Spring 2017 Gear Favorites

At Buffalo Peak Outfitters we work every day to bring our customers the best equipment and apparel the industry has to offer. Our goal is to provide an enjoyable one stop shopping experience for your next adventure. Whether you’re traveling across the world, staying in your favorite weekend cabin, or conquering Mt. Kilimanjaro, we’ve got you covered on gear, luggage, clothing, and accessories. Our buyers have worked hard to bring our customers all of these products and we have compiled a list of some of our staff favorites for this spring/summer season.

Osprey Aether 60 AG

Osprey Aether 60 AG

First up is our favorite pack. Osprey’s new Aether/Ariel series of packs has everything you could ask for in a large internal frame backpack. Osprey continues to be on the cutting edge of pack design with this updated series. They have kept the same highly efficient frame for those heavy loads, added their beloved AG harness system, and even added a lid that transforms into a full day pack. The Aether/Ariel series of packs comes in 60, 70, and 85 Liter capacities (55,65, and 75 for women) and is perfect for any adventure from trail to travel.

Oboz Bridger Mid BDry

Oboz Bridger Mid BDry

Once you’ve got your pack you’ll need a good pair of boots and socks. We have a wide selection of both, and the Oboz Bridger is one of our favorites. The Bridger is an extremely capable boot. It has a full leather upper for durability, aggressive outsole for excellent traction, and with its roomy toe box and lacing all the way through the ankle, it offers a comfortable, yet secure feel. This boot is perfect for everything from short day hikes, to multiday trips. Pair these with an all American made, high quality merino wool sock from Farm to Feet and you’re ready to hit the trail.

MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Tent

MSR Hubba Hubba NX 2-Person Tent

Next up is a shelter. Tents can be a difficult purchase. There are many great options out there, and even more that will leave you cold and wet if a good rain blows in. When looking for a good tent you want something durable, light weight and above all water proof. The MSR Hubba Hubba NX fits the bill and has been a beloved tent by many for some time now. At 43 cubic feet of space weighing in at just under 4 pounds, the Hubba Hubba NX is the perfect two-man tent for almost any situation.

Big Agnes Boot Jack 25

Big Agnes Boot Jack 25

Now that you’re guaranteed to stay dry you’ll want to stay warm. A good 25 degree bag is an optimal temperature rating for our southern climate and can easily be stretched into much cooler climates. The Big Agnes Boot Jack 25 is an excellent option for someone who wants a high quality true down bag, but doesn’t want to spend $300 on one. Priced just under $200 the Boot Jack is for any hiker who is serious about staying light and warm, regardless of experience.

MSR Trailshot Pocket-Sized Water Filter

MSR Trailshot Pocket-Sized Water Filter

A water filter is another necessary piece of equipment for any hiker. A good filter can make the difference between a miserable ending to a trip, or a successful hike. This brings us to the Trailshot. The TrailShot is a compact, pump style water filter. It has all the benefit of any pump filter on the market, but at half the price and less than half the weight, yet still maintains a flowrate of a liter every minute. The TrailShot is a must have for any weight conscious hiker.

Patagonia Men's Midweight Capilene Crew

Patagonia Men's Midweight Capilene Crew

Last on our favorites list is clothing. In the outdoors world wicking materials are the only way to go. Patagonia’s Capilene is at the top of that list. Capilene is the perfect synthetic active wear for any adventure. With its wicking ability, anti-microbial traits, and variety of thicknesses and weights Capilene is the ultimate in everything from t-shirts to thermal base layers.

The 6 Best Kayaking Spots in Mississippi, brought to you by KEEN

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Canoeing on Mississippi's Pascagoula River. Joe Lee/Visit Mississippi

 

 

 

 

With a wealth of waterways snaking throughout the state, it's clear that outdoor enthusiasts in Mississippi both seek, and find, refuge on the water. One of the advantages to living this far south? You can basically paddle all winter.

Epic kayak expeditions can be had on the mighty Mississippi River and in the Gulf Islands National Seashore, but there are also plenty of smaller creeks and rivers that crisscross the state, many of which are tailor-made for day or overnight float trips. People unfamiliar with the state may be surprised at some of the subtle beauty that Mississippi waters have to offer, but locals know all too well that it's a fantastic place to paddle.

Here, KEEN and Buffalo Peak have assembled six great Mississippi waterways well worth a visit with your kayak.

1. CHUNKY RIVER

Dunn's Falls is a 65-foot waterfall was once used as a power source.  Visit Mississippi

Dunn's Falls is a 65-foot waterfall was once used as a power source.  Visit Mississippi

The Chunky is a short tributary of the Chickasawhay River in the Pascagoula River watershed. It forms near the town of Chunky, Mississippi and eventually flows into the Chickasawhay. The Chunky flows over rocky shoals as it moves east towards Alabama amid rolling, wooded hills. Near the town of Enterprise you’ll see Dunns Falls, a 65-foot waterfall created in the mid 1800’s to power a gristmill. It’s now open to visitors as a park, complete with the functional waterwheel. The Chunky also provides great fishing for bass, bream, and catfish. Fly fishermen consider the Chunky to be a top spot in the state, as the relatively clear water and rocky shoals give ample opportunity to hook up on the fly. Chunky River Recreation and Chunky River Canoe and Kayak can help you out with renting and/or shuttling your gear.

2. BLACK CREEK

As Mississippi’s only official National Wild and Scenic waterway, the Black Creek is a popular paddling destination in the summer months. Like several on this list, the Black Creek is a tributary of the Pascagoula River. It flows through stands of longleaf pine and hardwood bottomland in the DeSoto National Forest. The sandbars are plentiful and often hundreds of feet long, making perfect places to stop for lunch or to set up camp. Black Creek Canoe in Brooklyn offers kayak and canoe rental and shuttling for several trips of varying length on the Black Creek.

3. LEAF RIVER

The Leaf is part of the same watershed as the Black Creek, ultimately meeting the Chickasawhay to form the Pascagoula River. Compared to the rest of the waterways on this list, it is generally a larger river, so you can expect to encounter a bit more boat traffic. Still, it is a paddler’s paradise. Sandbars are frequent, and obstacles are usually few and far between. Sheer bluffs and steep banks can make landing sites a bit tricky, but they also contribute to the creation of shoals and occasional technical spots, and they're quite gorgeous to paddle past as well. South Mississippi Canoe provides rentals and shuttling to several streams in the area, including the Leaf River.

4. BEAR CREEK

Tishomingo State Park, Bear Creek, Mississippi.  Tishomingo County Tourism/Visit Mississippi

Tishomingo State Park, Bear Creek, Mississippi.  Tishomingo County Tourism/Visit Mississippi

If you happen to be in northeast Mississippi with a free afternoon, you can’t go wrong by kayaking Bear Creek. In just a couple hours you can paddle through the beautiful, rocky terrain of Bear Creek Canyon in the Appalachian foothills, finishing under a swinging bridge in Tishomingo State Park. Located just off the Natchez Trace Parkway, Bear Creek provides some of the best scenery of any waterway in the state. If you want to make it easy, you can rent a kayak from the state park and get on one of the two daily trips they offer , covering just over six miles.

5. STRONG RIVER

D'Lo Waterpark, Mississippi.  Quinn Rossi

D'Lo Waterpark, Mississippi.  Quinn Rossi

The Strong, while not always true to its name, is a picturesque and iconic river that stretches 95-miles in south-central Mississippi. You may recognize the rocky section in the D’lo Water Park; it was there that the Coen Brothers filmed the sirens scene in “O, Brother Where Art Thou.” The Strong River has several shallow shoals similar to the one in this scene, especially in the upper section, where pullovers and portages can be frequent. When the water levels are between three and five feet, though, most of the river from Hwy 13 down is passable with minimal or no pullovers necessary. Eventually, the Strong empties into the Pearl River, which flows out to the Gulf of Mexico. The D’Lo Water Park provides rental and shuttle services, as well as a campground and other facilities.

6. OKATOMA CREEK

Paddling the Okatoma River, Mississippi.  John Perry, mods made

Paddling the Okatoma River, Mississippi.  John Perry, mods made

On summer weekends, the Okatoma is a pretty popular spot in south-central Mississippi. With the water at normal levels, it covers a wide range of paddling dynamics. From wide, lazy stretches to faster portions with chutes, riffles, and rapids, the Okatoma has something for beginner and advanced kayakers alike. The numerous launches and takeout points make it simple to plan out a trip to fit your group’s needs and skill levels. If you need to rent or just transport your boat, Seminary Canoe Rental and Okatoma Outdoor Post have everything to get you on the water.

Of course, always check water levels before going on any float trip—low water can mean you'll be dragging your boat more than paddling it, and high water can send you on a collision course with obstacles that would normally be above your head.

KEEN AND BUFFALO PEAK OUTFITTERS

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Here's a waterproof hiking boot that offers four-wheel-drive performance for your feet. It's designed to keep your feet dry and let them breathe, and the aggressive outsole bites into the terrain. The mid-cut height adds ankle support. Come see the full KEEN selection at Buffalo Peak Outfitters.

Originally written by RootsRated.

Out West

Over spring break, we headed out west to photograph and use lots of products we sell here in the store. We traveled to places like Big Bend, Carlsbad Caverns, the Grand Canyon, Zion, and Rocky Mountain. 

Throughout the trip, we intentionally used products we sell in the store in order to demonstrate and show the top-notch (and awesome) quality of the brands we carry. During the trip we used items such as:

  • Vasque boots

  • North Face jackets and duffel bags

  • Patagonia day packs, long underwear, and pants

  • MSR gas, stove, cooking gear, and tent

  • Yeti cooler and tumblers 

  • Ray Ban and Costa sunglasses

  • Smartwool socks 

All of these items performed perfectly and fit every need we had throughout the whole trip, whether 25 degree weather in the Grand Canyon, or 70 degrees in the New Mexico desert. 

Outdoor Magazine Top 100 Retailers

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Outdoor USA Magazine has named us one of the Top 100 Retailers in the country! 

The Outdoor USA Magazine Top 100 Retailers initiative recognizes the leading outdoor specialty retailers in the country for their outstanding work and entrepreneurial drive, and we are very honored to be considered. 

We don't want this to be just about us though; we want it to be about you! You have helped us become who we are, and for that we are incredibly grateful. Without this community of people in and around Mississippi, we don't know what we'd be doing! So we thank you so much for the past 28 years, and what do ya say we make it another 28 strong? 

5 Often Overlooked Necessities For Roadtrips

|by Cody McCain|

I've grown up my entire life going on plane rides, boat rides, and bus rides, but none of them compare to good ol' fashioned car rides. Seeing life from the road is an unexplainable feeling. It's a freedom that is unmatched by any other means of transportation. While on a roadtrip, YOU are in control of where you go, when you go, and why you go. 

Though America did not inherently invent long distance travel, I believe we opened it up and made it available to anyone and everyone. Whether you're a backroad chaser, or a straightforward highway driver, here are some things that I think are often overlooked in everyday roadtrips:

1. Good Music

These days, you have to make an effort to not have a way of playing music in your vehicle. With so many options and ways of playing music, why not pick one that caters to you? Apps such as Spotify and Rdio have recently made listening to music extremely easy and accessible. My advice? Make an offline playlist with as much music as needed for your whole trip, and some. I listened to 90 albums on my roadtrip to Alaska, and it's nice to have a variety when you inevitably get bored of the same ol' same. 

2. Good Food

Yes, there is a way to drive more than 2 hours without feeling a need to go to McDonalds. Go to a grocery store before and along the way, and pick some good stuff that you can store and will keep your energy up. Picking healthier foods will not only help prevent sluggishness from your 4th pack of Reeses, but will also increase alertness as you drive. My favorite snack I take with me on trips is guacamole--fresh, made by me, guacamole. It got me through the tiring windy roads of Canada with ease. Don't underestimate the power of energy rich food! 

3. Side Trips

I have found it to be so important not to have a strict schedule on a trip. A roadtrip is stressful enough after your 10th hour of looking at absolutely nothing in central Nebraska, so don't make it worse by time restrictions. Yes, you should have a general idea of when you need to get to your destination, but leave time for side trips and breaks--you'll need them. So much of America's uniqueness and beauty comes from off the beaten path. Stop and smell the roses, or the foresty goodness of the redwoods in north California. Case in point, I stumbled across the Sign Post Forest in British Columbia by complete accident and it ended up being my favorite side trip I've ever had. Most times it's about the way you get there that makes a trip memorable. 

4. Respect for the Moment

Being able to look back on a trip with hundreds of photographs is a privilege we have nowadays that everybody else in history never had. I personally love taking pictures of places I go. I do, however, firmly believe that some experiences are better left unphotographed. Take a second and realize how special those moments are when you don't have a screen in front of you. Our generation seeks to document literally everything we come across, and this often leads to regret after we realize we never really truly took in what we just experienced. That moment is unique, and though lots of pictures may help you remember it in the future, I believe that experience trumps remembrance. Find your healthy balance of respect of that moment and documenting it with photos. 

5. People

As much as we love the idea of pursuing the idealism of a solitary roadtrip to escape society, we always return to the fact that we are made to work best with a buddy. We need another person to do more than simply keep us awake, or take a turn at driving. We need that person or people to experience it with us. Having driven 5,000 miles to Alaska by myself, I can say that I survived by myself, but roadtrips are so much more than surviving. Go with somebody who wants to share in your adventure, and then meet people along the way! People are nicer than might you think, and you never know who you'll come across in this small world. 

 

Don't wait for the conditions to be perfect for a roadtrip, just go. Take what experience is in store for you and treasure the freedom that we have to come and go as we will.

Get Outside. 

Pint Night

Claire and Jeremy Jungling summited Mt. Kilimanjaro, the world's tallest freestanding mountain, in February to support the 34.5 million cancer patients and survivors around the world in 2014's Survivor Summit.

Buffalo Peak and the Junglings will be holding a Pint Night on June 17 with a Q&A session with six fellow team members from the trip to talk about the climb, cancer, and their continued fundraising for the LIVESTRONG Foundation's mission to improve the lives of people affected by cancer now.

During the event, you'll be able to buy a pint cup for $20, which will get you 2 free tickets that you can get 2 free drinks with. We will have local beer from Lucky Town Brewing Co as well as wine from Fondren Cellars. If you want more drinks, each additional ticket will be $5, or 5 for $20. The best part? You get to keep your pint cup! 

If you would rather enter to win some free stuff with your tickets, we will have LOTS of raffle prizes that will be given away. 

The President/CEO of LIVESTRONG, Doug Ulman, will be in attendance and will talk about how cancer has affected his own life as well as how his foundation is helping others affected by it. Marshall Ramsey will also be there!

 

Come on out for this amazing event, which might be our biggest ever! Let's join together to support fighting cancer, hiking, and some good beer. 

 

 

Creating Our Blog

Hey, friends! With the completion of our new website, we want to give you a run-down on the plan for our blog.
Let’s start by stating the obvious: like you, we love the outdoors. We want you to get to know us, and we want you to get know the people and places we love – that’s why we’ve started this blog. This is the place where we’ll post something about everything. We’ll have the scoop on the latest news from your favorite companies such as Salomon, Osprey, North Face and Patagonia, and we’ll showcase some little-known destinations in the Magnolia State where you can bike, run or canoe/kayak. Here, you’ll get insight into the BPO team’s favorite gear, and you will learn the proper way to be fitted for a backpack or a pair of hiking boots.
This blog will be used to promote conservation in Mississippi and to help bring the outdoor community together. Some of you have seen the world while in pursuit of the perfect wave or in search of a yet-to-be-climbed mountain, while others aren’t international travelers and/or adventurers but parents taking your child on a Boy or Girl Scout trip or grandparents taking a grandchild fishing on a beautiful spring afternoon. We believe all such activities are to be cherished. We’ll profile some of the fascinating people who walk through our doors and give them a forum to share about the trips they take as well as ways that they make every day an adventure. We hope to inspire you to be adventurous and make you feel better connected with others who love the outdoors. After all, the best outdoor-related memories always involve the people we meet and the shared memories we create.