The Well-Outfitted Trekker


Mar 12, 2002
Outside Magazine

SmartWool Next to Skin Wear base layer (his), Nalgene Go Mug, the Adventure Medical Kits' Savvy Traveler, and The North Face's Nuptse down jacket.

Rite in the Rain notebook

Patagonia's R2 Jacket, Cloudveil Maverick mountain pant, and Black Diamond's collapsible, three-section Ascent trekking poles

Most likely, porters will haul your baggage, but you'll need a comfy daypack to carry on-trail necessities. The Timberland Mountain Athletics Zone ($55) divides 2,700 cubic inches three ways, but for more technical features like water-bottle pockets and front-panel access, try the 2,500-cubic-inch Gregory Fury ($125). Trekking poles are nice for redistributing weight, and the grip-mounted shock absorbers of Black Diamond's collapsible, three-section Ascent ($100) soften the trail even more. Yes, the views are unreal, but don't fry your eyes! Wraparound Smith Pivot Sliders ($99) provide 100 percent UV protection and come with three sets of polycarbonate lenses. If one gets scratched or broken on the rocky terrain, you've got two spare pairs of lightweight, shatterproof glasses. Bring those distant peaks into focus with Brunton's Eterna compact 8x25 binoculars ($259). The rubber armor protects against trail knocks. For capturing the spectacle on film, the new 6.7-ounce Canon Elph LT270 ($230) offers an expanded viewfinder to help squeeze in all those mountains and the option to shoot in panoramic format. Protect your APS memory bank with the crush-resistant AccuCase Camera Case ($22). And for traditional memories, the waterproof paper of Rite in the Rain's notebooks ($3-$12) matches its All-Weather Pen ($7), which writes underwater, upside down, and in deathly temps from minus 50 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. The ubiquitous dirt, road apples, and cramped kitchens encountered trekking abroad quickly sully hard-to-clean hose-and-bladder hydration systems. Solution: the classic 32-ounce, wide-mouth, puncture-proof Nalgene water bottles ($9), which are are easy to wash and available in fresh new colors like yellow and pink. Plus they screw right onto MSR's small, light, and field-maintainable Water Works II water filter ($130), featuring a ceramic element and carbon core. The insulated, two-in-one Nalgene Go Mug ($18)—good for keeping yak-butter tea piping hot—comes with a pop-out spare cup and an attached carabiner for clip-on convenience. At night, the 600-fill, 15-degree Big Agnes Lost Ranger sleeping bag ($199) will keep you plenty warm, and during the day its light weight (2 pounds, 12 ounces) and compressibility will keep you unencumbered. It also sports an innovative sleeve for slipping in your sleeping pad; no more sliding around and waking up on top of your boots. It holds most sleeping pads, though the 1.5-inch-thick, 20-inch wide, self-inflating Big Agnes REM Pad ($70) is a natural fit. Light your way to the outhouse with the 90-gram Black Diamond Moonlight ($35). On three AAA batteries, it burns an amazing 140 hours. The lemon-flavored oral rehydration salts and diarrhea-relief pills in Adventure Medical Kits' Savvy Traveler ($55) are vital for obvious reasons but so are the sutures, syringes, needles, bandages, and medications. You can turn a visit to a slimy hospital into a sterile, well-stocked experience. You'll even have enough to donate extra supplies to Medicines for Nepal (310-556-0809;—a program whereby trekkers help stock medical outposts along their routes.

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