Free 2-Day Shipping Over $50 Order by 12/20*
Connor Johnson

Connor Johnson

Gearhead

Salt Lake City, Utah

Connor Johnson's Passions

Biking
Running
Skiing
Hiking & Camping

Connor Johnson's Bio

Howdy! I work as one of our Expert Gearheads - I specialize in skiing (resort & backcountry touring, I don't discriminate in my powder hounding), mountain biking, hiking & camping. I'm happily semi rad! When I'm not getting lost in the woods, you'll catch me tinkering with my bikes, snappin' photos, and eating burritos.

Some of my favorite trips I've done have been bikepacking the Colorado Trail from Denver to Durango, following the snow up & down the Powder Highway in Canada, and roadtripping with my brother to find the best trailheads & singletrack west of the Mississippi!

All of the photos in my reviews are either my own or one's that friends have shot of me enjoying the gear! Check out my latest adventures on my Instagram @connorjuliusjohnson

For any gear questions or adventure advice, give a shout to cojohnson@backcountry.com or call me at 801.204.4547

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on December 14, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: L/XL

I got some Bjorn Daehlie gear for winter training and activites in Salt Lake City, including these. I spend my time running and road riding to cross train as well as backcountry skiing. I'm 5'11" and 175lbs and got the L/XL. I likely should have gone with the M/L but this is a pretty great base layer. Its a bit long and long sleeves, but like that for being able to curl up my hands in if its a cold day and without gloves.

I would say that the material is soft, but still durable enough that it seems like it will hold up to at least a few seasons of training and skiing. I do like the quarter zip though, its an easy way to dump heat and regulate those temps. These will be a go to for me for cold weather activities this year.

I would absolutely recommend this to someone looking for a good midweight base layer. I've also mountain biked with it as a base layer in 25 degree weather and it did great with an outer shell. I plan on using it for touring in the backcountry as soon as we get more snow!

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on December 14, 2017

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

I got some Bjorn Daehlie gear for winter training in Salt Lake City, including this. I spend my time running and road riding to cross train as well as backcountry skiing. I'm 5'11" and 175lbs and got a size medium. It fits true to size. The cut of the top is a bit interesting.

I just want to make it clear what you're buying - the mesh is pretty much see through and the way these pants are designed ends up being pretty specific to their intended use, that being high aerobic activity. Its a bit of a crop top with merno mesh being pretty snug around the bell. I will say that I'm not willing to post a photo of myself wearing them, but the merino mesh is very much see through, the product photos show this.

If you plan on doing a seriously high intensity aerobic activity and plan on wearing an outer layer, I could see these being a great option. Not sure these would be the first base layer option I'd recommend to most people unless you plan on mostly nordic skiing with it.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on December 14, 2017

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

I got some Bjorn Daehlie gear for winter training in Salt Lake City, including these. I spend my time running and road riding to cross train as well as backcountry skiing. I'm 5'11" and 175lbs with a 32" inseam and waist and got the size medium. It fits true to size, but the cut of the pants is a bit interesting.

I just want to make it clear what you're buying - the mesh is pretty much see through and the way these pants are designed ends up being pretty specific to their intended use, that being high aerobic activity. With that said they are very form fitting, though not uncomfortable. I will say that I'm not willing to post a photo of myself wearing them, but the merino mesh is very much see through.

If you plan on doing a seriously high intensity aerobic activity and plan on wearing an outer layer over it, I could see these being a great option. Not sure these would be the first base layer option I'd recommend to most people unless you plan on mostly nordic skiing with it.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on December 11, 2017

Fun, Light, Touring Ski Quiverkiller
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I am 5'11" and weigh 180lbs and bought the 183cm size. I ski relatively aggressively and was looking for a touring specific ski. I wanted a quiver killer for the backcountry, that being a one ski to do it all: everything from powder days to spring skiing. I was looking for a lightweight, midfat (100mm-110mm) underfoot, and reasonably priced touring ski. I mounted these at the Voile recommended mount with G3 Ion 12's.

Pros:
-These ski really well. They aren't overly stiff, but don't feel like a noodle either. Something I'd note though is for someone who is looking for a stiffer ski or is a bit heavier than I am, these may feel a bit soft. Have yet to have skied anything deeper than 6", but they've ripped it up so far.

-These are pretty lightweight. There are lighter skis out there, but for the price, durability, and performance, its pretty hard to beat.

-They are made in the USA, which is not something that a whole lot of brands can say these days. (They're made in SLC, Utah, actually right down the street from where this review is being written.)

Cons:
-As with many rockered skis, these do ski a bit short. I don't mind due to liking a shorter touring ski, but something to make note of.

-I already had a bit of the topsheet scraped off. Probably because of the new, sharp edges and doesn't affect anything other than cosmetically, but slightly annoying to see.

Overall:
These are a really solid, lightweight all mountain ski. They've skied well on everything so far from hardpack to a bit of powder, but as with all of my items, I'll check back in if there's more to note or anything changes!

(0)

 

0 Comments

0 Comments

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 29, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Bleed a man's brakes, he'll have stopping power for a bit, teach a man to bleed his brakes, he'll have stopping power forever. For the cost of bring your bike to a shop to have them bled a single time, you could pick this up and learn to do it yourself.

Literally everything you need to bleed them, its not hard to do. I'm an intermediate, self taught mechanic who has learned everything from Youtube. Super easy to do. Took me a bit when I first learned, now am able to bleed brakes for buddies and they're stoked on it too!

Let me know if you have any questions on bleeding your brakes or if you'd like to pick up a bleed kit yourself - my direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can email me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 13, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: 32x32

I am 5'11" and 175lbs - have a 32" waist typically. I went with 32" x 32" - these fit spot on, maybe even a bit of room to roll the cuffs if you like that. They do not run large, they are true to size.

They have a ton of stretch to them, which is something I personally love in jeans. - especially a more slim fitting one. I don't climb a ton, but you could go straight from work to the climbing gym and not skip a beat. While they're definitely a slim -ish fit, they aren't tight by any means. Stylish enough to go out in but still durable enough to have as a work pants.

Some stretchy jeans do have a sort of weird Lyrca feel to them, these pretty much just feel like jeans. I haven't done a ton of active stuff in these, but I would imagine the CoolMax would help. I have the darker Heritage Rinse and they're a great color. I'd personally go that route.

If you're looking for a rad pair of stretch denim for yourself or a significant other, look no further. I would absolutely recommend them again and again. If you have any questions on sizing or would like help putting in an order, give a shout - my direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com.

(1)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 9, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: Runs large
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

I'm 5'11" and about 175lbs - I can often be on the fence between medium and large. Medium is absolutely the way to go in this case. Marmots almost always feel a touch on the bigger side for me. With that said, the medium fits great - the cut allows for a bit of room (you could wear a thicker base layer if you needed) and still have plenty of mobility. I got the Dark Spruce color and its rad! Cool other color options too.

I like that it has the look & almost feel of down, but is synthetic. A lot of synthetic jackets have somewhat of a bulky or funky feel to them, this doesn't at all in the slightest. I haven't packed it into a stuff sack or a pack yet, but would imagine I'll have plenty of doing so through the winter for backcountry touring.

The pocket situation is fine - has 2 main outside pockets that are pretty big and one inner one for your phone / gypsy trinkets / etc.

This is a great mid layer piece or even stand alone for cold weather. If you have any questions on the sizing of it or if its the right jacket for you, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be happy to help - my direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can email me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(1)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Such a slick ski bag!
5 5

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

I already have a ski bag (Dakine Fall Line bag) but this thing is so slick. Really impressed with it in the very briefy time I was able to check it out. Here's why:
-The bag is able to be rolled up in a more compact way than more other ski bags. I can speak from experience, the Fall Line Bag is bulky. Its a problem I didn't know I had. It also can be rolled to adjust for different ski lengths when in use.
- If you're traveling with skis, you can pretty much assume you'll have at least another bag to go along with it. Pretty much all of their bags are able to link up to the ski bag and you make a little caravan of bags that are easy to wheel around.
- Not only is it easy to wheel around, it has a strap that you can put around your body and have both hands free. You can wear a backpack if you'd like, but your other bags (provided that they're DB bags) are already getting wheeled with your skis. Both hands free. Carrying your skis and potentially all of your other luggage. Wrap your head around that, its a game changer!

Feel free to reach me at my direct line 801.204.4547 or cojohnson@backcountry,.com if you have any other questions on it or if you'd like help placing an order!

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

My favorite trail running shorts!
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm 5'11" and 175 lbs with a 32" waist. I purchases the medium and they fit great. Straight up, I love these shorts. I don't have a ton of running shorts, but of the handful I do have, these are by far my favorite.

Pros:
- Merino liner wicks nicely and doesn't get that perma funk smell. Its also incredibly comfortable.
- The back pocket is plenty big for a phone, though I do still have an iPhone 5s - not positive how bigger phones would fit.
- Long enough that they don't feel like dorky short shorts.

Cons:
- Though the Merino liner is lightweight feeling, I haven't spent much time in it running in full on summer heat. I might worry that they would be too hot.

If you'd like help with size or putting in an order, don't hesitate giving a shout at my direct line 801.204.4547 or my email cojohnson@backcountry.com and I'd be happy to help!

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Great Gear Range on Gravel Bike
4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I was looking to drop the front derailleur on my beater CX/Gravel/Commuter Diamondback Haanjo trail and realized I could make my current Ultegra 11sp rear derailleur work with a Wolftooth Roadlink and this SLX 11-40 cassette. I went with the SLX to save a little dinero, even though its a bit added weight.

For the record, my drivetrain previously was a FSA 2x crankset, an Ultegra front and rear (medium cage I think) derailleur, and a 11-32 cassette. I went to the Rival 1 crankset, an SLX 11-40 cassette (Item #SHI00C1), and a Wolftooth Roadlink (Item #WFC0006). I'm running it with a Sram 11sp chain and it works flawlessly. I do wish the Ultegra derailleur had a clutch to keep chainslap down a bit on rougher CX terrain, but the shifting itself works flawlessly with the Wolftooth Roadlink.

If you have any questions on whether or not this is right for your derailleur or updating your drivetrain to a 1x, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be happy to help! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Makes a 11-40 cassette work W/  1x Crank
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I was looking to drop the front derailleur on my beater CX/Gravel/Commuter Diamondback Haanjo trail and realized I could make my current Ultegra 11sp rear derailleur work with this Roadlink.

For the record, my drivetrain previously was a FSA 2x crankset, an Ultegra front and rear (medium cage I think) derailleur, and a 11-32 cassette. I went to the Rival 1 crankset, an SLX 11-40 cassette (Item #SHI00C1), and a Wolftooth Roadlink (Item #WFC0006). I'm running it with a Sram 11sp chain and it works flawlessly. I do wish the Ultegra derailleur had a clutch to keep chainslap down a bit on rougher CX terrain, but the shifting itself works flawlessly with the Wolftooth Roadlink.

If you have any questions on whether or not this is right for your derailleur or updating your drivetrain to a 1x, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be happy to help! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Great Bang For Your Buck 1x Crankset
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Looking for a 1x crankset for a gravel or cyclocross bike that isn't going to break the bank? Look no further, the Rival 1 has it all and does a great job with it. I was looking to drop the front derailleur on my beater CX/Gravel/Commuter Diamondback Haanjo trail and the BCD & bolt pattern on the FSA 2x crankset was funky, meaning I decided a GXP threaded bottom bracket & the Rival 1 crank was my solution. It isn't a carbon crank, but I don't need one.

For the record, my drivetrain previously was a FSA 2x crankset, an ultegra front and rear (medium cage I think) derailleur, and a 11-32 cassette. I went to the Rival 1 crankset, an SLX 11-40 cassette (Item #SHI00C1), and a Wolftooth Roadlink (Item #WFC0006). I'm running it with a Sram 11sp chain and it works flawlessly. I do wish the Ultegra derailleur had a clutch to keep chainslap down a bit on rougher CX terrain, but the shifting itself works flawlessly.

If you have any questions on whether or not this is the right crankset for you, what bottom bracket you'll need with it, or updating your drivetrain to a 1x, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be happy to help! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Aggressive 29" Shred Rig
4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The Following is back! I'm 5'11" and have a 32" inseam - the demo I rode was a medium, but made me realize that even with the MB (more better)'s increased reach, I would absolutely go to the large. I'm currently riding a SB5.5 as my daily driver bike so much of this review is having it compared to that (I know its not a direct apples to apples comparison, but also a 29'er, just a bit more travel than the Evil Following). I rode this on a XC style ride putting some serious miles, in some full on shuttle DH laps, and a few rides of between the two.

What I liked About the Bike:
- I will say that Evil Bike's DELTA suspension takes a bit of getting used to. I'm coming off Yeti's Switch Infinity & DW Link bikes that are a touch more lively feeling. This is feels more like a DH bike and I'd imagine what a downhiller's trail bike would want to look like. It grows on you though, by the end I wanted more and more and was sad to return the demo back after the greater part of a week of riding.
- The climbing of the Following is decent. I wouldn't say its the most efficient bike out there, but I will say that the climbing is good enough for the downhill capability that this has.
- Going back into the DH capability - for 120mm of travel in the rear, this rig rides fantastic. While its definitely not going to ride as well as well as a full on downhill bike, it certainly can keep up as the runt of the litter. It'll eat up bumps and rock gardens (I was thankful for the 29" wheels on this) and rips on mid size jumps.
- I like the integrated chain guide, slick to have on the bike.
- (This is from my review of our own build of the Following MB item #EVB000B, but going to keep it if you're looking for an idea of what components to spec your bike with). The components were on point - this is how I'd like my own bike to be spec'd. GX Eagle really is one of the best bang for your buck drivetrains out there right now - just felt crisp and on point. The Reverb felt great, especially with the 1x lever on it. Sram Roam 50 Carbon wheels were solid - no flex as can happen with aluminum 29'er wheels and seemed burly enough for getting rowdy. I rode this with a 130mm fork and think that's what I'd do if I were to build up a Following MB from the frame up myself. I have never been a fan of Schwalbes due to slashing sidewalls & puncturing tires and lo and behold I managed to puncture both the front and tire - at least Schwalbe is consistent, right? I'd say throw on some Maxxis Minions and have no fears.

What I didn't like:
- It does take a bit of getting used to. I didn't hop on and immediately love it, which I feel like a lot of Evil Bike owners do.. I grew to love it for sure, but takes a bit of a learning curve I suppose.
- I don't think the suspension sag set tool works as well as it should. I had to fiddle with the air pressure a few times to get it actually dialed.
- Emphasizing my dislike for the the Schwalbe tires - the Nobby Nic is a trail tire (and I was excited to try out the new Addix tire compound) and it did not live up to my expectation. Luckily, I'd be happy to help out swap out the tires for you before we even ship the bike out to you!

If you are wondering if this is the bike for you or are looking to build up a custom build on the Following MB, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be stoked to get you on an Evil of your own! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The Following is back! I'm 5'11" and have a 32" inseam - the demo I rode was a medium, but made me realize that even with the MB (more better)'s increased reach, I would absolutely go to the large. I'm currently riding a SB5.5 as my daily driver bike so much of this review is having it compared to that (I know its not a direct apples to apples comparison, but also a 29'er, just a bit more travel than the Evil Following). I rode this on a XC style ride putting some serious miles, in some full on shuttle DH laps, and a few rides of between the two.

What I liked About the Bike:
- I will say that Evil Bike's DELTA suspension takes a bit of getting used to. I'm coming off Yeti's Switch Infinity & DW Link bikes that are a touch more lively feeling. This is feels more like a DH bike and I'd imagine what a downhiller's trail bike would want to look like. It grows on you though, by the end I wanted more and more and was sad to return the demo back after the greater part of a week of riding.
- The climbing of the Following is decent. I wouldn't say its the most efficient bike out there, but I will say that the climbing is good enough for the downhill capability that this has.
- Going back into the DH capability - for 120mm of travel in the rear, this rig rides fantastic. While its definitely not going to ride as well as well as a full on downhill bike, it certainly can keep up as the runt of the litter. It'll eat up bumps and rock gardens (I was thankful for the 29" wheels on this) and rips on mid size jumps.
- I like the integrated chain guide, slick to have on the bike.
- The components were on point - this is how I'd like my own bike to be spec'd. GX Eagle really is one of the best bang for your buck drivetrains out there right now - just felt crisp and on point. The Reverb felt great, especially with the 1x lever on it. Sram Roam 50 Carbon wheels were solid - no flex as can happen with aluminum 29'er wheels and seemed burly enough for getting rowdy. I rode this with a 130mm fork and think that's what I'd do if I were to build up a Following MB from the frame up myself. I have never been a fan of Schwalbes due to slashing sidewalls & puncturing tires and lo and behold I managed to puncture both the front and tire - at least Schwalbe is consistent, right? I'd say throw on some Maxxis Minions and have no fears.

What I didn't like:
- It does take a bit of getting used to. I didn't hop on and immediately love it, which I feel like a lot of Evil Bike owners do.. I grew to love it for sure, but takes a bit of a learning curve I suppose.
- I don't think the suspension sag set tool works as well as it should. I had to fiddle with the air pressure a few times to get it actually dialed.
- Emphasizing my dislike for the the Schwalbe tires - the Nobby Nic is a trail tire (and I was excited to try out the new Addix tire compound) and it did not live up to my expectation. Luckily, I'd be happy to help out swap out the tires for you before we even ship the bike out to you!

If you are wondering if this is the bike for you, are looking to swap any components out, or interested in placing an order, don't hesitate giving a shout and I'd be stoked to get you on an Evil of your own! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or you can reach me at cojohnson@backcountry.com

(0)

 

0 Comments

Connor Johnson

Connor Johnsonwrote a review of on November 2, 2017

Compact Awesomeness
4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm 5'11" and and 175lbs. I ended up with the large - I likely could have gotten away with the medium also, but the fit of the large works well and isn't too tight fitting. I use this for trail running, mountain biking, hiking, and its great for travel as it packs up tight.

Pros:
- Its seriously small when its packed up - it packs into its own pocket. Its barely bigger than the size of an avocado. Its easy to pack into itself, but has room that makes me think it could be even smaller if need be.
- The hood is great and can fit up and over a beanie no problem.
- Like Kyle mentions below, it does fit in a fanny pack for mountain biking just fine. I'll one up him as I use the smaller Dakine Hot Laps pack and still have room for a tube, tools, and snacks in addition to the jacket. This is a cold wind / sporadic weather jacket that you can pull out of a nook of a backpack.

Cons:
- No other pockets than the small chest one, which I suppose is why its such a small jacket.
- Its got a DWR coating, but isn't a technical jacket.

Let me know if you have any other questions with it on intended use or sizing and I'd be happy to help! My direct line is 801.204.4547 or my email cojohnson@backcountry.com and I'd be happy to help!

(0)

 

0 Comments