About Tim Sprinkle

Tim Sprinkle is a Denver-based writer and editor whose work has appeared in dozens of publications, including Outside, Backpacker and Wired.


Gear Review: Braven BRV-BANK Battery

Call me old-fashioned, but I’m not a fan of electronics in the outdoors.

Sure, I understand the safety reasons for carrying a cell phone in the backcountry. And I’ve been known to play around with GPS from time to time. … Continue reading

Gear Review: Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight & Watertight First Aid Kits

It should go without saying that a well-stocked first aid kit is an absolute must for every trip into the backcountry. Winter or summer, you can never be sure what will happen out there, and the mantra of every outdoor … Continue reading

Gear Review: Nokero Crestone N200 Solar Light Bulb

Here’ a twist on the whole backcountry lighting market: A solar-powered light that’s actually affordable.

What a concept.

Marketed by Nokero as “the most economical solar light on the market,” the $15 Crestone Solar Light Bulb (N200) is almost ideal … Continue reading

Gear Review: Chunks of Energy

Tasty. Natural. Energy foods. Turns out, these three things aren’t mutually exclusive.

The energy bars known as Chunks of Energy made me a believer.

Created more than two decades ago by a maple syrup harvester in western Massachusetts, these chewy … Continue reading

Gear Review: CLIF Bar Energy Products

CLIF Bar is no longer just about bars.

Granted, this is not breaking news. The company has been offering a range of energy products – including gels, gummy blocks, drink mixes and more – for years. But these days the … Continue reading

Gear Review: Skout Organic Energy Bars and Pumpkin Seeds

The market for healthy, organic outdoor foods has come a long, long way over the last 15-plus years. Driven by industry pioneers like CLIF Bar and others, energy products are no longer by default oddly-colored, sugar-filled options, and can now … Continue reading

Gear Review: Polaroid XS100 Extreme Edition HD Action Camera

Ah, the classic Polaroid camera. First introduced in the 1940s, the company’s iconic, instant-print cameras were a ubiquitous part of American life for generations, until the product was discontinued in 2007, complete with the square prints, the multi-use flashbulb “bars” … Continue reading

Gear Review: Awake Caffeinated Chocolate Bars

My first experience with a new caffeinated product – outside of the usual suspects like coffee, tea and soda – came in the late 90s via Penguin Peppermints, a straightforward combination of breath freshener and energy jolt that got me … Continue reading

Gear Review: Soldier 7800mAh Power Bank

When it comes to “should-you-or-shouldn’t-you?” regarding to the use of electronic devices in the backcountry, the debate is still open. Some argue that the conveniences of modern life – whether that list includes cell phones, tablet devices, or even portable … Continue reading

Gear Review: Slap Frozen Energy Drinks

Here’s a new concept. Instead of just mixing up an energy drink and sucking it down lukewarm in the middle of a workout, why not just freeze the whole thing and, well, turn it into some sort of slushy, pouch … Continue reading

Gear Review: Looptworks Noll Messenger Bag

So what makes a messenger bag special? It has to offer plenty of storage space for your daily essentials. It has to have plenty of pockets, to keep all of that gear organized. It has to be durable, to stand … Continue reading

Gear Review: Patagonia Northwall Softshell Pants

At first glance, the name of the Northwall softshell pants from Patagonia might seem to be a nod to the outdoor gear maker’s longtime competitor, The North Face. But in reality it is simply a reference to the mountaineer’s “cold … Continue reading

Gear Review: KEEN Portsmouth Shoe

It’s no secret that KEEN makes some seriously comfortable footwear. First the sandals, then the approach shoes, then the hiking boots … my love affair with KEEN is well documented.

Now the company has come out and created a casual … Continue reading

Gear Review: Julbo Explorer XL Sunglasses

So let’s get one thing out into the open to start: the difference between the Julbo Explorer XL sunglasses and the regular Explorers is the frame size. Why does that matter? If you have a “hard to fit face,” you’ll … Continue reading

Gear Review: Julbo Bivouak Sunglasses

What makes a pair of sunglasses unique? High quality lenses? Sure. Nifty styling? Why not. But, beyond that, the basic qualities of the sunglass – two lenses and a frame — are pretty well established.

Until now.

The Bivouak glasses … Continue reading

Gear Review: HornyToad Toad Traveler Bottle

What is every stainless steel water bottle on the planet missing?

Recipes for the end-of-day cocktails, of course.

HornyToad has the problem solved with its Toad Traveler bottle, which comes complete with 22 cocktail recipes printed on the side. Never … Continue reading

Gear Review: Patagonia Men’s P26 Mid A/C GORE-TEX Backpacking Boot

It takes a lot of work to come up with a new kind of hiking boot. Leather, nylon, waterproof, light weight, low rise … it has all been done before. That’s why Patagonia’s P26 Mid A/C backpacking boot is so … Continue reading

Gear Review: Patagonia Insulated Powder Bowl Jacket

A good backcountry snow jacket really only needs to be able to do two things: keep you warm, and keep you dry. Patagonia’s Insulated Powder Bowl jacket does both with style, with an insulating layer bonded to a two-layer GORE-TEX … Continue reading

Gear Review: Neova DNA Damage Control Sunscreen

Traditional sunscreen has a problem.

Although it does a generally good job of protecting the skin from the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays, it falls short when it comes to actually repairing already damaged skin. Sunscreen as most of … Continue reading

Gear Review: Bear Naked Treats

The Bear Naked brand began in 2002 with a line of homemade, all-natural granola, all whipped up and sold directly by co-founders Kelly Flatley and Brendan Synnott. A decade and a corporate buyout later – Bear Naked was purchased by … Continue reading

Gear Review: Canada Goose HyBridge Jacket

It’s amazing how far the technology behind goose down insulation has come in the last few years. What was once limited to bulky, once-size-fits-all, worthless in the rain, products has now evolved into a do-anything material that can be found … Continue reading

Gear Review: Chaco Credence Baa Nurl Boots

Strange name, extreme comfort. That is the idea behind Chaco’s Credence Baa Nurl boots, a winter, around town boot that fits like a high performance athletic shoe and is based on the feel of Chaco’s super supportive and super popular … Continue reading

Gear Review: KEEN Howser Wool Slippers

My experience with KEEN footwear can be summed up in one word: comfort. From their sandals, to their hiking boots, to their approach shoes, everything with KEEN starts with that signature, wide toebox, and comfort is the name of the … Continue reading

Gear Review: Icebreaker RedRam Base Layers

As opposed to those made from more traditional synthetic materials, merino wool base layers offer a number of distinct advantages. They are breathable, they’re warm, they’re sustainable and, perhaps most important for the day-to-day user, they are naturally stink proof.… Continue reading

Gear Review: Obermeyer Kenai Shell

There are generally two things I look for when shopping for a winter shell: light weight and breathability. And, for the most part, most products on the market these days meet my needs. Obermeyer’s Kenai shell adds the elusive … Continue reading

Gear Review: Brooks-Range Mountaineering BR Sweater

I have a problem with underfilled down jackets.

Sure, they’re easier to slip on than their overstuffed cousins. And, sure, they look a little more “normal” when worn around town with a pair of jeans. But, for me, the trade-offs … Continue reading

Gear Review: KEEN Pearson Mid Boots

It’s hard to overstate the value of a good approach shoe. It needs to be comfortable enough to slip into after a day in the hills, heavy duty enough to survive in a snow packed parking lot, loose enough to … Continue reading

An Interview with Filmmaker Hunter Weeks: The Mind Behind ‘Where the Yellowstone Goes’

Stretching nearly 700 miles through northern Wyoming and southern Montana, the Yellowstone River is probably best known as the longest undammed river in the lower 48 states. As a result, it’s also among the wildest waterways in America; twisting, turning … Continue reading

Wet and Wild: Snowmelt Contributing to Heavy Spring Runoff

There's a flipside to all the epic snow totals that the west has seen this past winter – equally epic spring runoffs.

Gear Review: Outdoor Research Northback Gloves

As far as I'm concerned, nothing ruins a good winter trip faster than a lousy set of gloves (except maybe leaky boots, but that's a story for another review). If they leave my fingers cold, or make my palms sweat, or make it tough to use my hands, I'm just not interested.

Gear Review: Columbia Majik Wands Gloves

In reality, there probably isn't much new technology out there to improve on the concept of the glove. Manufacturers got the whole wind protection, insulation formula down years ago.  But that isn't to say that the Majik Wands glove from Columbia doesn't do a great job of doing what gloves do best.

Canadian Pride: A Profile of GV Snowshoes

Given the popularity of the phrase “Made in America” in some circles, it should come as no surprise that “Made in Canada” carries similar sentiments north of the border.

Made in Vermont: A Profile of Dion Snowshoes

Bob Dion, the founder and owner of Dion Snowshoes, likes to think of himself as a racer first and a businessman second. And, given his background, that certainly makes some sense.

Gear Review: Seattle Sports DryDoc Waterproof DigiCase

At first glance, the task of protecting a smartphone in the outdoors seems pretty straightforward. Simply toss it in a zip close sandwich bag and hit the trail. But the reality is a little more complicated.

The Sound and the Fury: Regulating Snowmobile Use on National Forest Lands

The sport of snowshoeing is synonymous with the concept of quiet. Aside from the soft crunching of snow underfoot and the occasional gust of wind, few activities are as silent and reflective as snowshoeing (though fly fishing and summertime hiking do come to mind).

Gear Review: All Terrain WinterSport Skin Protectant/Sunscreen

It would be easy to jump right into the clichés when talking about All Terrain's WinterSport Skin Protectant/Suncreen. Peanut butter and jelly, peas and carrots, ebony and ivory… the fact is, this do-it-all winter skin cream really is more than the sum of its parts.

Snowshoeing Around the World: A Profile of Crescent Moon Snowshoes

Sometimes it seems like only cars and couches are made in America anymore.

Oh, and Crescent Moon snowshoes.

Based out of Boulder, Colo., Crescent Moon has been designing and building snowshoes in the Mile High State since 1998, growing from just three models to more than a dozen today. And, despite shipping some 20,000 sets of shoes in 2009, the company is an unashamedly small enterprise, occupying a cramped industrial space that's packed floor to ceiling (literally) with shipping boxes, inventory and snowshoes in various states of repair.

Curing Winter Sports Injuries With…Stem Cells?

For winter sports athletes, nothing can ruin a season quite like a knee or other joint injury. At best, you're looking at 6-12 months on the sidelines: going under the knife, working through months of rehabilitation and then trying to get back in shape before the snow melts.

Gear Review: National Geographic’s Trails Illustrated Maps

It takes a lot to improve on the concept of a map. After all, excluding GPS, it's not like too much has really changed in the area of navigation in the last century or so.

Book Review: Snowshoe Routes – Colorado’s Front Range

If anything, Colorado is home to an embarrassment of riches for winter sports enthusiasts.

High altitude snowpack? Check. Backcountry terrain? Check. Well maintained trail systems? Check.

The problem for snowshoers in the Centennial State often isn't “where to go” but where “else” to go.

Book Review: Hypothermia, Frostbite and Other Cold Injuries

Two facts for consideration:

1. Snowshoeing is a cold weather, winter sport.

2. Athletes who participate in winter sports put themselves at risk for a variety of sometimes severe cold weather injuries, including hypothermia, frostbite and more.

(This is hard-hitting information, I know.)

Book Review – Snowshoeing: From Novice to Master

Snowshoe Magazine
These days, there are essentially three ways get your feet wet in a new sport. You can either (1) grow up doing it, (2) spend some quality time with a private (and often expensive) instructor or group class, or (3) pick up a book and "wing it."