Holiday Gift Guide: Enjoy the Outdoors with These 8 Finds from ICAST 2018

Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug and Wiley X Sunglasses.

“This is the most innovative freshwater fishing lure on the market,” or so representative after representative told me.

This was my second year attending the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades, commonly referred as ICAST, the world’s largest sportfishing tradeshow produced by the American Sportfishing Association. More than 15,000 people walked the 220,000 net square feet of exhibit space at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. While most attendees (primarily wholesalers, retailers, representatives of manufacturers, government agencies, media, and fishing pro staff) walked the aisles looking for the latest and greatest in fishing, I was on the mission to find the latest and greatest in outdoor gear. Enjoy the outdoors with these 8 finds from ICAST 2018 or consider this your holiday gift guide for the outdoorsy person in your life.

Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System Ensures You'll Have Access to Clean Water When Outdoors.
Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System Ensures You’ll Have Access to Clean Water When Outdoors.

Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System
Keeping hydrated outdoors is essential for a healthy and enjoyable experience and on extended hikes, bicycle rides, or other activities, access to clean water may not be an option. The 3-ounce Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter may be a solution. It’s small and lightweight. Fill up the pouch with freshwater, attach the filter then squeeze the bag to release filtered water. It removes 99.99% of bacteria (such as cholera, E. coli, and salmonella) and 99.99% of protozoa (like giardia).

I really like that Sawyer is on a mission to eliminate bad water, one of the leading causes of death in the world. To that extent, they have partnered with several non-government organizations to bring clean drinking water to developing countries. When properly taken care of, the Sawyer filters distributed in these countries can provide a family with clean drinking water for about 10 years. Available at most outdoor retailers in store and online. Visit more about Sawyer and how they are making a global difference.

OMEALS is Convenient and Perfect for Enjoying the Outdoors; They're Also in My Hurricane Preparedness Kit.
OMEALS is Convenient and Perfect for Enjoying the Outdoors; They’re Also in My Hurricane Preparedness Kit.

I learned about OMEALS last year and because I’m a fan of the product, I’m sharing them again with you. Unlike those camp meals where water is added to rehydrate food, water poured into the OMEALS pouch does not touch the food because it’s in a separate, sealed package. Contents are steamed when liquid, such as rain water, sea water, beer, whatever (because the water does not touch the food) meets the included heating element. Plastic cutlery is included and eat right from the pouch for easy cleanup.

OMEALS are great while kayaking, hiking, biking, boating, and post-storm. I ate them following Hurricane Irma when I was without power and water for six days. Available flavors include pasta fagioli, spaghetti with beef and sauce, and Southwest style chicken with rice. Purchase through online retailers, such as Amazon, or directly from OMEALS.

Wiley X Sunglasses
Sunglasses are part of my everyday wardrobe and Wiley X makes the perfect eyewear for those active in the outdoors. They’ve been around for more than 30 years and during ICAST they introduced six new styles to its collection. Their eyewear offers protection from the sun’s harmful rays and is American National Standards Institute Safety rated which qualifies it as OSHA Occupational Eye Protection. A pair of Wiley X should protect from ricocheting shot, ejected brass, or a rogue jig. Two of the new additions into the Wiley X’s Active Lifestyle Series are the company’s first metal framed aviator style shades. Lately, I’ve been wearing the Wiley X Kobe with polarized amber lenses and hickory-brown frame which gives me crisp vision and eye protection when bicycling wooded areas. The new shades are available in prescription lenses, too. Learn more

Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug and Wiley X Sunglasses.
Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug and Wiley X Sunglasses.

Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug, 16 oz
Keeping hydrated is important when enjoying the outdoors and I’m totally digging this Stanley Classic One Hand Vacuum Mug not just outdoors but in my day-to-day life. What makes it special? It’s leak-proof so I can toss it in a bag and don’t need to worry about it leaking. Plus, it’s like a travel mug in that I can drink out of it without screwing off the top. Plus, it’s easy to clean – take the top apart to clean every nook and cranny. It keeps beverages hot for 7 hours and cold for 7 hours, whichever is your pleasure. It’s pretty sturdy, too. I’ve dropped it a few times and it’s still leak-proof. And don’t forget, Stanley has a lifetime guarantee. Visit Stanely for more information.

The Reef Glider Mask Makes Gliding Over Reefs and Snorkeling Easier.
The Reef Glider Mask Makes Gliding Over Reefs and Snorkeling Easier.

Reef Glider Mask
I didn’t learn how to snorkel until I was an adult and I’m lucky if I’m popping on my mask and snorkel at least once a year. The biggest challenge for me is breathing through the snorkel and not fogging up my mask which is why I was excited to learn about Reef Glider, a face mask that keeps the entire face dry. It’s meant for surface snorkeling, those who are curious what’s in the water and to glide over a reef. There’s a built-in sealed nasal mask which minimizes fogging which means there’s no mouthpiece. Visit the Florida Atlantic International Corp website to learn more.

ArachNet Security, Keep Your Gear Protected.
ArachNet SecurityArachNet Security, Keep Your Gear Protected.

ArachNet Security
One of the most uncomfortable experiences I have had while camping was having someone break into my friend’s car and steal my daypack and other items. Although that was probably about 25 years ago, I still feel violated. I was excited seeing ArachNet Security at ICAST, although I was a bit freaked out at the oversized black spider. Basically, it’s a big, red net you cast on your belongings, such as on your belongs in the back of an pickup truck bed, over your motorcycle, over your boat, etc. When the spider (the security device) is activated and someone touches the net, an alarm will sound to hopefully spook away the thief. Learn more on the ArachNet website.

Fish Sandals
Wait. What? Yes. You read correctly. Fish sandals. These slide-on novelty shoes took home ICAST’s Best Footwear New Product award, beating out more practical and stylish foot coverings. They certainly are fun, if nothing else. Now, they were entered by Rivers Edge Products and according to their website, they will be available in Nov. 2018 in Bass, Red Snapper, Rainbow Trout and Crappie, however, scanning Amazon, there are other retailers out there selling very similar fish sandals like these fish sandals claiming to be handmade and these fish sandals and these bright and cheery fish sandals. Hmm. Something seems fishy.

Underwear for Men UFM Keeps Guys Comfortable When Enjoying the Outdoors. Photo Credit:
Underwear for Men UFM Keeps Guys Comfortable When Enjoying the Outdoors. Photo Credit:

Underwear for Men “UFM”
There are things I never thought I’d be writing about but here I am, blogging about men’s underwear. This is one for the guys to address the problem of, uh, that swampy feeling in the loins. I was told the idea was birthed on a golf course because Florida summers on the greens can be hot and sweaty. A patent-pending pouch system and breathable fabric that wicks sweat away and dries fast provides support and reduces chafing. Underwear for Men has been on the market since 2013 primarily targeting golfers and is hoping to reach a broader audience to address an uncomfortable situation many men who enjoy the outdoors face. And yes, UFM is available in boxers and briefs. Learn more on the Underwear for Men website.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to support this blog, my traveling habit and my special-needs dog.



Jennifer A. Huber is an award-winning travel and outdoor blogger and writer in Southwest Florida. Originally from Buffalo, N.Y., a hiking trail led her to a career path in the tourism industry for more than 30 years. She spent a decade with a park management company in Yellowstone, Death Valley, and Everglades National Parks. She founded the travel blog, with the goal of inspiring others to travel alone, not lonely. The unexpected death of her former husband in 2008 reminded her how short life is. His passing was a catalyst for sharing her experiences with the goal of inspiring and empowering others to travel solo. Jennifer holds a Travel Marketing Professional certification from the Southeast Tourism Society, is a certified food judge, member of the NASA Social community, and alum of the FBI Citizens Academy. When not traveling, she is either in the kitchen, practicing her photography skills, or road tripping with her dog, Radcliff.

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