Cool Outdoor Gear From Our Friends at Offroad Power ProductsPosted in Features on March 14, 2018
Growing up, there was always that one kid who had all the coolest stuff. He got those rad new inflatable shoes circa 1989 that definitely made you better at B-ball. He got that bitchin BMX bike with the handlebars that could spin around and still had rad cable brakes. He got those awesome shirts that changed colors when the fabric got hot or cold. We were jealous.
After the last several Ultimate Adventures it has become clear to us, the staff of 4WOR magazine, that the new version of the kids with all the coolest stuff are our friends and UA sponsors at Offroad Power Products. When the UA starts, we’re thrashing to finish a rig and gather some old camping gear and clothes at the last minute that will hopefully keep us alive. At the same time these guys always have a bitchin rig and the coolest newest outdoor and camping gear infused with Kevlar, rip-stop fabric, titanium, and liquid-crystal awesomeness. We’re sleeping on the roof of our rockcrawling S-10 grocery getter at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, swatting bugs in a ratty old sleeping bag, while they are snug as a bug in a rug in their apartment-sized James Baroud rooftop mounted condo in the bed of the Howitzer.
Jealousy doesn’t look good on us, so what do we do? Well, chances are we will still be thrashing at the last minute to hit the road for UA 2018 with the same old moldy sleeping bag, but until then we can at least have a look at all the cool gear that Offroad Power Products uses and sells. The best part is you can bet if their camping and outdoor gear doesn’t work, they won’t sell it, because they actually use and test what they sell. That’s what we do for you when it comes to off-road parts and vehicles, so we thought we’d lean on them a little to find out what cool new outdoor gear they’ve used and like. These cool items can be had at Offroad Power Products’ new website, offroadpowerproducts.com/lifestyle.html. If you can’t find it there, we have also included website info for the manufacturer.
Tembo Tusk SkottleWhy: A self-contained great place to cook awesome camp food
How Much: $275
Most humans we know like food, and those who don’t usually pretend to so we don’t think they are aliens. They might be aliens. One evening on UA 2017 we smelled something delicious and floated down the scent to find Cooper from Offroad Power Products cooking something beautiful in what looked like a big old wok. Cooper told us this is a Tembo Tusk Skottle. That sounded weird, but we didn’t care because carne asada. The Skottle is a standup grill, a sort of wok-shaped pan that is heated by a Colman 10,000 single-burner stove. The grill, or pan, is preseasoned, and the stove hangs in the frame under the bottom of the pan. The pan, burner, and up to four 16-ounce gas bottles fit in a supplied bag, while the collapsible legs have a separate storage bag. The Tembo Tusk Skottle has a weird name (tembo means elephant in Swahili; a tusk is a tusk; and Skottle is a play on skillet?), but this tool is perfect for cooking breakfast, lunch, or dinner when you’re on the trail, camping, or at home.
ARB SkyDome SwagWhy: You need a place to sleep, don’t you?
How Much: $400 single; $560 double
Off-roading is fun, but it’s better if you’re alert, and for that you need sleep. The ARB Swag may look like a tent, and in some ways it is, but in other ways it is not. The original idea is you can sleep on a tarp in a sleeping bag and if it rains you can enfold yourself in part of the tarp like a taco. The ARB Swag is the modern evolution of that idea with easy zip-up entry that doubles to keep the stinging, biting, slithering critters outside. The Swag is made out of waterproof canvas and is available as a single or a double. It has its own high-density corrugated foam mattress and does not require any pegs or guywires when deployed on a flat surface. Our friend and freelancer Harry Wagner loves his Swag and definitely got us thinking about one for UA 2018. Also, ARB makes several rooftop tents for your overlanding needs if you don’t want to sleep on the ground.
RinseKitWhy: Washing stuff makes it cleaner
How Much: $79.95 ($49.95 for Field Fill Kit)
One reason some folks don’t like camping is it’s too rugged. That’s one reason we love camping, but still, we don’t turn down all creature comforts. Let’s say for example running water—yeah, running water is pretty cool. Well, thanks to Offroad Power Products we found out that running water might not be that far out of reach for car campers like us. With the RinseKit Pressurized Portable Shower you can spray water on anything you’d like for up to 3 minutes without a hose bib or an outside power source. The RinseKit doesn’t have any batteries and doesn’t require a pump to pressurize the water. The unit is self-contained and hard-sided so you can toss it in the bed of your truck or the back of your 4x4 and use it whenever. It stores the water pressure from wherever you fill it, so the pressure comes from the hose bib, although a manual refill kit is available if you need to fill the RinseKit from another source of water.
Grizzly Drifter CoolersWhy: We all like cool drinks but don’t always have tons of space
How Much: $69.99 for the Drifter 12; $149.99 for the Drifter 20
You’ve probably heard of Grizzly Coolers; that is, if you don’t already own one. Grizzly’s large roto-molded coolers are perfect for camping for several days. But you probably haven’t heard of the new, smaller Drifter 12 and Drifter 20 soft-sided coolers. Drifters blur the line between a cooler, a backpack, and an arm bag and are perfect for daytrips, boating, and bringing lunch and a few drinks on that trail ride. The 12 and 20 are two sizes of Drifters and are made of durable fabric with heavy-duty zippers and a nonskid molded base. These coolers keep your goods cool with a removable waterproof liner and EVA foam insulation.
Ultimate Survival Technologies Spork Multi-ToolWhy: A fork/spoon hybrid with tools. Eating has never been so much fun.
How Much: $3.99
Ah yes, harken back to a simpler time when a young and naive Tech Editor Simons was but a wee lad headed for a bright (or is it dull?) future in the off-road magazine world. A growing Simons tucks into his fast food chicken and mashed potatoes with vigor . . . and a plastic spork. Mind blown! It’s a spoon and a fork! When you’re camping it’s darn easy to forget to bring utensils. Sure, you could use your pocket knife to whittle a fork out of a pine tree, but who has time for that when you are hungry? Enter the Ultimate Survival Technologies Spork Multi-Tool. This titanium spork is great for more than filling your pie hole, and hey, it’s cheap. With its integrated bottle opener, can opener, and flathead screwdriver, you can do more than just eat—you might be able to fix your 4x4 too (or you can just eat).
Petzl E+LITE Emergency HeadlampWhy: So you can see in the dark
How Much: $29.95
Everyone likes eating Petzls with mustard or cheese dip—er, we mean pretzels. A Petzl is a flashlight, and they’re not edible. Flashlights are, however, a must on the Ultimate Adventure. If you don’t need one to set up camp at night, you will need one when making that late-night repair on your rig after a long trail or road day. We like the look of the Petzl E+LITE Emergency Headlamp for a couple of reasons but mainly because we seem to always be strapped for space and the E+LITE is ultralight and very compact. The little light also has an integrated whistle so you can lead a rave or call for help. Petzl also claims that the light and its batteries can be stowed in the case for up to 10 years. That makes it a perfect flashlight to stow for emergencies in your glovebox or trail tool bag.
Geigerrig RigWhy: You should bring water everywhere you go
How Much: $100
One of the rules on the Ultimate Adventure is to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. The saying goes that if you aren’t peeing then you probably aren’t drinking enough water. More than one person has ended up going home early because of dehydration or overheating. One great way of ensuring that you have plenty of H2O is to bring a backpack full of the stuff. The Rig from Geigerrig holds 2 liters of water in a reversible, top-rack-dishwasher-safe hydration engine and comes with a lifetime warranty. What is a hydration engine, you ask? It’s a hydration reservoir that, once pressurized with the included bulb, can spray water for drinking, cooling, or cleaning. The engine is reversible for easy cleaning by hand or in the dishwasher and is BPA and phthalate free. You can even fill the Rig up in a stream or pond and use an optional Aquamira Frontier Filter inline to clean the water as you drink.
Aquamira Frontier Straw FilterWhy: When you run out of clean water, this helps with dirty water
How Much: $11.99
Clean water is a necessity of life, and the future is now with the Frontier Straw Filter from Aquamira. This compact unit holds a very advanced filter that allows you to use the Straw to drink 30 gallons of just about any water you can find. The inline Aquamira BLU Line filters are certified by IAPMO to consistently remove protozoan cysts to U.S. EPA standards. That means it can remove cryptosporidium and giardia from water while also reducing chlorine and chemicals and improving taste and odor. The straw is certified lead free to NSF/ANSI-372. That means running out of water on the Ultimate Adventure or anywhere else won’t put your life at risk—unless you (or we) head back to Death Valley anytime soon.
Emmrod Fishing RodWhy: Give a man a fish, or give him a fishing rod
How Much: $70-$270 depending on options
As the saying goes, if you give a man a fish he eats for a day, but teach a man to fish and he eats and drinks beer the rest of his days … or something like that. We like to fish. It’s a great way to convene with nature and reduce stress. But the fishing rod hasn’t changed much since someone tied string to the end of a bamboo pole. Enter Emmrod Fishing Rods, with a unique line of fishing rods. The “rod” is made of 302 stainless spring steel and is designed to be compact and easy to transport. It’s nearly indestructible. And casting and sensitivity are comparable or superior to graphite or fiberglass long rods. The power coils (that’s the springy thing near the handle) provide heightened sensitivity, casting that’s better than other styles of fishing rod, and incredible bait action. There are multiple Emmrod models to choose from, so your best bet is to explore the company’s website or call customer service so they can help you get the best rod for your next fishing trip.
James Baroud RTTWhy: Because Cooper needs a Cooper den on UA
How Much: $3,699.95
Cooper from Offroad Power Products is like a big old grizzly bear, so he needs a den to hibernate in or he’ll get sleepy and start smashing stuff. Cooper smashing stuff on UA means fixing stuff, and that means less time at the campfire. During UA 2018 he brought a very nice James Baroud Discovery rooftop tent. The Discovery is one of the more compact hard-shell rooftop tents from James Baroud, but don’t let the compact size fool you. This thing is plenty big for two people (or one Cooper) with interior dimensions of 78 inches long, 54 wide, and 41 tall when open. The tent comes with a five-year warrantee, a solar-powered fan for ventilation, a fiberglass outer shell, and strut-assisted auto opening. It is wind tested and weatherproof, and it comes with a nifty rechargeable LED flashlight that you attach to the tent or can bring on a night stumble to take a pee.
Flex-a-lite Mojave HeaterWhy: Being cold might be worse than being hot
How Much: $224
Most custom off-road rigs, and probably about half of the rigs that go on the Ultimate Adventure, lack a heater. In the past few years that hasn’t really been a problem because of the venues and the fact that we hold the event in the middle of summer, but when things get chilly it’s hard to rely on a header-heated floorboard for warmth. Lucky for everyone, Offroad Power Products carries Flex-a-lite, a company generally known for cooling fans, but with the Mojave Heater Flex-a-lite goes the other way to warm the air inside your 4x4. Mojave Heaters are compact (10 1/8x9x5 inches) and easy to mount. They move 140 cfm and put out 12,000 Btu. That really ought to keep your toes toasty come what may.
Daystar Dash PanelWhy: Because dash clutter is unacceptable
How Much: $20-$34
A dirty, poorly organized dash is unacceptable. Well, it’s certainly inconvenient anyways. These nifty Daystar Dash Panels help keep things organized inside your 2004-2014 F-150, 2004-2010 H3 or H3T Hummer, or 1997-2010 Jeep Wrangler. Plus, they are easy to install, don’t require any drilling, are made in the USA, and comes complete with a phone/GPS cradle that will hold all phones and most small tablets. The Dash Panel is also skid resistant to keep whatever you put in it from flying across the dashboard in a turn or when your rig gets off-camber on the trail.
Diesel Power Products Official UA 2017 T-ShirtWhy: Cause you love UA and want the swag
How Much: $18
There are two ways to get your very own UA T-shirt. You could be one of the select few individuals invited on our annual trip, or you can buy one from Diesel Power Products. That means you can finally (pretend to) be like Cooper and the other cool guys from Offroad Power Products (you’re still not that cool). This is honestly a much more cost-effective way to get the shirt; the alternatives are to become a UA sponsor, which ain’t cheap, or get selected as an invited reader. And while we encourage you to apply, the trip is not free (you have to pay for your rig, gas, some food, insurance, and getting to the starting point and back home afterwards). And you’ll probably break something and get at least one new dent on your rig. The shirt is cheaper.
F-Bomb Fuel Additives for Your DieselWhy: Tow rig or trail pig, you need all the cetane you can burn
How Much: $9.95 per bottle
Sure, not everyone is as cool as the boys from Offroad Power Products. Not everyone can drive a diesel on the trail like they do, but many of us drive a diesel tow rig. Diesels need cetane to thrive, and one great way to give it to your diesel is by using one of three F-Bomb Fuel additives. There are three formulations: regular F-Bomb for everyday use in your tow rig; F-Bomb Ice for your tow rig in cold weather with additives that mitigate icing and freeze-up and prevent waxing and gelling; and F-Bomb Hellfire, which gives the maximum cetane boost for maximum performance. All three additives lubricate, clean injectors, prevent algae and bacteria buildup in your fuel, improve fuel economy, and more. And since each bottle treats somewhere between 500 and 125 gallons, the cost is literally pennies to the gallon.
Red Oxx Big Bull RollupWhy: Because your tools need a home even on the trail
How Much: $285
Keeping tools organized wherever you go is key to getting the job done in a reasonable time. The Big Bull Rollup from Red Oxx is a great bag to store your tools, and thanks to Offroad Power Products we now know about it. On the past several UAs when Cooper smashed something it had to be fixed. Since he knows he can smash stuff, he brings lots of tools organized neatly in his Big Bull Rollup. The bag is made in Billings, Montana, of ballistic nylon. It has six pockets in three sizes for either large or small tools. The bag has welded stainless steel V-rings, Fastex buckles, and fiberglass rods that prevent the bag from slouching. All seams are double stitched and bound, and the bag comes with a “No Bull” lifetime warrantee.