How To Save Phone Battery Life On The Mountain

We’ve all been there. Your phone dies just when you need it the most. It could be right before you’re supposed to meet a friend or worse case, an emergency. No matter when it turns off, it’s an inconvenience. While it’s not possible to completely stop your battery from draining, you can substantially decrease how fast it depletes. Here are some tips to help you save phone battery life while on the mountain.

Avoid Extreme Temperatures

According to Apple, extreme temperatures can play a role in draining your phone’s battery while on the hill and can even cause permanent damage. To prevent your phone from being exposed to cold temperatures, refrain from taking it out while on the chair and keep it close to your body for heat.

Use Airplane Mode

Switch your phone into airplane mode to prevent it from constantly searching for a signal. Whistler Blackcomb does have good service range but there are some areas where your phone might work extra hard for that one bar.

Turn on Low Battery Mode

Turning your phone to low battery mode reduces the amount of power that it uses when the battery gets low. This should prolong what little power you have left.

Dim Your Screen

Adjusting the brightness of your screen can have a huge effect on your phone’s battery life. Dim it when you know you’re going to be away from a charger for an extended period of time.

Be Smart About Your Battery Usage

Uploading that photo to Instagram might have to wait. Many apps drain battery life. You can check which apps are the culprits under settings and in the battery section. If some are worse than others, it might be time to delete them.

Turn off Push Notifications

Push notifications are an apps way of waving at you and also a huge power drain. Stop your home screen or lock screen from lighting up every few minutes by turning off push notifications.

Stop Location Services

Once again, those pesky apps are stealing your battery life. You can optimize your battery life by turning off location services in your apps.

Turn off Push Notifications

Stop your home screen or lock screen from lighting up every few minutes by turning off push notifications.

Know Your Charge Stations

Whistler Blackcomb has many charging stations that can provide you with a little boost should you be running low. Guest Services at Skiers Plaza and the Roundhouse are just to name a few.

Power Up

If you’re planning on spending the day on the mountain and know you’re going to be using your phone, bring up a battery pack. We would suggest one of Outdoor Technologies many battery packs that come with multi-function options such as a speaker or flashlight.

If you have any questions about using your phone on the mountain and related gear, come in and speak to the experts at McCoo’s. Your one-stop shop for adventures.

Gearing Up For Opening Weekend

We’ve been waiting long and hard for the start of the season. Counting down the days in fact. Our gear has been sitting beside the door ready to go. Has yours? Gearing up last minute can lead to missing key pieces and ultimately put a kink in enjoying the first few days fo the season. Ride with ease and eliminate any unnecessary stress by gearing up with our handy Opening Weekend Checklist.

Goggles

You don’t want to leave this item behind. Sunny, windy, you name it. You’re going to need to see through every type of conditions, making goggles extremely important.

McCoo’s Recommendation: The Spy Ace Snow Goggle with the Happy Lens.

Action Cam

You’ll want to catch every first. First bails, first face shots, first après! Make sure your action cam is on your helmet or on a handheld gimble and ready to capture all the moments.

McCoo’s Recommendation: GoPro Hero 7.

Gloves

It’s no secret that ski gloves might be one of the most essential pieces of equipment in your pack. If you leave yours at home, you might as well not even go up the gondola. Well-fitted gloves provide greater dexterity, warmth, and comfort allowing you to ride all day long.

McCoo’s Recommendation: Hestra Army Leather Patrol Mittens.

Base Layer

The real secret to staying warm is having the right base layer. Forget wearing yesterdays sweatpants or even just your unmentionables. Believe it or not, you need fabric that can wick away sweat and breathe. That’s where Merino Wool comes in.

McCoo’s Recommendation: Mons Royale Merino Wool Yotei Tech LS Jersey

Outer Wear

It’s tough to leave these key pieces of your gear at home but never say never. If you did, you might just have left the house without pants. Stay warm and dry with the right outer wear. It’s also a bonus if you look good and can go right from the hill to après.

McCoo’s Recommendation: RipCurl Rebound Fancy Jacket and Pants. 

Battery Pack

Losing your riding buddy right before après is the worst! Don’t miss a beat because your phone is dead. Make sure your battery pack is charged and ready to keep you connected.

McCoo’s Recommendation: Outdoor Technology Kodak Ultra Battery Pack.

We’ve been ready for this weekend since closing day last year. You’ll be ready too with our handy Opening Weekend Checklist. If you left gear on the kitchen table, pop by the shop. We’ve got what you need to gear up for any Opening Day adventure.

4 Tips For The Best Ski Season Ever

The countdown to the start of the ski season is on. With less than a month until opening day, it’s safe to start getting excited. It’s also time to begin to prepare. Preparation for skiing and snowboarding season is key, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the best powder day ever? But what does it entail and how can it help you have the best ski season ever? Read on for tips and tricks that will keep you shredding right until spring.

Get Fit

It’s not too late to get your ski legs ready. Hit the gym armed with a total body workout and get ready to sweat. Once a week might not be enough for you to be able to charge right out of the gate. Commit to a few days, and you’ll see the benefits on opening day. What’s more, being fit can help prevent injury. So stay strong and you’ll cash in on as many powder days as you please.

Get The Right Gear

At some point, your gear is going to be the limiting factor in not just having fun but also progression. Before opening day, go through everything (jacket, pants, goggles, helmet, poles, gloves, etc.) with a fine tooth comb. Damaged gear can end the party early and even be dangerous. If you’re not sure where to start, talk to an expert to find what could do with an upgrade. Investing in certain parts of your kit can make all the difference.

Find The Right Crew

There is such thing as a friends on a powder day, just the right kind of friends. Find some peeps that will wake up for first chair, encourage you to challenge yourself, and are at a simialr skill level. With these kind of buddies in tow, everyday no matter how much snow, will be a good one.

Make Some Goals

This is one of the biggest secrets to having the best season ever. You see, if you set some goals and work towards them, even achieve them, you’ll look back at the season with a satisfaction like never before. To make sure you follow through, write them down or tell a friend to hold you accountable.

Staring the ski season off on the right foot is key to having a memorable few months on the hill. Get fit, check your gear, and find some rad people to shred the Whistler powder with. Don’t forget to stop by McCoo’s for the latest gear for any of your mountain adventures.

 

5 Gear Upgrades You Need To Do This Winter

We know how much a beloved piece of gear makes you feel. It’s trustworthy, reliable, and worked in. That stinky old base layer that you’ve been holding onto since you first moved to Whistler. That shirt has kept you warm through countless pow days and après. You know the one we’re talking about. Its lifespan has been reached, possibly even exceeded. Do yourself a favor and upgrade it to newer technology for the best ski season yet. While you’re at it, here are 5 more gear upgrades you definitely need to do this winter.

Gloves

Your gloves see a ton of action. Through all the strapping in, and doing up ski boots, they can lose some of their durability. Retire last seasons gloves to the status of ‘back-up’ and grab a new pair of Hestra Gloves. The design and material choice of Hestra gloves will even see you into next season and beyond.

Socks

Socks are one of the most washed parts of your winter gear. This means that over time, the fabric weakens and their adaptability to changing temperature conditions can be altered. Invest in a decent pair and it can make a huge difference to your experience on the mountain.

Goggles

Goggle technology is always improving. There’s no need to suffer through fogging and light distortion issues associated with many of the older models.  Ditch what you’ve got and check out the Oakley PRIZM Snow Goggles. The lenses enhance contrast and visibility over a wide range of light conditions.

Action Cam

GoPro has recently released the GoPro Hero 7 and a Hero 5 just won’t do the trick anymore after you hear about the new features. On the Hero 7, you’ll find improved audio, live-streaming to sites like Facebook, and a new time-lapse mode. All necessities when it comes to making edits of your latest mountain antics an getting them on social ASAP.

Beanie

If you’re anything like the average Whistler local, you’re most likely wearing your beanie day in and day out. At work, the bar, and of course on the hill, it’s just part of your mountain wardrobe. Freshen up your look with this year’s colors and styles by snagging one of the latest COAL headwear toques, found at both of our locations.

We at McCoo’s know how important it is it to have gear that you love. Why not make the gear you love, also the latest technology by upgrading some of the essentials this winter?

Everything You Need For A Lit Day In The Park

Jump, berm, drop, repeat! Bike park season is going strong and chances are, you’re making the most of it. While it may seem like there’s endless riding, all good things do come to an end and winter is just around the corner. Don’t waste one minute shredding the gnar in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. To make the most of each and every day, go in kitted out in the best gear for the job. We’ve got everything you need for a lit day in the park!

POC Helmet

Your noggin needs protecting. Aside from the obvious, you can’t actually ride in the Bike Park without a helmet. We recommend a breathable POC helmet. State of the art technology combined with progressive design has resulted in one of the most breathable and safe helmets on the market.

Mons Royal Tee

Speaking of breathability, you’re going to want this feature in you’re cycling clothing. Sweat is no stranger but with Mons Royal, it can become more of an acquaintance. Using the latest German knitting and spinning equipment, the apparel helps to regulate your temperature, dries quickly and doesn’t stink. You’ll still probably want to change before hitting the GLC patio.

Stance Socks

Sure, black socks might seem like the go-to option for biking. With Stance socks, what’s covering your feet becomes a fashion statement. Get a few pairs and let what peeks out of your shoe do the talking each day. And just a heads up, when you’re sending the Canadian Open step-down under the chair, you can totally see your socks.

Oakley PRIZM Goggles

Years and years of research led to Oakley PRIZM technology. These goggles control light transmission resulting in colours so tuned, they maximize contrast and enhance visibility. No more glare or light distortions, you’ll see everything. Well, maybe not that bear hiding in the woods, but everything on the trail!

GoPro

Get the best POV with a GoPro HERO 6. You can make edits, post your big hits on social, or just relive the crash moments over and over again.

Much to our dismay, Whistler Mountain Bike Park season doesn’t last forever. Enjoy the hero dirt while you can and be comfortable in the latest and best gear from McCoo’s.

GEAR FEATURE: Outdoor Technology

Let’s face it. Most of our experience with music technology lies in headphones being tangled, getting lost, or just plain breaking. But what if we told you there was a brand that made a goal of blending a modern lifestyle in the age of technology with the drive to be outdoors? Outdoor Technology does just that. They make products that last through all your adventures, letting the song carry on till the very end. You see what we did there?

tags2-bluetooth

Outdoor Technology’s Tags 2.0 – Wireless Earbuds

Design

Outdoor Technology’s purpose is to create music products that serve real needs. This means their headphones, Bluetooth speakers, helmet audio, and earbuds fit active lifestyles. The design, style, and creation aims for comfort and durability.

Turtle-shell3

Outdoor Technology’s Turtle Shell 3.0 – Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

Specs

Waterproofing/Water Resistance

Since Outdoor Technology aims to provide products that can endure all of your adventures, they possess some impressive specs. Many of the products vary in the level of water resistance, rated to at least IPX3 or better. That being said, most of the products are rated IPX6. For clarification, the IPX# refers to a products water resistance and waterproofing level, with IPX8 being the magic number and meaning the device can be submerged in water over 3 feet.

Bluetooth

Pretty much all of the Outdoor Technology devices come with Bluetooth technology. According to their website, if you own a laptop, desktop, crop top, carrottop, phone, bone, loan, tablet, phablet, or whatever else has Bluetooth, then it will connect. This is a great spec as no one wants to use their dirty hands to fumble with a button and that playlist you have for hiking, biking, shredding the gnar… it can be played no problem on whatever device!

rhinos-waterproof

Outdoor Technology’s Rhinos Waterproof Bluetooth Wireless Headphones

Warranty

The Outdoor Technology products come with a great warranty.  It entitles you, the original purchaser of the products, to normal use and/or operate as intended for a period of one year from the original purchase date and for goods to be free from defects in material and workmanship. This warranty is limited and is not applicable to damage caused by misuse or negligence, so don’t be throwing it off any cliffs and hoping it will still work!

We at McCoo’s pride ourselves on providing gear that you can adventure with and Outdoor Technology is perfect for all your Whistler activities. If you have any questions, come by the store and we’ll make sure we find you exactly what you need to play the background music to your most rad life.

GEAR FEATURE: POC Cycling Helmets And Apparel

Here at McCoo’s, we look to offer the best gear for all your Whistler adventures. What makes it the best is extensive research into what is needed to perform and play at all levels. We look for gear that lasts, performs in all conditions and of course, is safe. With all things considered, POC cycling helmets and apparel fit what we look to offer to our customers.

POC is a Swedish company on a mission to produce helmets and apparel that save lives and can reduce the consequences of accidents for gravity sports athletes and cyclists. The company was founded in 2005 and initially, they broke into the ski racing market. POC’s new ideas and solutions to improve alpine safety, by reducing the force transmitted to the brain and body in case of a crash, gained a lot of attention. The need for such products quickly transferred into another industry: cycling. This led to the evolution and development of protection for different categories with each sport including freeskiing, snowboarding and mountain bike disciplines. Consequently, POC has become a highly desired brand by athletes and enthusiasts alike of both sports.

The concepts, technologies, and materials used and implemented by POC for the helmets and body armor are highly researched in the state of the art POC Lab. Throughout the research process and during testing, the equipment is scrutinized by POC’s scientific forum that consists of some of the world’s foremost sports medicine experts, brain scientists, and specialists in spinal cord injuries. As result, the products created by POC are scientifically proved to help reduce the severity of injuries in action sports.

In addition to protecting the user and decreasing the undesired results of crashing, POC has set themselves apart with their designs. Eye-catching colors and progressive structures have made their products distinguishable from competitors. What’s more, the aesthetics are an addition to a high-level of comfort. Vents and padding have been put in the perfect places so that users can focus on the task at hand and not their gear.

We hope you enjoyed this gear feature. As always, if you have more questions regarding the best gear for you and your sport, stop by McCoo’s. We’d be stoked to lend our expertise. Stay tuned for more gear features!

How To Spring Clean Your Gear

Spring is in the air. With the warmer weather comes an increase in activity and that means more sweat, more dirt, and more frequent cleanings. The frequent cleaning should be in place to keep germs, mildew, and other gross stuff under control. Not mention, prevent your gear smelling like a locker room. What’s more, not cleaning your equiptment regularly can actually decrease its performance.  Even if you’re regularly cleaning your gear, and you should be doing that, here’s a quick guide to making sure you’re keeping your equipment clean the right way.

Head Phones/ Ear Buds

Dip a Q-tip in rubbing alcohol and wipe it across the speakers of your earbuds. This works best for in-earbud that can gather wax as they nestle in your ear canal. The rubbing alcohol should take the wax right out, making your music instantly sound more clear. You only need to do this if you notice gunk buildup, or if the audio is noticeably quieter in one bud.

Backpack

Backpacks collect so much more than what you put inside them. First vacuum out dirt and debris. Then, add a delicate detergent to warm water and use a sponge or cloth to wipe the pack down. Some pack manufacturers also recommending avoiding hot water or spot removers, as these can damage the fabric. As you clean your pack, examine the zippers, which can fail if they’re jammed with dirt and debris. You can vacuum out the dirt, or scrub zippers with a soft nylon brush (like a toothbrush) and cold water. After you wash the bag, don’t put it in the dryer. A good way to dry your pack is to stuff it with newspapers and hang it in the shade.

Water Bottle

Hopefully, you’re not waiting until spring to clean your water bottle but just in case…pick your cleaning solution and get it ready. White vinegar is probably best for the job because it’s an excellent stain remover. Dilute 1-2 tablespoons of the vinegar with a cup of water. Pour the solution into your water bottle and let it sit for 15 minutes and then rinse. Voila!

Sunglasses

Forget using your breath to remove streaks and residue. Rinse your sunglasses under warm water- not too hot, not too cold. Use a mild dishwashing soap to wash all over your frames, working it in with your fingers. If necessary, use a microfiber cloth to dislodge heavier grime. Concentrate on areas that are heavily exposed to your skin – the nose bridge and the ends of your stems. A soft-bristled toothbrush is ideal for cracks and crannies, especially the groove where the lens sits, as build-up is prone to occur there. Rinse off all the soap, dirt, and dust. Watch it swish satisfactorily down the drain. Dry your sunglasses thoroughly using a microfiber or lint-free cloth. If you use a towel, you may end up with lenses covered in towel fuzz.

Clean your gear to prolong its lifespan and also to stay fresh while adventuring. If you have any questions about how to clean any of your other gear, don’t ask Mom, ask McCoo’s.

Heated Clothing

The cold. Most of our winter gear is designed to combat its effects. Gortex, layers, breathability. These terms might sound familiar and don’t get us wrong, they do work. Despite the technologies improving drastically, there still stands a chance of the sub-arctic temps winning and leaving you out in the cold…no pun intended. Presently, there are a number of brands that have lead the way in creating clothing that keeps you warm no matter what conditions are on the outside. They rely on generating heat from an external source, most of them powered. We’ve got the low down on some of the current heated clothing technologies now available at McCoo’s.

Flexwarm Jackets

Flexwarm has spent over the last five years researching and developing patented new technologies that have enabled them to create a completely unique, flexible heating element that is so thin (0.5mm) it can be printed directly onto fabric. Because Flexwarm can be printed, it can then be layered directly onto fabric which enables 8K Heated Apparel to be ultra-lightweight, durable and washable (without the need for adding additional heavy and bulky insulation materials). You can expect upwards of 13 hours of heat from your jacket and when it’s out, just recharge the battery. To adjust the temperature, connect your phone to your jacket via Bluetooth and input your desired level of toastiness! And finally, topping it all off, these jackets are splash resistant, so you don’t have to worry if mother nature decides to change her mind from snow to rain.

Therm-ic Socks

Therm-ic have designed high-end socks that can offer up to 29 hours of heat. The heat is generated from an easily rechargeable battery that sits at top of the sock. The technology allows for even distribution of heat, easy attachment of batteries to the sock, and optimized integration of the heating elements for a guaranteed long life. What’s more, Therm-ic products connect to your smartphone! With the batteries’ Bluetooth function and the Thermic mobile app, you can adjust the heat setting for your sock at the touch of a screen. Now, that’s going to come in handy for turning it up a notch while on the chair lift.

Staying warm while on the hill no longer has to be a battle. With heated clothing technologies advancing, it can be easy to set a temperature and stay there, no matter what the weather is doing. If you have any questions regarding the heated gear currently on the market, come stop by McCoo’s– guarenteed a few of our staff members are probably wearing them right then and there!

Buying The Right Ski Or Snowboard Helmet

Skiing and snowboarding can be full of hazards. You have your airtime, trees, cliffs, and of course, other mountain revelers. While many of us don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how to protect ourselves from these risks, it should be more than food for thought. Head and facial injuries are just some of the consequences of not wearing the proper equipment when on the hill. Even if you consider yourself a conservative rider, all skiers and riders can enjoy the benefits and warmth that a helmet provides. But where to start? Here are some tips for buying the right helmet.

Ski And Snowboard Helmet Components

Inner liner: This is typically made from EPS (expanded polystyrene) foam, the material that looks like Styrofoam®. It’s designed to absorb impact. A helmet is considered no good after a direct blow to it.

Shell: The shell, or outer layer of the helmet, is a rigid surface (typically high-impact plastic) that can help protect the head against sharp objects, knocks, and abrasions. It also helps spread impact energy over a larger portion of the helmet during a fall.

Certification: There’s a new buzzword in the helmet world, MIPS.  MIPS stands for Multi-directional Impact Protection System and it is the current gold standard for helmets.

Ski / Snowboard Helmet Sizing and Fit

Measuring for your size: You can find your correct size by measuring your using a tape measure or come on down to the store and have one of our staff help you. To do it yourself, position the tape measure just above the ears and about 1″ above your eyebrows. Measure around the largest part of your head to determine the circumference of your head. The measurement will help you select from extra small, small, medium and large helmets.

Checking the fit: A good helmet should feel snug but not tight. If the helmet can rock back and forth, the fit is too loose. Shake your head from side-to-side. If the helmet shifts, try a smaller size, adjust the sizing mechanism or use thicker sizing pads. Push up the front and back edges. If they move, tighten the straps.

The helmet should be positioned low enough in the front to protect your forehead. It should sit level with its front edge no more than 1″ above the eyebrows. Finally, check to make sure there are no gaps between your head and the helmet lining. If there ae gaps, pads can be used to decrease them.

Chinstrap/buckle: The chinstrap needs to fit comfortably against the throat to reduce the chance it will come off. The strap should fit snugly but loose enough for you to not feel choked. Make sure to always fasten the strap before riding.

Now that you have your helmet picked out, you can add extra features such as audio, camera mounts, and warmer liners. There’s really no excuse for not protecting yo’ head!