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Winter

Outdoors

SkiTaker lets you carry your skis using your feet

Downhill skis may give you an unmatched feeling of freedom and exhilaration when you're actually skiing, but they can be quite awkward to carry when you're not on the slopes. That's why a group of Spanish entrepreneurs has created the SkiTaker system. It allows users to clip the ends of their skis onto the sides of their boots, then "walk" their skis around vaguely like upside-down stilts. Read More

Outdoors

Forcite Alpine ski helmet has a camera, comms system, and other techy features

So, you think that a ski helmet is just supposed to protect your head? Well, the folks at Australia's Forcite Helmet Systems apparently believe that it should do a little more. Among other things, their Alpine helmet lets the user shoot video, talk on the phone, and alert the authorities if they crash – hopefully not because they were distracted by talking on the phone. Read More

Outdoors Review

Review: North45 scarf keeps your goggles from fogging up

Last March, we first heard about the North45 scarf. Created by Canadian entrepreneur Dimitri Poliderakis, it's designed to keep winter sports enthusiasts' faces warm while simultaneously not causing their goggles to fog up – a feat that regular scarves often can't manage. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, it went on sale at the end of last winter. I got a chance to try one out this winter, and I can tell ya right now ... it works just as advertised. Read More

Outdoors

Ice-fishing go-kart borrows the motor of its user's ice auger

Dedicated winter anglers will travel long distances across frozen lakes, in order to reach prime ice-fishing spots. While many of these fishermen use a snowmobile to do so, such vehicles can cost US$10,000 or more to buy new. Wisconsin-based sportsman Adam Ford, however, has come up with an alternative. He's created an ice-going go-kart that utilizes the motor of an ice auger, which the user would be carrying with them anyway. Read More

Outdoors

NuDown inflatable jackets insulate with air

Back in 2009, Utah-based company Klymit came up with a wild idea for cold-weather clothing: replace traditional insulation with gas. Its NobleTek inflatable clothing earned plenty of attention from the outdoor and technology industries, but it never really seemed to catch on. Under the guidance of start-up NuDown, the inflatable insulation has been repackaged into a simpler form. In place of a mandatory argon gas inflator, it now uses a simple hand pump to adjust your core warmth. Read More

Science

De-icing system targets wind farm efficiency in cold climates

Given that the sterotypical image of the world's northern regions involves howling winds, why don't we see more wind turbines in such places? Well, it's largely because those turbines' blades would ice up a lot. The added weight could cause them to turn more slowly, to break down by throwing off their balance, and it could cause their operators to shut them down during potentially icy weather. The European Union Windheat Project is aiming to change that, with a carbon nanotube-based de-icing system. Read More

Nokian develops winter tires with retractable studs

Studded tires may make it easier to drive on ice, but those same studs will quickly wear down when used on dry asphalt – plus, they'll create a very rough, noisy ride. The problem is, most winter drivers encounter both types of road conditions, often even on the same trip. That's why Nokian has created a snow tire with retractable studs. Read More

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