Po Campo Kinga Handlebar Bag 2 Review

Po Campo Kinga Handlebar Bag 2
Po Campo Kinga Handlebar Bag 2

When I got my first commuter bike six years ago, I also bought a small seat bag to store tools, an extra tube, air cartridges, etc. But it was only big enough for those things. One of the more annoying aspects of my rides was that I’d also have things stashed in my pockets that couldn’t fit into that small bag: phone, wallet, keys.

Along with the Irving Backpack Pannier, Po Campo also sent me the Kinga Handlebar Bag 2. Once I got it installed on the front of my bike, it was easy to say goodbye to my seat bag. All the tools that I had fit easily in the Kinga Handlebar Bag, plus I had plenty of room to stash more, including my iphone, wallet, and keys.

Inside the bag, there is a large compartment for miscellaneous things, but there are also three smaller pockets to keep things organized.

On the front of the bag there’s an additional pocket that’s perfect to stash my iPhone.

Po Campo Kinga Handlebar Bag 2
Po Campo Kinga Handlebar Bag 2

The bag is waterproof with water-protected zippers. It is easy to attach/detach with velcro straps. The structure of the strap will also allow them to attach to any handlebars. My bike has drop bars and I was able to attach the straps to either side of my bell and light. 

For times I’m commuting to downtown Boulder it has shoulder straps that stash away in a hidden compartment that I can pull out and use to carry the bag with me.

If you’re looking for a stylish addition to your bike, the Kinga Handlebar Bag is the way to go.

Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2 Product Review

Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2
Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2

I live close enough to my office, that bike commuting has become more of a have to instead of continuous mental debate of “Should I?” I have comfortable enough commuting backpacks, but in the heat of summer there were days where I’d show up to work and my back would be a hot sticky mess.

Avoiding a good back sweat is only one reason to buy a pannier. There’s also the convenience of not having that extra weight on your back. Even though my commute to work is around 15 minutes, the route I take back home takes me 25, but given all the trails around me, it also provides the option of going for a longer ride. And lets be honest, if you’re commuting more than 15 minutes, having the weight of a computer, lunch, clothes, etc is not the best way to start your day.

Po Campo popped up on my radar mostly because of their mission. Besides creating some really awesomely designed bags, they partner with World Bike Relief and for every 50 bags sold, they fund a bike to mobilize students, healthcare workers, and entrepreneurs in parts of the world where distance is a barrier.

They recently sent me the Irving Backpack Pannier 2 to test. This is the first pannier I’ve owned. It was easy to transition my work things from a larger backpack into the smaller, compact Irving Backpack Pannier.

On my work commutes, I can easily carry my 13-inch Macbook Pro, a change of clothes for a lunch run, food, and toss my protein shake shaker in a side pocket. 

Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2
Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2

It functions as a backpack, as well. To attach it to my rack, I flip the backpack straps to the front, clip the sternum strap so they stay in place, and use their patented Fidlock® magnetic clips to attach it to the rack. The straps, once reversed, are a bright reflective green that really stands out in the wee hours of the morning before the sun has fully come up over the horizon. 

My ride to and from work is a bit bumpy on gravel trails, so I also utilize their hook at the bottom of the bag to connect to the bottom of the rack.

Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2
Po Campo Irving Backpack Pannier 2

The bag itself is waterproof with water-protected zippers. Hidden away in the bottom of the bag is a built-in raincover. It’s made from a bright green, waterproof vegan fabric. I had the ability to utilize this a couple weeks ago when Colorado got their earliest snowfall in decades. When I got to work the raincover was splattered, but it was easy enough to wipe away the mud before stashing it back away in it’s hidden pocket.

If your bike has a rack that can equip a pannier, I highly suggest the Irving Backpack Pannier 2. Since using it for the first time, I haven’t gone back to my standard backpack. It is a great companion for my work commute and I’m looking forward to finding the right opportunity to take it on longer and larger adventures.

Po Campo Breathable Face Mask

Po Campo Breathable Face Mask
Po Campo Breathable Face Mask

Po Campo started based on need: the founder, Maria Boustead, had a bike and needed a bag. Now their product line has expanded based on need to face masks.

Their face masks are made from recycled fabric with a breathable microfilter between two antibacterial layers.

I’ve been using this mask very consistently on bike rides and I love it. It is very comfortable and easy to pull up and down as I’m passing others on the trail. With the Cameron Peak fire pushing smoke into the area I live and commute, the filter does a great job of making me feel like I’m not breathing smoke. All that being said, the mask isn’t intended to be a replacement for N95 or surgical masks.

One of the things I love about this brand is their mission. They are always giving back. With these masks, a portion of sales is donated to Biking Public Project to equip NYC working cyclists with medical-grade face masks.

You can purchase these face masks at pocampo.com. Their website has a size chart to determine what size fits your face best. My face is in-between a Medium and a Large. On longer rides I’ve tended to stick with the Large for a slightly looser fit, while on my shorter commutes to work I’ve stuck with something more snug.

Sunday Afternoons UVShield Face Mask Review

Sunday Afternoon UVShied Face Masks
Sunday Afternoon UVShied Face Masks

Wherever you’re reading this, it seems that wearing masks is the new norm on or off the trail.

Since we’ve started wearing face masks, more and more companies have released their variation, but Sunday Afternoons UVShield Cool Face Mask stands out.

The mask is made from a UPF 50+ sun protective, chemical-free cooling fabric. It has a contoured shape and soft mesh liner and straps to make sure the mask fits securely and comfortably over the nose and mouth. The fabric is also moisture-wicking and breathable.

This last point is probably the most important. As COVID-19 picked up speed in 2020, it became more and more important to have a mask with you at all times. With other masks when I hiked, biked, or ran it was noticable how hard it was to breath when the mask was up. With Sunday Afternoons UVShield Cool Face Mask, I can easily breath when having the mask up. And with their elastic ear loops, I can easily keep the mask connected while being active, pulling the mask up or down, depending on if people were near.

Sunday Afternoon UVShied Face Masks
Sunday Afternoon UVShied Face Masks

The masks we tested came in adult and kid sizes. You can find them at Sunday Afternoons website.

Xero Shoes Fall 2020 New Release Reviews

Xero Shoes Fall 2020 Lineup
Xero Shoes Fall 2020 Lineup

Xero Shoes is a Colorado-based minimalist shoe company. They believe in the natural ability in feet; that they are meant to bend, flex, move freely and feel. They have a wide selection of incredibly light shoes and sandals built with this “foot-first” mission.

All of their shoes have the same DNA:

  • A wide toe box that lets your toes spread and relax
  • Zero-drop, non-elevated heel for proper posture
  • Flexible soles so that your feet bend and flex naturally
  • Natural feel through their thin soles; allowing your feet and brain to regularly communicate

I’ve been wearing various pairs of shoes—mostly in their running and hiking categories—and couldn’t have been more happy about testing out their Fall 2020 lineup.


Xero Shoes Aptos
Xero Shoes Aptos

First up is the Xero Shoes Aptos. For Fall 2020, this shoes is part of their casual lineup, and right out of the gate I love it. 

It still retains the classic Xero Shoes design with these mid-point straps. While in this shoe they aren’t as functional as other products (mainly because of the lack of laces), the shoe fits well.

The shoe I tested is a 10.5 Mens. Normally with Xero Shoes products I’m a size 11. Because of the lack of laces, I scaled down to make sure I had a room to flex and feel, but without having my foot move around too much.

The look of these are amazing. They look a lot like the classic Vans slip-on. These have become a staple for me in the office mainly because it allows me to be little bit more dressy, but while still being able to wear a minimalist shoe.

The top is super sleek with it’s hemp upper. It’s great to pair with a pair of jeans or something a little less casual.

Xero Shoes sells these in men and women sizes in two colors: black and navy.


Xero Shoes Alpine
Xero Shoes Alpine

Xero Shoes is also releasing a snow-friendly, waterproof, insulated boot: The Apline. It has polyester insulation, heat-reflective insoles, and a fully seam-sealed lining to get you warm and dry.

While I was testing them in August without any snow available for a deeper test, I tried them out in two different scenarios.

  • Ice Bucket Challenge. I filled a bucket with ice and stepped into it with the boot on. The beauty of the heat-reflective insole is that it does exactly what it’s supposed to do. While there was some cold that seeped through, my foot was still extremely comfortable. I left it in for 45 minutes and while a lot of ice melted, the inside of the shoe was dry.
  • Snowshoeing. This is always the question I have for minimalist winter boots: can I snowshoe in them? The extent of this test of just strapping a pair of snowshoes on. While it was successful and I didn’t have any issues with the boot slipping out while walking around my yard, it’s fair to say that this test was incomplete.

I can’t wait for Winter to come so that I can test these more fully and will post a follow-up review after our first significant snowfall.

The Alpine I tested was a size 11 Mens. It’s fit is loose, but that’s good. When I test this further in the winter, I’ll be pairing it with thicker socks and for snowshoeing it’ll be good to have some extra room in them.


Xero Shoes Leather Hana
Xero Shoes Leather Hana

Four years ago when I first discovered Xero Shoes, the Hana was one of my first purchases and I still have that original shoe. Even though it’s been fairly beat up it’s still a slick shoe to wear into the office.

For Fall 2020, Xero Shoes is adding to their original model’s lineup a Hana with a leather upper. Even with the leather upgrade, the Hana retains its original slipper-like feel and true to Xero Shoes design it retains the functional, huarache-inspired heel strap for a more secure fit.

While the original Hana was a classy shoe for wearing out around town or in the office, the leather definitely helps the shoe step up the classiness an extra notch. Stylish, comfortable, minimalist shoes for work wear or more formal engagements has always been challenging. While there are more brands on the market trying to deliver this function, they typically run into the same issues: they are either too expensive, too weird-looking, or don’t have enough form to them and after a few wears look trashy.

These on the other hand are pretty damn awesome. I’ve played around a bit with different outfits and they worked well whether I was pairing them with a suit jacket or a short-sleeved button up.

The Hana I tested was a size 11 Mens. It felt true to size.


Xero Shoes Oswego
Xero Shoes Oswego

Oswego is new for Xero Shoes this fall. And out of everything I’ve tested, my favorite. It stands out as a performance-shoe, but with a style that you could easily take from the trail to Main Street.

The bottoms have the same grippy pattern on the sole as their Speed Force shoe, but the uppers have a cool polyester knit upper.

My first impression was how close they look to All Birds. I remember when All Birds came out and Googling whether they were minimalist and being disappointed when I found out that they weren’t. The Birds were stylish and cool, but now with the Oswego, I can easily give that brand the bird when sporting these.

These shoes, because of their nature, have been the most heavily tested. Because of the grippy sole I’ve taken them for runs, flipped tires in the backyard in them, and cycled to the office in them. They work well in all scenarios. Can you think of another shoe that you could bike to work in, go for a run in, and shoe up to an executive meeting in? I can’t.

The Oswego that I tested was a size 11 Mens. I felt it was true to size.

When they launch they will come in an assortment of colors for both Men and Women.


Xero Shoes Leather and Knit Phoenix
Xero Shoes Leather and Knit Phoenix

We also tested out two versions of the Phoenix: a classy women’s flat in both knit and full-grain leather.

My wife has naturally wide feet that make shoe-buying hard, which is why she gravitates towards minimalist brands, but with that comes another, more serious challenge: finding cute shoes.

Any time she needs to buy more dressy shoes, it’s a struggle finding anything wide enough. Most women’s “wide” shoes on the market just aren’t that wide. 

With the Phoenix, right off the bat, she noticed the 8 Wide’s sole was wider than the widest dress shoe in her closet. My wife also thought the design of the shoe was “super cute” with the lines and texture on a corner top of the shoe. For sizing, she usually wears an 8W, and these were a perfect fit. 

My wife found the knit version of the Phoenix to be great for wide feet. She has a wide toe box, and her feet were actually wider than this shoe. But, because the knit version has some stretch to it, it felt really comfortable and she has been getting a lot of wear out of this pair. It cleans easily and can be dressed up or down. 

The leather Phoenix was a bit less forgiving for wide feet. The leather is thick and didn’t stretch as much as she’d hoped, so it was a bit of a squeeze for her at first. She found that after some wear, the leather had more give and was more comfortable. She found the leather to be more dressy than the knit. 

She said Xero shoes did really well with this design and she’s excited to have shoes that are both comfortable and dressy.