The O List

Camping Gear

Jan 10, 2001
Outside Magazine

Backpackers' Cache by Garcia Machines

Backpacking Accessory  Sleeping Bag  Hiking Boot  Backcountry Stove  Tent  Bear Canister  Mountaineering Boot
"A pair of telescoping trekking poles, sometimes called yuppie sticks, that I use for long-distance hiking and think are the cat's ass. They help on the uphill and take pressure off the knees on the downhill. The latter is crucial to those of us silly enough to have played high-school football."
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The North Face Polarguard Delta bags

The North Face's next generation of Polar-guard bags are filled with the closest thing there is to down. For clammy climates like the Eastern Seaboard, where down soaks up humidity faster than cotton undies, these synthetic-fill bags are the best you can buy.
Starting at $149; 800-447-2333;
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Asolo AFX 520 GTX

A one-piece leather upper, Gore-Tex outer, one of Vibram's toughest soles, and, of course, exceptional Italian styling make the Asolo worthy of multiple 1,000-mile through-hikes.
$195; 877-888-8533;
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MSR Dragonfly

Durable, reliable, lightweight, versatile--the Dragonfly consistently cranks out serious BTUs (at high decibels) whether melting snow at altitude or whipping up an Outback Oven pizza while through-hiking the PCT.
$100; 800-877-9677;
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Bibler Ahwahnee 2

Pick your pleasure: Zip open an entire wall for superior ventilation on a warm summer weekend next to an Oregon trout stream, or guy the whole rig down to endure shelter-shredding gales on Rainier. This five-pound, four-season tent has versatility that's hard to find in a port-able shelter. At $140 per pound, it's worth every penny.
$698; 801-278-5533;
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Keep Your Stinkin' Paws Off My Grub!
They tested the first prototype of BACKPACKERS' CACHE BY GARCIA MACHINES bearproof container in Denali National Park. "The rangers watched more than 200 incidents of bears trying to get into 'em," recalls inventor Richard Garcia, a machine-shop owner who frustrates bruins in his spare time. "A bear would work on one for an hour, only move it a few feet." Shaped like a black-powder keg and slick as hell, the bears can't get their claws to pierce it or their paws to hold it. But humans can open it lickety-split thanks to an ingenious coin-slot opener. Rangers and backcountry survivors swear by it. But for the love of God, don't lose that coin! --Bruce Barcott
$75; 559-732-3785

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Koflach Arctis Expe

A plastic boot that flexes like leather, has a stiff enough sole for vertical ice, and houses 28-millimeter-thick insulated liners that can be worn inside your sleeping bag. Need proof of its superiority? The Arctis Expe is the first choice of hundreds of professional guides.
$355; 603-880-6143;
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