King Cake Slate 1

What is a King Cake? [giveaway CLOSED]

Well, we’re glad you asked.

It’s Mardi Gras season, dear friends. We at Captain and Clark are huge patrons of traditions, especially ones that include pastry. If it’s a French pastry tradition, all the better. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the tradition of the King Cake, then hold on to your Mardi Gras beads… you’re about to learn. King Cakes are a traditional part of the New Orleans festivity that leads up to Lent. As the good people of NOLA remember the story of the wise-men searching for little baby Jesus they craft the perfection that is King Cakes. These King Cakes are cloaked in the colors of the kings. Gold for power, green for faith, and purple represents justice. The best part is that somewhere inside the cake is a tiny baby figure that symbolizes baby Jesus. By eating the cake you all get to go on a search for Jesus, just like the wise-men. Who ever finds the baby gets extra good luck for the year. Don’t worry though, if you don’t get the baby you still get cake. The symbolism is almost as delicious as the cake itself. Let’s be honest though, the cake is way better.

Shop Sucre

To help you  celebrate this tradition, we’re hosting a giveaway with our old pals at Shop Sucre. On the 26th we’ll make a joyous announcement and one of you will win your own King Cake. Be the envy of all your neighbors and friends as you flaunt your cosmopolitan flair and topical knowledge, by offering them King Cake. Check out the easy ways to enter below.

 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you have any more knowledge, or dare we say, personal anecdotes please leave them in the comments below. We love to hear from you all.

 

ShopSucre was kind enough to provide a free King Cake for the giveaway. Obviously. *Giveaway open to residents of the continental U.S. only.

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The Armytek Predator Flashlight – Best Travel Flashlight EVER

In the world of flashlights it’s hard to know where to go. As avid travelers we’ve been huge proponents of headlamps for years. In particular the retractable cord headlamp from Petzl is one of our go-to lights. Recently though we were in the market for a more durable light that would be hardy in the field and would put out enough light to make the sun envious. Our conclusion was the Armytek Predator.

 

Armytek flashlight review

Armytek in Action – Great for Zombie Prep

 

Here’s our list of pros and cons for the Armytek Predator Tactical Flashlight.

PROS:

  • Powerful – The flashlight projects a powerful beam to a useable distance of over 400 yeards. The website promotes it as being usable to 400+ meters. We tested ours to the same distance.
  • Durable – The strong aluminum body is covered with an alloy that makes it easy to grip. Mostly when I hold it I want to punch someone in the face with it. It feels like Thor’s hammer streaming lighting.
  • Waterproof – If you watch the video you’ll see that Tawny enjoys dropping my things in whiskey. She’s also a little clumsy in general. Insurance on our electronics is a must. If I can buy something that is both drop resistant and waterproof, I do. Always.
  • Affordable – While it seems a little steep in a world where you can buy a keychain light for $1 I’m all on board. The Predator retails for about $100 but it’s built to last. Personally I’ve had too many flashlights fail on my while in the woods. Last time I was hiking for a week we got caught in a massive rain storm and one of my flashlights bit it. I would have prefered to spend a little extra on a higher quality flashlight. If you’re only using your light for walks to the car don’t bother. If you’re looking for a high function light to last you a lifetime, then think about this one.
  • POWER – Once again, I cannot stress just how powerful this light is.
  • Rechargeable battery – We left the light on for two days and used it in 10 degree conditions. It worked perfectly. The rating has it down for lasting 130 days with one rechargeable battery. I haven’t tried it that long yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised.
  • Rapid recharge – The battery charged from empty to full the first time in under an hour. Boom!
  • Good for zombie apocalypse.

CONS

  • Rechargeable battery – While the battery lasts forever and is easy to recharge I worry that we’ll be somewhere without a power source and I’ll need to recharge it. The spare batteries retail for about $12, so no big deal. I just sometimes miss AAs. Still, it’s better for the environment.
  • It can be a little pricy for a recreational user.
  • This particular model doesn’t have a flood feature. It’s a focused beam, which I like. If you want a flood feature the Armytek people have a lot of great options for reliable field flashlights.
Armytek reveiw

Light and Charger

 

 

Armytek offered us a flashlight in exchange for an honest opinion.

beats_full

Beats by Dr. Dre (Giveaway CLOSED)

We recently received an offer to review a pair of the wireless headphones from our good friend Dr. Dre. He’s very busy so his liason, Staples, asked us but I’m sure he wanted to ask us himself. Obviously we saw the commercial recently in which Beats lays it on Seattle Seahawks fans pretty thick. Honestly, we understand why. Considering how well the Seahawks have been doing this year it only makes sense that people would be jealous, and that does cloud judgement. We at Captain and Clark, however, decided to go ahead a review the headphones on the condition that we’d get to give a pair away. We endeavor to be objective in our observations and to not let the holiday grumps of sore losers get in the way of our evaluations.

We napped

Field testing

That said, we tried the Beats headphones and we emerged impressed. The single best part of them is that they cancel sounds. We found the audio to be commanding and most importantly the bass to be a tangible presence in our ears. The fact that they’re wireless only meant that we were free to roam… as a travel blogger does. The ear pieces themselves are comfortable and don’t put too much pressure on the ears. Glory.

 

All said, here’s our list of pros and cons:

PROS

  • PHENOMENAL sound
  • Great bass
  • Wireless with solid distance before signal cuts out (we tested about 41 yards, which is insane)
  • Comfortable
  • Great battery life
  • Sturdy, we dropped them several times and roughed them up quite a bit (not because of their saucy commercials, just for science)
  • Sound again. I used them for video work and could hear frequencies on the audio track that I would have missed with just my laptop speakers.

CONS

  • Price – The Beats retail for around $190.00, but since they are built to last we do think it’s worth it. If you’re serious about your audio or do video or audio work like we do it’s worth it.
  • No appreciation for the culture of Seattle or its fine sportsmanship. (I’ll let it slide though.)

If you’re on the market for a solid pair of headphones then we’d highly recommend Beats by Dr. Dre. Good news is, if you leave a comment, like this post on Facebook, or Tweet it out you’re automatically entered into a drawing to win a pair of Beats from Staples. We’ll announce the winner on January 4th! Huzzah!

Which headphones would you choose if you won? Check out the selection at Staples by clicking here.

Congratulations Cheryl Anne. We will be contacting you shortly. The winner has 7 days to claim their prize.

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The Eternal Debate: Backpack or Rolling case

Our recent trip to Korea offered us an interesting chance to compare our new style of travel. As an avid backpacker and outdoorsman, I find myself an eternal patron of using durable and high quality rucksacks to travel. I’m what the travel world has lovingly dubbed, “a backpacker.” Tawny however has just entered into a new world of class and distinction… she had betrayed me more deeply than she’ll ever know. She has adopted a “rolly case.” 

what kind of bag should I take traveling

For the last 11 years, I’ve traveled the world with the same Gregory Reality backpack. It’s still in excellent condition. Well, structurally. After thousands of miles around the world and hundreds upon hundreds of miles through Alpine wilderness, it’s started to fade a little. I realized that it might be time to update my gear. After looking for a high grade bag I finally settled on a Karrimor 45L. Luckily it arrived in time to head out to Korea.

sportsdirect bags

This all happened at the same time that Tawny gave me the most shocking news of my life… she wanted a rolling bag. You know what I’m talking about, one of those bullet proof, long handled, wheel-studded bags that people drag behind them at airports. The kind that you see whats-her-face from Sex and the City carrying through the desert, and laugh. (BTdubss, her bag is totes adorbs.) Tawny had become “that girl.” She wanted to travel Korea with a rolly bag in tow. Leaving me to use the most practical travel bag for exploration.

rollybag

karrimor

Well, so I thought. After one month in Korea, with hills, stairs, escalators, trains, planes, and automobiles here is my (un)biased review of the Karrimor 45L and the Uber-Cute Cal Something-or-other rolly bag.

IN THE FIELD

When you’re talking about heading from the plane to the baggage claim or from the car to the hotel, it’s really a toss up. Tawny’s rolling bag was very easy to maneuver around the airport. The solid and smooth floor of Seoul International and SeaTac were both perfect for her. The only place she got hung-up was on escalators. However, the long handle allowed her to hang, like a billion (appx), hand bags and doodads on her bag. Thus freeing her hands to smack me when I made snide comments about her bag.

On the other hand, my backpack/rucksack allowed me full use of my arms to hold doors open for her and carry the coffee caddy through the airport. The real difference was when we left for the open streets of Seoul. All rough terrain or hills (of which there are many in Seoul) and the Karrimor took a commanding lead. I especially love this bag since it has more padding than a feather bed in the South. I must have been packing about 55lbs of gear through Korea and it still felt comfortable. This is the benefit of a waist strap. Thus keeping all the weight on my hips.

 - WINNER: KARRIMOR -

IN THE ROOM

I’ll give credit where credit is due. The Karrimor backpack was super easy to load and unload. It’s got a distinct zipper section on the bottom to keep items separate from the main compartment and there are side sections and a separate top pack. All of this pales in comparison to Tawny’s walk-in closet of a bag. She not only fit as much gear (if not more) into her bag, but she managed to keep it all in separate pockets. While it took her some creative yoga moves to fit it all back in when we moved, it was still amazing to see her unfold the bag open and display all her gear effortlessly.

Captain and Clark

- WINNER: ROLLY BAG -

In conclusion, both bags offer a lot to the avid traveler. When I walk into a hotel I feel like a squatter, where as Tawny looks like a distinguished patron. On the flip side though, hills are now her worst nightmare. I, on the other hand, can eat them up like bon bons.

 

Sucre

Win some free Chocolate!

‘Tis true. We’re hosting a giveaway with our new friends at Sucre. The rules are pretty simple. Watch the vlog above and leave us a comment in the section at the bottom. Next week we’ll be selecting a winner at random to receive a box of signature artisan chocolate.

Boo yah!

 *Alas, the giveaway is limited to the continental US