The Holidays are fast approaching and you are not sure what to get that special boater. They seem to have it all – but do they? If their love of the water keeps them on it or in it as much as possible, then these holiday gift ideas of new waterproof products will help them enjoy that time all the more.
First is Lifeproof’s line of ultra-thin cases for iPhone, iPad and the iPod Touch. These cases are specifically tailored to the different models of Apple’s products and fit snugly around them to seal out water and weather, allowing you to swim with your device and even take photographs and video underwater. Their line is rated to seal out water at a depth of 6.6 feet for 30 minutes. They are also rated to a military standard capable of protecting the device from “non-repetitive shocks.” Each case is pre-tested at the factory for waterproof integrity, so you can rest assured that your electronics will stay dry and dust free. All Lifeproof cases have waterproof vents on all mike and speaker outlets. The case for the iPad generation two and three seals around the glass display so that the screen you are touching is the actual iPad glass and not a protective cover. Lifeproof also has an array of accessories including floating collars (shown here on the iPhone) as well as straps, mounts, armbands, waterproof ear buds and video accessories. The phone cases are $80 and are available in various colors. The iPad case runs $150. www.lifeproof.com
Next up is the IC-M92D, a new lightweight VHF radio from Icom. One feature that separates it from competitors is a built-in GPS, making it one of the few hand-held radios that has DSC (Digital Selective Calling). When you push a protected button on the back of the radio, it will transmit an automatic mayday signal with your location. The radio has a large display showing your current position along with VHF channel information and battery level indicator. A new intuitive user interface makes using the radio’s functions simple. It has active noise canceling and a loud audio output. It floats and – when dropped in the water – will flash an LED light making recovery an easy task. The radio comes supplied with a long life lithium battery and both a desktop charger and a 12v cable for charging on the go. Price is $350. www.icomamerica.com
The cameras manufactured by GoPro are extremely small and lightweight and come enclosed in waterproof housings. They can be purchased in a variety of packages depending on resolution and mounting options. These mounts allow video to be shot in places and ways that were difficult or impossible in the past. Their top of the line Hero 3 Black Edition ($399) can shoot 4KP video at a stunning 12 frames per second and shoot 12MP stills in 30 frames per second bursts. The camera has Wi-Fi built in and comes with a remote and mounting accessories. The GoPro Hero 2 ($299, pictured here) with included mounting accessories shoots HD video in 1080 at 30 frames per second. Cool videos demonstrating what can be done with these cameras can be seen on the website: www.gopro.com
West Marine’s line of boating binoculars includes the compact Lake Champlain 10×42 waterproof model ($120). These weigh in at a mere 22 ounces and use a simple center ring for quick and easy focusing. They have individual eye adjustments and come with a comfortable strap and carry case. The optics are multi-coated to reduce glare and the binoculars are nitrogen filled to prevent fogging in wet conditions. Despite their size, they are surprisingly bright and sharp. www.westmarine.com
For the waterman who wants the very best, there is the Simms ProDry Gortex Jacket ($500), offering total protection from rain and the elements while on the water. This award-winning jacket is made of Gortex Pro Shell, the latest technology available from the fabric maker. It is a very lightweight breathable material that blocks wind and rain as heavy as 22 inches per hour. Apart from keeping you dry, it will also be one of the most comfortable outerwear jackets you will ever wear. It has stretch fabric in the shoulders and elbows. There is a comfortable storm hood and watertight adjustable cuffs, along with waterproof main and pocket zippers. Well thought out details include a watch window and pockets to place heat packs in. This jacket is at home not only in cooler climates over layers, but works equally well in tropical downpours. Matching bibs are also available. www.simmsfishing.com
If your boater has it all – including a moldy and smelly cabin, then Forespar’s Tea Tree Power Gel mold, mildew and odor eliminator would make a great stocking stuffer. Natural, non-toxic and biodegradable made from pure natural distilled Tea Tree oil, in gel form it is an effective way to eliminate airborne mold spores and odors. Also available is an 8 oz. spray bottle for eliminating odors and the mold that cause them. Available in five different sizes it is a natural and safe solution to common mold and odor problems found aboard. Available on line and from select retailers, prices start at $16. www.forespar.com/ttpower/