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Fun in the Sun

Colorado may be a landlocked state, but that doesn’t keep us from the water. Whether it’s kayaking on the Arkansas or diving into a cold mountain lake, we’re as splish-splash as the next girl. Give us a day that starts with a wide-brimmed hat and ends with a long cold beer, and throw in some sun sports in between and we’ll forget all about having to hang up our skis and snowboards for the season.

What women’s gear really sizzles this summer?  Read on for the stuff that has us all hot and bothered.

What a Girl Wants

1. Tifosi Optics DEA Sunglasses
The DEA combines the runway model look of oversized glasses with the function you need for sports, all tailored for narrower facial features. And it works—the lenses prvide 100 percent UVA and UVB protection. Girl Power: Get ‘em in white; it’s hot this summer, which is unfortunate for cycling shorts, but sweet for sunglasses.

2. Pistil Designs Nellie Sunhat
The XX-chromosomed Elevation Outdoors staff dubbed Nellie the raddest summer hat in the history of the universe. Made of lightweight woven raffia with an open air pattern at the top of the crown, it’s also the coolest hat. The pliable brim is moldable so that it can be curled up or flattened out. We say curl it up and kick it cowgirl style. Girl Power: Nellie bounces back pretty well after being crammed into a pack.

3. Patagonia Amaia Dress
For those whose only pack one dress that must excel at tree-climbing, fish filleting, and long, sticky-hot drives, behold the Amaia. Made from organic cotton with subtle textured stripes and printing, this sexy little number is as light as a first kiss. Gathered shoulder straps cross to a feminine V-neck and the drawstring empire waist with delicate pleats secures with side ties. Girl Power: Comes in two tropical patterns in addition to the Northern Lights color shown.

4. Clif Dark Chocolate Walnut Nectar Bar
It’s a crime that hot, summer sun and silky, sensual chocolate just don’t mix. Enter Clifbar. Toss one of these babies into your pack for chocolate that melts in your mouth, not in your hand. Made with dates, walnuts, unsweetened chocolate, cocoa and vanilla, this simple bar is a pure and healthy indulgence. Girl Power: Made with 100 percent organic yummies.

5. Kor ONE Hydration Vessel
This could be the sexiest water bottle we’ve ever seen. But that’s beside the point. Save yourself and the world from harmful plastics in favor of a smart clean design that’s PBA-free. The wide mouth and one-handed hinge opening will win over even the crustiest gear curmudgeon. Girl Power: KOR donates 1 percent of its sales to nonprofits that focus on water-related issues.

6. KEEN Waimea Waterfront Sandal
The fit and function we’ve come to expect from Keen, now in a sunny sandal.
More than your average flip-flop, the Waimea’s outsoles wrap up and over the
toes to provide toe protection. Take a stroll toward a tropical rendezvous, without being afraid to head off-trail. Girl Power: Engineered to support the foot on impact, dissipate shock and reduce your odds of twisting an ankle.

7. Adventure Medical Kits  Women’s Edition Outdoor Kit
Yes, there are some things women have to worry about in the backcountry that men don’t—but please, don’t dumb down the necessities. This kit features all of the hospital-quality wound care, medications and instructional materials that AMK is famous for providing, plus components that will help women when they’re hours or days away from the nearest drugstore—like applicator-free tampons with odor-proof disposable bags. Girl Power: It comes in a color other than pink.

8. Jackson  Kayak Little Hero
The Little Hero was added to Jackson’s river-runner line last fall to address the gap between the adult-sized Hero and the child-sized Sidekick. The Little Hero is appropriate for paddlers who weigh in at 90-140 pounds, meaning they should have called it the Heroine. Girl Power: This is an advanced boat, yet still works well for beginners.

9. MontBell U.L. Spiral Down Hugger #1 (not shown)
You can have it all with this innovative new down mummy: It’s roomy, warm (rated 15 degrees F) and light (2 pounds). Montbell used a classic tailor’s technique to address sleeping bag comfort issues. By integrating a woven fabric “cut on the bias” and orienting the fabric’s warp and weft threads at 45 degrees to major seam lines, the sleeping bag becomes more fluid or elastic in nature. Girl Power: Snuggling all by yourself.

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