of the Forefront's core. Granted, I've got short hair, but I've never really noticed this before. I was impressed. I'll update this after a few more rides, but it's a solid start. I've got to get my hands on the GoPro mount to see how it compares to the stability of the "vented helmet strap" that I'd usually use.

(4)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford posted a video about on April 5, 2014

March 2013 I got to ski Retallack for several days with the Orage team. We had a bunch of fresh snow and tended to stay within the trees. I was on the 192s, which would have really enjoyed some massive lines, but they were surprisingly nimble in tight spaces. I think for most applications, 186 is plenty of surface area. If you're going to be able to have pow and a nice slope to play on, you're obviously psyched, but doubly so if you're surfing on these.

(2)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on January 20, 2014

Powerful and playful
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm really pleased that the Influence has remained more or less untouched from last year, the exception being the cosmetics...and I think it's sweet because it's the orange makes it way safer when you're combining hunting and big lines. (not that I've ever done that...)

So, I feel the Influence is a really predictable, strong ski that doesn't punish you for mistakes. It's fun to play around on but will have your back when you get into some serious $#!*.

Despite being the 115mm waist, they can rip hardpack and groomers- while still giving the float in really deep situations.

The 21m turn radius feels true when you rip a big gs turn, but the ski never dictates the turn shape- it feels comfortable going from a straightline into a dump speed schmear, and then into whatever else you'd like.

The early rise and taper at tip and tail help the Influence ski shorter than the number indicates when you're slarving turns or in a tight situation...until you open it up and have all the stability for runouts in chunder.

On the subject of chunder... this ski is super fun in crud & chopped up snow. The wood & metal help the ski stay damp and stable until you pick a bump to pop off of and load those carbon stringers up...and then you're touching back down 20 ft later.

I'm 6ft, 165lbs without pack, and the 192cm is my go-to ski. I've used the 186cm with Dukes and it felt great and now I'm trying the 192s with a CAST touring setup...and we'll see if I'm strong enough to really tour with that, because it's not exactly a rando race ski.

(3)

 

Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on December 1, 2013

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've got mine mounted with my first Dynafit bindings and have found them to be a really fun and reliable touring setup. Versatile turn shape allows you to go from bouncing through tight spots to surfing into wide open terrain. Taper, early rise, camber and sidecut all come together to provide a predictable, intuitive nature to the ski. It's got good energy and pop, but does have an eventual limit in terms of torsional rigidity- but for me that's been a rare experience. Overall, this is an energetic take-me-anywhere kind of ski that encourages you to flow and play with the terrain rather than destroy it.

(1)

 

Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on October 22, 2013

Lightweight but burly
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

Lightweight & avoiding the unnecessary, you can roll the Seven Prolite nicely into it's own hood- about the size of a basic first aid kit. The jacket has stood up to significant scruff-age on rocks and trees without any markings. Seams and other details are very clean.
The large interior bin pocket is nice for keeping goggles close at hand but out of the elements, and the chest pocket has a mesh inside with slit opening for a cord- easy spot for my shuffle.

Breathability and waterproofing are as should be expected for a garment at this level- top notch. Big pit zips further aid dumping steam while bootpacking or skinning. The hood is large enough to fit over a helmet, but it does pull the collar up really high- beneficial when it's nuking, but borderline claustrophobic without opening the curved zipper just a bit. There is a tiny layer of microfleece along the collar making it friendly on the face.
Fit is true to size, not too baggy.

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 31, 2013

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I think that the Shimano XT line provides excellent bang for you buck. Strong, relatively light, and really solid performance. It's a great workhorse line, at a price you can generally stomach. I was only disappointed when I realized I couldn't adjust the tension on the clutch mechanism. (Edit- clutch is adjustable, see comments below). Even with the clutch engaged and proper chain length (on a 1x10 Ibis Mojo HD) I wanted to tighten things up to prevent chain slap that was still occurring over really rough descents. On my newest bike I threw down on the XTR Shadow Plus on which you can adjust the clutch.

(1)

 

Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 31, 2013

Helmets only work if you wear them...
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

...and you only wear things if you like them. 1) (IMO) This helmet looks rad. 2)It fits great and the micro adjustments allow you to get it dialed. 3)Super easy to do some climate adjustments...opening or closing different vents gives you a lot of freedom to keep your head feelin' proper. 4)Keeps your noggin safe!

(1)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 31, 2013

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Every morning I brew coffee in a french press and fill up this Hydro Flask. It's large enough to prevent the need for constant fill ups (for me, at least) and the seals are excellent. No leaks, no loosening...and the flip lip is solid and easy to open and close with one hand. It does a tremendous job of maintaining the temperature of your beverage...better than any other travel mug I've used. Keep it close by when you're on the road so you can avoid use of disposable cups!

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 10, 2013

Stay dry and steezy
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

Comfortable, roomy fit without being too baggy and getting caught on stuff. Quite durable and shrugs off branches and other trailside gnar. The hood is large and fits well over my open face helmets without problem. Breathes well, but most importantly keeps you dry. It packs down nice and small & I toss it inside my Dakine Nomad pack anytime there is a chance of rain. Zippered pockets are handy for light items but if you're riding aggressively heavier items (cell phone or multi tool) will bounce the jacket around because the shell is quite light.
The red looks great on a dreary day, too!

(2)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 10, 2013

Don't leave home without it!
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

So light and packable that it's more or less a part of my first aid kit. Breathes really well while blocking the wind. Perfect for a chilly start to the ride or while waiting along a windy ridge line for your friends to catch up. Hiking, running, biking, and ski touring...times when your activity keeps your body warm, but you are want to avoid the bite of the wind. If you remove it to change layers in a windy place, make sure it doesn't blow away...because it's so light that it certainly could!

(2)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 10, 2013

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

I often wear more casual sunglasses that are decent for athletic endeavors because, well, I think I look cooler. However, now when it comes time to go for a real ride, you can't deny the performance of some top of the line V2 shades. I really enjoy the orange lenses for busting in and out of shade and sun, but the simple clear lense absolutely kills it later in the evening or a stormy day.

Swapping lenses is very straightforward and quick. They're light, good coverage (no eye watering) and I forget that I have them on...until my sweaty head starts dripping onto them. They can't help with that! The adjustable nose piece also helps dial the fit to your face.

(1)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 10, 2013

A great "go to" pack.
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I use this pack for almost every ride. Adequate space for first aid kit, a rain layer, extra food, cameras, tools, tubes, pads, etc. I find the small base side pocket with a forward facing zipper is ideal for my multi tool, because you can access it without taking the pack off. The outermost portion is handy for stowing knee pads or your full face if you're on a long climb. I appreciate the full sized bladder. There are two fleece lined pockets- the internal one is handy for my cell phone or GoPro, and I save the larger glasses pocket for the...well, glasses.

I've got a lot of other packs, but I choose this one 98% of the time. (For serious adventures, the Apex may be more appropriate. For my road rides, I go with my Amp.)

(2)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on August 31, 2012

The Cats Pajamas
5 5

I was lucky enough to help in testing and tweaking this version of the Influence 115, and they are far and away the best of the skis I've been on in the last...well, ever. You can read the details in the description, or what the product video on Line's site...but know that these are remarkably playful skis with some badass roots. I would say if you sent Pollard's Opus to the gym all fall and had it listen to Rage Against the Machine, the result at the end of November would be the new Influence 115. Ready to destroy the mountain (if necessary) but equally fun to shred even if the mountain isn't covered in fresh.

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 14, 2012

5 5

James is spot on with his review. Comfortable against the skin, though I mainly use it as a mid layer for skiing. This spring and summer I've been tossing it in my hydration pack as an extra layer when I'm hiking or biking. Doesn't look dorky, doesn't hold your funk (unless you're getting extra funky), and fits perfectly.

(1)

 

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Andrew Whiteford

Andrew Whiteford wrote a review of on July 2, 2012

5 5

I've had one pair of these in my rotation of socks for "real" activity (biking/hiking/running) for about 6 years now. They've outlived all my other socks. Spending $15 bucks or so on socks isn't fun or exciting, but it's great to only have to do it twice a decade. I'm going to order a couple pairs now and just hope they last as long! They're light, breathable, and wool for the win.

(0)

 

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