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  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Climbing Essentials

    Everything you need to scale new heights.

    —Molly Loomis

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Stonewear Designs Lola Jacket

    This buttery-soft layer ($75) incorporates critical climbing components like quick-drying material, a roomy hood, thumb loops, and a comfortable cut. The flattering fit makes it that much better.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Mammut El Cap Helmet

    An innovative design—hard outer shell and new double-layer styrofoam core—spreads impact over a large area, enabling greater shock absorption ($70). The visor may look small, but we found it just big enough to keep sun and debris at bay.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Black Diamond Ethos Harness

    The Ethos ($125) is light enough (360 grams) for sport climbing but offers trad features like generous gear loops, a drop seat, and abrasion-resistant material. A smart pre-rigged, adjustable waist buckle minimizes the potential for error.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Patagonia Ascensionist Pack

    It might look pared down, but the Ascensionist (from $99) can accommodate a rope, ice axes, crampons, and skis. And that’s just on the outside. Aluminum stays lend just enough support, the hipbelt can be removed, and the generous collar keeps spindrift out and can be extended to cram in extra layers or a helmet. Available in 25, 35, and 45 liters.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Prana Meme Pants

    Sexy skinny jeans made for sending! Testers loved the Meme’s ($75) nylon-spandex fabric, which not only stretches and moves better than you’d think, but is also quick drying, water-resistant, and scuff tough.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Salewa Capsico Shoes

    Equipped with sticky rubber and a convenient heel strap that can be engaged for technical approaches or pushed out of the way, the Capsico ($75) is lightweight and versatile. Testers loved the breathable fabric that kept their feet cool.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Prana Meadow Top

    A draped cut and highly functional liner bra ensure the Meadow ($65) looks good on a variety of figures. Stretchy, quick-drying material makes this a stellar outer or under layer.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    La Sportiva Oxygym Shoes

    Goodbye, foot funk. Made from a super-breathable synthetic material, the Oxygym ($99) is the first machine-washable climbing shoe. Two Velcro tabs with wraparound lacing help customize the fit. A great entry-level shoe for gym-goers and craggers alike.

  • Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Next Up:2014 Women's Running Essentials

    Wild Country Helium Friend Cams

    With the Helium’s (from $65) wide placement range and overlap between sizes, all you need is nine units for a complete rack. Thanks to Dyneema slings and redesigned stems, this year’s retooled versions are lighter and can reach deeper spots.

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