Spring Break

Score with a bargain rain shell, an eco-friendly PFD, and more of the season's hottest new gear

(Jens Mortensen)
New Spring Gear

1. FLOAT
Polyvinyl chloride is bad for humans and the environment. So Patagonia developed the RIO FRIO, a PVC-free personal flotation device that can save your life without harming your health. It also includes a compartment for your hydration reservoir. $120; patagonia.com

2. SAVE
The unbeatable bargain among this year's rain shells is REI's ULTRA LIGHT JACKET, which uses two-way stretch nylon for improvedmobility—even when you batten everything down. And it comes with a zip-off/stow-away hood. $129; rei.com

3. HAUL
Big Agnes's STAGE-COACH DUFFEL shines whether you're on foot or afloat, thanks to smooth-rolling polyurethane wheels, an extendable handle, hide-away backpack straps, and waterproof welded construction. 5,100 cubic inches; $159; bigagnes.com

4. RIDE
The only time it's acceptable for a guy to wear capris? When he's bike- commuting in Chrome's three-quarter-length SHINS. You get: light padding (i.e., no diaper butt), zippered cargo pockets, and synthetic water-resistant stretch fabric. You don't get: grease stains. $136; chromebags.com

5. RUN
Think of Brooks's HVAC LONGSLEEVE as your personal heating-and-cooling system. It's part moisture-wicking mesh, part thermoregulating woven silver (which also helps cut odor-causing bacteria). Bonus: a digital audio pocket. $68; brooksrunning.com

6. GRIP
Pow's SLICK LIGHT-WEIGHT GLOVES are ideal for spring's fickle weather. Use them alone for skiing, biking, and more; the stretch mesh shell is both breathable and warm. On cold days, they work great as liners inside a heavier glove. $35; powgloves.com

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